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Documents Relating to New Zealand's Participation in the Second World War 1939–45: Volume II

366 — The Hon. W. Nash (Washington) to the Prime Minister of New Zealand

page 336

The Hon. W. Nash (Washington) to the Prime Minister of New Zealand

2 February 1944

The following is the text of a reply from the White House, dated 1 February 1944, to my letter to President Roosevelt:

My Dear Mr. Nash,

I have received the comments of the American Joint Chiefs of Staff on your letter of 24 January regarding the employment of New Zealand manpower to the best advantage in our common war effort. They advise me that the military implications involved are as follows:


Shipping requirements.


The relative importance to the war effort of the New Zealand military and food production programmes.


The effect of a reduction in the Mediterranean forces on operations planned for the near future.


The concentration of the New Zealand effort closer to the homeland.


The possible precedent for others of the United Nations with forces overseas to press for the release of these forces at times that might prove inopportune.

Believing this matter to be of concern to both Great Britain and the United States, the American Chiefs of Staff recommend that it be considered by the Combined Chiefs of Staff, and that the question should be referred to the Combined Staff by the British Government.

I therefore suggest that you consider referring the entire matter to the Prime Minister of Great Britain.

Most sincerely,
Franklin D. Roosevelt,

The present plans provide for my departure direct from Washington on Saturday morning. I will approach the Prime Minister immediately after my arrival with a view to discussing the subject early next week.