851.86/107: Telegram

The Ambassador in the United Kingdom (Winant) to the Secretary of State

3382. Embassy’s telegram No. 3264, May 11, 7 p.m. The British Admiralty have just informed Admiral Stark that Admiral D’Argenlieu, Acting Commander-in-Chief of the Fighting French Navy in the absence of Auboyneau, states that the Fighting French formally refuse to order the deserters of the naval gun crew back to the Fort de Douamont. The British are taking no further action.

Kerr64 of War Shipping Administration states that the ship may thus be compelled to sail without a gun crew endangering both the ship and loyal members of its crew.


[No later correspondence on this question has been found in Department files. Presumably conflicting claims on the services of French seamen were ended by the formation of the French Committee of National Liberation in June 1943.]

  1. Alexander C. Kerr.