Monday, January 25, 2016

ADSS 1.162 Kaldewey to Maglione: news from Romania

ADSS 1.162 Umberto Kaldewey (1), Charge d’affaires, Budapest Nunciature to Luigi Maglione, Sec State

Reference: Report number 2657/1939; AES 6348/39

Location and date: Budapest, 31.08.1939

Summary statement: Romania has proposed a non-aggression pact with Hungary without success; Hungary calls for a pact for the protection of minorities.  Hungarian press is silent on the German occupation of Slovakia.  Friendly demonstrations outside the German and Italian legations.

Language: Italian


Hungary also, naturally, takes the necessary precautions required by the present difficult situation, but the calm, order and discipline which prevails in Budapest and in the centre of the country is noted even abroad. Parliament is due to open again on 14 September when a Bill on agrarian reform will be introduced.

The Hungarian Government has expressed to the Rumanian Government its anxiety about the vast movement of soldiers taking place in Rumania.  The Bucharest Government replied that no aggressive intention should be seen in these activities: they are only concentrations of army units that are part of the autumn manoeuvres for exercise purposes.  In order to give proof of its peaceful intentions towards it neighbours, the Rumanian government has declared itself ready to sign a non-aggression pact between Rumania and Hungary.  The Hungarian Government replied that it was unable to accept this proposal; it does not object to the mobilisation, but it does not consider that the concentration of Rumanian troops along the Hungarian border is a friendly act.  The Hungarian Government, giving proof of its good will, proposed to the Rumanian Government that, instead, a treaty for the protection of the minorities should be concluded because in such a way the relations between the two nations could be improved; such a treaty, moreover, notwithstanding its political nature, could not be construed as a consequence of the mobilisation and the movements of the Rumanian army.

The news that German troops have entered Slovakia has not created any excitement here.

A small number of people with swastika emblems were able – notwithstanding the prohibition of the authorities – to set up a demonstration of sympathy in front of the Italian and the German Legations – as I informed you in my report Number 27 (1) The Hungarian newspapers have disapproved almost unanimously of this gesture, made more or less for internal political purposes, considering it offensive to Germany and Italy as if sympathy towards the two Axis partners in Hungary could be deduced from the action of a few swastika bearers.

Hopes unfortunately are every moment becoming frighteningly weaker; but the people anxiously follow the efforts which are being made to avoid war and especially, with profound gratitude, the noble efforts of the Holy Father in favour of peace.

(1) Umberto Kaldewey, priest of the diocese of Rome, was Charge d’Affaires at the Hungarian Nunciature since at least 1928. 
(2) Not published in ADSS.

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