Roosevelt Papers

The President to the Secretary of State

Dear Cordell: I am anxious that we get into a conference at an early date with the British, and possibly the Dutch, relative to the raw materials of the world which are either under our control or are under the control of our friends. It is essential that we make the best and most effective joint use of these materials.

I think the conference should also deal with such critical items as steel. I do not wish it to include munitions of war or other manufactured products. Any political implications that arise out of the conference will naturally be referred to the proper Departments of the Government.

I wish you could assign Mr. Thomas K. Finletter, Chief of your Division of Defense Materials, to be a member of the group. The names of the other members are as follows: Mr. James Forrestal, Mr. Robert Patterson, Mr. William Batt, Mr. Donald Nelson, Mr. E. R. Stettinius, Mr. W. L. Clayton and Mr. Milo Perkins. I have asked Mr. Batt to take the initiative.

I wish for the present that this proposed conference be kept confidential.

Sincerely yours,

Franklin D. Roosevelt