740.00119 Control (Italy)/12–1145: Telegram

Mr. Alexander C. Kirk, Political Adviser to the Supreme Allied Commander, Mediterranean Theater, to the Secretary of State

4231. At SAC special meeting this morning to consider provisions of Fan 634,56 decision was reached that Italian Govt would be notified [Page 750] immediately by Admiral Stone57 of contents in CCS directive and arrangements for public announcement would be undertaken with Italian Govt through AC.

SAC instructed Admiral Stone that at time of notification to Italian Govt of Fan 634 he should warn De Gasperi informally and orally that SAC, at time of handover of northern provinces to Italian Govt may have to obtain undertaking from Italian Govt that Italian troops other than carabinieri will not be stationed anywhere within 15 miles of the Franco-Italian frontier. Meanwhile General Morgan is proposing CCS that he will obtain this undertaking from Italian Govt at time of handover. Admiral Stone was also instructed by SAC to warn De Gasperi in some manner that a public announcement at time of handover might have to be made to the effect that such handover is without prejudice to any rectification of Italian frontier.

At meeting Broad read telegram from Foreign Office stating that State Dept agreed that SACMED should be instructed:

Thus [That] on the withdrawal of Allied troops no Italian troops other than carabinieri should enter a 15-mile belt along the frontier.
That in handing over territory to Italian Govt administration a communication to the Italian Govt and public announcement should be made stating that this is without prejudice to any frontier rectifications which may subsequently be decided.

State Dept thinks words “frontier rectifications” should be used rather than “final settlement of the frontier”.
Halifax58 is concerting with Joint Staff Mission draft directive to SACMED on the above lines.

We stated that in absence of instructions in foregoing sense from Dept we could not regard that message as a directive, and that we should have to ask for instructions with regard to any plan which did not contemplate handback without restriction of all northwestern Italian territory up to 1939 Franco-Italian frontier on same basis as other northern provinces. We pointed out that Dept’s position as communicated to us was that Italian northwestern border territory should be returned to Italian administration at same time, and on same terms, as rest of Northern Italy. (Deptel 1351, August 11 to Rome.)

It also was decided that SAC message to CCS reporting foregoing would state [that] handover of northern provinces be effected about December 31, and urge that question of Franco Italian frontier zone be settled with French Government by that date (see our 4225, Dec 7, 1945). SAC stated that he intended personally to inform General [Page 751] Laparra (head of French Military Mission here) regarding Admiral Stone’s informal warnings to Italian Govt.

Dept’s 1016, December 1059 received after meeting this morning. This appears to be in conflict with British understanding of Department’s position as reported by Broad.

It also was decided at meeting that query be sent to CCS regarding interpretation of paragraph 2 of Fan 634. SAC intends to assume that there will be an AMG headquarters in Rome for Udine and Venezia Giulia.

  1. Message of December 8 from the Combined Chiefs of Staff to the Supreme Allied Commander, Mediterranean Theater, p. 747.
  2. Adm. Ellery W. Stone, Chief Commissioner, Allied Commission, Rome.
  3. Lord Halifax, British Ambassador in the United States.
  4. Not printed.