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Memorandum for Operations Division
August 19, 1942 [Washington, D.C.]
Relative to General Eisenhower’s telegram #1293 regarding the organization for Sledgehammer, Roundup and Torch, my understanding in London was that we were to proceed with the Supreme Commander over both the Torch and the Sledgehammer-Roundup landings until the positive order for the Torch operation was given.1 By this I understood it to mean when the troops were actually committed to movements to base ports, etc.
Apparently General Eisenhower and the British C.O.S. consider that a final decision in Torch has been made. The decision to mount the operation has been made, but it is still subject to the vicissitudes of war. Whether or not we should discuss this phase of the matter with General Eisenhower I do not know. There is a further complication in the fact that no Supreme Commander under the terms of the left-hand diagram has ever been designated, and apparently the President has no intention of committing himself on this subject at this time.2
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. Eisenhower’s telegram and attached diagram are printed in Papers of DDE, 1: 481-83. See Marshall to Eisenhower, August 14, 1942, Papers of George Catlett Marshall, #3-279 [3: 302].
2. On August 22 the Combined Chiefs of Staff sent a message to Eisenhower that he should now be “relieved of responsibility for Sledgehammer-Roundup planning and that system of command indicated in right-hand diagram of annex to CCS 30-3rd meeting should become operative. . . . Accordingly responsibility for Sledgehammer-Roundup planning will be transferred at a time convenient to you to a British Officer to be designated by the British Chiefs of Staff as Deputy Commander Roundup.” (Combined Chiefs of Staff to Eisenhower, Radio No. FAN 2, August 22, 1942, NA/RG 165 [OPD, TS Message File (CM-OUT-7387)].) For more information, see Matloff and Snell, Strategic Planning for Coalition Warfare, 1941-1942, p. 294.
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), p. 305.