J. C. S. Files

Combined Chiefs of Staff Minutes

1. Operations in Burma
(C.C.S. 154)5

At the request of General Marshall, Admiral Cooke discussed the landing craft situation in regard to Operation Anakim. He said the United States Planners had estimated the number of landing craft of types built by the United States which would be required for Operation Anakim would be available in November 1943. These requirements can be made available from United States production and they will be in addition to allocations of landing craft already made. There has been uncertainty as to what the production of landing craft would be because of the necessity of revising the whole production program in the United States.

Sir Alan Brooke asked if this number of landing craft would be available over and above those needed in all other operations under consideration, including Roundup.

Admiral Cooke replied that the landing craft which would be made available for Anakim would be from United States production that will be too late for other operations in 1943 which are being considered.

Lord Louis Mounbatten stated that the British will be unable to man additional landing craft beyond those for which they are asking.

Sir Alan Brooke then described the proposed Operation Anakim. The operation must start by the middle of December in order to clear up the communications to the north after the capture of Rangoon. To protect the flank it would be necessary to occupy Moulmein and the airports on the west coast of Thailand. It will be necessary to protect the east flank to prevent the Japanese from coming in from Thailand by routes that are capable of sustaining a maximum of five divisions, in order to insure that once in Burma, our forces remain there. Thereafter, it will also be necessary to maintain adequate air and naval cover to keep open the lines of communication to Rangoon.

Sir Alan Brooke pointed out that naval forces must be built up for the operation. As far as air power is concerned, 18 squadrons will be available and can be provided. The landing craft is the most ticklish question. Landing craft training establishments have now been provided for two brigade groups in the Mediterranean and one [Page 615] in India. There is also a mobile overseas reserve but it will take three months to move this after it completes operations either in the Mediterranean or operations from the United Kingdom. He believed that the necessary shipping could be made available but that the two main bottlenecks were naval coverage and landing craft.

Admiral King stated that we can count on shipping some landing craft from the Southwest Pacific to Burma together with operating crews. These could probably be made available in Burma in November. While the operation was at least ten months off, he did not see why necessary naval coverage could not be assembled, either by having the United States relieve the British from naval missions elsewhere so that they could furnish the Burma coverage, or by supplying the deficiency from the United States naval units to participate in the Burma operation. He stated that he was willing to commit himself to assisting the British in these operations.

Admiral King stated that our use of landing craft in the Pacific would be in the Rabaul operations primarily. Operations beyond Rabaul would not require landing craft of the types needed for Rabaul. The Rabaul operations would be completed long before Anakim would be mounted. He added that even though we had gone beyond Rabaul in the Pacific, the operations could be curtailed or lessened in order to insure the success of Anakim in view of its importance.

Lord Louis Mountbatten said that the possibility of securing help from the Pacific altered the whole situation as far as the British were concerned and that with the assistance of the United States, he thought that the necessary landing craft could be assembled.

General Marshall then asked Sir Alan Brooke to discuss the relation between Operation Ravenous and Operation Anakim.

Sir Alan Brooke said that Operation Cannibal now being undertaken was for the purpose of securing the airport in Akyab. This is necessary in order to furnish air support for future operations. He described Akyab as a locality in no man’s land lightly garrisoned by both sides.

He described Operation Ravenous as one to improve the line of communications preparatory to Operation Anakim, in order to drive in from the North at the same time as the offensive from the South. A British corps is to secure bridgeheads over the Chindwin River and improve the road between Imphal and Kalewa, to connect it with the Chindwin River for use as a supply line to the South. The Ramgarh force was to advance on Myitkyina from Ledo which will also enable us to build a road between these two points. This road will be of value in supplying our forces in Operation Anakim and also will be used as a connecting road to join with the main Burma road into China.

[Page 616]

Sir Alan Brooke gave a résumé of the present conditions of roads in Burma which indicated that all are badly in need of improvement. He said that all of the component operations of Ravenous are independent of each other. The operation of the British 2nd Corps from Imphal is thus independent of the action taken by the Chinese Ramgarh and Yunnan forces. The improvement of the road from Ledo was only possible to the extent of the advance made by the Ramgarh force.

Sir Alan Brooke said that Anakim is now definitely on the books, is being planned, and should be put to the front. With the assistance from the United States Navy in providing landing craft, the operation would be feasible.

Lord Louis Mountbatten then discussed again the question of landing craft with particular reference to paragraph 9(d) of C.C.S. 154.6 In reply to a question from General Marshall, he stated that the assault force in England would remain there as a permanent spearhead in case of a crack in German morale. The overseas assault force contains sufficient landing craft to undertake the operation in Burma by October 1st provided that they had not been used in operations elsewhere. If they had been so used, their use in Burma would be delayed for a period of three months following the termination of the operation in which they had been engaged. He added, however, that with the assistance promised by Admiral King from the South Pacific, he felt that sufficient landing craft could be assembled to mount Anakim.

Sir Charles Portal pointed out that the amphibious operations in Anakim would have to be supported by aircraft based on carriers.

Admiral King said the main point was that we should plan to do Anakim in 1943.

The Committee:

Agreed that all plans and necessary preparations should be made for the purpose of mounting Anakim in 1943.
Agreed that the actual mounting of Operation Anakim would be determined by the Combined Chiefs of Staff in the summer of 1943 [Page 617] (preferably not later than July) in the light of the situation then existing.
Took note that if Anakim is mounted in 1943, the United States will assist in making up deficiencies in the necessary landing craft and naval forces by diversion from the Pacific Theater, and in merchant shipping, if necessary.

2. The Situation To Be Created in the Eastern Theater (The Pacific and Burma) in 1943
(C.C.S. 153 and 153/1)7

Sir Alan Brooke stated that the British Chiefs of Staff took exception to paragraph 1 of C.C.S. 153 in that it did not provide that Germany must be defeated before undertaking the defeat of the Japanese.

General Marshall stated that, in his opinion, the British Chiefs of Staff wished to be certain that we keep the enemy engaged in the Mediterranean and that at the same time maintain a sufficient force in the United Kingdom to take advantage of a crack in the German strength either from the withdrawal of their forces in France or because of lowered morale. He inferred that the British Chiefs of Staff would prefer to maintain such a force in the United Kingdom dormant and awaiting an opportunity rather than have it utilized in a sustained attack elsewhere. The United States Chiefs of Staff know that they can use these forces offensively in the Pacific Theater. He felt that the question resolved itself into whether we would maintain a large force in the United Kingdom awaiting an opportunity or keep the force engaged in an active offensive in the Pacific.

General Marshall said that the number of troops used in the Pacific would not have much effect on the build-up of forces in the United Kingdom. The conflict arises chiefly in the use of landing /craft and shipping. He said that to a large measure the shipping used in the Pacific is already committed and, therefore, could not be made available for a build-up of forces in the United Kingdom and the necessity of maintaining them. These forces are at the end of a long line of communications and the question arises as to whether we should let them remain there precariously or do something to improve their situation.

Sir Alan Brooke stated that we have reached a stage in the war where we must review the correctness of our basic strategic concept which calls for the defeat of Germany first. He was convinced that we cannot defeat Germany and Japan simultaneously. The British Chiefs of Staff have arrived at the conclusion that it will be better to concentrate on Germany. Because of the distances involved, the British [Page 618] Chiefs of Staff believe that the defeat of Japan first is impossible and that if we attempt to do so, we shall lose the war.

He said that having decided that it is necessary to defeat Germany first, the immediate question is whether to attempt to do so by an invasion of Northern France or to exploit our successes in North Africa. The British Chiefs of Staff consider that an all-out Mediterranean effort is best but that it must be “all-out.”

He said the British Chiefs of Staff appreciate the position in the Pacific and that they will do everything they can to meet it but that they feel we must give first consideration to the defeat of Germany. This can be done by finishing Tunisia and then operating in the Mediterranean so as to draw the maximum number of German ground and air forces from the Russian front. In undertaking operations in the Mediterranean, assistance from the United States is necessary. He felt that if we do not maintain constant pressure on Germany, they will be given an opportunity to recover and thus prolong the war.

General Marshall said the United States Chiefs of Staff do not propose doing nothing in the Mediterranean or in France; they have no idea that we should not concentrate first on defeating Germany. The question that is to be decided is how this can best be accomplished. On the other hand, it is the view of the United States Chiefs of Staff that the war should be ended as quickly as possible, which cannot be accomplished if we neglect the Pacific theater entirely and leave the Japanese to consolidate their gains and unnecessarily strengthen their position.

General Marshall said that he advocated an attack on the Continent but that he was opposed to immobilizing a large force in the United Kingdom, awaiting an uncertain prospect, when they might be better engaged in offensive operations which are possible.

General Marshall stated that it was apparently agreed by the Combined Chiefs of Staff to give Russia every possible assistance and to endeavor to bring Turkey into the war. His primary concern with the operations in the Pacific was to insure that our positions would be so strengthened as to provide us with the means for necessary operations rather than to continue conducting them on a “shoe string.” He felt that this would ultimately reduce the necessity for tonnage in the Pacific and this was his chief reason for advocating operations in Burma.

Sir Alan Brooke said that the British Chiefs of Staff certainly did not want to keep forces tied up in Europe doing nothing. During the build-up period, however, the first forces to arrive from America could not be used actively against the enemy; a certain minimum concentration had to be effected before they could be employed. His point was that we should direct our resources to the defeat of Germany first. He [Page 619] agreed as to the desirability of Anakim since it appeared that for this operation we could use forces available in the theater without detracting from the earliest possible defeat of Germany. This conception was focused in paragraph 2(c) of the British Joint Planning Staff’s paper (C.C.S. 153/1) in which it was stated that we agreed in principle with the U. S. strategy in the Pacific “provided always that its application does not prejudice the earliest possible defeat of Germany.”

Admiral King pointed out that this expression might be read as meaning that anything which was done in the Pacific interferred with the earliest possible defeat of Germany and that the Pacific theater should therefore remain totally inactive.

Sir Charles Portal said that this was certainly not the understanding of the British Chiefs of Staff who had always accepted that pressure should be maintained on Japan. They had, perhaps, misunderstood the U. S. Chiefs of Staff and thought that the point at issue was whether the main effort should be in the Pacific or in the United Kingdom. The British view was that for getting at Germany in the immediate future, the Mediterranean offered better prospects than Northern France. For this purpose they were advocating Mediterranean operations with amphibious forces while concentrating, so far as the United Kingdom was concerned, on building up a large heavy bomber force, which was the only form of force that could operate continuously against Germany.

General Marshal said that he was most anxious not to become committed to interminable operations in the Mediterranean. He wished Northern France to be the scene of the main effort against Germany—that had always been his conception.

Sir Charles Portal said that it was impossible to say exactly where we should stop in the Mediterranean since we hoped to knock Italy out altogether. This action would give the greatest support to Russia and might open the door to an invasion of France.

General Marshall pointed out that extended operations in the Mediterranean as well as the concentration of forces in England for the invasion of Northern France might well prevent us from undertaking operations in Burma; he was not at all in favor of this. Moreover, American forces at present in the Southwest Pacific were desperately short at present of their immediate requirements.

Admiral King said that we had on many occasions been close to a disaster in the Pacific. The real point at issue was to determine the balance between the effort to be put against Germany and against Japan, but we must have enough in the Pacific to maintain the initiative against the Japanese. The U. S. intentions were not to plan for anything beyond gaining positions in readiness for the final offensive against Japan. He felt very strongly, however, that the details [Page 620] of such operations must be left to the U. S. Chiefs of Staff, who were strategically responsible for the Pacific theater. He did not feel this was a question for a decision of the Combined Chiefs of Staff. The U. S. Chiefs of Staff had not been consulted before the British undertook operations in Madagascar and French Somaliland—nor did they expect to be; but the same considerations applied to the details of operations in the Pacific.

In his view there would be plenty of forces in the theater for all necessary operations in the Mediterranean and it was now determined that such operations should be undertaken. The operations contemplated in the Pacific, however, would have no effect on what could be done in the Mediterranean or from the United Kingdom.

Sir Charles Portal said that the British Chiefs of Staff would be satisfied if they could be assured of this point. Their fear was that the result of extended operations in the Pacific might be an insufficient concentration in the United Kingdom to take advantage of a crack in Germany.

General Marshall pointed out that the whole concept of defeating Germany first had been jeopardized by the lack of resources in the Pacific. Heavy bombers set up to go to the United Kingdom had had to be diverted to the South Pacific to avoid disaster there. Fortunately disaster had been avoided; but if it had occurred, there would have been a huge diversion of U. S. effort to the Pacific theater. The U. S. had nearly been compelled to pull out of Torch and the decision to spare the necessary naval forces from the Pacific had been a most courageous one on the part of Admiral King. A hand-to-mouth policy of this nature was most uneconomical. He was anxious to get a secure position in the Pacific so that we knew where we were. The recon-quest of Burma would be an enormous contribution to this and would effect ultimately a great economy of forces.

Discussion then turned on the operations proposed to secure the Pacific theater, which were set out in C.C.S. 153.

Sir Alan Brooke said that in the British view it would be sufficient to stop at Rabaul and Anakim and that to go on to Truk would take up too much force. There would inevitably be large shipping losses in the course of such operations, which would be a continuous drain on our resources.

Admiral King pointed out that the proposed operations would be carried out one after the other. After Rabaul had been captured, the same forces might be employed to go on to the Marshalls. Rabaul might be taken by May and Anakim could not start before November. During the intervening months, surely the troops in the theater should not be allowed to remain idle but should be employed to keep up pressure on the Japanese and maintain the initiative. Only by this means could we offset the advantage which the Japanese had in their [Page 621] possession of interior lines. Operations into the Marshalls could be stopped at any point desired and were not an unlimited commitment which had to be seen through to the end. It might well be that Truk would, after all, be found impossible to capture this year.

General Marshall said that there seemed general agreement as to the need for the capture of Rabaul and the desirability of Anakim. Could it not be agreed that operations should be continued as far as Truk if it were possible with the forces available at that time? There should be no question of sacrificing Anakim for Truk.

Sir Charles Portal said he would not like to be committed to Anakim, even with forces released after the capture of Rabaul, without first reviewing whether some other operation more profitable to the war as a whole might not be desirable. For example, to take an extreme case, suppose after the capture of Rabaul a good opportunity arose, owing to a crack in Germany, of breaking into France. Should we refuse to take advantage of it because we were already committed to Anakim?

General Marshall felt that if such a situation arose we should certainly seize the opportunity. He agreed that a further meeting of the Combined Chiefs of Staff might be necessary in the summer to decide these questions.

Sir Alan Brooke proposed that at the present time we should limit our outlook in the Pacific to Rabaul, which should certainly be undertaken, and to preparations for Anakim, the decision to launch this being taken later. Similarly, any decision on Truk should be deferred.

Admiral King pointed out that the effect of this would be strictly to limit commitments in the Pacific, although the British Chiefs of Staff apparently contemplated an unlimited commitment in the European theater.

General Marshall agreed that a decision on Anakim and Truk could be left until later. He pointed out that C.C.S. 153 merely proposed a series of operations which might be carried out in 1943 with the means available.

Admiral King said that on logistic grounds alone it would be impossible to bring forces from the Pacific theater to the European theater. Anakim was not therefore an alternative to operations in the European theater.

General Somervell supported this view. He pointed out that, once Rabaul had been seized, ships would be required to maintain the garrison there and these could be employed to exploit success by minor operations against other islands.

As regards landing craft, the U.S. Chiefs of Staff had committed themselves to supply a large proportion of the craft needed for [Page 622] Anakim. Operations against the Pacific Islands required combat loaders and not the tank-landing ships and tank-landing craft which were needed elsewhere.

Admiral Cooke said that a very large proportion of the U.S. shipping in the Pacific was needed for the maintenance of the Fleet, which was operating 7,000 miles from its home bases. This requirement would continue whether or not operations against Truk were undertaken. U.S. production of L.S.T.’s would shortly amount to about fifteen per month. These could not be ready in time for Mediterranean operations in the summer, but would be available for Anakim. As regards land forces, the figure of 250,000 put down in C.C.S. 153 included 150,000 men now in movement or set up to move, and another two divisions which he understood were already earmarked for operations in Burma this year from India. This left a total of only some 50,000 men additional for the whole Pacific theater.

Sir Charles Portal reiterated that it would be unwise to accept a definite commitment for Anakim now since a favorable situation might arise in Europe during the year which would make operations in the European theater more profitable than anything in the Pacific.

Admiral King said that forces set out in C.C.S. 153 constituted the minimum necessary to maintain pressure on the Japanese. Although the forces in the Pacific were primarily for defensive purposes, many of them could be used simultaneously for minor offensives, such as air bombardment of Japanese bases. Favorable opportunities might then be seized for exploitation.

General Marshall suggested that paragraph 11 (c) of C.C.S. 153 could be revised to read “seizure and occupation of Gilbert Islands, Marshall Islands, Caroline Islands up to and including Truk with the resources available in the theater.”

(The meeting adjourned at this point.)8

On the resumption of their meeting the Combined Chiefs of Staff had before them a draft note setting out tentative agreements which appeared to have been reached in the preceding discussion.9

After some further discussion,

The Committee:

Invited General Ismay and General Hull to redraft this note to include further points which had been raised.
Instructed the Secretaries to circulate this draft for discussion at the next meeting.10

[Page 623]

3. Escort Vessels

Sir Dudley Pound emphasized the need for the Combined Chiefs of Staff having before them a proper survey of the escort vessel position before taking any final decision on operations during the coming year. He recapitulated the British needs for additional escorts in the Atlantic and pointed out that considerable U. S. assistance would be required not only in the Atlantic but also for Husky if that operation were undertaken. When escorts were withdrawn for an operation such as Torch or Husky, they were absent from their normal duties for about four months. It took at least one month to collect them beforehand from the various convoys on which they were working and a similar period to redistribute them after the operation. Experience in Torch had shown that it was not possible to release them from the operation itself under about two months.

Admiral King said that with the U. S. and U. K. construction coming out during the next six months, the position should be easier by July, when Husky was to be launched. He thought it should be possible to find additional escorts for the Atlantic as well as those required for Husky. If the use of combat loaders for Husky could be cut to the minimum, escort requirements would be correspondingly reduced.

Sir Dudley Pound said that new construction in the U. K. was comparatively small during the first half of 1943 and would do little more than make good recent heavy losses.

Admiral Cooke said that the examination of the escort position by the British Joint Planning Staff was progressing well but it appeared that the total number of U. S. and British escort vessels would not be sufficient to provide any surplus after providing for normal convoy work. Any operations undertaken would therefore involve accepting increased losses in normal convoys. The Combined Chiefs of Staff would have to decide what losses would be acceptable.

The discussion then turned on the relation of P.Q. convoys to Mediterranean operations.

Sir Dudley Pound said that one problem was whether a 30-ship convoy every forty days would be considered sufficient for Russia or whether we should be pressed, as we had been in the past, to increase Russian deliveries. The worst three months were from February to the middle of May when daylight hours were increasing and the channel was restricted by ice. Later in the year the ice retreated and although the days were longer, the passage of convoys became less dangerous.

General Marshall felt that we should not again risk the same heavy losses which had been sustained on the Russian convoys in 1942. Such losses were likely to cripple our whole offensive effort against the enemy. He suggested that the Combined Chiefs of Staff [Page 624] should include a reference to this effect in the note which was being drafted. One alleviating factor was the improvement in the Persian Gulf route which would offset reductions on the Murmansk route.

Sir Dudley Pound said that the Prime Minister had made it clear to Mr. Stalin that we might have to call off P.Q. convoys if the scale of German attack became too heavy.11 If warning was given of our intention to stop the convoys, there was likely to be heavy pressure to increase deliveries during the early part of the year, when, as he had previously explained, conditions were most difficult. This meant either increasing the size of the convoys or reducing the cycle. The dangers which we were likely to face this year were much greater than last year.

4. Potentialities of Polish Forces

Sir Alan Brooke, in answer to a question by General Marshall, said that the Polish forces consisted (1) of a “secret” army inside Poland and (2) of regular Polish troops outside the country. As regards the first, there was a definite organization of determined men; with leaders, though they were almost entirely unarmed. Their intelligence service had been good, but recently many of their agents had been caught by the Germans and less information about German forces was now coming out from Poland. General Sikorski claimed that by the use of this organization he could do great damage on the Polish railways to interrupt German communications at a critical moment. There could be no doubt that this secret army would play a valuable part in the final rising against Germany, particularly if combined with similar action in adjacent Balkan countries. There was always a danger of a premature rising, however.

The Polish forces outside Poland consisted of an armored division and a parachute brigade with certain other units in the United Kingdom and 2 divisions and 2 brigade groups in the Middle East. General Sikorski’s conception was to get some of these troops into Poland to supplement the secret army. The difficulty was the method of transport, on which General Sikorski was rather vague. He envisaged the use of air transport and parachutes, but there were obvious limitations in this.

General Marshall inquired whether any steps had been taken to meet a request of General Sikorski for the bombing of an area in Poland from which the Germans were clearing out all Polish inhabitants under circumstances of great brutality.

Sir Charles Portal said the Poles had been informed that this operation was impracticable, but steps would be taken to publicize the presence of Polish air forces in the raids on Berlin which might be considered partly as a reprisal on behalf of Poland.

[Page 625]

5. Raids on Berlin

Sir Charles Portal gave details of the recent raids on Berlin, and estimated that, making all allowance for the comparative sizes of London and Berlin and the time interval, the two raids on Berlin on successive nights had hit Berlin about twice as hard as London had been hit in the two heaviest raids of April and May 1941. The aggregate losses in the two Berlin raids amounted to 6 percent, the figure expected being 10 percent. The effect of the raids would be largely morale though there were important electrical works in the area attacked. They would be a great encouragement to the Russians as well as the Poles.

(Sir Andrew Cunningham entered the meeting at this point.)

6. Naval Situation in the Western Mediterranean

Admiral Cunningham said that the Germans might threaten our shipping passing through the Straits of Gibraltar by U–boats and by aircraft and coast defense guns from Southern Spain. He considered the risk from U–boats was comparatively small. The Germans had never been able to maintain many U-boats in the Straits where currents made their operation difficult. The danger from aircraft would be no less than to coastal convoys along the east coast of England. Provided we had fighters established in the airfields of Spanish Morocco, we should be able to deal with this threat. Coast defense guns constituted the greatest danger, but only experience would show how bad this would be. The guns were supposed to have Radar range-finding apparatus but we had means of jamming this which would probably be effective. The guns would have to be neutralized by counter-battery from the southern shore and by air bombardment.

He thought that ships with a speed of 11 knots and upwards would get through the Straits without heavy losses even with the Germans in Southern Spain provided we held Spanish Morocco. Even without it, we should be able to get some convoys through by night. The Planning Staffs at Algiers had been examining the problem and their preliminary conclusions were that if we seized Majorca we should be able to prevent the Germans building up a large air strength in Southern Spain.

Sir Dudley Pound said that in spite of the German coast defense guns on the French shore of the Straits of Dover, we had not lost a ship from them. The range, however, was some 38,000 yards, whereas the distance across the Straits of Gibraltar was only about half that.

Sir Alan Brooke said that a plan had been prepared for seizing Southern Spain with a force of about six divisions. It would not be [Page 626] possible, however, to do this at the same time as Husky. It must be remembered that even if the Spaniards offered no resistance at all it would take some time for the Germans to become fully established in Southern Spain.

Admiral Cunningham, referring to the possibility of capturing Sicily, said that he did not anticipate very heavy shipping losses in the operation but the actual assault of the beaches would be a very expensive operation. He did not consider that the possession of the island would very greatly add to the security of the sea route through the Mediterranean. If we were in Sicily, he would estimate this route as being 90 percent or more secure; without Sicily, it would be about 85 percent secure, once we held the whole of the North African coast.

Sir Charles Portal pointed out that from the air point of view the possession of Sicily would make a very considerable difference. If the Germans were not in the island, it would be difficult for them to operate against our shipping at all; they would have to use bases in Sardinia and the mainland of Italy, which were a considerable distance from the Narrows.

Admiral Cunningham then described the naval situation in the Tunisia area. The Germans had made heavy attacks on Bône on three successive days damaging four merchant ships and a cruiser, but the defenses were now much improved and our cruisers were still operating from the port. We had at first sunk about one ship a day, but the Germans were getting far too many ships into Tunisia now. We should be able to inflict much greater damage on them as soon as we had fully organized our arrangements. Steps were now being taken to block the channel between the Italian minefields with our own mines.

  1. C.C.S. 154, January 17, 1943, a report by the British Joint Planning Staff entitled “Operations in Burma, 1943” is not printed, but the paragraph relative to landing craft availabilities is quoted in the following footnote.
  2. Paragraph 9(d) of C.C.S. 154 reads as follows:

    “(d) Assault Shipping and Landing Craft

    If no major amphibious operations are carried out elsewhere in 1943, the assault shipping and landing craft could be found by the British by October 1, 1943.
    If Operation Brimstone is carried out not later than the end of June 1943, and no other amphibious operation takes place, the assault shipping and landing craft could be found by the British by December 1, 1943, in Indian waters. This would permit of an assault on Rangoon about December 30, 1943.
    If Husky is carried out after June 1943—or any other operation, such as the Dodecanese, in addition to Brimstone —it will not be possible to provide the assault shipping and landing craft for Anakim from British sources until about February 1944.
    If Operation Anakim is carried out with British assault shipping and landing craft at any time during the winter 1943–44, it would seriously curtail the British share of any cross-channel operations in the early spring of 1944.” (J.C.S. Files)

  3. Post, pp. 755 and 757.
  4. According to the account in Alanbrooke, pp. 449–450, the meeting adjourned at 1 p.m. and resumed at 3 p.m.
  5. The draft note considered by the Combined Chiefs of Staff at this point is substantially identical with parts 5 (a) and 5 (b) of C.C.S. 155, post, p. 760. Accounts of the preparation and presentation of this draft note are to be found in Slessor, The Central Blue, pp. 445–447, and Alanbrooke, pp. 449–450.
  6. C.C.S. 155, January 18, 1943, post, p. 760.
  7. See Churchill’s message of July 17, 1942, to Stalin, Hinge of Fate, pp. 267–270.