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On November 2 the decision to withdraw the entire mission was communicated to Tirana and, on November 5, an informal note was delivered to Hoxha acknowledging that “the Mission has been unable to achieve the purposes for which it was originally sent to Albania.” Prime Minister Hoxha quickly placed his interpretation on this new development, incorporating it in a lengthy note delivered to the American mission on November 7 and published in Bashkimi on November 12, in which he lauded the compromise offer made August 13 and criticized the impolite Americans for their failure to respond. Meanwhile, the United States Government presented its side of the matter in dispute, setting forth the history of the mission and the rationale for its withdrawal in a State Department press release of November 8 (published under the title “American Mission to Albania Withdrawn” in the Department of State Bulletin November 17, 1946), which read in part:
The proposal made by the United States Government on November 10, 1945, to recognize the Albanian regime headed by Col. Gen. Enver Hoxha specified as a condition that the Albanian authorities affirm the continuing validity of all treaties and agreements in force between the United States and Albania as of April 7, 1939, the date of the Italian invasion of Albania. The requirement of such an assurance from the Albanian regime as a prerequisite to: United States recognition is in accord with the established practice of this Government to extend recognition only to those Governments which have expressed willingness to fulfil their international obligations. The Albanian regime on August 13, 1946, after a delay of nine months, indicated its acceptance of the multilateral treaties and agreements to which both the United States and Albania are parties, but it has failed to affirm its recognition of the validity of bilateral instruments between the United States and Albania.
In view of the continued unwillingness of the present Albanian regime to assume these bilateral commitments and obligations, which are in no instance of an onerous character and concern such customary subjects as arbitration and conciliation, naturalization, extradition, and most-favored-nation treatment (see the appended list), the United States Government can no longer serve any useful purpose by remaining in Albania. ... Bilateral Treaties.and Agreements between the United States and Albania Arbitration treaty
Signed at Washington, Oct. 22, 1928. Ratifications exchanged Feb. 12, 1929; proclaimed Feb. 12, 1929. Effective Feb. 12, 1929. Conciliation treaty
Signed at Washington, Oct. 22, 1928. Ratifications exchanged Feb. 12, 1929; proclaimed Feb, 12, 1929. Effective Feb. 12, 1929. Naturalization treaty
Signed at Tirana, Apr. 5, 1932. Ratifications exchanged July 22, 1935; proclaimed July 29, 1935. Effective July 22, 1935. Extradition treaty
Signed at Tirana, Mar. 1, 1933. Råtifications exchanged Nov. 14. 1935: proclaimed Nov. 19, 1935. Effective Nov. 14, 1935.
Agreement relating to most-favored-nation treatment and other matters.
Signed at Tirana, June 23 and 25, 1922. Effective July 28, 1922.
Signed at Tirana, May 7, 1926. Effective June 1, 1926.
Signed Apr. 13 and June 18, 1932. Effective July 1, 1933. On November 14, 1946 a three-minute flag lowering ceremony took place at the Department of State's survey mission in Tirana, and its American staff drove off for Durres and, on November 15, ships carrying the mission's American staff weighed anchor in heavy seas off this Albanian port en route for Naples, arriving the next afternoon. Ironic sidelights in connection with the hazardous boarding operation completed nearly ten miles off Durres, despite ten-foot waves and minimal cooperation of Albanian authorities, were a prior protest by the Albanian Government to the United Nations charging the American mission with an improper request for “two military craft,” apparently UNRRA-owned but Albanianoperated cargo lighters, for transferring freight from the docks to ships at anchor, and subsequent claim of nearly $1,000 for the “loan” of the UNRRA owned tug and lighter actually used in quitting Durres. Noteworthy Developments (1955-1967) Following Departure of American Survey Mission
A number of noteworthy developments have occurred since Prime Minister Enver Hoxha in his New Year's Message of December 31, 1946 castigated the United States Government, and referred to the departure of the American survey mission as good riddance.
On December 14, 1955, the People's Republic of Albania was admitted to the United Nations, and, at the United Nations General Assembly's 601st Plenary Meeting of November 29, 1956, participated in the Assembly's general debate for the first time. On that occasion Minister of Foreign Affairs Behar Shtylla announced that on the basis of the five well-known principles of peaceful coexistence, the People's Republic of Albania had established diplomatic relations with twenty countries and was “ready and willing to establish normal relations with every country desiring this."
At the 872nd Plenary Meeting of the General Assembly, on September 28, 1960, Chairman of the Council of Ministers, Mehmet Shehu, made the invitation more specific:
We again confirm our readiness to establish normal relations with all States which wish to have such relations with us, including the United States and
the United Kingdon. Three years before addressing those conciliatory words to the United
States and British Governments, Mehmet Shehu had received in Tirana the enterprising foreign correspondent of The New York Times, Harrison E. Salisbury. As the first American newspaperman to enter Albania in ten years, Salisbury owed that honor to Mehmet Shehu himself. Despite this small token of goodwill toward one individual, amplified obliquely to include the United States itself in comments made by Mehmet Shehu, reported by Mr. Salisbury in the series of articles he wrote to describe a week's visit in Albania, officials of the Department of State were quoted in The New York Times of September 13, 1957, as saying that there was "no present prospect of any change in United States relations with Albania.
On March 16, 1967 it became less inappropriate for Americans to seek to enter the People's Republic of Albania as far as the United States Government was concerned. On that date the Department of State published in the Federal Register a revision of Section 51.72 Passports invalid for travel to restricted areas, of the Code of Federal Regulations. On the same date, in the Federal Register, four public notices, Nos. 256-259, emanating from the Office of the Secretary of State, pursuant to the authority of Executive Order 11295 and in accordance with 22 CFR 51.72, were published. These public notices for United States citizens set forth a restriction on travel to, in, or through Mainland China, Cuba, North Korea and North Viet-Nam.
The restriction on travel to Albania was not published, indicating that the Secretary of State had not determined, as he could have, that in addition to the aforementioned restricted areas or countries, Albania was now a "country or area to which travel must be restricted in the national interest because such travel would seriously impair the conduct of U.S. foreign affairs." Therefore, the restriction on travel to Albania is no longer in effect as of March 16, 1967. However, this does not mean that the United States Government is in a position to afford normal protection to its citizens traveling there; it only means that United States passports no longer need to be specially validated for travel to Albania.
“Study the Past" and "What is Past is Prologue”
On the Pennsylvania Avenue side of the National Archives Building in Washington there are impressive statues, each bearing one of these inscriptions. It is evident from the within detailed account of diplomatic and legal ramifications with respect to the policies of de jure recognition and non-recognition, as applied by the United States Government to Albanian Governments over the past fifty years, that the facts are now available upon which to develop in 1972, a new and far more constructive policy
toward the present Maoist-oriented Albanian Government still controlled by those two comrades in arms of World War II - Colonel General Enver Hoxha and Major General Mehmet Shehu.“
One of the facts which can be documented in the files reposing in the National Archives is the very close relationship between Albanians in the United States of America, and their kinfolk in the southern part of Albania, mainly in the prefectures along the Greek frontier. Although cut off from their American kinfolk from 1939 to 1945, and again from 1946 to 1971, they undoubtedly remain, as in June 1945, "highly pro-American” and unaffected by anti-American propaganda.
A report on southern Albania based on personal observation, May 31- June 3, 1945, contained the sentence: “There are still hundreds of people in the South who depend wholly on their husbands, parents, or close friends in America." The truth of this statement can be seen in such newspaper reports as the recent one entitled “Four Weeks in Albania," by an Albanian American, Bill Gounaris. His personal account was serialized throughout most of 1971 in Liria, one of the two Albanian-language weekly newspapers published in Boston, the undisputed center of Albanian American activities in the United States.
The Gounaris account of his travels in southern Albania during his stay in Albania from November 3 to December 1, 1970, provides current support for the recommendation of July 1, 1945 made by Foreign Service Officer Joseph Jacobs to the Secretary of State. Jacobs urged that, irrespective of recognition, communications between the United States and Albania should be reopened for, according to his best estimates from the vantage point of Tirana, “about 25% of Albania's population have either been in US or have friends and relatives who have been there."
The Peking Precedent: From Confrontation to.
Now that President Richard Nixon has made his historic journey to Peking, the saying attributed to the Chinese that a long journey begins with a single, first step should enjoy even more currency. From the day (October 26, 1970) when President Nixon in a toast to visiting President Nicolae Ceausescu of Romania at the White House, deliberately used Peking's official title – the People's Republic of China, the first time an American President had ever done so, to the day of his arrival in Peking (February 20, 1972) is a long time, almost sixteen months.
Inasmuch as the People's Republic of China and the People's Republic of Albania, through public expressions of mutual respect and joint assis
tance by their respective Party leaders, Chairman Mao and First Secretary Enver Hoxha, e.g., in the exchange of telegrams between Peking and Tirana dated September 9 and 17, 1968, within the context of an everlasting and a great and unbreakable militant friendship between the peoples of China and Albania,” do indeed form a sort of big and baby brother combination, little (2 million population) Albania should not be overlooked as a result of the awesome size of China (over 700 million population) and the long distance from Peking to Tirana.
Moreover, President Nixon, in moving beyond the watershed year of 1971, has reasserted in his Third Annual Report on the State of United States Foreign Policy dated February 1972, the continuing validity of the American approach toward all potential adversaries as set forth in his Inaugural Address of January 20, 1969, which contained these statements:
Let all nations know that during this Administration our lines of communication will be open.
We seek an open world - open to ideas, open to the exchange of goods and people -- a world in which no people, great or small, will live in angry isolation.
If, when he spoke those lines, President Nixon did not have in mind, besides the great People's Republic of China the small People's Republic of Albania, he should be reminded of the statement he made July 15, 1971 to explain his Journey for Peace to Peking, in which he expressed the conviction “that all nations will gain" from an improved relationship between the United States of America and the People's Republic of China.
Recommendations in Conclusion
It is respectfully submitted that the approach promised by President Nixon in his Inaugural Address contemplating entry now into an era of negotiation has proved to be valid with respect to the People's Republic of China. Accordingly, the approach should be pursued without delay with respect to the People's Republic of Albania which, under the leadership and control of Enver Hoxha, has engaged in continuous confrontation with the United States of America for almost five years longer than the People's Republic of China and as recently as the autumn of 1971 – when it sponsored the resolution for "Restoration of the lawful rights of the People's Republic of China in the United Nations."
Moreover, in view of the statesmanship he has exhibited by visiting two crucially pivotal Balkan nations, one would hope that President Nixon will seek and find an appropriate occasion, as with Ceausescu at the White House, for deliberately using as President of the United States, Tirana's official title – the People's Republic of Albania. From this new start we