740.0011 EW/1–2745: Telegram

The Acting Secretary of State (Grew) to the Secretary of State
top secret

War Department has just made available message dated February 7 from Marshall2 which indicates that JCS on February 7 approved with certain changes British preliminary text of agreement with Soviet Union for exchange of prisoners of war and apparently also for liberated persons. (This is our message No. 27.)3 While it is not definitely clear what preliminary British text is referred to, if it is the preliminary text included in JCS 1266,4 the agreement would not appear to cover the following specific points which were incorporated in the United States counterproposals forwarded to JCS staff with you:

Protection of Geneva Convention5 which we have informed Soviet Government we will accord to Soviet citizens captured in German uniform who demand such protection.
Soviet citizens in the United States not prisoners of war whose cases the Attorney General feels should be dealt with on basis of traditional American policy of asylum.
Persons liberated by United States forces no longer in their custody.
Question of the liberation and repatriation of other United Nations citizens.
Persons claimed as citizens by the Soviet authorities who were not Soviet citizens prior to outbreak of war and do not now claim Soviet citizenship.

(Allstate Horseshoe) It is felt that these questions and others referred to in JCS 1266 and 1266/1 should be brought to your attention in order that consideration may be given to them before final agreement is reached.6

  1. The text of this message in the Defense Files bears the date February 8, which is the date under which it was transmitted.
  2. Not printed.
  3. i. e., from the Acting Secretary to the Secretary since the departure of the latter from Washington, in this series of messages sent via Army channels.
  4. Not printed. See text agreed upon by the Combined Chiefs of Staff, post, pp. 754756.
  5. For the text of this Convention Relative to the Treatment of Prisoners of War, which was signed at Geneva July 27, 1929, on the part of the United States and forty-six other countries, see Department of State Treaty Series No. 846, or 47 Stat. 2021.
  6. For Stettinius’ reply to this message, dated February 9, 1945, see post, pp. 756757.