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Documents on Germany, 1944-1959 : background documents on Germany, 1944-1959, and a chronology of political developments affecting Berlin, 1945-1956
(1959)

Statement at Geneva by Prime Minister Eden, on European security, German reunification, and a demilitarized area, July 18, 1955,   pp. 147-149 PDF (1.3 MB)


Page 147

DOCUMENTS ON GERMANY, 1944-59
DONE in Warsaw on May 14, 1955, in one copy each in the Russian,
Polish, Czech and German languages, all texts being equally authentic.
Certified copies of the present Treaty shall be sent by the Government
of the Polish People's Republic to all the Parties to the Treaty.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF the plenipotentiaries have signed the present
Treaty and affixed their seals.
Statement at Geneva by Prime Minister Eden, on European
Security, German Reunification, and a Demilitarized Area, July
18, 19551
This Conference is unique in history because the conditions in
which we meet are unmatched in human experience. We all know
what unparalleled resources the scientific and technical discoveries of
our age have placed within our reach. We have only to stretch out
our hand and the human race can enter an age of prosperity such as
has never been known. It is equally clear how utterly destructive
must be the conditions of any conflict in which the Great Powers are
engaged.
There was a time when the aggressor in war might hope to win an
advantage and to realize political gain for his country by military
action. The more overwhelming the military power the more tempt-
ing was the prize and the less might the aggressor expect to have
to pay. We can each one of us think of examples of this in history.
Nothing of the kind is possible now. No war can bring the victor
spoils; it can only bring him and his victim utter annihilation.
Neutrals would suffer equally with the combatants.
These are stern facts out of which we can perhaps win enduring
peace at last. The deterrent against warlike action holds up a, warn-
ing hand. But the deterrent cannot of itself solve international
problems or remove the differences that exist between us. It is in an
attempt to make progress with these problems and differences that we
are met here today. And at this Conference we have to deal with
them mainly in the context of Europe.
What is the chief among them? There can surely be no doubt of
the answer. The unity of Germany. As long as Germany is divided,
Europe will be divided. Until the unity of Germany is restored there
can be neither confidence, nor security in this continent. Within the
limits of our Western Zone we have done all we can to unify Germany.
We have broken down the barriers between our zones. We have
treated the three Western areas as an economic unit and given them a
federal Government. We have brought the occupation to an end.
Quite apart from the larger issues of German reunification it would
mark a real advance if, pending our negotiations for German unity,
the Soviet Government felt able to relax the physical restrictions
which now aggravate the division of Germany, and prevent contact
between Germans in the East and West.
Now I must turn to the wider' issues of German unification. What
is the reason why the Berlin Conference failed a year ago? We
must examine this as dispassionately as we can in order to see what
1 The Geneva Conference of Head8 of Government, July 18-23, 1955 (Department
of State
publication 6046), pp. 31-34.


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