Hull Papers

The Adviser on Political Relations (Dunn) to the Secretary of State 1


SMr. Secretary: With reference to the attack on AMGOT contained in the recent issue of “War and the Working Classes” published in Moscow, the following points concerning the purpose of Allied Military Government in occupied territory may be of interest.

In the earlier drafts creating the structure for Allied Military Government and which served as a basis for the present directives to General Eisenhower the following statement appears, “Since these operations will involve military occupation of enemy territory, in contrast to the operations in North Africa, and will be conducted under the unconditional surrender principle, the administration should be definitely military in character as a part of progressive military operations.”

[Page 1265]

It is clear that from its inception AMGOT was designed for the administration of enemy territory. Its purpose is three fold:

To preserve order;
To secure the safety of the Allied forces operating in the territory; and
To make available the resources of the territory or country for the further military operations of the Allies against Germany.

To accomplish these purposes, the Allied Military Government is conceived as having supreme military authority by reason of the conquering of the territory or country by the Allied military forces. Thus, the Allied military Commander of the operations is himself the Military Governor of the territory although for certain purposes he delegates his authority to a member of his staff as Military Governor who in turn has a Chief Civil Affairs Officer and the necessary staff.

Allied Military Government as presently organized for the administration of Sicily is perfectly consistent with, the policy of unconditional surrender. Indeed, unconditional surrender would be quite meaningless if our principal pre-occupation in Italy were the return of that country to the normal democratic processes of administration rather than the further prosecution of the war against Germany. Our position with respect to our European Allies would be quite indefensible if we concentrated on the restoration of enemy territory such as Italy to the normal processes of life and failed to use every available resource in the country for the defeat of Germany and the liberation of the territory of our Allies from German domination. Italy for her sins must pay the price required by the United Nations. It is inevitable that her complete liberation from foreign domination must be postponed until her European Axis partner has been defeated.

AMGOT has no political aspects. It is purely military administration of enemy territory which is being used for the further prosecution of the war by the United Nations. It is temporary in the sense that it will not outlive the military requirements of the area. It is non-political through necessity.

J[ames] C[lement] D[unn]
  1. The subject of this memorandum was discussed by Churchill and Marshall during a meeting at the White House on September 11, 1943. See ante, p. 1234. No record has been found of any conversation on the subject in which Hull took part during Churchill’s stay in Washington.