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Memorandum for Admiral King
July 15, 1942 [Washington, D.C.]
The President in his conversation with me this morning referred to the proposal to transfer our major effort to the Pacific as something of a red herring, the purpose for which he thoroughly understood.1 However, he stated that he thought the record should be altered so that it would not appear in later years that we had proposed what amounted to the abandonment of the British. I think he refers to our joint memorandum to him on the subject, though I have not had time to look into the matter. If this last assumption is correct his idea evidently is that we should alter that memorandum insofar as may be necessary to present our views in such a fashion that it will not appear that we are proposing such abandonment. I did not think we were, with at least the Magnet force of ground troops going in there and a considerable air complement.
I am sending this to you now so that you will have an opportunity to consider the matter before we talk it over.
Document Copy Text Source: George C. Marshall Papers, Pentagon Office Collection, Selected Materials, George C. Marshall Research Library, Lexington, Virginia.
Document Format: Typed memorandum.
1. As to whether the Pacific alternative was a bluff, Forrest C. Pogue noted that General Marshall told him in 1956: “In my own case, it was bluff, but King wanted the alternative.” (Marshall Interviews, p. 593.)
Recommended Citation: ThePapers of George Catlett Marshall, ed.Larry I. Bland and Sharon Ritenour Stevens(Lexington, Va.: The George C. Marshall Foundation, 1981- ). Electronic version based on The Papers of George Catlett Marshall, vol. 3, “The Right Man for the Job,” December 7, 1941-May 31, 1943 (Baltimore and London: The Johns Hopkins University Press, 1991), pp. 276-277.