Roosevelt Papers: Telegram

Prime Minister Churchill to President Roosevelt 1

most secret

Number 377. Former Naval Person to President Roosevelt personal and most secret.

My immediately preceding telegram.

Following is telegram from the High Commissioner Canada and my reply.

[Page 396]

High Commissioner Canada to Prime Minister number 1779. 21st July 1943.

I know that Mackenzie King is assuming that in any meeting on Canadian soil he would be present throughout as host and that he would be also a party in the discussions. He realizes, of course, that the President and the Prime Minister will wish to have a great deal of talk between themselves or with their staffs and every arrangement would be made for this. He also realizes that he could not be a full partner in the discussions without creating awkward (?)2 problems about the position of other Dominion Prime Ministers. At the same time it would be extremely embarrassing politically to the Government here if the Canadian Prime Minister seemed to be less than a fairly full partner in a meeting in Canada and would cause undesirable comment from general point of view in Quebec and everywhere in Canada. On the other hand, a meeting between the President and the Prime Minister in Quebec with the Canadian Prime Minister attending would, of course, delight everyone here and do much solid good.

Prime Minister to High Commissioner Canada 23 July 1943. Your number 1779.

I do not anticipate any difficulty in arranging for Mackenzie King and his principal military advisers to be adequately associated with the conference. My idea is that Mackenzie King himself, together with the Canadian Chiefs of Staff, should attend all plenary meetings over which the President and I preside and that the Canadian Chiefs of Staff should attend all plenary meetings of the Combined Chiefs of Staff Committee.

These arrangements will not, of course, prevent my having private and off the record discussions alone with the President whenever lie or I may think it necessary; nor will they prevent the Combined Chiefs of Staff Committee (which consists of the American and British Chiefs of Staff) from meeting alone and in camera whenever the nature of the discussion renders this desirable.
The above is, of course, business only and apart from all social and personal meetings between hosts and guests and special Anglo-Canadian discussions to which I am looking forward.
Pray sound Mackenzie King on the above proposals and say that if they are agreeable to him I will seek the President’s approval.
  1. Channel of transmission not indicated.
  2. This indication of a possible garble is in the source text.