Volume #15 - 349.|
SECURITÉ DE L'ATLANTIQUE DU NORD
LA MISE EN OUVRE DU TRAITÉ DE L'ATLANTIQUE NORD
Note du sous-secrétaire d'État aux Affaires extérieures|
pour le secrétaire d'État aux Affaires extérieures
le 1er avril 1949|
RE: DEFENCE ORGANIZATION TINDER NORTH ATLANTIC TREATY|
1. A short time ago Brigadier Clark, the Canadian Observer on the Western Union Chiefs of Staff Committee, submitted two tentative schemes for the defence organization to be set up under the Atlantic Treaty; one had been prepared by U.K. military authorities and the other by U.S. officers.
2. The U.K. scheme envisaged an Atlantic Chiefs of Staff Committee with the United States in the chair, Western Union represented by France, the "Maritime States" by the United Kingdom, Scandinavia by a representative to be selected and North America by Canada. Regional defence committees would be established for Western Union, the Maritime States, Scandinavia and North America. The chain of responsibility was not made very clear and the P.J.B.D. was included as the regional organization for North America. (Attached is a chart showing the U.K. proposals).†
The U.S. scheme, so far as I can gather, was an emergency plan. It envisaged the Combined Chiefs of Staff as the effective planning body for the new Atlantic group.
3. Since we received these preliminary views, General Foulkes has prepared a paper of his own which he has submitted (on a purely personal basis) to General Groenther (United States) and General Hollis (United Kingdom). Foulkes' scheme involves regional planning groups and what he calls "a strategic reserve group" which would consist solely of the United States, the United Kingdom and Canada. The strategic reserve group would, in effect, be the new Combined Chiefs of Staff designed, primarily. as an acceptable and efficient planning body. It would supersede the old Combined Chiefs of Staff, while maintaining major U.S. and U.K. interests.
(I attach a copy of Foulkes' memorandum, dated March 7th).
Hollis is not altogether unfavourable to Foulkes' proposals; he accepts the principle of regional grouping but criticizes the C.G.S.'s scheme principally on the ground that it gives the impression of holding back North Atlantic resources from effective defence planning for Western Europe.
4. Foulkes' proposals have been discussed in a preliminary way with Mr. Claxton and with Robertson and me. Mr. Claxton is aware that Foulkes has put them informally before the U.K. and U.S. staffs.
5. It is, as you know, proposed that, after the signing of the Treaty on Monday, the participating countries should establish a working group in Washington to prepare proposals for organization under the Council. No doubt defence organization will be considered by this working group. I am not at all clear as to the precise type of organization which would best serve Canadian interests but in the following paragraphs I attempt to set out some of the considerations which our representatives should have in mind.
(Incidentally, Foulkes tells me this morning, on his return from Washington, that the U.S. military authorities have reached no conclusion in their own preliminary thinking on this question. It will clearly be some months before any new organization can be agreed on-meantime, the Western Union organs will presumably carry on with U.S. and Canadian observers).
6. It would clearly be inappropriate and unwise for us to take a leading part in putting forward proposals for the form that defence organization might take under the Atlantic Treaty. It could indeed prove very embarrassing if we were to insist on any given scheme for our own representation and then find that we seriously disagreed with the criteria proposed by other countries for apportioning the burden in men, money or supplies.
7. It may be found necessary or advisable to establish an Atlantic Chiefs of Staff Committee but the decision to do so involves at least two serious difficulties:
(a) presumably, there could be no less than six members of the Chiefs of Staff Committee; participation by some of the states whose representatives would attend would involve security problems;
(b) the United States in particular, and possibly the United Kingdom as well, would not be prepared, at this stage, to have overall plans made by an Atlantic Chiefs of Staff group.
There is some indication that the Americans might prefer not to set up an Atlantic Chiefs of Staff Committee now but to employ an expanded Western Union organization to do the planning for defence in Europe. This it is felt would avoid the danger of U.S. and Canadian resources being planned on a joint basis by representatives of all the parties to the Atlantic Treaty.
8. If an Atlantic Chiefs of Staff Committee is created, I believe that Canada should be a member. If we are not, we will be presented with settled joint plans which we will have had no opportunity of discussing in comntittee. The Canadian Government will naturally insist on determining the nature and extent of our contributions to North Atlantic defence. We would be in a better position to argue our case as members of the Chiefs of Staff Committee when plans are being formulated than, as "outsiders", to turn down or modify the recommendations of a committee upon which we were not represented.
9. You may have to discuss this whole matter with Mr. Bevin and Mr. Acheson in Washington. The Foreign Office and the State Department will have a better understanding of our political position than the representatives of the National Military Establishment and the officers of the U.K. Chiefs of Staff.
10. There is one more point which may be of some importance. If the Combined Chiefs of Staff is to be continued, I think it is important that we should keep our foot in the door as we have managed to do so far during the emergency planning.
I gather that the United Kingdom and the United States intend to shelve the emergency plan. This may be an indication that they now attach less importance to the continuance of the Combined Chiefs of Staff. On the other hand if they are faced with the prospect of an Atlantic Chiefs of Staff Committee upon which all members are represented, they may decide to retain a Combined Chiefs for the really important planning. We should not press for an elaborate Atlantic organization upon which we would be fully represented only to find ourselves omitted altogether from basic United States-United Kingdom planning.
11. With respect to the actual Command Organization, in the event of an emergency I feet sure that we should do everything possible to avoid the position we found ourselves in in the last war when a Supreme Commander was named without our participation in the appointment and without any delegation of authority in advance on the part of Canada, Whatever happens I feel strongly that all the members of the Atlantic Pact should jointly confer authority on the Supreme Commanders who will exercise Command over their forces. I do not think this problem will arise in the immediate future but we should perhaps bear it in mind.
Ottawa, March 7, 1949
NORTH ATLANTIC PACT MILITARY ORGANIZATION
1. To recommend an outline military organization required for a North Atlantic Pact.
2. A North Atlantic Pact will not only encompass a vast territory but will include a large number of sovereign countries with divergent outlooks, strong nationalistic pride and varying military and logistical capabilities. Therefore, it will be imperative that every sovereign country has a voice in the military control of the Pact. This, I suggest, should be done through the Council of Defence Ministers.
3. In addition, I consider that certain basic premises should be agreed by all the countries concerned if there is to be sound planning for the equipping and training of the armed forces in preparation for their employment in war. These basic premises are:
(a) The North Atlantic Pact countries can be divided into several groups, the division being based on the principle of the countries within each group having a common vital interest which, if threatened, would call for immediate military action by all the countries in that group. It appears paramount that if the Pact is to be successful, the basic idea must be that the member nations of each territorial group must be determined to fight to the last man and last round for the defence of their group homelands. If this is accomplished, then all other armed forces not involved in these territorial commitments would be available to the Supreme Commander for counter attacks, for exploitation, for opening up new fronts, for holding strategic bases or any other tasks he may decide.
(b) Each of these groups would then be responsible only for the military planning within the group of their particular interest and may not even be required to fight outside that particular group.
In addition, it would be permissible to have quite different military arrangements within each group varying, if necessary, from the clear-cut agreements of the present Western Union Alliance to a somewhat looser confederation such as might be formed in the Middle East, Mediterranean or Australasia. Thus, there would be a series of interlocking regional groups, capable of mutual support, inspired with the will to fight, and with a knowledge that their battles are part of a co-ordinated strategic plan.
(c) Behind the regional groups who are planning the initial battles will be the Strategic Reserve Group which includes those nations which can provide uncommitted reserves of personnel and material. The planning for the employment of this Strategic Reserve will only be done by the members of the Strategic Reserve Group based on the instructions of a Supreme Commander.
(d) For the efficient co-ordination of the military plans of all these groups of nations, it is necessary to establish a Supreme Commander or a Chief of Staff to the Supreme Commander (as for COSSAC [Chief of Staff to the Supreme Allied Command] before the appointment of General Eisenhower). This officer to be an American.
He will be primarily concerned with the building up and employment of the Strategic Reserve but will be also available to the Chairman of each group's Chiefs of Staff for advice and consultation.
(e) Within each group there would be formed a Defence Committee which in turn would receive the advice of a Chiefs of Staff Committee for that particular group. The Chairman or leader of each Chiefs of Staff Committee would be the officer responsible for consulting and advising the Supreme Commander.
4. Present infernational relationships would indicate that the establishment of the following groups within a North Atlantic Pact is immediately feasible. In the near future it may well prove advantageous to include within the Atlantic Pact such groups as a Middle East Group, a Southeast Asia Group and an Australasian Group.
(a) North American Group
(b) Scandinavian Group
Made up of those countries which foam the land mass of Western Europe,
together with the USA.
UK - Chairman (with French Deputy)
(d) Strategic Reserve Group
5. I realize that one of the over-riding problems connected with planning is security. It is for this reason that I suggest all planning connected with the Strategic Reserve is retained within a special group, which for several years can only comprise US, UK and Canada. Group planning will also assist overall security by dividing plans into comparatively watertight compartments.
6. A proposed outline organization is shown at Appendix "A" attached]
7. Bearing in mind the political and geographical problems of an Atlantic Union and the urgent need for sound but secure planning, I consider that all countries must agree to the following basic premises:
(a) The necessity for a number of closely integrated groups within the framework of a larger union;
(b) The military staffs within each group plan only for the action of the forces in that group;
(c) A Supreme Commander (or Chief of Staff) is appointed to advise and coordinate group planning and to relate the plans of the Strategic Reserve Group to the plans of each of the other groups. This officer to be an American. If this procedure is not at present acceptable, then agreement should be reached that another body such as Combined Chiefs should temporarily perform the function of Supreme Commander.