Friday, June 5, 2015

ADSS 1.41 Osborne to Maglione: Latest British proposals - promote German-Polish talks

ADSS 1.41 D’Arcy Osborne, UK Minister to Luigi Maglione, Sec State.

Reference: 68/28/39 (AES 2510/39)

Location and date: Rome, 13.05.1939

Summary statement: The British Government would like the Pope to promote German-Polish negotiations and promised to support the Pope’s initiative on behalf of peace.

Language: English


Note by Domenico Tardini: Second British reply to the proposal in the Papal peace message.

Aide Memoire

His Majesty’s Government have made confidential enquiries in Paris and Warsaw in regard to the views held there in respect of the action on behalf of peace which His Holiness the Pope had under consideration.  From these enquiries it has clearly emerged that the most hopeful procedure would be if His Holiness could take any steps to promote the peaceful negotiation of the issues outstanding between the German and Polish Governments.  While His Majesty’s Government understand that the Pope does not intend to proceed at present with his project, Lord Halifax would like His Holiness to know that His Majesty’s Government would be ready to give all the support in their power whenever he might feel that the time was appropriate for an initiative on the above-mentioned lines.

His Majesty’s Government desire to convey to His Holiness a reiterated expression of their deep appreciation of the motives underlying his action.  Although his enquiries may not at once have produced the full result for which all lovers of peace may have hoped, His Majesty’s Government are confident that the knowledge throughout the world of the interest which he has manifested will exert a powerful moral influence for good.  And it is their earnest hope that, should at any time the opportunity arise of securing general support for a further and maybe wider effort, His Holiness will not fail to grasp it in the common interests of world peace. (1)

(1) This memorandum reiterates in substance Lord Halifax’s message to Osborne of 11.05.1939.  See DBFP Series 3, Volume 5, n487, p 524.

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