Relations with Yugoslavia

November 4, 1949

Report Outline
American Support of Communist Yogoslavia
War and Early Postwar Relations with Tito
Titoism vs. Soviet Russian Communism

American Support of Communist Yogoslavia

Aid in Electring Yogoslavia to U. N. Security Council

American support last month of Yugoslavia's candidacy A for a seat on the United Nations Security Council reaffirmed alike the importance attached by the State Department to Marshal Tito's quarrel with the Cominform and the determination of the United States to neglect no opportunity to strengthen resistance to Soviet dictation in Eastern Europe. The American action in the United Nations was the more conspicuous in that it was not accompanied by parallel British action. Great Britain voted for the Soviet-backed candidate, Czechoslovakia, but the support of the United States won for Yugoslavia the two-thirds General Assembly majority necessary for election as a non-permanent member of the Security Council.

The U. N. Charter provides for “equitable geographical distribution” of the six non-permanent Security Council seats. In vehemently opposing Yugoslavia's candidacy for the scat customarily assigned to an Eastern European country, Soviet Foreign Minister Vishinsky contended that “established tradition, a gentlemen's agreement,” gave the member nations of a geographical region the right to name the nation to be elected from that region. Secretary of State Acheson asserted, on the other hand, that Yugoslavia met all the implications of the Charter requirement, because that country was situated in Eastern Europe, was a Slavic nation, and had a Communist government.

Britain's refusal to take up the cudgels for Yugoslavia was based on the belief that the issue was not of sufficient importance to warrant provoking the Soviet Union and risking a widening of existing divisions within the United Nations. However, a Foreign Office spokesman said in London, Oct. 19, that there was no foundation in the Charter for the Vishinsky view that election of Yugoslavia would be unlawful and unjust. And Hector McNeil, leader of the British delegation to the United Nations, observed on the day after Yugoslavia's election that he and his colleagues were “not at all sorry” over the result of the voting.

ISSUE TRACKER for Related Reports
Aug. 21, 2012  The Troubled Balkans
Jun. 06, 1973  Yugoslavia in Flux
Dec. 18, 1968  Tito's Yugoslavia
Nov. 29, 1961  Yugoslav Neutralism
Nov. 04, 1949  Relations with Yugoslavia
Diplomacy and Diplomats
Regional Political Affairs: Europe