Volume 7 1941~1945

Doc No.

No. 394  NAI DFA Berlin Embassy 18/2

Code telegram from Con Cremin to Joseph P. Walshe (Dublin)
(No. 27) (18/2) (48/2b) (48/4)

BERLIN, 16 March 1944

My 25.1 Received by Secretary of State himself yesterday Wednesday. I handed him short aide-mémoire to effect that (1) Irish Government attributes U.S. démarche to German infringements of our sovereignty and neutrality such as parachute landings and (2) hopes therefore that German Government will take effective measures to prevent recurrence of events likely to compromise our position. Verbally I added to (1) that the landings were the more unintelligible as they in no way benefited Germany and were bound to give pretext for démarches of this description and to (2) that I was instructed by my Government to state formally and clearly that recurrence of acts compromising for us would have most serious consequences for which responsibility would be German alone and that matter is all the more serious considering our very exposed position and the pressure to which we can be subjected by England and America. Secretary of State said 'neither the German Government, any official authority including military authorities nor the German Legation knew of or had anything to do with these landings, that they regretted they had taken place, and that they had already taken measures to guarantee that similar incidents should not recur '. He mentioned that he had already tried to get information regarding the landings but had found out nothing and would again enquire. His opinion was that the men wanted to go home and persuaded some pilot to take them. He said however that it would be possible for British plane to take in Spain or elsewhere and parachute land in Ireland men who had been in Germany and that the two landed men were probably nothing in comparison with the number of British agents who might land in Ireland. I said that while it was of course possible that a British plane might land someone who had been in Germany it was out of the question in these cases (later at the diplomats lunch I was in position to inform him that O'Reilly was seen here on Dec. 15th by Irishman your tel. 5 1943) and that neither point was quite relevant considering conclusions drawn from the landings by Americans and our geographical position. My impression is that Secretary of State does not sincerely hold above theory but was trying to find some explanation for what he considers most regrettable incident.

The conversation was quite friendly. Secretary of State repeated more than once more or less textually statement quoted above. He said (repeating here what he had already said in presence of colleagues at lunch on March 11th) that Ireland's attitude in this matter had called forth highest admiration.

Tendency in official circles to consider U.S. note as in line with pressure on Turkey, Spain, Portugal, Argentine and as forming part of a drive on neutral countries preconcerted at Teheran.

1 Not printed.