J. C. S. Files

No. 1192
Report by the Combined Military Transportation Committee of the Combined Chiefs of Staff1
C. C. S. 897

Provision of Personnel Shipping for the Requirements of Allied Governments

the problem

1. To ensure the efficient coordination of the demands for personnel shipping submitted by Allied governments, other than British and American military movements, and to provide a machinery for dealing with essential personnel movements other than those already approved.

facts bearing on the problem

2. See Enclosure “B.”


3. See Enclosure “C.”

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4. It is concluded that:

The following procedure will ensure the efficient coordination of all those Allied demands:—

The current procedure for handling the United States and United Kingdom personnel shipping for military requirements will be continued. This procedure will permit on an operational basis the opportune use of such shipping on return voyages, or legs of such voyages, to move passengers of any of the Allied governments.
All requirements of the Allied governments for the movement of passengers, whether military or civilian, involving definite additional commitments of shipping, whether on a short- or long-term basis, should be submitted to the United Maritime Authority (UMA) in terms of the shipping space required. The Combined Shipping Adjustment Board should confer with the Combined Chiefs of Staff as to practicability of meeting such requirements. On military requests of the other Allied governments the decision will rest with the Combined Chiefs of Staff.
As regards the movement of civilians for which provision is not made under a. and b. above, the matter may be referred to the appropriate agencies of the United Kingdom and United States to decide whether passenger vessels should be withdrawn at the expense of the military effort. Ships, if so allocated, would operate under the control of the United Maritime Authority on the basis of the “Agreement on Principles”2 but would be retained in the common pool and assigned for particular voyage employment as might be decided from time to time.


5. a. That the foregoing conclusions be approved by the Combined Chiefs of Staff.

b. That the letter in Enclosure “A” be forwarded to the Combined Shipping Adjustment Board.

[Enclosure A]


Memorandum for the Combined Shipping Adjustment Board

The Combined Chiefs of Staff have been studying the problem of providing passenger carrying shipping to meet the urgent demands for the essential military operations in the prosecution of the war against Japan, and for the provision of such shipping of this type to [Page 1196] meet other requirements as can be made available without adversely affecting military operations.
The available passenger space is insufficient to meet all the urgent requirements of the United Nations, and coordination of demands is, therefore, essential in order to determine priority and to secure shipping efficiency as well as to ensure the fullest consideration being given to all claimants.
The Combined Chiefs of Staff have, therefore, agreed that in accordance with the “Agreement on Principles,” dated 5 August 1944, contained in the UMA report, October, 1944, the following procedure in respect of the submission of demands should be adopted by all the Allied nations:—3

. . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Vital demands for shipping should therefore be submitted to the United Maritime Authority for consideration.
The Combined Shipping Adjustment Board is requested to transmit the foregoing statement of policy to the United Maritime Executive Board in Washington and London.
[Enclosure B]

Facts Bearing on the Problem

The tonnage of the Allied Nations under the control of the United Maritime Authority (UMA) is administered in accordance with the “Agreement of [on] Principles,” dated 5 August 1944. As regards cargo, this agreement and the procedures of the UMA provide fully for the requirements of the contracting governments to be taken into account in the disposition of available tonnage. This report deals only with the sea transport of personnel.
The “Agreement on Principles” contains the following provision in Article 7 (c):—

“… In order to meet the special case of military requirements those ships which have been taken up under agreements made by United States Government and/or United Kingdom Government with the other governments having authority for those ships for use as troopships, hospital ships, and for other purposes in the service of the armed forces, shall remain on charter as at present to the War Shipping Administration (WSA) and/or the Ministry of War Transport (MWT), as the case may be, under arrangements to be agreed between the governments severally concerned. (Any further ships required for such purposes shall be dealt with in a like manner.)

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“The fact that these ships are assigned to military requirements shall not prejudice the right of the governments concerned to discuss with the central authority the measures to be taken to provide …4 shipping for their essential requirements within the scope of paragraph 1 of the Agreement.”

As regards personnel ships suitable for long sea voyage employment, estimates of military needs indicate the necessity for every suitable vessel being under the direct control (by time charter) of the WSA or the MWT. The estimates of available trooplift as submitted to the Combined Chiefs of Staff are based on the assumption that all the Allied passenger ships at present in service, or recovered as a result of liberation or capture, will be under the direct control of the Combined (Anglo-American) shipping authorities. On the other hand, it has always been recognized that there might be requests for the movement of military and civilian personnel sponsored by other Allied governments. The last paragraph of Article 7 (c) as above, expressly reserves “the right of the governments concerned to discuss with the central authority the measures to be taken to provide shipping for their essential requirements,” and was inserted at the request of the other Allies to provide for this expectation. These requirements might include:—
Movement of military personnel of the forces under the control of these governments, or repatriation of prisoners of war, or
Movement of civilian passengers of high priority (including essential civilian personnel in colonial territories), displaced persons, etc.
[Enclosure C]


The procedure of the UMA for the allocation of shipping to contracting governments depends upon the assumption that there are appropriate authorities to approve and sponsor the requirements of those governments for shipping space. As regards cargo, this is provided for by arrangements already in force. As regards other Allied personnel movements, however, there is at present no authority responsible for guiding the UMA on questions of priority, and in this class of shipping, owing to the acute shortage, it is clear that some guidance will be necessary.
The available personnel lift is not adequate to meet all the urgent requirements of the United Nations. Coordination of demands is, therefore, indispensable in order to determine priority and [Page 1198] to secure shipping efficiency. In any case, it is presumed that the appropriate chiefs of staff or theater commander would be concerned with any substantial movement of personnel. Once it is determined that a particular government has personnel movements of an approved character to carry out, it would be in accordance with the procedure of the UMA to allocate ships or space to that government for the approved movements. It should be noted that under existing conditions the combined shipping authorities are bound to advise that such arrangements can not be made on any substantial scale at present without affecting existing plans for military moves.
  1. Submitted on the Committee’s initiative, in consultation with the Combined Shipping Adjustment Board. Considered at the 201st Meeting of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, July 23 (see ante, p. 272) and at the 199th Meeting of the Combined Chiefs of Staff, July 23 (see ante, p. 294).
  2. Signed at London, August 5, 1944 (Treaties and Other International Agreements Series No. 1722; 61 Stat. (4) 3784).
  3. Here follow subparagraphs a, b, and c, which are identical with paragraphs 4 a, b, and c in the body of the Committee’s report printed above, except that the parenthetical “(UMA)” in subparagraph b is omitted.
  4. Ellipses in this quotation are in the source copy.