Relations with Spain

October 3, 1949

Report Outline
Division on Policy Toward Fascist Spain
Relations with Spain During World War Ii
United States, United Nations, and Spain
Efforts to Alter Present Spanish Policy

Division on Policy Toward Fascist Spain

Recent advocacy by sen. Taft (R., Ohio), chairman of the Senate's Republican Policy Committee, of friendlier relations with Spain added an influential recruit to the group pressing for revision of American policy toward the Franco regime and at the same time emphasized the cleavage between Congress and the administration on the Spanish question. Although Taft said, Sept. 25, that he was not proposing military aid for Franco, he contended that there was “great strategic value in having the friendship of Spain.” Disclosure that Russia had achieved the manufacture of an atomic bomb was expected to increase the demand in Congress that Spain be brought into the defense planning of the western nations.

Chairman McCarran (D., Nev.) of the Senate Judiciary Committee and several other members of Congress recently carried their advocacy of more cordial relations with Spain to the point of visiting Madrid to discuss with Franco the possibility of American loans and the return of an American ambassador. Such marks of congressional favor for the Spanish dictator have received no encouragement from the administration. On the contrary, when McCarran left for Europe, President Truman emphasized that the senator was acting on his own responsibility in visiting Spain, that he did not represent the American government in any way, that he had no authority to commit the United States to anything.

Four American warships made an official visit to Spain early in September and during the visit Admiral Conolly, commander in chief of U. S. Navy forces in European waters, was received by Franco. Apart from this gesture, the administration has given no indication of altering its policy toward the Spanish regime. At a press conference on July 14 the President said bluntly that the United States and Spain were not on friendly terms. Truman and Secretary of State Acheson both have taken the position that any initiative toward inclusion of Spain in joint recovery and defense efforts must come from European nations. In the meantime, the administration is adhering to the policy of limiting diplomatic relations with Spain in conformity with recommendations made by the United Nations General Assembly in 1946.

ISSUE TRACKER for Related Reports
May 24, 1974  Threatened Spanish Succession
Sep. 18, 1968  Spain and the West
Aug. 12, 1959  Spain and the Free World
Dec. 22, 1951  Franco Spain and European Defense
Oct. 03, 1949  Relations with Spain
Apr. 20, 1945  Spain in Transition
Jan. 26, 1939  Spain's Civil War and the Great Powers
Diplomacy and Diplomats
Regional Political Affairs: Europe