Diary of a Labour Man: 1917 - 1945

Full text Prime Minister




On 13th February, 1945, the Prime Minister (Mr. Curtin) said -

"I regard it as a most revealing communiqué,* indicative of the most intimate concert in the conduct of operations against Germany, and making a completely maximum use of the pooled resources and a complete co-ordination of the military capacity of the three great powers.

*On 12th February, 1945, the following communiqué was issued from Yalta (Crimea):-

The following statement is made by the Prime Minister of Great Britain (Mr. Churchill), the President of the United States of America (President Roosevelt) and the Chairman of the Council of Peoples Commissars of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (Marshall Stalin):

1. The Defeat of Germany. We have considered and determined the military plans of the three Allied Powers for the final defeat of the common enemy. The Ministry staffs of the three Allied Powers have met in daily meetings throughout the Conference. These meetings have been most satisfactory from every point of view and have resulted in closer co-ordination of the military effort of the three Allies than ever before. The fullest information has been interchanged: the timing scope and co-ordination of new and even more powerful blows to be launched by our armies and air forces into the heart of Germany from east, west, north and south have been fully agreed and planned in detail. Our combined military plans will be made known only as we execute them, but we believe that the very close working partnership among the three staffs attained at thin conference will result in shortening the war; meetings of the three staffs will be continued in the future whenever the need arises. Nazi Germany is doomed, the German people will only make the cost of their defeat heavier to themselves by attempting to continue a hopeless resistance.

2. The Occupation and Control of Germany.- We have agreed on common policies and plans for enforcing the unconditional surrender terms, which we shall impose together use Nazi Germany after German armed resistance has been finally crushed These terms will not be made known until the final defeat of Germany is accomplished under the agreed plans. The forces of the three powers will each occupy a separate zone of Germany; co-ordinated administration and control has been provided for under the plan through a central control commission consisting of the Supreme Commanders of the Three Powers with head-quarters in Berlin. It has been agreed that France should be invited by the Three Powers, if she should set desire to take a zone of occupation and to participate as a fourth member of the Control Commission The limits of the French zone will be agreed by the four Governments concerned through their representatives on the European Advisory Commission. It is our inflexible purpose to destroy German militarism and Nazism and to ensure that Germany will never again be able to disturb the peace of the world. We are determined to disarm and disband all German Armed forces, break up for all time the German General Staff that has repeatedly contrived the resurgence of German militarism, remove or destroy all German military equipment, eliminate or control all German industry that could be used for military production, bring all war criminals to justice and swift punishment and exact reparation in kind for destruction wrought by the Germans, wipe out the Nazi party, Nazi laws, organizations and institutions, remove all Nazi and militarist influences from public offices and from the cultural and economic life of the German people and take in harmony such other measures in Germany as may be necessary to future peace and safety of the world. It is not our purpose to destroy the people of Germany but only when Nazism and militarism have been extirpated will there be hope for a decent life for Germans and at place for them in the comity of nations.

3. Reparation by Germany.- We have considered the question of the damage caused by Germany to Allied Nations in this war and recognize it as just that Germany be obliged to make compensation for the damage in kind to greatest extent possible. A commission for the compensation of damage will be established. The commission will be instructed to reconsider the question of extent and methods for compensating damage caused by Germany to the Allied countries. The Commission will work in Moscow.

4. The United Nations' Conference.- We are resolved upon the earliest possible establishment with our Allies of a general international organization to maintain peace and security. We believe that this is essential both to prevent aggression and to remove the political, economic and social causes of war through the close and continuing collaboration of all peace-loving people. The foundations were laid at Dumbarton Oaks on the important question of voting procedure; however, agreement was not then reached. The present conference has been able to resolve the difficulty. We have agreed that a conference of United Nations should be called to meet at San Francisco in the United States of America on 25th April, 1945, to prepare the charter of such an organization along the lines proposed in the informal conversation at Dumbarton Oaks. The Government of China and Provisional Government of France will be immediately consulted and invited to sponsor invitations to the conference jointly with the Governments of United States of America, Great Britain and the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics.

As noun on the consultation with China and France have been completed the text of proposals on voting procedure will be made public.

5. Declaration of Liberated Europe.- We have drawn up and subscribed to a declaration on liberated Europe: this declaration provides for concerting the policies of the Three Powers and for joint action by them in meeting the political and economic problems of liberated Europe in accordance with democratic principles The text of the declaration is as follows:-

"The Premier of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom and the President of the United States of America have consulted with each other in the common interests of peoples of their countries and those of liberated Europe. They jointly declare their mutual agreement to concert during the temporary period or instability in liberated Europe the policies of their three Governments in assisting the peoples liberated from the domination of Nazi Germany and the people of the former Axis Satellite States of Europe to solve by democratic means their pressing political and economic problems.

"The establishment of order in Europe and the rebuilding of national economic life must be achieved by processes which will enable the liberated peoples to destroy the least vestiges of Nazism and Fascism and to create democratic institutions of their own choice. This is a principle of the Atlantic Charter, the right of all peoples to choose the form of government under which they will live, the restoration of sovereign rights and self-government to those peoples who have been forcibly deprived of them by the aggressor nations, to foster the conditions in which the liberated peoples may exercise these rights. The three governments will jointly assist the people in any European liberated State or former Axis Satellite State in Europe where in their judgment conditions require -

(a) To establish conditions of peace; (b) To carry out emergency measures for the relief of distressed people; (c) To form interim governmental authorities broadly representative of all democratic elements in the population and pledge to the earliest possible establishment through free elections of Governments responsive to the will of the people: and (d) To facilitate where necessary the holding of such elections."

The Three Governments will consult the other United Nations and provisional authority or other Governments in Europe when matters of direct interest to themselves are under consideration when in the opinion of the three Governments. conditions in any European liberated State or any former Axis Satellite State in Europe make such action necessary. They will immediately consult together on the measures necessary to discharge the joint responsibilities set forth in this declaration. By this declaration we reaffirm our faith in the principles of the Atlantic Charter our pledge in the declaration by the United Nations and our determination to build, in co-operation with other peace-loving nations, a world order under law dedicated to peace, security, freedom and the general well-being of all mankind. In issuing this declaration the Three Powers express the hope that the Provisional Government of the French Republic may be associated with themselves in the procedure suggested.

6. Poland.- We came to the Crimea Conference resolved to settle our differences about Poland. We discussed fully all aspects of the question, we reaffirmed our common desire to see established a strong, free, independent and democratic Poland. As a result of our discussion we have agreed on the conditions in which a new Polish Provisional Government of National Unity may be formed in a manner as to command recognition by the three major powers. The agreement reached is as follows:-

“A new situation has been created in Poland as a result of her complete liberation by the Red Army. This calls for the establishment of a Polish Provisional Government which can be more broadly based than was possible before the recent liberation of Western Poland. The Provisional Government which is now functioning in Poland should, therefore, be re-organized on a broader basis with the inclusion of democratic leaders from Poland itself and from Poles abroad. This new Government should then be called the Polish Provisional Government of National Unity. M. Molotov, Mr. Harriman and Sir A. Clark Kerr are authorized as a Commission to consult in the first instance in Moscow with members of the present Provisional Government and with other Polish democratic leaders from within Poland and from abroad, with a view to the re-organization of the present Government along the above lines. This Polish Provisional Government of National Unity shall be pledged to the holding of free and unfettered elections as soon as possible on the basis of universal suffrage and secret ballot. In these elections all democratic and anti-Nazi parties shall have the right to take and put forward candidates when a Polish Provisional Government of National Unity has been properly formed."

In conformity with the above the Government of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, which now maintains diplomatic relations with the present Provisional Government of Poland and the Government of the United Kingdom and the Government of the United States, will establish diplomatic relations with the new Polish Provisional Government of National Unity, and will exchange ambassadors by whose reports the respective Governments will be kept informed about the situation in Poland.

The three heads of the Government consider that the eastern frontiers of Poland should follow the Curzon Line with digressions from it in some regions of five to eight kilometres in favour of Poland. They recognize that Poland must receive substantial accessions of territory in the north and west. They feel that the opinion of the new Polish Provisional Government of National Unity should be sought in due course on the extent of these accessions and that the final deliminations ot the western frontier of Poland should thereafter await the Peace Conference.

7. Yugoslavia.- We have agreed to recommend to Marshall Tito and Dr. Subasio that the agreement between them should be put into effect immediately and that a new Government should be formed on the basis of that agreement. We also recommended that as soon as the new Government has been formed it should declare that -

(1) The anti-Fascist Assembly of National Liberation (AVNOJ) should be extended to include members of the last Yugoslav Parliament (SKUPSHINTA) who have not compromised themselves by collaboration with the enemy, thus forming a body to be known as a temporary Parliament; and,

(2) Legislative Act passed by the Assembly of National Liberation will be subject to subsequent ratification by a Constituent Assembly.

There was also a general review of other Balkan questions.

8. Meetings of the Foreign Secretaries throughout the Conference.- Besides the daily meetings of the heads of the Governments and the Foreign Secretaries separate meetings of the three Foreign Secretaries and their advisers have also been held daily. These meetings have proved of the utmost value and the conference agreed that permanent machinery should be set up for regular consultation between the three Foreign Secretaries. They will, therefore, meet as often as may be necessary, probably about every three or four months. These meetings will be held in rotation in the three capitals, the first meeting being held in London after the United Nations Conference on World Organization.

9. Unity for Peace as for War.- Our meeting here in the Crimea has reaffirmed our common determination to maintain and strengthen in the peace to come that unity of purpose and of action which has made victory possible and certain for the United Nations in this war. Believe that this is a sacred obligation which our Governments owe to our peoples and to the people of the world. Only with continuing and growing co-operation and understanding among our three countries and among all the peace-loving nations can the highest aspiration of humanity be realized, of secure and lasting peace which will, in the, words of the Atlantic Charter, afford assurance that all the men in all the lands may live out their lives in freedom from fear and want. Victory in this war and establishment of the proposed International Organization will provide the greatest opportunity in all to create, in the years to come, the essential conditions of such a peace.

“It does spell, as the communiqué says, the doom of Germany. Naturally, the communiqué proceeds to indicate that plans have been made for the administration of Germany when the Nazi armies have surrendered. There, too, the concert is complete. Germany, and to some extent, other areas, is to have a military administration after the German armies have been defeated.

"I welcome very much the conference to be held at San Francisco, United States of America, on 25th April, 1945, on world security. World security cannot become practicable until Japan has been defeated in the Pacific and in China. I regard the selection of San Francisco, as politically significant as it is geographically accessible.

“I direct attention to the fact that in regard to the military plans for the completion of the war against Germany, the three great leaders say that these will be revealed as they are executed. That is to say, they are not to be made known to the enemy nor are they to be for public discussion among ourselves which is, I think, the proper way to treat military plans."