861.24/1252a: Telegram

The Secretary of State to the Ambassador in the Soviet Union (Standley)

35. Stettinius sends following for Faymonville.

We would like to have you inform us from time to time of your estimate of possible changes to be given basic classes of commodities in shipping priority. This would aid us in planning production and arranging for shipping stores, if you can give us this information. Last Autumn, for example, there was shift to food which caused considerable accumulation of other items in full production and shortages of certain classes of foods, which Soviets wanted, were not anticipated. In March or April, can it be expected that food priorities will suddenly be lowered? What classes of items are likely to replace food if this happens? At the present time 57 mm. AT guns47 and American tanks are practically eliminated from shipping priorities. Is it likely this condition will continue? Sudden request for 18,000 tons of caustic soda is given top shipping priority, although chemicals are hardly being moved. At end of January industrial equipment is called for in large quantities after months of small shipments. Your estimates of future trends would be invaluable but at the same time we appreciate that you cannot be omniscient. [Stettinius.]

  1. 57-millimeter anti-tank guns.