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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

Memorandum from the Western powers to the Soviet Union, on agenda for a summit meeting, May 28, 1958 [extracts],   pp. 277-280 PDF (1.6 MB)

Page 277

DOCUMENTS .ON GERMANY, 1.944-59             277
claims that those who draw together to get protection from that shield
are aggressive groupings". It claims that those who seek only de-
fense should prove it by renouncing all but inferior weapons, leaving
modern weapons to be a monopoly of those who have a tragically
long record of expansion by the use of violence.
It claims that certain of our aerial defense precautions are danger-
ous and frightening. But when we try to make it possible to revise
them on the basis of reciprocal international inspection that will give
a large measure of assurance against surprise attack, the Soviets say
"nyet". They did so again at the United Nations Security Council
last week.
The Soviet Union professes not to want to use nuclear weapons, but
insists upon continuing at a feverish pace to multiply such weapons
in, its own arsenals. It calls the free world to rely upon Soviet pro-
ises not to use its nuclear weapons in the event of war despite the
long record of broken promises to which I have alluded.
This Communist propaganda line is designed to produce a world
dominated by the military power of the Sino-Soviet bloc. Freedom
would have no adequate defense. There is a duty to look behind
words that sound alluring and to see and reject the underlying plot
against freedom.
I hope that the lessons of Berlin-the lesson taught by its sur-
roundings, the lesson taught by its faith and the lesson taught by the
cooperative action of the free-will be applied to the larger context
of world affairs.
All peoples in all the world, including the peoples of the Soviet
Union. look with horror at the prospect of a new war. All' would
take any dependable steps to reduce that prospect, and,' above all,'''to
eliminate the new weapons which threaten humanity with virtual
extinction. But Berlin teaches that there cannot be confidencei n- ere
Soviet Communist promises; that there cannot be safety in weakness.
It also teaches that man is a spiritual being able, by faith, to pfo rem
miracles. And that men of 'faith'are not prepared to succumb to a
rule that is atheistic and militaristic merely in the hope of'. thus
insuring continued existence.
And men who are free-and all who having lost freedom would
regain it, can pay homage to Berlin, and learn and apply the lessons
that it teaches.
Memorandum from the Western Powers to the Soviet Union, on
Agenda for a Summit Meeting, May 28,19581
The Governments of the US, UK and France believe that. the
present international situation requires that a serious attempt be
made to reach agreement on the main problems affecting the attain-
ment of peace and stability in the world. They consider that, in the
circumstances, a Sunmmit meeting would be desirable if it- would pro-
vide the opportunity for serious discussions of major problels -and
1 Department of State press release 330, June 16, 19!&. The memorandum
was handed
to Foreign Minister Gromyko by the British Ambassador on behalf of the United
States, the
United Kingdom, and France. Soe also Western paper of May 31, 1958; and Premier
Khrushchev's letter of June 11, 19,58 (infra).

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