University of Wisconsin Digital Collections
Link to University of Wisconsin Digital Collections
Link to University of Wisconsin Digital Collections
The History Collection

Page View

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

Note from the American Embassy to the Soviet Foreign Ministry, regarding German reunification, September 30, 1958,   pp. 305-307 PDF (1.4 MB)

Page 306

306           DOCUMENTS ON GERMANY, 1944-59
cussion of the German problem must be the reunification of Germany
and the formation of an all-German Government by means of free
On the method by which such Government should be formed, the
United States Government finds the proposals in the Soviet Gov-
ernment's note both unrealistic and unsatisfactory. According to
those proposals, the question of the reunification -of Germany is to
be left-to a commission composed ofr qpresentatives of the Federal
Republic and the Soviet Zone. The regime estalished in the Soviet
Zone of Germany does not represent the. will of, the people of Eastern
Germany. It is rightly regarded by the people of all parts of Ger-
many as a regime imposed by a foreign power and maintained in
power by foreign forces. Since this regime has no mandate from
the people it purports to speak for, it would violate any genuine con-
cern for the interests of the German people to allow such a regime
to participate in any discussions involving their future Government.
In the Directive issued by the Four Heads of Government at
Geneva in 1955, the Soviet Government recognized its responsibility
for the reunification of Germany. The Directive provides inter alia:
"The Heads of Government, recognizing their common responsibility
for the settlement of the German question .and , the reunification of
Germany, have agreed that the settlement of the German question
and the reunification of Germany by means of free elections shall be
carried out in conformity with the national interests of the German
people and the interests of European security". The United States
Government cannot accept that the Soviet Government has the right
unilaterally to evade this responsibility or this agreement. In ac-
cordance with its similar responsibility the ITnited States Govern-
ment, in conjunction with the Governments of France and the United
Kingdom, has on many occasions put forward!proposals designed to
achieve the restoration of German unity. These Western proposals
recognize the right of the German people to determine their own
way of life in freedom, to determine for themselves their own politi-
cal, economic and social system, and to provide for their security with
due regard to the legitimate interests of other nations. They provide
for the exercise of this right through the holding of free elections
throughout Germany, the establishment of an all-German Govern-
ment, and the negotiation with this Government of the terms of a
peace treaty.
The Government of the United States is ready at any time to
enter into discussions with the Soviet Government on the basis of these
proposals, or of any other proposals genuinely designed to insure
the reunification of Germany in freedom, in any appropriate forum.
It regards the solution of the German problem as essential if a
lasting settlement in Europe is to be achieved.  This problem
has been included as one of the subjects wlhich the Western Powers
put forward on May 28 for examination at a conference of Heads of
Government. Although the Soviet Government agreed that prepara-
tions for such a conference should be made between representatives of
the Four Powers in Moscow, these preparations have been in suspense
since the end of May because of the Soviet Government's failure to
reply to the Western proposals of May 31 for overcoming the pro-
cedural difficulty caused by the divergence in the Soviet and Western.

Go up to Top of Page