Chapter XVII: 
 
AFTER TORCH
 
What to do after completing the conquest of North Africa was the crucial question of Allied strategy at the end of 1942. Since operations in North Africa were almost certain to continue for several months and since it was uncertain how many months they would last, it was too early for a final decision to be made. But the British and American staffs, still much preoccupied with the progress of the first big combined operation, began to feel out each other's positions on future Allied strategy.
 
The War Against Germany
 
On 18 November the Prime Minister cabled the President that the "paramount task" before the United States and the United Kingdom was, first, to conquer North Africa and open the 'Mediterranean to military traffic and, second, to use the bases on the African shore "to strike at the underbelly of the Axis . . . in the shortest time." 1 He spoke of the advantages of using either Sardinia or Sicily as air bases to attack Italy and called for a "supreme effort," to bring Turkey into the war in the spring. He concurred in a proposal the President had sent him that the CCS should "make a survey of the possibilities including forward movement directed against Sardinia, Sicily, Italy, Greece, and other Balkan areas and including the possibility of obtaining Turkish support for an attack through the Black Sea against Germany's flank." 2 In accord with these desires of the President and the Prime Minister, the CCS on 19 directed the combined planners to examine the situation in the 'Mediterranean and recommend a policy for subsequent action in the area.3
 
At a White House meeting on 10 December 1942, the President took up with the JCS the question of the next move after the close of the campaign in North Africa.4 General Marshall gave reasons for not undertaking any new operations in the Mediterranean. The first thing to be done, he observed, was to clear enemy forces from Tunisia in order to hold the area without using large forces and to be prepared to safeguard the lines of communication in the
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Strait of Gibraltar. He once again called attention to the logistic difficulties of operations in the Mediterranean and repeated his opposition to "dabbling" wastefully in that area. Before any new operations were undertaken there, he wanted to make sure that they would be worth the cost. Marshall wanted to settle the North African campaign quickly in order to increase the rate of troop movements to the United Kingdom-then about 8,500 men a month. He declared it to be important to build up a balanced force to strengthen the defenses of the British Isles and to take advantage of possible German disintegration on the Continent. He specifically argued that it was important for the United States and the United Kingdom to be ready in March or April 1943 to launch emergency operations against the Brest peninsula or Boulogne, or both, if there were signs that the German air force was becoming weaker or if German forces started to move through Spain.
 
The President was of the opinion that there then was no need for an immediate decision on the next strategic move, and that a decision could possibly be delayed until as late as 1 March 1943. Meanwhile, the United States should continue to build up forces both in the United Kingdom and in North Africa with the greatest possible speed. These two strong striking forces would be prepared to execute whatever line of action should be chosen. The President declared that even if British and American forces did not succeed in driving the enemy out of Tunisia immediately, they were helping the Soviet Union. He expressed the belief, moreover, that operations through Turkey would be well worth considering as a next possible strategic move, provided Turkey could be persuaded to cooperate.5 But the President did not commit himself to any course of action. So far as the War Department planners could tell, it was still an open question whether he would commit the united States to further operations in the Mediterranean. Planning for such eventualities had, of course, to be continued.6
 
Role of Air Power
 
In the closing weeks of the year, while the Army planners were studying possible future operations in the Mediterranean, they were also examining plans for air bombardment in the European theater. The Army Air Forces remained as eager as ever to concentrate air power against Germany. General Arnold held that bombing was the only means of maintaining pressure against Germany, and that an integrated air offensive from the United Kingdom and North Africa would offset the dispersion of Allied forces caused by the North African operation. The main force would be based in
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the United Kingdom. Arnold declared that a minimum force of 2,22:1 U. S. heavy and medium bombers based in the United Kingdom and utilizing American "precision methods" would in six months have a great enough effect to make a land offensive against Germany possible.7
 
Commenting on these views, the Army planners had pointed to the limitations of weather upon a sustained "all-out" bomber offensive, as well as to the reservations of tire British about any kind of cross-Channel offensive before the complete collapse of Germany. If the British would not agree to exploit a favorable situation created by the proposed bombing operations, they observed, then the operations would in large part be wasted.8
 
Recognizing that air power was a strategic weapon of great importance, the Army planners cast about for a proper role for it in the changed circumstances of the European war. They were favorably inclined to that part of the recommendations of the AAF--with which General Eisenhower was in accord-for developing United Kingdom, Forth African, and other Mediterranean bases, as they became available, into a single area for air operations.9 They recommended a more extensive air offensive throughout the European theater from these bases and intensive Allied pressure regardless of the specific line of land action eventually adopted in the theater. The Army planners did not accept the more extreme claims being advanced by exponents of victory through air power.10 They still saw a need for a tactically oriented air offensive before and during a combined land offensive across the Channel; they were not willing to rely solely on "strategic bombing" to prepare the way for the defeat of Germany.
 
Summary of Main Alternatives
 
Examination of the possible courses of action in 1943 and thereafter led the Army planners to the conclusion that there were three main alternatives- -victory through strategic bombing, cross-Channel invasion, and continued pressure in the Mediterranean region.11
 
They rejected the first alternative-victory through strategic bombing-believing that only the concerted use of air and land offensives would produce the decisive defeat of Germany. The second alternative-the cross-Channel operation involved a reversion to ROUNDUP as soon as the enemy was expelled from North Africa. The Army planners had not given up the idea that there must be a decisive campaign in northwestern Europe, but they could not see how or when it could be launched. To resume plans for ROUNDUP in 1943 would be to ignore the fact that a decisive, large-scale cross-Channel operation would not be fea
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sible, as it matter of logistics, before mid1944. It would mean accepting the sacrifice of trial] of tire psychological and tangible advantages promised by  TORCH. It Would also be to disregard the fact that large ground forces would be required to safeguard North Africa and the Middle Fast. In addition, the Army planners were very much impressed by the heavy cost ill Casualties of the Allied raid on Dieppe in August 1942.12 They thus accepted once more the indefinite postponement of Roundup.
 
The third alternative continued pressure in the 'Mediterranean region- was the line of least resistance. The strategic objectives for 1943 would be to open the Mediterranean to Allied shipping, and to knock Italy out of the war. The proponents of this alternative pointed out that the United States and the United Kingdom could not decide, perhaps before mid-1943, when and where the decisive blow against Germany would be struck. In the meantime, limited operations in the 'Mediterranean would be of some help to the Soviet Union by making supply routes shorter and safer and by giving Germany no respite. Such operations could be carried out within the limited means at the disposal of the United States and the United Kingdom in 1943 and could be supplemented by the all-out air offensive against Germany. . Rejecting the first alternative and convinced that the second must be postponed, the Army planners in the closing weeks of 1942 turned with considerable misgivings toward the third alternative for 1943.13
 
The study of the War Department planners had thus brought them by the turn of the year to no conclusion oil which they could heartily agree regarding the course to be followed, in the European Mediterranean area after TORCH. But they were beginning to face tip to the need for some new way of going about the defeat of Germany. Air bombardment its it strategic weapon suggested it combination of possibilities consistent with the view of strategy to which the American military chiefs adhered. Although tire relations among the possible elements-- cross-Channel, air bombardment, and Mediterranean-were still confusing to the War Department planners, they were beginning to think in terms of possible permutations and combinations of operations. They were still speaking-as a carry-over from earlier 1942 planning-largely in terms of this operation or that. But by the very circumstances of their involvement in the Mediterranean, they were now being compelled to consider the possibilities of this and that course. The transition to the strategic initiative err the European theater, along with the growth of the resources at their disposal, had brought them to a new stage in strategic, planning.
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The War Against Japan
 
As long as plans for operations across the Atlantic in 1943 remained indeterminate, it was impossible to resolve the uncertainties and disagreements of the American planners over future operations in the Pacific. But since a large-scale continuation of operations in the Mediterranean was highly probable, the began to project a parallel development of operations in the Pacific. The Army planners continued to work on the principle-which was never stated in so many words-that further "diversions" to operations in the Mediterranean, as required to maintain the momentum of the "diversionary " operations initiated there in 1942, justified parallel "diversions" to operations in the Pacific, as required for the same reasons. This equation remained the basis of War Department dealings not only with -admiral King and General MacArthur but also with the British, since the effective check on British proposals involving increased U. S. Army commitments in the Mediterranean was always the prospect that the JCS would recommend correspondingly more ambitious plans in the Pacific.
 
South and Southwest Pacific
 
In the late fall of 1942, American forces in the South Pacific were still desperately fighting off a series of Japanese thrusts aimed at dislodging them from their foothold in the southern Solomons. General MacArthur had begun a campaign to relieve the Japanese threat to Port Moresby, the advance Allied base on the southern coast of New Guinea. During October and November, Australian troops drove the Japanese back across the Owen Stanley Range, while American troops-transported to the northeast coast primarily by air- joined in bottling up the Japanese in the Buna-Gona area. From the middle of  November 1942 until the middle of January 1943, the Allied troops engaged in bitter fighting to eliminate the Japanese from their strongly defended positions.14
 
In October 1942 the President had told General Marshall that he believed the northeast coast of New Guinea should be secured as soon as possible. Then operations could be undertaken against the New Britain-few Ireland area and from there against Truk, the important Japanese base in the Carolines. The President's view was entirely in accord with that of the Army strategic: planners who had long been maintaining that Rabaul was the key to the Japanese position in the Southwest Pacific, and the best way to approach Rabaul was from New Guinea.
 
Although the immediate objective was the elimination of the threat to Port Moresby, the Papua Campaign was actually the first step in securing the northeast coast of New Guinea. This move was essentially the limited Task Two that General Marshall and his staff advisers had proposed shortly after the launching of Task One, as part of the scheme of operations against Rabaul.15
 
As soon as the Allied forces in the South and Southwest Pacific had shown that they
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could withstand powerful Japanese Counterthrusts, Marshall urged that definite plans be drawn tip for continuing the offensive. as provided in the joint directive of 2 July 1942. On December 1 he sent to -Admiral King for comment the draft of a new joint directive to proceed with the next steps: "Seizure and occupation of the remainder of the Solomon Islands, northeast coast of New Guinea, New Britain and New Ireland." Subject to the approval of the JCS, General MacArthur and Admiral Nimitz were to provide jointly the necessary task forces and to maintain and protect the lines of communication. The target date for beginning these campaigns was also to be determined jointly by MacArthur and . MacArthur was to be charged with the strategic direction of the forces involved. A naval officer was to be in direct command of all naval and amphibious operations.16
 
Weeks of proposal and counterproposal followed, and as had happened in June 1942, the expectation that the Navy would favorably consider the Army recommendations was disappointed. The same issues of unity of command, maintaining the flexibility of the Pacific Fleet, and the risks involved in the employment of naval forces under the strategic control of other than naval officers were carried over from the June discussions. Briefly stated, the War Department called for "an elbowing-forward movement" along the Solomons and New Guinea axes.17 Except for the completion of Task One, all subsequent action would take place in the Southwest Pacific Area. Therefore, strategic control should be vested in General MacArthur. The argued that 'bask One could not be considered completed until the Guadalcanal--Tulagi area had been made secure and developed into an air and naval base. A step-by-step advance tip the Solomons chain would be necessary, but doubts were expressed about the possibilities offered by North Fast New Guinea as a base of operations. Admiral Halsey's command in the South Pacific should not, in an case, be disturbed. Unified command should be set tip over the whole Pacific theater and General MacArthur be given strategic: direction of operations in the Southwest Pacific under Admiral Nimitz.18 This proposal was an entirely natural continuation of the line of reasoning the Navy Department had taken on previous occasions and was accompanied by the same justification as before- the very strong operational argument that the Pacific Fleet should not be divided between two commands. The war Department agreed that a single commander should some day be appointed for the whole Pacific theater, but once again pointed out that this as a matter for higher authority and that a de-
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cision could be made only after prolonged consideration, because of the "political, international and organizational implications." The War Department also reminded the Navy that provision must be made for shifting, air forces as well as naval forces in the Pacific: from one sector to another. The action proposed by the Army, besides solving the problem at hand, would be "a positive step toward eventual unification of command of all forces in the Pacific." 19
 
By early January 1943, when the Chiefs of Staff left for the Casablanca Conference, the Army and Navy had reached no agreement on the details of the strategy and command arrangements for continuing operations against Rabaul.20 Nor had the JCS as yet received MacArthur's detailed plans for the employment of forces in those operations.21 In anticipation of these meetings, the War Department planners had themselves drawn up for the Army representatives an outline strategic plan for an Allied offensive to seize and occupy Rabaul. A condition of the War Department plan was that Allied operations in the Solomons, New Guinea, and the Bismarck Archipelago be placed under the operational control of a single commander.22 The reason for this condition was to make sure that the two jaws of the pincers would come together on Rabaul. Among the advantages of the operation, the War Department planners observed, were bringing the key Japanese naval base at Truk within range of Allied bombers, extending the area of Allied air reconnaissance, and removing the existing threat to the Hawaii-Australia supply route. This operation, moreover, would continue the offensive against Rabaul already opened. Seven U. S. Army and Marine divisions, five Australian and New Zealand divisions, three Marine raider battalions, and one U. S. parachute regiment-all told, about 187,000 combat troops-would be required to execute the proposed plan. All these Allied forces were allocated to the area but not all of them had been sent. There were, moreover, deficiencies in certain kinds of shipping-especially small ships for coastwise use-and some of the divisions within the area lacked equipment and training for jungle and amphibious operations. 
 
To make possible continued operations aimed at Rabaul-the War Department had taken steps to send essential reinforcements to Mac Arthur. As a partial compensation for the immediate involvement of available trained amphibious troops and amphibious equipment in South Pacific operations, the War Department had dispatched a parachute regiment and additional transport planes to the Southwest Pacific. A jungle-trained combat team, moreover, had been sent to that area. An engineer amphibian brigade had been organized for shipment to Australia along
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with a unit to assemble and repair landing craft. Such steps were in line with the relaxation of War Department restrictions on Pacific deployment following the combined agreement on TORCH. In addition, the JCS had approved, at the end of November 1942, the diversion of the 25th Division tentatively scheduled for Australia--to the South Pacific, on the condition that the 1st Marine Division would be released to General MacArthur.23 Contingents of the Marine unit began to arrive in the Southwest Pacific in December, the vanguard of a first-class division experienced in landing operations.24
 
Limited Operations in the Aleutians
 
During October and November 1942 the threat of further Japanese penetration in the Aleutian area remained of secondary importance so far as the Army planners were concerned. Since all available means were being used to bolster the precarious Allied position in the South and Southwest Pacific and to execute TORCH, American strength could not be spared for immediate operations in the Aleutians. For that reason, the War Department had repeatedly refused to approve urgent recommendations from General DeWitt of the Western Defense Command that he be allowed to assemble forces to eject the Japanese from the Aleutian.
 
In the closing weeks of 1942 the Washington staffs reconsidered the question of operations in the Aleutians. Late in November reports had come in that the Japanese had landed a reconnaissance party on Amchitka, an island just to the cast of Kiska. Admiral Nimitz at once recommended to Admiral King that Amchitka be occupied as soon as possible by an Army garrison. He pointed to the possibility that the Japanese might construct an airfield there-they had been unable to complete one on either Kiska or Attu.25
 
In mid-December 1942 General Marshall and Admiral King reached an agreement on a joint directive to Admiral Nimitz and General DeWitt for the preparation of plans to occupy both Amchitka and Kiska. Amchitka was to be occupied as soon as possible and an amphibious force was to be trained for the Kiska operation. But Marshall thought that for tactical and logistical reasons the operation should not be undertaken in the war future, and at his request no target date was set.26
 
The War Department remained reluctant to commit additional forces to Alaska until final agreement on the dates of the offensive operations was reached. The
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Chief of Staff expressed dismay that so mane troops were being committed to Alaska for an essentially defensive role:
 
The present strength in Alaska I am informed is about 85.000 men and approved commitments will raise this figure to over 98,000. Considering the desperate fighting in which we are involved in tile Solomons. New Guinea and Tunisia, and Stilwell's predicament in Burma, we cannot afford this continual increase in Alaska.27
 
On 20 December the War Department specifically told DeWitt that the forces for the occupation of Amchitka would have to be taken from those currently available to him.28
 
While detailed operational plans for the Amchitka and Kiska operations were being prepared in the theater, the War Department strategic planners, in anticipation of the Casablanca discussions, drew tip an outline plan for the occupation of Kiska.29 On the assumption that the impending landings on Amchitka would be successful, the proposed target date. for the undertaking against Kiska was set for early May 1943. Based oil the estimates submitted by General Dewitt, a total ground force-assault and reserve-of approximately 25,000 would be required, including one infantry division, one infantry regiment, and sundry other ground units trained in landing operations.
 
The purposes of the projected operation were to reduce the threat of further Japanese aggression in the Aleutians and Alaska, remove a Japanese observation post in the North Pacific, and deny the use of Kiska Harbor to the Japanese.30 The planners were not at all sure that it would be worth the expense in American lives, shipping, and equipment to remove a position that was then costly to the Japanese because of American air attacks. Even after tile Japanese were driven from Kiska, furthermore, they would still have a listening post in the Aleutian area on Attu, and to remove this Would take a further investment of American forces and resources. The operation would not, the planner, maintained, result in the reduction of the American air and ground garrisons in Alaska. Oil the contrary, it would increase the Alaskan garrison by the number of forces required to occupy Kiska. Though acknowledging the advantages of removing the Japanese threat in the northern Pacific, the Army planners were still ware of the further scattering of American strength.
 
At the same time that the planners were engaged in exploring the problem of ejecting the Japanese from tile Aleutians, they were also considering the possibilities of using the northern route of approach to Japan.31 In September 1942 Admiral King had called for the study of ways and means of supporting Soviet troops in the Far East and of using Soviet bases to strike at Japan itself should war break out between Japan and the USSR.32 A special subcom-
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mittee of the JPS reported at the end of November 1942, listing what would have to be done to prepare against this contingency. This included recapturing the western Aleutians-to ensure the safety of the lines of communication-and obtaining Soviet co-operation in plans and preparations for a campaign against Japan via the northern route.33 On 5 January 1943 the JCS approved these recommendations, with slight modifications, for planning purposes.34
 
Consideration of the northern route, however, was to be temporarily abandoned by the Army staff planners following the Soviet Government's refusal early in January 1943 to allow a survey of facilities in eastern Siberia.35 The cancellation of the survey project (BAZAAR) seriously curtailed the planning that could be done for a campaign against Japan by way of the northern route. But the unopposed landings by an American task force on Amchitka, begun on 12 January 1943, just before the opening of the Casablanca Conference, raised the question of further operations in the Aleutians.36 The Army planners had to allow for another active front, which was likely. to require a further dispersion of American forces in an indecisive area.
 
Plans for Burma Operations
 
The strategic location and manpower of China had continued to figure throughout 1942 as essential-if somewhat abstract -factors in planning the war against Japan. Lark Japanese ground forces were still in China.37 To make more use of bases in China and of the huge reserves of Chinese manpower would threaten Japanese positions on the Asiatic mainland and allow air operations both against Japanese coastwise traffic: and against the Japanese home islands. It might well force the Japanese to divert strength from other areas, specifically from the South and Southwest Pacific. To realize these possibilities, China's troops would have to be armed and its bases equipped with supplies from the United States and Great Britain on a much greater scale than in 1942, when only a trickle of supplies had reached China, carried by a few transport planes from India over the Hump.
 
Throughout 1942 Allied leaders and strategists remained in general agreement that they must keep China in the war, and appeared to agree that the best way to do it wits to reopen land communications through Burma. In the words of the. JCS, the course of action in the Far Fast in 1943 should be:
 
Conduct offensive operations in Burma  with a view to reopening the supply route; to China, thereby encouraging China, and supplying her with munitions to  continue her war effort and maintain, available to us, bases
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essential for eventual offensive operations against Japan proper.38
 
Various proposals and plans--American. British, and Chinese--for an offensive in Burma had been tinder consideration in Washington since the summer of 1942.39 It had soon become apparent to the combined planners that, for lack of necessary means, a major land offensive to retake all of Burma could not be launched before late 1943, if then.40 The combined chiefs directed, in early November 1942, that planning for this offensive continue. At the same time they decided to explore the possibilities of a limited operation earlier in 1943.41 By early December 1942 General Marshall had ready for the JCS the War Department's proposal for a limited offensive operation to be launched by the Generalissimo and General Stilwell in March 1943.42 It was to follow a British operation to seize Akyab, which was already under way, and a British thrust toward the Chin win River that was to begin in February 1943. The War Department proposed that a limited spring offensive, to be launched by forces converging from India and China, be aimed at opening a land supply route into China connecting Ledo with Myitkyina and Bhamo thence to Wanting on the Burma Road. General Marshall stated to the JCS that he considered the proposed Burma operation to be of the "utmost importance." To reopen a land route from Burma to Supply the interior of China would make possible the use of greater American air power in China, since the required base facilities could be supplied overland rather than by air. There was even a good possibility, in Marshall's opinion, of using bases in China to carry out the long-cherished project of bombing Japan proper. The bombing of Japan would influence opinion in India and China and among the Soviet forces on the -Siberian front and would "seriously complicate" the Japanese position in the South and Southwest Pacific.
 
A condition of that operation, as 'Marshall went on to point out, was that Tunisia and Tripoli were in Allied hands, and that no major land offensive would be undertaken in the African-European theater before the summer of 1943. In order to know whether or not operations could be undertaken against Burma in 1943, it would be necessary to know whether there would be an operation against Sardinia in the spring of 1943. To meet the shipping requirements of an operation against Sardinia would immeasurably complicate the preparations for a campaign in Burma.
 
General Stilwell was showing progress in reorganizing and training the Chinese fighting forces. By early December, 32,000 Chi-
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nese troops, armed with American weapons, were being trained in India at Ramgarh. Chinese forces in Yunnan Province, moreover, were being reorganized and consolidated b the Generalissimo. But Stilwell still lacked the necessary road-building machinery and engineers, medical service, and communication troops. To make tip the deficiencies would require the shipment from the United States of 63,000 measured cargo tons and 5,000-6,000 men during January and February 1943. The problem was to secure the necessary shipping. The JCS agreed, on 8 December, to direct further study of the logistical and strategic implications, of the projected operation, and to acquaint the President with the plan.43
 
Meanwhile, the projected operation against northern Burma for March 1943 was being studied in the theater. The limited offensive, as conceived in General Marshall's proposal of early December 1942 ( JCS 162) , had the approval of Chiang Kai-shek, at least in principle.44 But complex and delicate issues in connection with such art undertaking were being raised in New Delhi and Chungking. One great obstacle in the ay of any combined Burma operation was the, problem of command. Relations among the three nationalities participating were already characterized by command arrangements as intricate as their military and political objectives were diverse. , After several conferences between Stilwell and the Generalissimo and Stilwell and Wavell, the three of them reached an agreement whereby the Generalissimo would in person command the Chinese forces from China. The Generalissimo, Wavell, and Stilwell were apparently in agreement also that the command of all forces operating from India would be under the British. Stilwell recommended to Chiang that he accept British Supreme command when the British and Chinese efforts converged in Burma. But no decision had been reached on this score by the end of the year.45
 
The question of mutual support also threatened to affect a spring operation. In November 1942 Chiang had agreed to a combined operation for the spring of 1943- -as then proposed by Field :Marshal Wavell provided lie was reasonably assured of Allied air superiority and naval control of the Bay of Bengal. ,On these conditions he promised to have fifteen divisions ready for the operation by mid-February.46 But it was far from certain that these conditions Would be fulfilled. In the early part of December one of the War Department planners went so far as to declare flatly, "It should be clear enough b now that the British do not want the Chinese to go into Burma." He went on to predict:
 
They Will by one means or another do Everything possible to block any Chinese forces front operating in Burma. This is, of course, a political matter . . . . In any event, do not expect the British to allow Chinese operations in Burma, nor themselves to be aggressive in their el\n operations. if any.47
 
Events appeared to bear out this prediction. Toward the close of the year the
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Commander in Chief, Eastern Fleet, Admiral Sir James Somerville, advised that it would not be practicable, with the naval forces available, to control the Bay of Bengal. (:hung thereupon complained to the President that the British were going back on earlier promises to furnish the necessary naval support in the Bay of Bengal for a Burma operation.48 At the same time Chiang also told the President that Field Marshal Wavell had two months earlier promised that the British would provide seven divisions for the recapture of Burma. More recently, Chiang declared, the British commander had told Stilwell the British could use only three divisions for limited operations aimed at taking Akyab and forming a lisle oil the Chindwin River. It would be impossible, Chiang informed the President, for the Chinese to undertake the offensive unless the British carried out their undertakings.
 
The British on their part were also stressing the logistical difficulties in the way of their own advance beyond the Chindwin River into Burma.49 On the question of naval support, Sir John Dill explained to the Chief of Staff that the British had no destroyers to guard their old battleships, which did not dare venture into the Bay of Bengal unprotected. He saw little possibility of Securing destroyers in time for all operation at the end of March 1943.50
 
The inevitable reaction set in at Chungking. Oil 27 December 1942, Chiang announced to Stilwell that the Chinese would make all preparations to jump off oil the date set, and then, if the British Fleet appeared, they would jump off. If not, they would not "move a finger."51 On 9 January 1943 Chiang cabled to the President that lie was convinced that the attempt to retake Burma would have to be a combined overland and seaborne operation. Unless the Allied navies could prevent enemy reinforcements by sea, or enable a landing force to attack the Japanese in the rear in south Burma, the enemy would be in a position to concentrate rapidly against the armies ill the north. Therefore, he considered that in all advance restricted to north Burma the Allies would be risking probable defeat. He w as also convinced that the Allies would have to muster adequate forces oil both the Indian and the Chinese sides for success in the limited spring operation. In his opinion, the forces which Field Marshal Wavell currently proposed to use were too small. He announced to the President that, with no hope of naval support, it would be better to wait a few months, or even until the fall, to begin the Burma campaign, but that an all' offensive to China Should, in the meantime, be undertaken as a preparatory measure. , He repeated that the Chinese were proceeding with preparations for the Burma offensive and that they would be ready when their -Allies were ready.52
 
Just before the Casablanca Conference in accord with Marshall's desire---the President urged Chiang Kai-shek to delay a final decision not to take part in the north Burma operation until after the President had conferred with Churchill.53 The War Department staff, of course, prepared plans for the Burma campaign to be taken to the
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conference.54 But the development of American military- policy with reference to China was likely simply to take the form of an extension of the policy of 1942--"keeping China in the war"-- is a policy that presupposed, and had so far succeeded in eliciting, only very limited collaboration from the British and the Chinese.55
 
British-American World Strategy for 1943
 
'Though the British and American planners had been discussing post-TORCH operations since the launching of the North African operation, the British and American Chiefs of Staff did not enter into any general exchange of views on world strategy for 1943 until the last hurried days of preparation before Casablanca. On 26 December 1942 the JCS circulated for the consideration of the British Chiefs of Staff a summary of their views on operations in 1943.56 They pointed out that the accepted principle of British-American strategy, reduced to its simplest form, read:
 
To conduct the strategic offensive with maximum forces in the Atlantic Western European theater at the earliest practicable date, and to maintain the strategic defensive in other theaters with appropriate forces.
 
The JCS assured the British that they still regarded this version as basically- sound, but they prepared it modified version that gave notice of their intention to match operations in the Mediterranean with operations against Japan.
 
Conduct a strategic offensive in the Atlantic-Western European Theater directly against Germany. employing the maximum forces consistent with maintaining the accepted strategic concept in other theaters. Continue offensive and defensive operations in the Pacific and in Burma to break the- Japanese hold on positions which threaten the security of our communications and positions. Maintain the strategic defensive in other theaters.
 
The JCS recommended, it will be noticed, that the principal offensive effort of the United Nations in 1943 be made "directly against Germany" in Western Europe, rather than against satellite states. They did not even mention the possibility of post TORCH seaborne offensives in the ,Mediterranean. They argued for an integrated air offensive from the United Kingdom, from North Africa, and, as far as practicable, from the Middle East, and the build-up as rapidly as possible of adequate balanced forces in the United Kingdom in preparation for a land offensive against Germany in 1943. After the expulsion of enemy forces from North Africa, they looked to consolidating the North African position, safeguarding the Allied lines of communication, and preparing for intensive air operations against Italy. Furthermore, the
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JCS recommended the eventual transfer of excess forces from North Africa to the United Kingdom in anticipation of the invasion of Western Europe in 1943. They proposed that Turkey should be maintained in a state of benevolent neutrality until such time as help, in the form of supplies and minimum specialized forces, would insure the security of Turkish territory and make it available for Allied use.
 
Turning to the Pacific, the JCS recommended offensive and defensive operations to secure Alaska, Hawaii, New Zealand, Australia, and the lines of communication thereto, and to keep the initiative in the "Solomon --Bismarck ---East New Guinea Area." As for the Far East, the JCS urged offensive operations in Burma, with the immediate aim of reopening the supply routes to China.
 
The British Chiefs of Staff replied on 2 January 1943 that on most issues they were in agreement with their American colleagues57 The British Chiefs stated that the main point of difference was that
 
We advocate a policy of following up TORCH vigorously accompanied by as large a "BOLERO" build-up as possible, while the U. S. Chiefs of Staff favor putting their main effort into "Roundup," while adopting a holding policy in the Mediterranean other than in the air.
 
The British Chiefs proposed the exploitation of TORCH in order to knock Italy out of the war, bring Turkey into the war, and give the enemy no time for recovery. The exploitation of TORCH during the spring of the year would, in the British view, offer a good chance of eliminating Italy by the combination of an air offensive on the largest scale and amphibious assaults (as against Sardinia, Sicily, and finally the mainland of Italy) . Along with the American Chiefs of Staff, they urged the increased bombing of Germany. They also proposed the (lathering of forces in the British Isles-but only to the extent that the other operations proposed by them would permit. The British estimated that about twenty-odd British-American divisions would be ready to re-enter the Continent in August or September 1943, if conditions at that time appeared favorable for success. In their opinion, this course of action would give greater relief to the USSR than would concentration on BOLERO at the expense of all other operations; nor would it render improbable the main Burma operation (ANAKIM) in the winter of 1943-44.
 
The British Chiefs contended that the strongest force that could be assembled by August 1943 for an attack upon northern France would be at most thirteen British and twelve American divisions. Of these divisions, six (four British and two American) would be the most that could be organized as assault forces with the shipping and landing craft that could be made available. The gathering of these forces, the British Chiefs argued, would result in curtailment of activities in other theaters; lead to only a slight increase in the scale of bomber offensive against Germany and Italy; and mean the abandonment of operations against Sardinia and Sicily and of any amphibious operations in the eastern Mediterranean. ANAKIM, moreover, could not be undertaken in 1943 because all available landing craft would be wanted in the United Kingdom. Even if this cross-Channel operation were undertaken, an expedition on an adequate scale to overcome strong German resistance could not be staged. A force of
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twenty-five divisions would be only slightly over one half the force originally planned for Roundup; for seven months, while the. force was being built up, the USSR would be getting no relief and the Germans would have time to recuperate.
 
The British Chiefs therefore recommended "limited offensive operations in the Pacific on a scale sufficient only to contain the bulk of Japanese forces in that area."58 They also proposed that operations to reopen the Burma Road be undertaken as soon as resources permitted. The British estimated that the Japanese were engaged almost to the limit of their resources and that their capabilities would not increase so long as "communications with Germany are kept severed.
 
The unsatisfactory exchange between the American and British Chiefs before Casablanca was accompanied by the failure of the planning subcommittee of the CCS to agree on a course of action subsequent to TORCH. The planners reported that they were helpless because of the lack of agreement on higher levels as to over-all strategy and even as to the general area for subsequent offensive action.59
 
In the remaining week before the departure of the American delegation for Casablanca, the JCS had their planners review the American and British proposals. General Marshall was particularly concerned over the difference in British and American estimate of the cost of post TORCH Mediterranean operations. He pointed out to the American military chiefs that the British were evidently "adamant in relation to establishing a front in France." On the other hand, he was "adamant against operations which would result in unwarranted loss of shipping." Admiral King was especially anxious to counteract what he believed to be the British underestimation of Japanese capabilities. In his opinion, unless constant pressure were maintained to prevent Japanese consolidation of their conquests, the Allied cause would be jeopardized. He went so far as to suggest the desirability of the Allies' deciding on a percentage basis what part of the over-all effort should henceforth be directed against Japan. General Marshall questioned the feasibility of this approach.60 On the basis of detailed findings of the joint planning committees, the joint Chiefs were prepared to reargue, at the conference, the case for immediate concentration of forces in the British Isles.61
 
The choice for 1943 appeared to be either to continue operations in the Mediterranean and in the Pacific on a large scale, while sending to the United Kingdom whatever U.S. forces could be spared from these operations, or to open no new land campaigns in the Mediterranean or the Pacific so as to accumulate forces for an invasion
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of the Continent and a campaign in Burma. There was every reason to expect the President and the Prime Minister to choose the first course, although General Marshall would do his best to dissuade them.
 
Staff Planning and the President's Position
 
General Marshall's intention to do just that became very evident in the discussion of the JCS with the President at the White House oil 7 January 1943-the only such meeting held in direct preparation for the forthcoming conference.62 At this meeting the President inquired of the JCS whether all were in agreement that the American delegation should meet the British "united in advocating a cross-Channel operation." General Marshall told the President that there was a difference of opinion, particularly among the planners, although the American Chiefs themselves regarded a cross-Channel operation more favorably than an operation in the Mediterranean. For Marshall the issue was "purely one of logistics." Though he was willing to take some "tactical" risks, "logistical hazards" were unacceptable. In accord with the reasoning of his staff, he went on to say that Sicily was probably a more desirable objective than Sardinia----apparently preferred by the British-but that any operation in the Mediterranean would, of course, reduce the strength and resources that could be sent to the United Kingdom.
 
Marshall warned above all against the loss of tonnage from operations in the Mediterranean. He personally favored a cross-Channel operation against the Brest peninsula sometime after July 1943. The losses in that operation would be in troops. The current shipping situation was so critical that "to state it cruelly, we could replace troops whereas a heavy loss in shipping, which would result from the Brimstone [Sardinia] Operation, might completely destroy any opportunity for successful operations against the enemy in the near future."
 
Marshall concluded that in view of current differences in American and British military opinion oil the critical issue of cross-Channel versus Mediterranean operations, "the question had resolved itself into one thing or the other with no alternative in sight." The President, seeking to postpone a final decision, renewed the request he had made in early December 1942 that the JCS consider the possibility of an intermediate, compromise position. He suggested the possibility of gathering American forces in England and making plans for operations in northwestern Europe as well as in the Mediterranean, leaving the actual decision in abeyance for a month or two. The decision would then be made on the basis of the existing situation.
 
In spite of the President's warning that "at the conference the British will have a plan and stick to it," the JCS and the President reached no understanding about what they would say to the British oil the great issue of European strategy. The President left the JCS free to state their own views at the forthcoming conference. He did not commit himself specifically- to those views. Left undefined was the American position oil the relations of any new action in the Mediterranean to a cross-Channel offensive and air operations in Europe, and to operations in the Pacific and Far East. Oil the significant question, then under con-
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sideration in Washington, how much more lend-lease aid to promise the USSR, the President left the JCS uncertain how far he was willing to go. He did not define his views on the conflict--which had long troubled Generals Marshall and Arnold and their staffs-- between increased air aid to the USSR and American air training programs and plans and operations. He simply proposed not to answer Soviet requests for more aircraft and to send General :Marshall to discuss the matter with Stalin after the Casablanca Conference.
 
The most striking illustration of the want of understanding between the White House and the military staffs was the President's announcement, military the 7 January meeting, of his intention to support the ,"unconditional surrender" concept as the basic Allied aim in the war.63 The President simply told the JCS that he would talk to the Prime Minister about assuring Stalin that the United States and Great Britain would continue on until they reached Berlin and that their only terms would be "unconditional surrender." No study of the meaning of this formula for the conduct of the war was made at the time by the Army staff, or by the joint staff, either before or after the President's announcement.
 
Without having made even a real effort to reach agreement on the problems of the coming year, the President and a small military staff delegation departed, a few days later, for Casablanca.
 
The Casablanca Conference
 
On 14 January 1943 the President and the Prime Minister met, in company with their leading political and military advisers, at Casablanca. They spent ten days reviewing the questions at issue in global strategy and considering the next move after TORCH. There were practical reasons for the choice of Casablanca as a meeting place. Any plans for subsequent action were directly related to the course of the North African campaign, and it was desirable to canvass the possibilities with the commanders on the spot. The hopes for a quick termination of that campaign had been dis. appointed, and uncertainty when it would end complicated and unsettled all British American planning for the future.
 
AS the exchange of opinion before the Casablanca Conference indicated, General Marshall had felt neither obliged nor encouraged to try at once to unite the American representatives, from the President down, on a revised version of the plan to concentrate forces in the British Isles. At the conference General Marshall fought a strong rear guard action in defense of the plan. This was a logical course for him to follow, since his own planning staff had at first taken the TORCH decision so ill and had afterwards been so engrossed in carrying it out that they had had only a few weeks in which to face the situation it had created. This course also served notice on all that concentrating for a major cross-Channel operation was still a cardinal objective in American strategic planning.
 
The British brought to the conference a very complete staff and fully prepared plans and positions-in striking contrast to the small American staff and incomplete Amer-
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Photo - MAJ. GEN. T. T. HANDY, Assistant Chief of Staff, Operations Division, and other planners of the division. Sealed left to right: Col. C. A. Russell, Col. J. E. Upston, Brig. Gen. P. H. Tansey, General Handy, Brig. Gen. A. C. Wedemeyer, Col. 1;. R. Partridge, and Col. R. F.. Starr; standing left to right: Col. R. C. Lindsay, Col. V. H. Connor, Col. F. L. Fair, Col. J. C. Blizzard, Jr., Col. C. W. Stewart, Jr., Col. b1'. 1.. Ritchie, Lt. Col. E. B. Gallant, Col. D. 1'. Johnson, Col. H. 1. Hodes, Col. 7'. S. Timberman, Col. L. Mathewson, Col. G. Ordway, Jr., Col. C. K. Gailey, Jr., Col. C. D. Silverthorne, Col. W. C. Sweeney, Jr., Col. .T North, and Col. R. T. Maddocks.
MAJ. GEN. T. T. HANDY, Assistant Chief of Staff, Operations Division, and other planners of the division. Sealed left to right: Col. C. A. Russell, Col. J. E. Upston, Brig. Gen. P. H. Tansey, General Handy, Brig. Gen. A. C. Wedemeyer, Col. 1;. R. Partridge, and Col. R. F.. Starr; standing left to right: Col. R. C. Lindsay, Col. V. H. Connor, Col. F. L. Fair, Col. J. C. Blizzard, Jr., Col. C. W. Stewart, Jr., Col. b1'. 1.. Ritchie, Lt. Col. E. B. Gallant, Col. D. 1'. Johnson, Col. H. 1. Hodes, Col. 7'. S. Timberman, Col. L. Mathewson, Col. G. Ordway, Jr., Col. C. K. Gailey, Jr., Col. C. D. Silverthorne, Col. W. C. Sweeney, Jr., Col. .T North, and Col. R. T. Maddocks.
 
ican preparations. It appeared at the time to the American staff that the British thoroughness had a decisive influence at the conference.64 In any event, General Marshall succeeded in making no real change in the direction Allied strategy had taken in the second half of 1942. The Casablanca Conference merely recognized that the Initiative would be maintained by the Allies both in the Pacific and in the Mediterranean, and defined short-range objectives in those areas in terms of operations in the South and Southwest Pacific and against Sicily. No real long-range plans for .the defeat of the Axis powers emerged from the conference. The questions of Asiatic and cross-Channel operations were simply left open for future negotiation and decision. Agreement on a round-the-clock bomber offensive from the United Kingdom was reached, but it was not tied precisely to Mediterranean or cross-Channel operations. Nor were the relationships among these operations and Pacific-Asiatic undertakings clearly defined. There were significant portents in the American staff's stress on enlarg-
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ing the scope of operations against Japan and in the President's announcement of the unconditional surrender concept. But the important thing for the immediate future was that the advances already begun in the Mediterranean and in the Pacific would be carried on in the two areas in which U. S. deployment had been especially heavy in 1942.65
 
The Future of Planning
 
The indecisiveness of the Casablanca Conference on basic strategic issues-which appeared to the American staff to be a victory for the British Chiefs-brought home to the Army strategic planners the need to adjust themselves to a new phase of coalition warfare. The effect of General Marshall's rear guard action at the conference was to give them the time they badly needed to regroup for a "counteroffensive" in their dealings with the British in 1943. The problem of limiting operations in "subsidiary" theaters, which the War Department planners had tried-and failed-to solve in simple terms, had become so complex that the Army planners had not only to start all over again but also to work much more patiently and thoroughly--and as a result more slowly--than they had in early 1942. The boldness and simplicity of the studies that General Eisenhower had submitted, the sense of conviction and urgency that had appeared in the oral and written presentations of the War Department case-by Stimson and Robert A. Lovett, Marshall, Arnold, and Wedemeyer -had had their effect, though not the effect intended. But their arguments were most evidently not strong enough in themselves to overcome the gravitational pull on the President of the diverse claims urged by the British Prime Minister, Admiral King, and General MacArthur. What was needed was a far more elaborate and extensive analysis of the "American position" than could be developed in the minds of a few War Department officials who had strong preconceptions and enormous operating responsibilities. To this task of analysis, similar to that that the British staff had long since made for the "British position," the American planners would have to address themselves.
 
The strategic planners had to face up to the problems of preparing for maximum offensive effort in the global conflict. The effect of the Casablanca Conference was to drive home to the Army planners what had already begun to be apparent to them in the closing weeks of 1942: The new stage of the coalition war demanded new planning processes, techniques, quantitative calculations, and ideas. On the basis of the bare beginnings made in these directions in late 1942, the Army strategic planners would have to start anew in 1943 to plan for victory.66
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