The Acting Secretary of State to the Secretary of War (Patterson)1

My Dear Mr. Secretary: Subsequent to our meeting Wednesday morning, February 25 [26], 1947, President Truman approved in principle the measures which you endorsed for immediate aid to Greece and Turkey as set forth in the memorandum entitled “Position and Recommendations of the Department of State Regarding Immediate Aid to Greece and Turkey”. Congressional leaders have been informed of the nature of the problem and the urgency of the need for our assistance to these countries. They also approve in principle the general program for aid.

In the course of our discussions on the Greek and Turkish problem, frequent reference was made to the fact that this is only part of a much larger problem growing out of the change in Great Britain’s strength and other circumstances not directly related to this development. I believe it important and urgent that study be given by our most competent officers to situations elsewhere in the world which may require analogous financial, technical and military aid on our part.

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I have asked Assistant Secretary Hilldring as Chairman of the State–War–Navy Coordinating Committee to direct the attention of that committee to this important problem and, in consultation with the Treasury Department, undertake a thorough study to be submitted to me or Secretary Marshall as soon as possible.2

Sincerely yours,

Dean Acheson
  1. Mr. Acheson sent an identical letter to Secretary of the Navy Forrestal on March 5.
  2. For the report of the Special Ad Hoc Committee of SWNCC, dated April 21, 1947, dealing with the “countries to which the U.S., for its own security and national interests, may find it desirable to extend aid in the next few months”, see volume iii .