740.0011 European War 1939/13066: Telegram

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

963. Embassy’s telegram 851, July 10, 12 p.m. [midnight] General Weygand’s personal representative in Vichy said last evening that the General had told him that he has been called here because of German [Page 391] anxiety with respect to his attitude and future actions; that the Germans had indicated to Admiral Darlan in Paris that in view of our occupation of Iceland,39 they were afraid of some similar move toward Casablanca or Dakar. (See also Embassy’s telegram No. 858, July 11, 6 p.m.40) They wanted Darlan therefore to make sure of Weygand’s “loyalty” and that he will continue to obey instructions from Vichy. (Although our informant did not appear to be aware of the development reported in the Embassy’s strictly confidential telegram 852 [851], July 10, 12 p.m., if the Germans are aware thereof, as they may well be, it would seem to explain in part their present doubts with respect to Weygand.)

Persistent reports continue to reach Vichy of German and Italian difficulties in Libya and the rapidly growing sick list among their forces there. In the light of the Axis problem of supplying and/or reinforcing their desert forces, the question of utilization of Bizerte and Tunisian territory may well take on an importance in German eyes.

Repeated to Casablanca.

  1. For correspondence on this subject, see pp. 776 ff.
  2. Not printed.