J.C.S. Files

Combined Chiefs of Staff Minutes
secret

1. Conclusions of the Previous Meeting

The Combined Chiefs of Staff:—

Accepted the conclusions of the 114th Meeting of the Combined Chiefs of Staff, subject to the understanding that, with regard to Item 2 of these conclusions, certain amendments made to C.C.S. 319/33 would necessitate consequential amendments in C.C.S. 319/2.4

2. Draft Final Report to the President and Prime Minister
(C.C.S. 319/3)

Certain amendments were agreed to the draft report to the President and Prime Minister contained in C.C.S. 319/3.

Later in the meeting, certain additional amendments were put forward consequent to decisions taken on Items 4 and 5 below.

In the course of discussion, General Marshall suggested that there might be some method whereby the Supreme Commander of the Southeast Asia Command should have at least some control over the lines of communication through Assam.

Sir Alan Brooke explained that it had originally been thought that it might be possible to put the Commander in Chief India, under the Commander of the Southeast Asia area, since India formed the base for the latter’s operations. There were, however, constitutional difficulties which had prevented this plan being implemented.

General Marshall said that he fully appreciated these constitutional difficulties, but had hoped that some system similar to the French “zones des armées” might be instituted.

Sir Alan Brooke explained that this point had also been considered and an Eastern Command, India, had been formed comprising the whole area covering the lines of communication through Assam. This command had been placed under the Commander of the Southeast Asia area.

General Arnold suggested that with regard to the examination of future operations in the India–Burma–China Theater, it might be well to insert a reference to a study and report on operations against the Andaman Islands, since the possession of these islands would be of great value to operations in this Theater.

[Page 938]

Sir Alan Brooke said that he felt that the Planning Staff would certainly consider the Andaman Islands in connection with certain of the operations which they had been instructed to examine.

The Combined Chiefs of Staff:—

Approved the draft final report to the President and Prime Minister as amended in the course of discussion (subsequently circulated as C.C.S. 319/45), and agreed to present it at the meeting to be held that evening at the Citadel.

3. Japanese Treatment of Prisoners

General Marshall read to the Combined Chiefs of Staff a brief memorandum6 on the treatment of U.S. and Filipino prisoners by the Japanese. This memorandum was a report from a Major in the Air Corps of the U.S. Army who had recently escaped after one year in captivity. The Japanese treatment of the prisoners had been inhuman and barbaric in the extreme.

4. Pipeline From India to China
(C.C.S. 312;7 312/18)

It was pointed out that an unqualified approval of the proposals contained in C.C.S. 312 might result in a further decrease in the scale of our military operations in Northern Burma.

General Somervell said that the U.S. craft sent to India for the pipeline could be used for other more urgent purposes if the Supreme Commander so desired.

After a full discussion,

The Combined Chiefs of Staff:—

Approved, subject to prior requirements of military operations in Burma, the construction of a four-inch pipeline from Assam to Kunming and a six-inch pipeline from Calcutta to Assam to facilitate air operations in China and to ease congestion on the existing lines of supply.

5. Operations From India
(C.C.S. 3279)

Sir Alan Brooke pointed out that there were three possible courses open to us in North Burma in the dry season of 1943–44, and that it seemed clear that the existing capacity of the lines of communication would not allow of the full accomplishment of more than one of these.

[Page 939]

General Somervell pointed out that operations in North Burma would not start until mid-February. He said that he believed the movement of supplies into the area should be based on the most optimistic forecast of the capacity of the lines of communication.

After a full discussion,

The Combined Chiefs of Staff:—

Agreed:

a.
That the main effort should be put into offensive operations, with the object of establishing land communications with China and improving and securing the air route.
b.
That priorities cannot be rigid and that therefore the Supreme Commander should be instructed that in formulating his proposals he should regard the decision in a above as a guide and bear in mind the importance of the longer term development of the lines of communication.

6. Movement of the “Queens”
(C.C.S. 246/110)

The Combined Chiefs of Staff:—

Agreed that the “Queens” should revert to running on a 21 day cycle.

7. Amphibians for “Overlord
(C.C.S. 32611)

The Combined Chiefs of Staff:—

Agreed to defer consideration of C.C.S. 326 until after the Quadrant conference.

8. Equipping Allies, Liberated Forces and Friendly Neutrals
(C.C.S. 317/112–317/213–317/314)

The Combined Chiefs of Staff:—

Agreed:

a.
That the supplies and equipment necessary to carry out the program recommended by the Commanding General of the North African Theater of Operations (Cable W7177– Cm-In - Bosco 21, 13 August 194315 be authorized for shipment during the period 1 September–31 December 1943, insofar as this does not interfere with operations scheduled previous to Quadrant .
b.
That the rearmament of French Army units be limited to the obligations of the Casablanca Conference,16 i.e., 11 divisions as modified by General Eisenhower’s radio (W7177) of 13 August 1943.

9. Operation “Rankin
(C.C.S. 32017)

Sir Alan Brooke said that the British Chiefs of Staff felt that the Allied forces employed were too large and that it was hoped that fewer forces could be used for occupation purposes. An insufficient emphasis had been laid on the value of air power to quell the population.

Admiral Leahy said that the U.S. Chiefs of Staff agreed with this view. They suggested that the plan should be approved in principle and kept under continuous review with particular reference to the premises of air superiority and the number of troops necessary to insure the success of this operation.

Sir Alan Brooke drew attention to the recommendation, contained in Paragraph 20b, that the provision in the United Kingdom of a Commanding General, Staff and Headquarters for the U.S. Army Group was of urgent importance and should be undertaken forthwith.

The Combined Chiefs of Staff:—

a.
Approved in principle the digest of the plan for Operation Rankin contained in C.C.S. 320, but directed that this plan be kept under continuous review with particular reference to the premises of air superiority and the number of troops necessary to insure the success of this operation.
b.
Took note that the U.S. Chiefs of Staff would give early consideration to the appointment of a Commanding General, Staff and Headquarters for the U.S. Army Group in the United Kingdom.

10. Rehabilitation of Occupied and Liberated Territories
(C.C.S. 324/118)

The Combined Chiefs of Staff:—

Approved the recommendations contained in Paragraph 5 of C.C.S. 324/1.

11. Future Convoy Arrangements in the Atlantic
(C.C.S. 222/219)

The Combined Chiefs of Staff:—

Agreed to defer consideration of this paper.

[Page 941]

12. Meeting With Major General Rooks and Major General Whiteley

The Combined Chiefs of Staff:—

Agreed to discuss operations in the Mediterranean with Major General Rooks and Major General Whiteley at their meeting the following day.

13. Future Meetings

The Combined Chiefs of Staff:—

Agreed to meet at 103020 on Tuesday, 24 August.

  1. “Draft Final Report to the President and Prime Minister”, August 22, 1943; not printed. For the final text of the report of the Combined Chiefs of Staff to Roosevelt and Churchill, see C.C.S. 319/5. post, p. 1121.
  2. “Progress Report to the President and Prime Minister”; not printed. See ante, p. 920, fn. 4.
  3. “Final Report to the President and Prime Minister”, August 23, 1943; not printed as such. The content of this paper can be reconstructed, however, from the footnotes to C.C.S. 319/5, post, p. 1121.
  4. Not identified.
  5. Post, p. 973.
  6. Post, p. 1003.
  7. Post, p. 1005.
  8. Post, p. 1041.
  9. Post, p. 1042.
  10. “Equipping Allies, Liberated Forces and Friendly Neutrals”, August 21, 1943; not printed. See fns. 9 and 11–13 to C.C.S. 317, post, pp. 10311032.
  11. Post, p. 1049.
  12. Post, p. 1053.
  13. Not printed, but summarized in appendix A to C.C.S. 317, post, p. 1032.
  14. See Foreign Relations, The Conferences at Washington, 1941–1942, and Casablanca, 1943, p. 823.
  15. Post, p. 1010.
  16. Post, p. 1049.
  17. Post, p. 1040.
  18. i.e., 10:30 a.m.