The French Yellow Book

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No. 245 :
M. Coulondre, French Ambassador in Berlin, to M. Georges Bonnet, Minister for Foreign Affairs. Berlin, August 26, 1939.

(Received by telephone at 12.5 a.m.)

IN the course of an interview with Sir Nevile Henderson today, Herr Hitler made the following statement to my colleague, the substance of which I report herewith as I had it from the latter. "I am prepared," said the Chancellor, "to make one more attempt to re-establish good relations between our countries and to preserve peace. I am willing to consider, within certain limits, a disarmament programme. I still want colonies, but I can wait, three, four or even five years; in any case, this will not be grounds for a war. Moreover, it need not be a question of the former German colonies. The important thing for me is to find fats and timber." My British colleague replied that to pass on these proposals with any hope of their being useful, he would have to be convinced that Germany would not attack Poland.

Herr Hitler replied: "It is impossible for me to give any such undertaking; I prefer that you should not pass on my proposals."

The British Ambassador has the impression, nevertheless, that hostilities will not break out during the 48 hours that his mission will take, for he is secretly leaving for London to-morrow morning by air. I asked my colleague if Herr Hitler had not referred to Poland. He answered that the Chancellor had repeated his claims of last April, namely, the return of Danzig, and access to the Free City across the Corridor.


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