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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

Statement by Secretary of State Dulles before House Foreign Affairs Committee, January 28, 1959 [extract],   pp. 378-380 PDF (1.3 MB)

Page 378

378           DOCUMENTS- ON GERMANY, 1944-5 9
the secret session at which finally that was agreed to by the Soviet
Union, including Mr. Khrushchev himself.
Now, if they want to suggest another method than the method
they have already agreed to, it is I think primarily up to them to
suggest the alternative and not up to us., We do not relinquish the
agreement that we have merely in order to have what may be a kind
of a wild goose chase looking for another method. We stand on the
agreement that we have. If the Soviets have another method and
say, "We don't want to have reunification -by free elections but we
willing to have it some other way", we could of course listen to any
proposal that they make. But it -seem.s to me the primary responsi-
bility to suggest an alternative rests upon the nation which wants
to -get out of its present agreement,- which is an agreement to do it
by means of free elections.
Q. Well, does that inrean, Sir, that you do not consider their ap-
parent qualified  disposition  toward  confederation  as a new
A. No, I do not. Quite to the contrary. Both the proposals for
confederation and the proposal for a peace treaty with two Germanies
are obviously designed not -to bring about reunification but to per-
petuate the partition, the division of Germany and to formalize it
for an indefinite period of time. In other words, I consider them as
proposals not for reunification but as proposals for permanent
*   *        *        *       *        *       *
Q. Mr. Secretary, you said that the confederation idea, as ad-
vanced by the Russians, is unacceptable. Would you consider the
confederation idea as constituting an item of negotiation if it were
under a different form and there were different safeguards leading
to- reunification?
A. Well, I said in answer to an earlier question that the word
"confederation" covers a very wide variety of political relationships.
It can beb a relationship between two utterly dis siilar and unrelated
areas which tends to perpetuate their division, perhaps only having
a surface unity with respect to certain particular matters. Or you
can. have a confederation which is, in fact, of very considerable
progress; toward reunification. I said in a sense you can call the
present Federal Republic of Germany a confederation. Now I don't
like, as I said, to use the word particularly because it has become a
word around which emotions revolve. But. the matter of finding ways
which, in fact, will promote reunification: is a matter which, I think
can be and should be studied as resourcefully as possible.
*       *        *        *       *        *       *
Statement by Secretary of State Dulles Before House Foreign
Affairs Committee, January 28, 1959 1
,*       *        *       *        *       *       .*
-* *: * In 1944-45 there were agreements between the principal
Western allies and the Soviet Union on the zones of occupation of
1Department of State press release 71, January 28, 1959.

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