740.00119 Control (Germany)/5–1245: Telegram

The Ambassador in France (Caffery) to the Secretary of State

2552. From Murphy. ReDeptel 1917, May 7th. The excellent suggestion made by [to] the President in the Department’s memo of May 5th was outstripped by the rapid tempo of military developments.

I discussed this matter informally with the Chief of Staff95 SHAEF who has also been informed of the contents of the Department’s 1935, May 8, 7 p.m.96 Chief of Staff informed me that it could have been a comparatively simple matter for the US Third Army to have penetrated deeply into Czechoslovakia and to have taken Prague.97 In fact German High Command strongly urged that USA forces should undertake such a mission and the opposition to the forces apparently would have been insignificant. In the absence of a directive however General Eisenhower’s strategy laid emphasis on facilitating the occupation of southern Germany and western Austria thus paving the way for the longer term occupation. [Murphy.]

  1. Lt. Gen. Walter Bedell Smith.
  2. Vol. iii, p. 281
  3. The Soviet Army occupied Prague on May 9.