841.24/1184b: Telegram

The Secretary of State to the Ambassador in the United Kingdom (Winant)

418. Personal from the President to the Former Naval Person.17

“I have asked the State Department through Halifax and Winant to express to the British Government my strong hope that it promptly agree to the present draft of Interim Lend-Lease Agreement and I now ask your personal help in bringing this about.

I understand your need of maintaining unity at home in the great task of winning the war. I know you also understand how essential it is that we maintain unity of purpose between our two Governments and peoples in this and, equally important, in the unfinished tasks which will follow it.

I am convinced that further delay in concluding this agreement will be harmful to your interests and ours. I am likewise convinced that the present draft is not only fair and equitable but that it meets the apprehensions which some of your colleagues have felt and which Halifax has brought to our attention.

No one knows better than I how busy you are. I should not add this matter to the long list of your worries, if, after giving it much personal attention, I were not convinced that a failure to sign this agreement would do much mischief.”

  1. Code name for Prime Minister Winston Churchill.