Documents on Germany, 1944-1959 : background documents on Germany, 1944-1959, and a chronology of political developments affecting Berlin, 1945-1956
Note from the German ambassador to the secretary of state, transmitting a memorandum from the Federal Republic of Germany to the Soviet Union, September 2, 1956, pp. 189-190 PDF (859.4 KB)
1Ju DOCUMENTS ON GERMANY, 1944-59 Quite recently, in his prepared statement of 13 June of this year, the Secretary of State of the United States called German reunification "a major objective of the West" and stressed the conviction "that the attitude of the West toward the Soviet Union should be determined by the endeavor to promote the reunification of Germany in freedom." On 17 June 1956, the President of the United States said in his mes- sage to the President of the Federal Republic of Germany, "The end- ing of the division of Germany is essential to the development of friendly and cooperative relations between the Western nations and the Soviet Union." Finally, the President of the United States, in his letter of 4 August this year to the Soviet Prime Minister, Marshal Bulganin, recalled the agreement reached at Geneva by the Heads of Government on the reunification of Germany and expressed concern that no action had been taken. The Federal Government noted these statements with great satisfaction. It is in complete agreement with them, particularly on the count of German reunification not being merely a question of German national interests but a question of coil- prehensive and decisive importance to the future relations between West and East and consequently to the maintenance of world peace. The Federal Government sees in those statements an indication of the serious desire of the United States to take practical, effective steps to reestablish the unity of Germany. Since several attempts to reach an agreement on this matter by means of large conferences have failed, the Federal Government does not consider it expedient to suggest that another conference be con- vened at the present moment. It is of the opinion that a new confer- ence should be convened only when a well-founded prospect has been created through normal diplomatic channels that such a conference may lead to success. The Federal Government urgently appeals to the Government of the United States of America to resume energetically its efforts to advance the matter along these lines. The Federal Government takes the liberty of making its own con- tribution to such efforts in the form of a memorandum addressed to the Government of the U.S.S.R. It considers this procedure useful in view of the fact that it has for sonme time past been engaged in an exchange of views with the Governments of the United States of America, the United Kingdom, and France and has happily reached agreement with those Governments. On the other hand, it has so far had no opportunity of entering into detailed discussion with the Government of the U.S.S.R. on the question of reunification. In view of the fact that, although the question of reunification can be dealt with to some purpose in bilateral exchanges of views, it can be solved, by reason of its legal nature, only jointly with all four governments, the Federal Government takes the liberty of forwarding to the United States Government the text of the memorandum addressed by it to the Government of the U.S.S.R.
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