Bullying Bonn: Anglo-German Diplomacy on European by Martin P. C. Schaad (auth.)

By Martin P. C. Schaad (auth.)

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Additional info for Bullying Bonn: Anglo-German Diplomacy on European Integration, 1955–61

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P. C. Schaad, Bullying Bonn © Martin P. C. Schaad 2000 40 Bullying Bonn: Anglo-German Diplomacy, 1955–61 The first of these factors concerned the Brussels negotiations themselves. Here, the discussions had reached a stage at which further expert deliberations were deemed unnecessary. At the meeting of the Foreign Ministers of the Six in February 1956, it was decided that a small committee of three should be asked to combine the findings of the various sub-committees into a single report which was then to be considered and, if approved, used as a basis for opening negotiations on the necessary treaties.

It included none of those officials who had been concerned with the assessment of the German position since Messina. The lack of information contained in the report led ministers to implicitly assume that the divisions within the German government were as fundamental as they had appeared not only at the beginning of the year 1955 but also in the comments of Erhard in Istanbul in October. In this sense, the decision may arguably have been based on Butler’s recollection of his meeting with Erhard, combined with long-held assumptions about the German attitude towards European integration, rather than on a specific assessment of their negotiation performance since Messina.

Now Adenauer and the Common Market enthusiasts in the German government were worried about the possibility of British attempts to wreck the scheme. This concern can be shown to have been justified, for the intention to prevent the establishment of the Common Market was indeed widespread within the British government. 14 Even supporters of British involvement now seemed upset, with Dutch Foreign Minister Johan Willem Beyen displaying ‘great perturbation and indignation’. 15 By the beginning of the new year, the futility of diplomatic pressure on the Six could no longer be denied.

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