J. C. S. Files]

Memorandum by the British Chiefs of Staff
top secret

C. C. S. 747/7 ( Argonaut )

Allocation of Resources Between India-Burma and China Theaters

1. The British Chiefs of Staff fully recognise the importance and magnitude of the United States commitments to China, both political and military.

2. They trust that the United States Chiefs of Staff will also recognise the political and military importance of the British stake in operations in Burma.

3. The circumstances in which the British Chiefs of Staff accepted without discussion in conference the United States reservation stated in C. C. S. 3081 no longer apply. A year ago, British land forces were not committed to operations in which their security was dependent to the same extent upon air transportation as it is now. Moreover, the situation in China was not such as to demand such urgent increase of the Fourteenth Air Force as to preclude prior discussion. It was more a question of taking advantage of opportunities in China rather than of warding off dangers.

[Page 525]

4. In present circumstances, the British Chiefs of Staff feel bound to reopen the question and to ask that no transfer of forces to the China Theatre from the India-Burma Theatre which is not acceptable to Supreme Allied Commander, Southeast Asia Command should be made without the agreement of the Combined Chiefs of Staff.

The British Chiefs of Staff are very ready to discuss means of reducing to an absolute minimum the time occupied in discussion of projected moves.

  1. Not printed.