File No. 763.72/1985

The Ambassador in Germany ( Gerard ) to the Secretary of State


2634. I gather that German Government will endeavor to let submarine controversy drag along as long as possible without coming to a definite break. The Germans are prodigiously [making?] efforts to bring the war to a close before entering into another winter campaign, and they now hope and expect to take Warsaw in near future and to shorten their lines in Poland so that one or two million men can be spared for the west front in order to break through to Calais or Paris. They would therefore be glad to avoid further complications at present. At the same time, both press and Foreign Office are extremely angry at the American note and there is much bluster about continuing the submarine warfare without restriction. It is not yet possible to gauge whether this is bluff or in earnest, [Page 491] but from present indications I am inclined to think that the deliberately unfriendly act specified in the American note will be avoided.