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Historical documents

387 Watt to Burton

Cablegram 21 Moscow, 21 January 1948, 7.45 p.m.


Your telegram 11. [1]


1. I agree that Australian initiative seems necessary and the
proposed assurance to the Soviet should be sufficient. At the same
time I doubt whether the Soviet will accept any proposal which
they will regard as a restriction on comprehensive veto rights.

Moreover, besides legalizing their own territorial acquisitions
they probably wish to prevent certain possible United States
acquisitions. Reparations issue may also be important for them.

2. Have twice tried without success to waylay Vyshinski at social
functions. Request for formal interviews have to be spaced out as
recently he has been inaccessible to some heads of Missions, and I
hesitate to ask for a formal appointment to discuss the Japanese
Settlement on a tentative basis, as distinct from making specific
proposals, but will do so if you think this necessary. [2]

Please advise.

1 Document 386.

2 Watt discussed the Australian proposals with V.A. Zorin, Deputy
Minister for Foreign Affairs, on 29 January 1948 and, on 19
February, with Yerofeev, head of the Second European Division. See
cablegram 61, dispatched 19 February 1948.

[AA:A3195, 1948 1.1236]
Last Updated: 11 September 2013
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