America at war! (1941–) – Part 3

U.S. State Department (December 27, 1943)

The Ambassador in the Soviet Union to the President

Moscow, 27 December [1943]

Personal and secret for the President from Harriman.

At a meeting with Molotov last night he gave me a memorandum in reply to the memorandum you handed Stalin at Teheran asking for action on the proposals presented by the United States Delegation at the Moscow conference concerning use of air bases for shuttle bombing, communications, etc., paraphrase of which follows:

There is no objection in principle, as was indicated previously from the Soviet side, to the granting of air bases in the territory of the USSR for American military airplanes for the purpose of carrying out the shuttle bombing of Germany. The organization of such bases, however, and the use of the appropriate airdromes for this purpose must be coordinated with the plans of the Command of the military Air Force of the Soviet Union. The Soviet Air Force Command will be instructed for this purpose to begin preliminary conversations on the above question with the appropriate military representatives in Moscow with the subsequent consideration of this question by the Soviet High Command. It goes without saying that there will be made available, after a definite decision of the question concerning the organization of air bases from the Russian side, all necessary information concerning weather related to the operation of shuttle bombing.

With regard to the establishment of air communications between the USSR and the United States along the Moscow-Teheran-Washington route, there is no objection from the Soviet side to the renewal of conversations on this question between representatives of the Chief Administration of the Civil Air Fleet of the USSR and the corresponding American representatives at Moscow for the conclusion of an agreement on a reciprocal basis. December 25, 1943.

Molotov also gave me a preliminary reply to the two other memoranda you handed Marshal Stalin at Teheran concerning advance planning in the North West Pacific for Naval operations and for air operations. Reading from a paper he made the following statement orally which he preferred not to give me in writing:

Under point A of the President’s memorandum concerning Naval operations in the Pacific the Soviet Government is prepared to utilize existing facilities to obtain intelligence information concerning Japan and to make such information available to the United States authorities through the United States Military Mission in Moscow.

With reference to weather information referred to in the President’s memorandum concerning air operations in the Pacific the Soviet Government agrees to furnish the necessary supplementary information concerning the weather in the Far East. Instructions to this effect will be relayed to the Soviet Meteorological Services and information will be exchanged through the United States Military Mission in Moscow or through such other channels as the American Government may prefer. This exchange of information is to be on a reciprocal basis.

[In] Regard to the other questions contained in the President’s memoranda, certain of these questions, because of their importance and complexity require more time for study by the Soviet Government. Others for reasons which the American Government will understand it is difficult for the Soviet Government to give affirmative answers to at the present time.

In making this statement Mr. Molotov said he desired to emphasize the words “at the present time.”

I thereupon said I knew you would be glad to learn that the Soviet Government was ready to begin cooperation in regard to the Pacific war. I pointed out, however, that Marshal Stalin had indicated to you at Teheran that it was of equal importance to the Soviet Union as to the United States to bring the war against Japan to a successful conclusion at the earliest date. Molotov interrupted me to say that Stalin had made this quite clear.

I explained further in considerable detail the need for immediate planning in order to make possible the achievement of Stalin’s objectives.

Molotov appeared to accept the validity of my statement and indicated that the subject was being actively studied.

Marshal Stalin, however, had just gone to the front and I do not expect to get any further reply for some days.


Memorandum prepared in the Department of State

Washington, December 27, 1943

. . . . . . . . . . . . . .

The indications are that the Chinese Government has applied to this Government for a loan of $1,000,000,000, and this memorandum will be posited on an assumption that such is the fact.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . .

There are indications that the subject of this loan was broached by Chiang at the Cairo Conference. There have been heard rumors to the effect that Chiang was given encouragement to believe that the requests by China for such a loan would meet with favorable response. There are indications, also, that Chiang strongly urged that a campaign for the reopening of the Burma Road be embarked upon at once; and rumors have been heard and have been seen in print to the effect that Chiang was told that this could not be done. Whatever the facts may be so far as the Cairo Conference is concerned, China’s desire for a loan has apparently been formally expressed and operations for the reopening of the Burma Road have not been embarked upon.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . .

The Pittsburgh Press (December 27, 1943)

Marine drive tightens ring about Rabaul

Guadalcanal veterans hit near Cape Gloucester, seize nearby island
By Don Caswell, United Press staff writer

Eisenhower sees 1944 as victory year

General says all on war, home fronts must do full duty
By C. R. Cunningham, United Press staff writer

Allied HQ, Algiers, Algeria –
Gen. Dwight D. Eisenhower, newly-appointed commander of the Allied armies massing for invasion of Western Europe, declared confidently today that “we will win the European war in 1944.”

It was in effect a pledge to do his job within a year that Gen. Eisenhower gave the American and British correspondents at a farewell press conference for Britain to take over his new post.

Gen. Eisenhower’s words startled the correspondents after one of them asked the departing Commander-in-Chief of the Mediterranean Theater for a new year’s prediction.

‘We will win’

He answered abruptly:

We will win the European war in 1944.

After the conference, he authorized the additional quotation:

The only thing needed for us to win the European war is for every man and woman all the way from the frontlines to the remotest hamlet of our two countries to do his or her full duty.

Smiling and unusually genial, Gen. Eisenhower gave quick answers to most of the questions, but pondered a few with his customary gestures of head-rubbing and leaning forward with clenched fists, finally to pound home his points. It was the biggest press conference here in months, with virtually every correspondent in Algiers present.

He apologized for being a few minutes late, then praised the correspondents in this theater, saying he had received the grandest cooperation any commander ever had in the field. The compliment was paid sincerely, he added, and was no eyewash.

To weld teams

Swinging quickly to the subject of his new task, announced only Friday by President Roosevelt, Gen. Eisenhower said:

My own and personal job immediately, of course, will be to do what we have done here. That is to weld the directing teams together in such a way that no real friction ever develops, that the people trust each other, work in unison and go into this thing with their full weight.

I believe that we have got here that sense of partnership which has come as nearly as it is humanly possible to the elimination of the friction that has been so typical of Allied actions in the past.

Gen. Eisenhower defined war as an extension of politics into force. He said time is what we fight for morale ranks next in importance to time.

He expressed amazement over the ability of U.S. and British frontline troops to accommodate themselves to the conditions on the Italian front, where they fight in knee-deep mud.

Gen. Eisenhower said that if the surrendering Italian armies had done their utmost, the Allies could have had all of Italy. He conceded that the surrender did not net all that had been hoped for, but what the Allies got made it well worthwhile.

Cites fleet surrender

The surrender of the Italian fleet permitted the withdrawal of heavy units of the British Fleet from the Mediterranean, he said, and enabled the speedy occupation of Taranto and Brindisi ahead of the Germans who attempted to take over the “heel” of Italy.

Explaining that the French had been rearmed to fight the Germans, he said any plans which excluded them would be silly. He praised Gen. Henri Honoré Giraud, and said from his observation he judged the French commander belonged near the frontlines, where Gen. Eisenhower had seen him twice.

Gen. Eisenhower said the North African campaign was won last January when Gen. Sir Bernard L. Montgomery began receiving supplies through captured Tripoli. From that day, German Marshal Erwin Rommel was done, he added.

Describes defeat

Gen. Eisenhower described the American defeat in Kasserine Pass in Tunisia as an incident – a regrettable incident, but only an incident.

He chided the all-knowing who discuss campaign schedules, and said the original North African plans called for the capture of only Oran, Algiers and Casablanca for use as air bases to protect convoys through the Mediterranean.

The approach to hills within sight of Tunis in the original landing was a bold stroke which failed. Thereafter the normal campaign continued.

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Battle tide turns, Yanks take 2 hills

Nazis falling back toward Cassino plain along road to Rome
By Donald Coe, United Press staff writer

145,000 join steel strike; Roosevelt’s appeal ignored

35,000 are idle in district as arms production is slowed down
By William Forrester

It’s train time now –
Rail showdown due today with non-operating unions

President awaits answer on arbitration proposal; plans completed for federal operation

Gangs resume bootleg wars

Probers warned syndicates thrive on suckers

War in Pacific to be all-out in coming year

Foreign editor also sees Turkey’s entrance in conflict
By William Philip Simms, Scripps-Howard foreign editor

Tomorrow’s jobs –
Baruch report will adviser reconversion begin now

Due after Jan. 1 survey will back steps to prevent mass unemployment influence on morale
By E. A. Evans, Scripps-Howard staff writer

Secret Service probe racket in war bonds

Self-styled brokers find money in premature redemptions

Door is closed by Roosevelt on flat raise

Basic formula maintained in President’s plea for production

WLB calls special meeting to line up steel policy

Chairman Davis urges central labor authority as a means to ‘good government’

U.S. troops speed to overseas posts

Four Americans stage raid 3 miles behind Nazi lines

By Reynolds Packard, United Press staff writer

Editorial: A new job for Eisenhower

Editorial: Save paper because –

Edson: A Merry Yule to all Washington

By Peter Edson

Background of news –
‘Too little and too soon’

By J. Z. Howard, Scripps-Howard staff writer

Stokes: Walker plans peacemaking trip to South

President’s ‘man Friday’ is a blue Monday’ politically
By Thomas L. Stokes, Scripps-Howard staff writer

In Washington –
Rations of meat may be rationed 11 pounds in 1944

Tentative plan is for current liberal allowances until spring, then cut; milk subsidy to be continued