File No. 763.72/8826

The Ambassador in France ( Sharp ) to the Secretary of State



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I learn from a source which in the past has been very reliable that as one of the results of the recent War Council at Versailles General Robertson went back to England with the intention of returning [resigning?] because of the extension of powers of the Supreme War Council. It is said that the part played by Lloyd George and General Wilson in this extension of powers has rendered acute the divergence of views between them and Marshal Haig and General Robertson. While M. Clémentel [ Clemenceau ] is now concentrating his attention on the Superior [Supreme] War Council the English do not feel that he has renounced the principle of the single commander-in-chief. This particular information seems to be corroborated from a declaration which Mr. Clémentel [ Clemenceau ] made to General Bliss and to me the day after General Bliss’s arrival in Paris. In discussing the question the Premier said that he had rather have at the head of the Allied forces a commander exercising authority even though he be quite incompetent, than have [no] commander at all. However, General Pershing told me after the adjournment of the conference that he felt for the first time that real [Page 108] progress had been made in bringing about a greater unity of military action.

The all round general confidence existing in all circles here in the strength of the military situation remains as stated in my previous weekly reports. While great uncertainty prevails even among those whose position to know is most favorable as to where the enemy’s offensive will be launched, yet there evinces a calm confidence amounting almost to an actual desire and impatience to have the supreme test begin.