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

No. 3831

Sir: I transmit herewith a copy of a letter32 from General Hilldring33 and a copy of the enclosure thereto which it is believed are self-explanatory. It will be observed that the memorandum from the Joint Chiefs of Staff delineates the zones to be occupied in Germany by American, British, and Soviet forces and that it was prepared on December 4, 1943. This document is transmitted to you for your consideration and for your recommendations with regard to it.

There are also enclosed herewith (1) a map setting forth the Soviet proposal concerning zones; (2) a map setting forth the United States Joint Chiefs of Staff proposal; and (3) a cartogram comparing maps one [Page 196] and two.34 These maps were prepared in the Department as of possible assistance to you.

Very truly yours,

Edward R. Stettinius, Jr.

Memorandum by the United States Chiefs of Staff to the Combined Chiefs of Staff 35

C.C.S. 320/4 (Revised)
In developing his plans for Rankin, COSSAC has submitted a recommendation (paragraph 11, C.C.S. 320/2)36 that under the general direction of the Supreme Allied Commander the territories to be occupied should be divided into two spheres, the British sphere, including northwest Germany, Belgium, Luxembourg, Holland and Denmark, and the U.S. sphere, generally southern Germany and France, with Austria a U.S. sphere, initially under the Mediterranean command. It is understoood that planning by COSSAC is now proceeding on this basis.
The U.S. Chiefs of Staff now propose that these spheres be changed as follows:37
U.S. sphere. The general area Netherlands, Northern Germany as far east as the line Berlin-Stettin, Denmark, Norway and Sweden. The boundary of this area is to be as follows: Southern boundary of the Netherlands; thence to Duesseldorf on the Rhine; down [up] the east bank of the Rhine to Mainz; thence due east to Bayreuth; thence north to Leipzig; thence northeast to Cottbus; thence north to Berlin (exclusive); thence to Stettin (inclusive).
British sphere. Generally the territory to the west and south of the American western boundary.
2 [3].
The U.S. Chiefs of Staff further propose that COSSAC be directed to examine and report on the implications of revising his planning on the basis of the new allocation of spheres of occupation.
[Page [Map 2]]
  1. Not printed.
  2. Maj. Gen. John H. Hilldring, Director of the Civil Affairs Division of the War Department.
  3. The three enclosures were not found attached to the file copy of this document. Copies of the two maps and the cartogram (reproduced on facing page) are included in the EAC files: Lot 52 M 64, box 9602, files 136 and 138 Germany—Zones of Occupation I.
  4. For record of the Meeting of the Combined Chiefs of Staff, December 4, 1943, at Cairo at which this paper was agreed upon by the C.C.S., see Foreign Relations, The Conferences at Cairo and Tehran, 1943, p. 688.
  5. Not printed.
  6. For Minutes of the President’s Meeting with the Joint Chiefs of Staff, November 19, 1943, aboard the U.S.S. Iowa on the way to the Cairo Conference, during which meeting the President outlined his views regarding the spheres of responsibility in Germany, see Foreign Relations, the Conferences at Cairo and Tehran, 1943, pp. 253256. For a reproduction of the map on which the President sketched his idea of occupation zones for Germany, see Maurice Matloff, Strategic Planning for Coalition Warfare, 1943–1944, in the official Army history United States Army in World War II (Washington, Government Printing Office, 1959), facing p. 341.