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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

Remarks at news conference by Secretary of State Dulles, on the question of a summit meeting, March 25, 1958 [extracts],   pp. 263-265 PDF (1.3 MB)

Page 264

1) The equating of certain Eastern European governments,
such as Czechoslovakia and Rumania, with such Western Gov-
ernments as the United Kingdom, France, and Italy-;
2) Acceptance of the legitimacy of the East German puppet
regime and acquiescence in the continued division of Germany;
3) Ending the agreed joint responsibility of the four former
occupying powers of Germany for the- reunification of Germany,
a responsibility that was reaffirmed at Geneva in 1955
4) Acceptance of the Soviet claim for numerical parity in
bodies dealing with matters, such as disarmament, within the
competence of the United Nations General Assembly-a "parity"
which if conceded would give the Soviets a veto power in many
functions of the General Assembly enabling them to evade the
will of the great majority and thus further to weaken the United
Nations by, in important respects, importing into the General
Assembly the same weaknesses that have crippled the Security
5) The acceptance of an agenda so formulated that virtually
every item-nine out of eleven-implies acceptance of a basic
Soviet thesis that the Western Powers reject.
Now in making clear this price tag, I do not want to imply that I
think that there will not be a Summit Conference.
*       *        *       *       *        *       *
Q. Mr. Secretary, in the note from the Soviet Government of yes-
terday, they referred to the possibility of discussing a German Peace
Treaty, and also a pact between the Warsaw Powers and the NATO
Powers. Now as agenda items, do those two points not open the whole
question of the reunification of Germany and, also, the position of
Eastern Europe, which you want to discuss?
A. I would feel rather that they tend pretty much to close the door
to the kind of thing that we want to discuss. The Soviet, at least,.
would interpret such an agenda item as limiting the discussion to
the particular matters; namely, a peace treaty involving both Ger-
manies, and equating of the Warsaw Pact with the NATO group.
I would be extremely concerned to see the agenda accepted in that
form without at least making clear that we interpret the agenda as
opening up the possibility of discussing these other items. You will
recall that at the last Summit Conference at Geneva, there was a very-
prolonged and rather sharp exchange of views at the restricted meet-
ing with respect to the label and title to be given to these topics. And
finally, we compromised upon a title that was called "European Se-
curity and Germany" and that, we felt was broad enough to open up
the kind of subjects that you refer to.
If we now accepted a narrowing of that agenda item, as the Soviets
propose, certainly they would argue that we had agreed to forego at
this time any discussion of the reunification of Germany. Indeed,
they are quite categorical, and have been in the whole series of notes
that they have put out, that they do not consider that the reunifica-
tion of Germany is discussable. If we accept such an agenda item
with their interpretation on it, I would think that-while, of course,
nobody is there physically to prevent the Heads of Western Govern-
ments from uttering words, and we could probably use those words,
"reunification of Germany"-I am quite sure it would be contended

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