|United States||United Kingdom||Soviet Union|
|President Roosevelt||Prime Minister Churchill||Marshal Stalin|
|Mr. Hopkins||Foreign Secretary Eden||Foreign Commissar Molotov|
|Mr. Harriman||Sir Archibald Clark Kerr||Marshal Voroshilov|
|Admiral Leahy||Field Marshal Dill||Mr. Pavlov|
|General Marshall||General Brooke||Mr. Berezhkov|
|Admiral King||Admiral of the Fleet Cunningham|
|General Arnold||Air Chief Marshal Portal|
|Major General Deane||Lieutenant General Ismay|
|Captain Royal||Lieutenant General Martel|
|Captain Ware||Major Birse|
November 30, 1943, 4 p.m. Secret
The President opened the proceedings by stating that while most of those present were aware of what had occurred this morning at the meeting of the British and American Staffs, he wished personally to express his happiness at the decision reached which he hoped would be satisfactory to Marshal Stalin. He proposed that Sir Alan Brooke, British Chief of Staff, report for the Combined Chiefs.
General Brooke said that sitting in combined session the United States and British Staffs had reached the following agreement, which had been submitted for the approval of the President and the Prime Minister. It was agreed:
That OVERLORD will be launched during the month of May 1944.
That there will be a supporting operation in southern France on as large a scale as possible, depending on the number of landing craft available for this operation.
The Prime Minister stated that it was important that close and intimate contact be maintained with Marshal Stalin and the Soviet General Staff since it was important that in closing on the wild beast all parts of the narrowing circle should be aflame with battle. All operations must be considered, and if Turkey entered the war her action as well as the resistance operations in Yugoslavia should also be coordinated with the actions of the allied army.
Marshal Stalin said he fully understood the importance of the decision reached and the difficulties which would be encountered in the execution of OVERLORD. He added that the danger in the beginning of the operation was that the Germans might attempt to transfer troops from the eastern front to oppose OVERLORD. In order to deny to the Germans the possibility of maneuvering he pledged that the Red Army would launch simultaneously with OVERLORD large scale offensives in a number of places for the purpose of pinning down German forces and preventing the transfer of German troops to the west. He said that he had already made the foregoing statement to the President, and Mr. Churchill but he thought it necessary to repeat it to the conference.
The President said that we were all aware of the importance of maintaining the closest cooperation between the three Staffs, and now that they had gotten together he hoped they would stay together. He went on to say that he had already told Marshal Stalin that the next step would be the appointment of a Commander-in-Chief for OVERLORD, and that he was confident that this appointment would be made within three or four days or immediately after he and the Prime Minister had returned to Cairo. He suggested that if Marshal Stalin and the Prime Minister had no objection it might be advisable for the British and American military staffs to return to Cairo tomorrow as they had a great deal of detail work to do in working out the decisions reached here. Both Marshal Stalin and the Prime Minister agreed.
The Prime Minister stated that having taken this important decision the main question now was to find enough landing craft for all our needs. He said he could not believe that the great resources of the United States and England could not make available what was needed. He said he had caused an inquiry to be made in regard to the total number of landing craft in the Mediterranean, and that upon their return home his military staff would have this information. Mr. Churchill added that he wished to state that now the decision had been taken he felt that OVERLORD should be delivered with smashing force and he hoped that it would be possible to add to the strength of the operation as he wished to place that man in a position where there was no way out for him; if he put force in the west he would be smashed on the Soviet front, and if he attempted to hold firm in the east he would be smashed on the west. He went on to say that the present conclave might now break up as the military questions had been settled. Some political questions remained to be discussed and he hoped it would be possible on December 1st and 2nd to discuss these questions since he felt it would be of great value to be able to tell the world that full agreement had been reached on all questions at this conference. He expressed the hope that the President and Marshal Stalin would be willing to remain in Tehran through December 2 if necessary. Both the President and Marshal Stalin agreed.
The President then said it would be necessary to consider the text of the communiqué to be issued and suggested that the military staffs before their departure work out a draft of the military aspects of the conference for their consideration. This was agreed.
The Prime Minister then said some form of cover plan should be worked out in order to confuse and deceive the enemy as to the real time and place of our joint blows. He said that the vast preparations in England could not be concealed from the enemy, and it was therefore important that every effort be made to confuse and mislead him. He said that “truth deserves a bodyguard of lies.”
Marshal Stalin then described the methods used on the Soviet front to conceal the location and timing of Soviet offenses. This was done through the use of dummy tanks, aircraft, fake landing fields and false information on the military radio.
The formal conference then closed with the agreement that the President, Marshal Stalin and the Prime Minister, Mr. Molotov, Mr. Eden and Mr. Hopkins would meet tomorrow to discuss political questions.