Editorial Note

The only information found on this meeting, which was concerned with terms for the surrender of Italy, is that contained in the following memorandum from Dunn to Hull on this subject dated September 1, 1943:

“Some time ago the British Chiefs of Staff brought before the Combined Chiefs of Staff a paper numbered C.C.S. 2581 which was a draft of conditions for surrender of Italy. This document came to be known thereafter as the long or comprehensive document. This paper was referred to the Combined Civil Affairs Committee of the Combined Chiefs of Staff and was found by that Committee to be out of order as the President and Prime Minister Churchill at Casablanca had declared the intention of the two Governments to pursue the war against the Axis until an unconditional surrender of the enemy. This view was concurred in by the Department of State, and when referred by the Combined Chiefs of Staff to the President was also confirmed by him. The War Department then proceeded to draw up a document containing the conditions to be imposed upon Italy in the event of an unconditional surrender by that nation.2 Although some discussion with regard to this latter document was entered into with the British members of the Civil Affairs Committee and the War Department draft was referred by the British members to London, no advance was ever made with regard to establishing this latter paper as an agreed document. In the meantime, indications suddenly appeared after the fall of Mussolini that the Italians might surrender at any time. Through cable correspondence between the Prime Minister and the President, military terms to be imposed upon Italy in the event of surrender were agreed to and were transmitted to General Eisenhower through the Combined Chiefs of Staff for the General’s use in the event of Italy tendering surrender.3 The General was also informed that political and economic conditions would be transmitted to him [Page 951] later and that in imposing the military terms on any Italian representatives he should mention that other conditions would be communicated at a later date.4

“The British were persistent in their efforts to have the long comprehensive document accepted and agreed to by the American Government for use as a single document comprising all conditions, military and other than military, in one paper. This matter came before you when we arrived at Quebec in the first conversation you had with Mr. Eden there.5 You will recall that you immediately mentioned the matter to the President and that the President took the position that there was no reason to change the arrangement which was in effect at that time, that is, that General Eisenhower had the military terms to be imposed upon the Italians in the event of a surrender and that other conditions could be sent him for transmission to the Italians after the military terms had been imposed. You did inform Mr. Eden, and I believe also the President, that as far as the content of the long paper was concerned that was entirely agreeable to the Department as far as concerned the matters contained therein which were other than military.

“Apparently Mr. Eden and Mr. Churchill, after bringing this matter up with the President, were satisfied that agreement had been reached between the President and Mr. Churchill that the long document should be substituted for the military terms which had been sent to General Eisenhower. Mr.[Sir Alexander] Cadogan informed me on Monday, August 23, the day before we left Quebec, that on the strength of the agreement reached between the Prime Minister and the President, Mr. Eden had sent a telegram6 to the British Ambassador in Lisbon7 to substitute the long document for the military terms in any subsequent dealings with the Italians.8

“Mr. Cadogan asked me if we would clear this matter with the President and have the Chiefs of Staff send a similar telegram to General [Page 952] Eisenhower. I informed Mr. Cadogan that that was a matter not within the province of the Department of State, and if he wished to have such a matter cleared through the Chiefs of Staff it should be taken up through the medium of the British Chiefs of Staff. It was not until Thursday, August 26, that you were informed by General Deane that the President had directed the Chiefs of Staff to instruct General Eisenhower to substitute the long document for the previously agreed upon military terms.9

“Apparently, from the reports coming from Lisbon and from Algiers, there has been considerable confusion introduced into the dealings with the Italians by reason of the action taken by the British Government in instructing the British Ambassador at Lisbon to introduce the longer comprehensive document into the conversations.” (Hull Papers)

  1. “Surrender Terms for Italy and Draft Declaration and Proclamation”, June 16, 1943; not printed.
  2. Not printed.
  3. For the “short” or “military” terms sent to Eisenhower, see ante, pp. 519, 522.
  4. See ante, p. 565.
  5. See ante, p. 912.
  6. See post, p. 1090.
  7. Sir Ronald Hugh Campbell.
  8. The “long” terms were accordingly given to Giacomo Zanussi at Lisbon on August 27, 1943. See Garland and Smyth, p. 461. Zanussi was then flown to Algiers, however, before he had communicated the “long” terms to the Italian Government. See ibid., pp. 462463.

    On August 25, 1943, the British Government instructed the British Ambassador at Moscow (Clark Kerr) to communicate the “long” terms to Stalin. This instruction stated that the terms had been approved by Roosevelt and Churchill. See Foreign Relations, 1943, vol. ii, p. 355. On August 26 Leahy, who was then with Roosevelt at Hyde Park, telephoned the Secretary of the Joint Chiefs of Staff (Deane) in Washington and informed him that Roosevelt wished Hull to send the terms to the Soviet Government. Deane transmitted this instruction to Hull first by telephone and then in writing. (740.00119 EW/8–2643) Hull’s telegram to the Ambassador at Moscow (Standley) forwarding this instruction was sent the evening of August 26. See Foreign Relations, 1943, vol. ii, p. 356. Clark Kerr handed the text of the “long” terms to the People’s Commissar for Foreign Affairs of the Soviet Union (Molotov) on the evening of August 26 with a covering note which he said was being communicated to the Soviet Government on behalf of Roosevelt and Churchill. Standley was present, although he had not yet received Hull’s telegram. See ibid., pp. 356357.

  9. No written communication from Deane to Hull to this effect has been found. It is probable that Roosevelt’s instruction to send the “long” terms to Eisenhower was transmitted to Deane by Leahy in the telephone call mentioned in fn. 8, above.