Peace by June, if possible, is German hope (4-28-41)

The Pittsburgh Press (April 28, 1941)


Writer says Nazis expect to have all Europe hogtied by then

By Helen Kirkpatrick

London, April 28 –
If German plans for the conduct of the war during the next two months materialize, the Germans expect to be in a position, by the end of June, to make a complete and conclusive peace offer to the United States.

By occupying the Greek islands and the Dodecanese, the Germans expect to be able to take Turkey without fighting, and to proceed southward through Syria and Palestine to the Suez Canal. There they expect to meet their mechanized divisions who are now in Western Egypt.

The Germans claim that they now have units of their navy in the Mediterranean. Whether this is true or not, observers in Morocco and Tunisia report that German reinforcements for Libya continue to stream across the Mediterranean.

Control Morocco

The Germans are now in such effective control of Morocco and all French North African territory that it is impossible for any British subject to gain admission to that region, and exceedingly difficult for Americans, as well.

Within two months, the Germans expect to have opened a campaign for the seizure of Gibraltar and to have obtained effective control of the Mediterranean. Occupation of Spain is regarded by best informed people to be a matter of weeks and the drive for Gibraltar is expected to develop from Algeciras and Ceuta, where the number of Germans has been increasing daily.

While the British have always insisted that they would never give up Gibraltar and would fight effectively to retain it, it should be recalled that during the Spanish War, various naval writers here advocated assistance to the Spanish Republicans for fear of the Germans gaining a foothold on the Spanish headlands.

Should such happen, they wrote, Gibraltar would become untenable. The fortress rock could undoubtedly be held, but its harbor, dominated by Algeciras, would certainly be a most unhealthy spot.

The Germans, therefore, are said to anticipate the fall of Gibraltar and the complete control of the Mediterranean quickly. It would then be that they would make a formal “peace offer” to the United States, pointing out that their control of Europe and North Africa would dictate American acceptance of economic collaboration with the German empire.

British reaction

If Adolf Hitler can get the United States to accept the offer, Great Britain would be effectively isolated and would thereafter be forced to accept the German terms.

The British reaction to this plan is twofold: In the first place, they do not believe that the United States would accept the offer and, in the second place, if the United States did, the British say that nothing would induce them to give in to Germany and that the Germans would have to “come and get” Britain.

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