740.0011 European War 1939/33265: Telegram

Mr. Harold H. Tittmann, Assistant to the Personal Representative of President Roosevelt to Pope Pius XII, to the Secretary of State

50. Vatican note, today’s date, states last few days city of Rome has suffered repeated air attacks, both by night and day causing numerous innocent victims in various localities of city itself, including two hospitals. Situation of city, which is practically undefended, is the more serious in that population increased by large numbers evacuees from battle areas elsewhere who were certain that Rome because of sacred and “open city” character would be spared any warlike attack. In conclusion note repeats serious reasons already advanced against involving city of Rome in war and asks me again to call matter to attention of Allied authorities with view to having precise instructions issued for protection of city.