851.20/303: Telegram

The Acting American Representative to the French Committee of National Liberation at Algiers (Chapin) to the Secretary of State

1104. Following is translation of decree concerning organization of National Defense adopted by the FCNL this morning.

“1. The FCNL insures the general prosecution of the war. It assumes authority over the totality of land, sea and air forces.

2. The President of the FCNL is Chief of the Armed Forces. The powers entrusted to the President of the Council of Ministers by the law of July 11, 1938, for the organization of the nation in time of war insofar as concerns the direction and coordination of national defense are exercised by the President of the FCNL.

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3. The President of the FCNL, Chief of the Armed Forces: (a) Has final decision as to the composition, organization and employment of the Armed Forces; (b) Orientates and coordinates the activity of the military departments and establishes dispositions of common interest to their activity and that of other departments; (c)Directs the activity of military missions abroad.

4. The President of the FCNL, Chief of the Armed Forces, is assisted: by the Committee of National Defense (provided by decree of November 16, 1943 establishing the organization of the High Command).

He is assisted by the staff of National Defense whose composition he shall fix.

The Chief of Staff of National Defense is appointed by decree and carries out the functions of secretary of the Committee of National Defense.

5. All dispositions contrary to the present ordinance are abrogated.

6. The present ordinance will be published in the Journal Officiel of the French Republic and executed as law.”

Sent to Department as 1104, repeated to London as 133.