J.C.S. Files

Memorandum by the Representatives of the British Chiefs of Staff1

most secret
C.C.S 334

Slowness of Build-up for “Avalanche

The following message has been received from the British Chiefs of Staff: Begins:

We have examined Avalanche plan in Naf 3452 and it seems clear that result of operation will depend on comparative rate of build-up.
Our estimate of rate of German build-up is greater than that of AFHQ. For instance we estimate three Panzer Divisions and four and a half others by D plus 10 whereas AFHQ only estimate three Panzers and three others.
By D plus 7 we estimate German build-up equals ours and overtakes ours after that until by about D plus 17 they have margin of one and a third Divisions at least.
Impossible to assess exactly where German Divisions may be and how greatly concentration may be interrupted by Baytown , by bombing or by action of Italians.
We cannot understand the limiting factors which appear to make the build-up of our own forces so painfully slow after the capture of Naples.
Result of our examination indicates overwhelming importance of straining every nerve to increase our own rate of build-up. Ends.

We agree that the build-up of our own forces after the capture of Naples does appear to be very slow indeed. It is to be hoped that in practice the figures given may well be improved upon. In any case General Eisenhower is clearly fully aware of the importance of the build-up being as rapid as possible, and no action at this end would seem to be called for.

  1. Noted by the Combined Chiefs of Staff at their 117th Meeting, September 3, 1943. See ante, p. 1206.
  2. Not printed.