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To Lieutenant General Jacob L. Devers
July 7, 1944 Radio No. WAR-61762 Washington, D.C.
Personal attention General Devers from General Marshall.
General Bethouart called on me this morning in regard to a number of matters of materiel. The War Department officials tell me that aside from some special items which we are short on here, deliveries on the agreed rearmament program have been made up to 51/3 Infantry Divisions and 3_ Armored Divisions. Also for 225 out of some 260 special units. As I understand it the equipment is available here and they tell me that the shipments will not be made until you give the word over there and that you wait until the men are prepared to receive it.
In view of pending operations, what portion of the missing equipment should be put en route now without further delay?1
Document Copy Text Source: George C. Marshall Papers, Pentagon Office Collection, Selected Materials, George C. Marshall Research Library, Lexington, Virginia.
Document Format: Typed radio message.
1. “All essential equipment for French required for pending operations should arrive on time, if action already initiated is completed as scheduled,” replied Devers on July 9. “Request for shipment of equipment has not been delayed in any case until men are assigned to units.” But his command had refused to provide equipment for units that French authorities had proved incapable of organizing in North Africa because of lack of personnel or for units French commanders proposed to raise in metropolitan France following liberation of French territory. “The French rearmament program in my opinion was designed to equip an expeditionary force for the invasion of Continental Europe and not to furnish supplies for liberated areas in France nor to build up a post-war French Army,” stated Devers. “It is suggested that no commitments based on statements made by Bethouart or DeGaulle be made by you without our comments.” (Devers to Marshall, Radio No. FX-70274, July 9, 1944, NA/RG 165 [OPD, Exec. 10, Item 52e].) For further discussion of the French situation, see the following document, Papers of George Catlett Marshall, #4-443 [4: 513-14].
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. 4, “Aggressive and Determined Leadership,” June 1, 1943-December 31, 1944 (Baltimore and London: The Johns Hopkins University Press, 1996), p. 513.