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189 Mr S. M. Bruce, High Commissioner in the United Kingdom, to Mr John Curtin, Prime Minister

Cablegram 124 LONDON, 13 December 1941, 6.10 p.m.


Page [1] and I feel considerable anxiety that the necessity for
coordination on highest plane of the Allies' strategy both in the
political and military spheres is not sufficiently recognised
here. While close contacts between the United Kingdom and United
States naval, military and air staffs and an immediate visit by
Beaverbrook [2] to Washington to discuss questions of production
and supply are contemplated, in our view neither the Chiefs of
Staff nor Beaverbrook can carry out their tasks effectively
without both immediate and long range strategy being laid down.

Our apprehension is that it will be felt that all that can be done
is being done by the despatch of Beaverbrook and either the Chiefs
of Staff or their representatives to Washington.

In our view leadership on the highest plane is necessary on the
Allies' side and that leadership must come from the British War
Cabinet. If this leadership is to be afforded the British War
Cabinet must immediately lay down the line it considers should be
followed with regard to our political and military strategy and
try and get it accepted by Roosevelt. At the same time Eden's [3]
presence in Russia should be used to obtain Stalin's agreement.

If this were done Beaverbrook and Chiefs of Staff and Eden and his
advisers could then work to bring about the implementation of the
policy agreed to concurrently with endeavours to obtain agreement
upon broad principles of our political and military strategy.

Steps should be taken to lay down the basis and method of
continuing consultation to co-ordinate the Allies' policy.

If you agree with the views set out above we feel that a direct
cable from you to the Prime Minister [4] would be most effective
in stimulating action or at all events in ensuring full
consideration of the issues involved.

In an attempt to clarify our minds as to the wide questions that
have to be considered I have run out a rough memorandum which I am
sending in my immediately following telegram [5] as it may be of
some use. [6]


1 Special Representative in the United Kingdom.

2 U.K. Minister of Supply.

3 U.K. Foreign Secretary.

4 Winston Churchill.

5 Cablegram 125 of 13 December is on file AA:M100, December 1941.

6 Page advised on 16 December (see cablegram P12 on file AA:M100,
December 1941)that he had urged the U.K. War Cabinet the previous
day to adopt the views set out in Bruce's cablegrams 124-5.He did
not report any direct result of these representations and Curtin
does not appear to have pressed this line of argument in any
cablegram to the U.K. Govt.

[AA:A3195, 1941, 1.27999]
Last Updated: 11 September 2013
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