840.48 Refugees/1–2245: Telegram

The Secretary of State to the Ambassador in the Soviet Union (Harriman)

134. The following for Harriman is from Department and War Refugee Board. In line with record of their past cruelties it is feared that, prior to retreat, the Germans will massacre Jewish and other survivors in Auschwitz (Oswiecim) and Birkenau near Kattowitz and other camps in that area. Please suggest to Soviet authorities the urgency of addressing suitable warnings to Germans in those localities by radio and pamphlets. It is felt, due to nearness of Soviet forces, that such warnings from them would be helpful and effective. Please also take up with Soviet authorities feasibility of their taking direct measures for the protection of inmates of camps.

Board is anxious to hear, as indication whether Germans previous to retreat continue their policy of exterminating remaining Jews, whether 60,000 to 80,000 Jews reported in Lodz a few months ago were found alive. Kindly inquire and cable results.