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Memorandum for the President
May 24, 1943 [Washington, D.C.]
Subject: Ammunition for captured German weapons.
It appears from General Eisenhower’s reports that there probably will not be ammunition in sufficient quantities for most of the weapon types captured, but we have not yet sufficient details to make a definite statement.1
General Somervell informs me that there is ample capacity available to manufacture such ammunition as may be required for these German guns. He has radioed General Eisenhower to send us samples of what is required along with an experienced officer, in order that we may make a prompt start towards the provision of the necessary ammunition.
Document Copy Text Source: Records of the War Department General and Special Staffs (RG 165), Records of the Office of the Chief of Staff (OCS), 471 [5-22-43], National Archives and Records Administration, College Park, Maryland.
Document Format: Typed memorandum.
1. “The matter of making fullest use of captured material for equipping French units, particularly those destined for defense of North Africa, has been under study for a month.” Eisenhower had cabled to Marshall on May 18. His office would keep the War Department informed as inventories were prepared. “A word of warning against becoming too hopeful is necessary because of the amount of reserves that must be piled up for each item issued since future manufacture cannot provide replacements. For example, in high velocity antiaircraft guns frequent replacements of tubes requires the issue of only a small portion of the total number available.” (Papers of DDE, 2: 1145.)
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. 699.