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

8675. Reed for Thayer28 from Orchard. The following statement of policy on the transition from military to civilian responsibility for civilian supplies in liberated areas was approved on October 17 by LAC for submission to CLAC:29

The Combined Liberated Areas Committee endorses the general principle that the military responsibility for civilian supplies in liberated areas of Northwest Europe should be terminated at the earliest possible date.
The Committee recognizes that insofar as military considerations are concerned the decision on the date of the termination of military responsibility for civilian supplies in each area must be made by the Combined Chiefs of Staff on the recommendation of SCAEF.
The Committee requests the Combined Civil Affairs Committee to undertake to advise CLAC of the military decision on the date of termination in ample time to ensure that the U.S. and U.K. Governments have the opportunity, before any notification of the date to the government of the area concerned.
To make known any policy considerations that may govern the continuation of civilian supplies to the area;
To ascertain whether or not there is a stable indigenous government able to assume the responsibility for civilian supplies;
To ascertain whether such supplies will be available to the indigenous government and whether the necessary shipping will be provided.
In order to provide as smooth a transition as possible from the military period to the post-military period, the Committee recommends that the military authorities, as soon as possible after their notification of the date of termination to the Combined Liberated Areas Committee, advise the civilian agencies concerned of the extent to which supplies or allocations in the hands of the military can be made available to ease the transition.
As the period of military responsibility may be brief or wholly unnecessary in the countries of Northwest Europe, the Committee recommends that through diplomatic channels the U.S. and U.K. Governments immediately invite the Allied Governments to discuss arrangements for obtaining their supplies for the post-military period.
The Committee requests that all notifications concerning the termination of military responsibility for civilian supplies be communicated to the Allied Governments through diplomatic channels.
The Combined Civil Affairs Committee should be informed that the above conclusions have been approved by the Combined Liberated Areas Committee and should be requested to indicate its concurrence.30

  1. Walter N. Thayer, Mission for Economic Affairs.
  2. The memorandum by U. S. members of CLAC, October 17, was approved, with modifications, on October 26.
  3. In a memorandum of November 14, CCAC advised of its, concurrence in the procedure outlined in the memorandum of October 26 (CLAC 8/3, November 15, Lot File No. 122, Box 50, CLAC Docs. 1–15).