Truman Papers

No. 1331
The Assistant Secretary of State (Dunn) to the Secretary of State1


Memorandum for the Secretary

I have communicated with General Hull of the War Department through Colonel Wise on the subject of the withdrawal of our troops from Iran.

General Hull said that unless we want to abandon the U. S. supplies which are now in the American Service Theater in Iran from Tehran to the Gulf, we will not be able to withdraw our Service troops in 30 days nor probably 60 days.

As you know, we are negotiating with the Persians and the Russians for the disposal of most of these supplies as surplus. Any forced withdrawal on our part would force our hand in this bargaining process and would probably amount to our just giving them away to either the Persians or the Soviet authorities.

The alternative to continuing these negotiations to their end would be to load up our stuff on ships and take the greater part out of Persia and practically abandon what we cannot move.

Another point is that about 1,500 of the U. S. Service Forces are Army [Air] Transport Command forces and, of course, in connection with the communications to the Far East and Russia, it would be advisable, if possible, to maintain this transport Service Airfield in Persia at least until the end of the war in the Pacific. These ATC forces are both at the Airfield on the Gulf and the Airfield at Tehran.

[Page 1393]

That means that if we agree to withdraw all of our forces, we would have to realize that such withdrawal would affect the matter of the surplus property in Persia and the ATC communications.

J[ames] C[lement] D[unn]
  1. The presence of the original of this memorandum in the Truman Papers suggests the probability that Byrnes passed it on to the President.
  2. This heading is a manuscript addition.