Foreign Policy

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Foreign Policy

Foreign Policy

E.B. 

Didn't expect Marshall Offer wd. precipitate this so violently.
But R. decided it was "now or never" & must bring it all to a head.  R. decided to try to smash w. Europ. countries (economically) before a w. union cd. be brought into effective existence.
French expect next upheaval in Feb.
Considered too wtr. strikes in U.K. cd. be provoked Mar./Apl.
W. world was awake to it & prevented it.
How long can we afford not to have w. Europe organised.

P.M. 

Must now have a positive policy. Not enough merely to denounce R.
But can't close eyes to what R. is doing - appeasement. That leads to E.B.'s concln.

A.B. 

Emphasis in pp. makes me uneasy.
"Mustn't become handmaid of U.S. policy." But in practice, it means an anti-Sov. policy. For our middle policy doesn't come out clearly. We are always in anti-Sov. posn. For our policies always commend themselves to Tory newspp. That makes me unhappy.
We say 3rd Force: but what we do is anti-Soviet with Right support. E.g. Greece. A Socialist policy wd. have strengthened Gk. centre. But in fact we have supported a Gk. Govt. wh. is v. re-actionary. cf. also references in memo. to Spain & Portugal.
This picture of world sitn is accurate to-day. But it won't last. The cultural watersheds of satellite States flow West. And R. can't make them turn eastwds. Trade can make for intercourse there wh. will enable us to penetrate the curtain.
R. offensive now because they are weak & frightened (by U.S. Press etc.). And no wonder. No reason to fear war fr. Russia - agrarian masses can't pack a punch.
Our course = avoid immutable decns. Pursue active social policies in Europe in such a way tht. we are criticised by the extreme Right.
Matter of emphasis.

P.M. 

Real Left will get capitalist support on e.g. civil liberties.
We mustn't be frightened when Tories applaud our liberal views.

E.B. 

Greece. Is strategic area. R.'s imperialist aims in Greece. We resisted that drive down to Med.
We tried to strengthen Gk. centre: but they won't stand up.
And Gks. voted for Royalists for sake of security, law & order.
Tie-up with U.S.A. Inevitable because we cdn't carry the cost any longer.
"R. doesn't want war." True:  but she will be as provocative as possible.

H.M. 

Sympathise with A.B.'s fear of support from Right. Don't care for having to attack Russia. But how can we help it on the facts.
Any discn on f. affairs = 0rds on the mischief-making activities of Sov. Union & their imitation of Hitler's tactics. And the success of those tactics.
And R. propaganda continues - thro' local Communists and fellow travellers. Which is more dangerous than R. radio.
We are therefore bound to include some criticisms of R. system & activities & aims. To weaken their influence.
But one doesn't do this with pleasure.  And doesn't like the Tory applause wh. it brings.
We mustn't however be driven into too much anti-R. publicity.
And the more positive element we can introduce, the better.
Welcome w. Union idea.  Trouble will be:  Doms. & Col. Empire.
Need for closer inter-dep. orgn to work on f. policy issues which involve economic ques. (F.O., Planners, B/T. etc.)
Can we carry cost of any part.  f. policy?
Much to be done on detail of a positive policy. Shd. be interdepl discn of that, too.

E.B. 

Not going to make these pp. public.
No intentn of making anti-R. attacks in my speeches.
My duty is to develop positive side.
Believe I've done this in last 2 years. Constructive work which F.O. have done all over world in last 2 years.
Trade negotns etc., have shown U.K. is still most constructive leader in world.
Positive action in welcomg. Marshall Plan, and organising Europe to receive Aid.
Now there is a chance of a w. Union - informal, with no written constitn.

R.S.C. 

H'to have opposed idea of w. Union - in hope of understandg. with R. convinced now we are driven to it, as prime necessity for our econ. survival: together with Africa.
That is least that will balance with R. and U.S.
Share A.B.'s dislike of Tory support. Expln prob. is that Tories here are Liberals - no extreme Right people of the kind who are willing to associate with Left to extinguish Centre.
W. Union must be on a Socialist basis. Wd. therefore prefer to leave Spain and Portugal out pro tem.
Shd. therefore work out precise steps.  Around what are you going to organise this? Defence:  economic system? V. diff. to organise round a sentiment. Problem will be to find a point of focus? Socialist principles.
Start prs. with France, with her "Third Force" Govt.
Emphasise socialist content of this f. policy.

E.B. 

Portugal. Can't ignore her, if you want Africa in this sphere.
Despite her unwelcome political system.
Spain, of course, is another story - until we can get Franco out.

C.J. 

Can't ignore Portugal if anythg. is to be done in organising Africa.
Have opened discns with them in Ldn. They are anxious to pursue this. Useful results can be secured cf. in outlets for Rhodesia etc.

P.M. 

How will you build this up? Not by constitution. Not by Socialist propaganda alone. Cultural links - f. travel important there.
Needs action on v. broad lines.

H.M. 

Can some organn like Marshall Cttee in Paris work this out - with C.O. & C.R.O. added?

E.B. 

Move already to keep the 16 countries together.
My aim since '45 has bn. to save outer crust of Europe.
Effect of R. refusal of M. Aid has bn. to keep together the ring of S/Democratic countries.
Dependence on U.S. I have tried to keep clear of it.  As soon as we can afford to develop Africa, we can cut loose from U.S.
My aim has bn. to develop B. influence in the heart of the world - thro' Med. & M/East to India, and thro' Africa to S.E.A.
Disengaging somewhat from S. America. Thus leaving U.S.  and R. to clash on the fringe i.e. in F/East and on n. frontiers of Canada.

A.B. 

We always assumed tht. R. wd. meet her sociological frontiers when she came up v. developed material civilisations.
That's all right. But represent it, not as anti-Soviet policy, but as natural defence of w. Europe.

T.W. 

Civil liberties - freedoms etc., etc.
Support E.B. and A.B. too.
E.B. must say somethg. in F. Affairs Debate about U.K. attitude to Soviet policy.

J. 

How & around what are you to build w. Union?
Defence: economic: cultural: Or all three?

E.B. 

Begun with Anglo-French Cttee. Economic.
Next: technical developmt. of Africa. Must be quiet about that because don't want to bring U.S. in.
Next: cultural. Means re-organising B.B.C. Want it linked into a w. European system. As at Singapore - one informn service for S.E.A.
Will a 2nd language (compulsory in schools) be necessary in U.K.?
To facilitate a w. Union.

P.M. 

Can you get a single Radio in Luxembourg? For W. Union.
Cd. P. Gordon-Walker look into this?

E.B. 

Possibly by developing central Radio in W. Zones  of Germany.
Defence. R. has now 300 m. In w. Europe, w'out Germany prs. only 150 m. but with Africa added we cd. be larger than either R. or U.S.

R.S.C. 

Seeking better econ. balance in world - seek grouping of R., U.S., W. Europe and Asia (later). That wd. be sensible & non-provocative.

P.M. 

Let E.B. circulate his speech to T.U.C. in 1932.

P. 

Encourage G. leaders to hope G. will soon be included.
They are excluded pro tem. for reasons diff. from those for excldg. Spain.
Let them come to mtgs.  Encourage them to think a chair will be kept  for them at the Table.

G.T. 

Effect on U.K.
Diffies due to encouraging idea only black or white.
Tory support for any attack on Soviet.
Not a ques. of pro-Soviet or con.
Need to emphasise line taken by P.M. in recent b'cast viz., trouble due to R. refusal of our offer to work with them.
Categorical denials backed up by proof.

A.V.A. 

In short, tell the truth about Russia.

A.W. 

R. has herself destroyed all the influence she had with working in U.K. Let her continue to take the blame for refusing to co-operate with world.

C.J. 

Colonial Empire & Propaganda.
Have overhauled informn services. Tried to interest B. newspp. In Col. work. Strengthened T.U. movement. Have used film & B. Council work.
Cultivated students in Ldn., who will be future leaders in Colonies.
Linked them e.g. with W.E.A.
News-service to African Press.
All this is positive work with anti-Communist effects.

P.M. 

Congress of Europe - proposed to be called at Hague. 

E.B. 

Am consultg. Morgan Phillips & Healey.
Diffy about W.F.T.U.  Means T.U.C. shdn't go to this.
No diffy, however, in Labour Party being represented.  
………later, discovered E.B. was talkg. of somethg. different. 
And knew nothing of it.

P.M. 

Gave further particulars. Linked with W.S.C.'s European organisation.

R.S.C. 

Otherwise a good lot of people.

P.M. 

L/N. Union sort of idea. What is to be our line?

A.B. 

Assocn with this will put us wrong.

E.B. 

I won't touch it - because I wasn't consulted!

P.M. 

Ques. really is - attitude of Labour Party. Will E.B. consider and advise.

E.B. 

V. well.

A. 

Remember Dom. interest. N.Z. & Australia will favour this.
Take care to see tht. C.R.O. are consulted.

Taken from C.M. 2(48) - Meeting held on 8 January 1948.