Chapter III
Partnership Versus Triangle

During the months after the establishment of the Permanent Joint Board on Defense and the initiation at about the same time of informal staff collaboration with the United Kingdom, the U.S. public continued to remain cool to the idea of involvement in the European war. Nevertheless, preparatory measures for continental security were considered legitimate actions in self-defense and had widespread public support. In this setting, the special military relationship between Canada and the United States developed harmoniously without undue involvement resulting from Canada's membership in the British Commonwealth and its participation in the European war.

The Roosevelt-Churchill Axis

The initial development of U.S.-British collaboration may have given some impetus to Canada's desire to join with the United States in a mutual defense scheme. The further development of that collaboration suggested the possibility of even greater impact on the U.S.-Canadian relationship and was therefore watched with interest from Ottawa.

The liaison established between the British services in London and the visiting U.S. staff group in August 1940 became closer during the ensuing months. With utmost secrecy and on an informal basis, the staffs explored the actions the United States would have to take if it entered the war. These were the first real steps in the direction of combined planning.

In the meantime, British Ambassador Lothian had presented to Secretary of State Hull, on 5 October 1940, a proposal for the conduct of formal military staff talks on the Japanese threat in the Pacific. His proposal, which was repeated later in October and again in November after the presidential election, and which contemplated multilateral participation, was not found acceptable in Washington. Yet it was probably this proposal that inspired the broader U.S.-British staff talks that took place in January 1941.1


During the autumn months of 1940 the war outlook changed substantially. British successes in defending against German air attacks in the Battle of Britain, together with German failure to attempt the English Channel crossing during the most favorable periods, increased the conviction that Great Britain would hold. In turn, the threat to North America was seen as diminishing. In the War and Navy Departments, emphasis in planning began to shift by the end of October from concern over hemisphere defense toward the concept of supporting Great Britain.2

Immediately after President Roosevelt's re-election in November 1940, Admiral Stark, Chief of Naval Operations, recommended that the President authorize secret and exhaustive military talks with the British staffs. General Marshall concurred in the proposal, which the President approved. On 30 November Admiral Stark issued the invitation to the British Chiefs of Staff in his own name.3 The staff group sent to represent the British Chiefs of Staff arrived in Washington in January 1941. Between 29 January and 29 March, fourteen plenary meetings with United States staff representatives took place. As stated in the report of the conferees, the conversations had the following purposes:

  1. To determine the best methods by which the armed forces of the United States and the British Commonwealth, with its allies, could defeat Germany and its allies, should the United States be compelled to resort to war.

  2. To co-ordinate on broad lines the plans for the employment of the forces of the associate powers.

  3. To reach agreements as to the methods and nature of military co-operation, including the allocation of principal areas of responsibility, the major lines of military strategy, and the strength of forces that might be committed.4

The United Kingdom representatives, on entering upon the talks, presented themselves as the "United Kingdom delegation," which was to represent the British Chiefs of Staff in their collective capacity as military advisers to the War Cabinet of His Majesty's Government in the United Kingdom. Both the British Chiefs of Staff and the War Cabinet were parts of the United


Kingdom Government and not of any Commonwealth machinery. Consistently, the British group was referred to in British papers, and in papers prepared by the joint secretariat that served the conferees, as the United Kingdom delegation.5 However, the U.S. committee specifically examined the question of nomenclature and concluded that it should refer to the United Kingdom representatives as the "British delegation." This delegation indicated in its initial statement that it understood the object of the conversations to be the co-ordination of plans for the employment of forces of the British Commonwealth, its present allies, and the United States. The records of the conversations do not indicate that the U.S. representatives in any way questioned the authority of the United Kingdom group to speak for the Commonwealth and its allies. The U.S. committee did consider the question of participation of Canadian and Australian officers as observers, and agreed that such participation was undesirable, although those officers could remain available to the British delegation as technical advisers.

The conversations thus proceeded with, at best, only indirect representation through the United Kingdom delegation for Canada, other Commonwealth countries, and other allied belligerents. Despite this fact the British and U.S. representatives in their talks and in the war plan prepared during the talks made world-wide allocations of strategic responsibilities and of the military resources available. The resources of Canada and the rest of the Commonwealth were included and simply enumerated as part of the total British resources. The war plan did take note of existing U.S.-Canadian defense planning by acknowledging that the measures needed for the defense requirements of contiguous land and coastal areas of the two countries would be covered in plans prepared by them. The report of the conversations, dated 27 March 1941 and given the short title ABC-1, made provision for methods of command and staff representation that proved unsatisfactory to Canada. The report had, of course, a considerable bearing not only on the form and substance of U.S.-Canadian co-operation but also on the role of Canada and on the future conduct of the war.

As provided for in ABC-1, the British Chiefs of Staff undertook to secure the concurrence of the dominion governments to relevant portions of the report. They submitted ABC-1 to the Canadian Government for approval but apparently had not yet received it at the end of July, four months after completion of the report.6 Earlier in July the Department of State had been


notified that "the United Kingdom Government . . . [was] in general agreement with the report" on the staff conversations except for "certain subsidiary points--such as some of the proposals made in paragraph 6 of the 'Joint letter of transmittal,'" on which London had not yet made up its mind.7

In Washington, the Secretaries of War and the Navy approved ABC-1, but the President merely noted it. Roosevelt's approval, tacit if not express, was assumed, and the U.S. services used the plan as the framework for their own global strategic planning.

On 27 May 1941, two months after the conclusion of the staff talks, President Roosevelt declared an unlimited national emergency. This date may be said to mark the transition from the informal liaison in Washington and London into a more-or-less formal and continuing combined U.S.-British planning arrangement. In accordance with the provisions of ABC-1 but in advance of the time specified in it, the United Kingdom had, in early April, already established the British Military Mission (later designated the British Joint Staff Mission) in Washington.8 On 17 June the first meeting of the U.S. and United Kingdom representatives who were later to become the working members of the Combined Chiefs of Staff committee took place in Washington.9

As the United States intensified planning and preparation for possible participation in the war against the Axis and increased collaboration with the United Kingdom, its collaboration with Canada receded in relative importance. The work of the Permanent Joint Board continued unabated and close interservice co-operation expanded. Since the foundations of U.S.British direction of the over-all war effort had been laid, Canada could but watch the United States move into ever closer collaboration with the United Kingdom.

Not long after Pearl Harbor the White House announced that military staff meetings with the United Kingdom had been taking place regularly in Washington and London. The announcement stated that the machinery for joint planning would soon be expanded to include representatives of the Soviet Union, China, the Netherlands, and other governments engaged in


the war. Secretary of State Hull urged President Roosevelt to establish a supreme war council, with major power representation, along the lines of the body that functioned in World War I. Hull opposed as an unwieldly arrangement the suggestion of Lord Halifax, the British Ambassador, that the dominion governments would probably have to be given the same status in such a council as Great Britain. By early January 1942 the President had concluded that a regional basis for co-ordination was best initially, and the Hull proposal was dropped.10

While a supreme war council was being debated, arrangements were being made for Prime Minister Churchill and the British Chiefs of Staff to come to Washington. They arrived in Washington for the ARCADIA Conference, the first of the major U.S.-British politico-military conferences of World War II, on 22 December 1941. Concurrently with the meetings of the political leaders, the chief staff officers of the two countries met and prepared recommendations on military problems for the consideration of Roosevelt and Churchill.11 No Canadian, or other third power, representatives participated in the military conferences, although Prime Minister King and political figures from other countries participated in the political discussions with Roosevelt and Churchill.

From the ARCADIA Conference emerged the Combined Chiefs of Staff (CCS) committee as a formally constituted body with an elaborate organization of subordinate planning and technical bodies. The U.S. members of the committee were General George C. Marshall, Chief of Staff of the Army; Admiral Harold R. Stark, Chief of Naval Operations; Lt. Gen. Henry H. Arnold, Chief of the Army Air Forces; and Admiral Ernest J. King, Commander in Chief, U.S. Fleet.12 Since the British Chiefs of Staff could not leave London for any protracted period, the British component of the Combined Chiefs of Staff normally consisted of senior representatives of the British Chiefs of Staff who spoke for and consulted them as necessary.13

North Atlantic Triangle

The culmination of the informal British-U.S. staff collaboration in the establishment of the Combined Chiefs of Staff raised for Canada, and for


other governments as well, the question of the adequacy of its representation in this new strategic council.14 Ottawa had already learned that not all arrangements worked out between Washington and London, and involving Canadian matters, accorded with the Canadian desires.

Difficulties had first been experienced in the field of matériel procurement. At the outbreak of war Canada had been obtaining such of the equipment for its armed forces as was procured from the United States by direct purchase from U.S. manufacturers.15 This procedure gave Canada full freedom of action as to items that were not in short supply. But even before the fall of France, the expanding needs of the United States and Great Britain were competing for an ever-increasing list of products. British and French supply and procurement activities in the United States were being co-ordinated through the Anglo-French Purchasing Board. Canada joined this arrangement, apparently as a means of improving its position in procuring competitive items, and on 5 March 1940 notified the Department of State that the board, then under the chairmanship of Arthur B. Purvis, a Canadian, was "acting for the Canadian War Supply Board in respect of purchases in the United States for Canadian defense service."16

The fall of France caused the dissolution of the Anglo-French Purchasing Board and its replacement by the British Purchasing Commission.17 It also greatly increased both British and American demands on the U.S. output of military matériel. Canada was not completely satisfied with the system of procuring U.S. matériel either through the board or through the commission because the United Kingdom was favored in allocations of the available matériel made by the commission, especially after the fall of France.18

Moffat had reported the Canadian difficulties to Morgenthau during his discussions in Washington on 2-3 July 1940, and had informed Prime Minister King, on his return to Canada, that henceforth the United States might break down the Empire requests by country and act on the requests piecemeal. To King, it appeared that such a procedure would make supply to Canada easier, since matériel for Canada would contribute more directly to the defense of the United States.19


Months later, in November 1940, the Canadian Section of the Permanent Joint Board on Defense was trying to improve this situation and proposed to the Board that Canadian matériel needs be divided into two categories: those for North American defense, and those for the European war. Orders for matériel in the latter category, the proposal stated, should properly be placed through the British Purchasing Commission for allocation from the quantities excess to U.S. needs, but matériel requirements for North American defense, the Canadian Section felt, should be met on the same basis as U.S. defense needs and without passing through the British commission.20

Another measure apparently designed, at least in part, to improve the Canadian position in the procurement of matériel was the establishment in January 1941 of a British Supply Council in North America to deal with "issues of policy concerning supply, including representations to be made to the United States Administration."21 Mr. C. D. Howe, Canadian Minister of Munitions and Supply, became a member of the new council. That Canadian efforts in this direction did not adequately fulfill Canadian needs is indicated by the fact that the Canadian Section of the Permanent Joint Board, which had at the November 1940 meeting reported its lack of success in obtaining through the British machinery a number of American flying boat patrol aircraft, had to report two months later that Great Britain had not yet agreed to this urgent Canadian request.22

Insofar as practicable Canada continued to purchase equipment directly from U.S. manufacturers. For items in competitive supply, the Canadian requests were placed through the British Supply Council and assigned an agreed priority. In turn, the British Commonwealth requests were considered by the U.S. Joint Army and Navy Munitions Board Priorities Committee, which assigned priorities in relation to U.S. requirements. After U.S. entry into the war, it became necessary for Canada to place virtually all requirements before the appropriate new combined agencies that were established in which allocations were made on the basis of world-wide operational requirements and priorities.23

The field of matériel procurement was not the only area in which Canada had experienced difficulties as a result of arrangements worked out between Washington and London. In some instances the United Kingdom and the


United States took actions in which the Canadian Government felt that it had been inadequately advised or consulted. One such instance was the conclusion, in March 1941, of the leased-bases agreement between the United Kingdom and the United States. During the later stages of the negotiations leading to the signing of the preceding destroyer-bases agreement of 2 September 1940, Prime Minister King had been consulted by both Roosevelt and Churchill, and had approved the arrangements embodied in the preliminary agreement.24 Although King had apparently expected to be a principal in the negotiation of the detailed agreement relating to the bases in Newfoundland, the negotiations were virtually completed before Canada was invited to participate and, even then, only in the role of observer at the conclusion of the leased-bases agreement, which was signed on 27 March 1941. At Canadian instance the three countries simultaneously signed a protocol clarifying the Canadian interest in the defense of Newfoundland.25 Prime Minister King felt so strongly about this case of bilateral U.S.-United Kingdom negotiation of a matter of direct concern to Canada that he complained to both the President and the Secretary of State.26

A similar situation was to develop within a few months. In August 1941 the first wartime meeting of Roosevelt and Churchill took place aboard ship off Argentia, Newfoundland. Roosevelt, in planning his secret voyage to the rendezvous, considered a route through Ottawa to Quebec, where he would embark on a cruiser. He rejected this route on the ground that it would be difficult either to explain his failure to take Mr. King along, or to take Mr. King, in the absence of the leaders of other interested states, to what became known as the Atlantic Conference. The conferees did discuss questions of over-all policy, such as the Atlantic Charter and the situation in the Pacific. Important decisions concerning the Canadian war role were also taken, yet no Canadian official participated in the discussions.27

The establishment of the Combined Chiefs of Staff and other combined United Kingdom-U.S. agencies subsequent to formal U.S. entry into the war


brought new occasions for Canadian dissatisfaction. In addition to creating the Combined Chiefs of Staff committee, Roosevelt and Churchill announced, on 26 January 1942, the establishment of the Munitions Assignments Board, the Combined Shipping Adjustment Board, and the Combined Raw Materials Board. The bilateral membership of these agencies accorded with the Churchillian concept that the "most sure way to lose a war" was to put every power contributing forces "on all the councils and organizations which have to be set up and to require that everybody is consulted before anything is done."28

President Roosevelt, while agreeing to the creation of the British-U.S. agencies, recognized the need for dominion and Dutch participation in the over-all conduct of the war, particularly in respect to the Southwest Pacific, where dominion and Dutch forces were engaged. Accordingly, the Combined Chiefs of Staff considered outline proposals formulated by the President and accepted the recommendations thereon of the British members. These proposals provided that political questions should be discussed in London, since the principal political representation of the countries concerned was centered there, and that strategic questions should be considered in Washington by the Combined Chiefs of Staff, who would hold the British Joint Staff Mission responsible for evolving a co-ordinated British Commonwealth point of view. Although staff representatives of the participating countries could maintain normal contacts with the U.S. staffs and attend Combined Chiefs of Staff discussions on matters of concern to them, the responsibility for making final recommendations to the British and U.S. Governments was to remain with the Combined Chiefs of Staff since they had to considered "the strategy of the war as a whole, the interests of their two Nations being world-wide."29

The British-U.S. organizational arrangements growing out of the ARCADIA Conference left the Canadian Government feeling that the Canadian position relative to the war direction boards was confused and unsatisfactory and that Canada had been pushed aside, even in fields where it had a direct interest. As a result, a Department of External Affairs officer, Lester B. Pearson, was sent to Washington on 19 February to clear up a situation that had apparently developed not only because of the natural desire to keep the directing bodies as small as possible, but also because of Churchill's "personal predilection for speaking in the name of the entire Empire and trying to reverse the process of recent years and integrate it more closely." Canadians felt that


Churchill had been ably abetted in this effort by the U.S. services, "whose attitude throughout had been that Canada was a nuisance and had much better be treated as a part of Britain," rather than as an independent country, which was in fact the true status of Canada and the other dominions.30

In March Prime Minister King himself came to the United States to discuss Canadian exclusion from the war direction agencies. Although by this time the Canadian Government had accepted its exclusion from the Combined Chiefs of Staff, it still sought representation in the raw materials and munitions assignments agencies. Arrangements were worked out to keep Canadian representatives better informed so that, upon the occasion of King's next visit to Washington in April 1942, he was satisfied to press only for membership on the Munitions Assignments Board.31

Nevertheless, the question of Canadian participation in the direction of the war continued to be a vexatious one for Prime Minister King. Selfinterest demanded that he vigorously protest cavalier treatment by either Great Britain or the United States and seek a strong Canadian voice in the war councils. Before the United States entered the war it had been his view that Canada had a special role to play in the promotion of British-American friendship and harmony of sentiment. One of the reasons he had given for his unwillingness to sit in an Imperial War Cabinet in London was his belief that his availability for personal contact with President Roosevelt "in critical situations affecting the relations between the United States and British Commonwealth" might easily be more important than any service he could render in London.32.

Canadians as a whole had taken pride in the Canadian role as connecting link, or hinge, between the two major English-speaking countries. Some of the developments that had taken place might understandably have made Canadians wonder whether at times the role had not more nearly resembled that of a nut between the two jaws of a nutcracker. Nevertheless, King followed a policy of taking such positions in regard to Canadian representation as "would best serve to bring about co-operation among all the governments concerned." He accepted the "arrangement under which the war . . . was being carried on, on behalf of the United Nations and which . . . recognized at the head as the combined command, the Prime Minister of Great Britain and the President of the United States." Where Canadian interests were likely to be prejudiced, he was prepared to, and did, make strong protests to get


representation. Otherwise, he recognized that the problem of representation by the many nations was only one of the difficulties facing Roosevelt and Churchill and endeavored not to add to an already complex situation.33

Arrangements for the strategic direction of the war followed the basic concept established in the ABC-1 report. A U.S.-British high command provided over-all direction, while the earth's surface was divided, with one exception, into three areas of responsibility--the first British, the second American, in which each government provided strategic direction through a senior national commander, and the third comprising the land areas in which joint U.S.-British offensive operations would later be launched under jointly agreed unity of command arrangements. The single exception provided that Canada could assume responsibility for the strategic direction of forces in such waters and territories of the Atlantic Ocean areas as might be defined by joint U.S.-Canadian agreements. The joint U.S.-Canadian defense plan, ABC-22, prepared in correlation with the ABC-1 plan, did provide for such assignments of responsibility to Canada. The net effect was that Canada alone of all the other powers was singled out for such an assignment of strategic responsibility.34

Insofar as the rest of the war areas were concerned, Canada and other powers participated in the deliberations of the Combined Chiefs of Staff only when the problems under consideration related to them. This participation comprised in part informal and continuous liaison between Canadian service representatives in Washington and members of the Combined Chiefs of Staff committee and its working subcommittees. Alternately, these representatives were invited to participate in the formal sessions of the Combined Chiefs of Staff. Canadian participation at formal meetings took place on several occasions.35

In time, Canada achieved membership on three of the subcommittees of the Combined Chiefs of Staff committee. By the spring of 1944, the United Kingdom half of the Combined Communications Board and the Combined Meteorological Committee had been expanded on a Commonwealth basis to include Canadian and other dominion representatives. In September 1944


independent Canadian representation on the Combined Civil Affairs Committee was approved, thus making this committee tripartite in nature.36

Two of the eight wartime politico-military conferences took place in Canada--QUADRANT (First Quebec Conference) in August 1943, and OCTAGON (Second Quebec Conference) in September 1944. At each of these conferences three general categories of meetings took place--those of the Combined Chiefs of Staff, those of the Combined Chiefs of Staff with President Roosevelt and Prime Minister Churchill, and the political meetings between Roosevelt and Churchill and, when invited, the representatives of other powers. Only the British and U.S. staffs participated in the first two categories of meetings, although informal and formal meetings and discussions did take place between the Canadian Chiefs of Staff, on the one hand, and the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff or the British Chiefs of Staff, on the other. The Canadian Chiefs of Staff visited Washington in May 1943 concurrently with the TRIDENT Conference and discussed mutual problems in a similar manner. Mr. King participated in Roosevelt-Churchill discussions at TRIDENT, QUADRANT, and OCTAGON and also met with the President and British Prime Minister separately. Thus, although no formal Canadian participation took place at the Combined Chiefs of Staff meetings, there was frequent opportunity to discuss and concert policies and measures of mutual interest.37

The three members of the North Atlantic triangle also participated in other bodies established to provide co-ordinated direction to the war effort. Pursuant to the ARCADIA discussions, Mr. Churchill had, on 27 January 1942, announced the proposed establishment of a Pacific War Council on the ministerial level in London to provide co-ordinated political guidance on the Pacific war to the Combined Chiefs of Staff. It held its first meeting on 10 February, with Great Britain, New Zealand, Australia, the Netherlands, and


QUEBEC CONFERENCE, AUGUST 1943. Seated are the President of the United States, Franklin D. Roosevelt, and the Governor General of Canada, the Earl of Athlone. Standing are Prime Minister Mackenzie King of Canada and Prime Minister Winston Churchill of Great Britain.

India participating.38 Subsequently Canada requested, and was granted, representation on the London council. On 30 March President Roosevelt announced establishment of a Washington body with the same name and similar functions and composition. This body, which met first on 1 April 1942 and included representatives of the United States, United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, China, India, the Netherlands, New Zealand, and the Philippine Commonwealth, met frequently during 1942 and 1943. The London council, with somewhat narrower representation, continued to meet, but less frequently. Both bodies furnished a formal forum, on the ministerial level,


in which the smaller countries could express their views and recommendations.39

A parallel staff agency, the Military Representatives of the Associated Pacific Powers, was also established at Washington in the spring of 1942 and included, in addition to the Washington members of the Combined Chiefs of Staff committee, representatives of Australia, Canada, New Zealand, the Netherlands, and China. This body met about once a month. In January 1943 French and Polish representatives were admitted, and in April the word "Pacific" was dropped from the title. Apparently by common consent, meetings of this group, which heard reports and exchanged views on a wide range of military problems, were not held after June 1943.40

Thus Canada, after some initial concern as to its role vis-á-vis the United Kingdom-U.S. machinery for the broad policy and strategic direction of the war, succeeded in developing satisfactory relationships which seemed adequate to its needs. In due course Canada also participated to varying degrees in other Anglo-American combined bodies.41

Canadian dissatisfaction over participation in the Anglo-American combined organizations was by no means the only occasion for resentment directed at the United States. Numerous incidents occurred on the point of the relationship of Canada to the British Empire that led Canadians to conclude that Americans still considered Canada a nonautonomous part of the Commonwealth. President Roosevelt had in September 1939 set a precedent in this regard that he himself failed to follow on several occasions. The United Kingdom had declared a state of war with Germany on 3 September. The Neutrality Act of 1937 required issuance of a U.S. neutrality proclamation involving an embargo on arms deliveries to belligerent states. Associates of the Secretary of State argued that, since the United Kingdom was at war, the dominions were also, unless they formally seceded from their association under a common sovereign. Hull recommended a contrary view to the President, who immediately telephoned Prime Minister King for his opinion. King stated that he did not regard Canada as being at war. Accordingly, Canada was not included in the U.S. neutrality proclamation of 5


September but in a separate proclamation issued on 10 September, the day of the Canadian declaration of war.42

Yet in drafting a proposed list of signatories to the Atlantic Charter in August 1941, the President initially grouped the dominions in a listing under the United Kingdom, although he later revised the list to place all the countries in alphabetical order. In January 1942 the State Department not only proposed a listing of signatories for the Joint Declaration by the United Nations in which Canada appeared as one of a British Empire group of nations, but it also compounded this maladroitness by presenting the document to Canada through the British Embassy, thereby occasioning a formal Canadian objection.43 Incidents such as these led some Canadians to conclude that both service and civilian elements of the U.S. Government believed Canada to be a nuisance, much better treated as a part of Great Britain.44

The Stresses of Partnership

Not all the difficulties that arose in U.S.-Canadian politico-military dealings during World War II can be ascribed to the North Atlantic triangle relationship or to Canada's position in the British Commonwealth. Naturally, in the course of years of close collaboration subsequent to the Ogdensburg meeting, many disagreements developed. Although it was not always possible to reconcile divergent fundamental points of view, representatives of the two countries always succeeded in amicably working out solutions which, if not the solution preferred by both sides, at least met the essential requirements of the situation. Despite the number of disagreements, large and small, disagreement was far from the norm for U.S.-Canadian wartime


co-operation. The many great joint wartime achievements deny any such conclusion. The areas of harmonious co-operation far overshadowed those in which disagreements needed to be worked out. Nevertheless, the record of these disagreements is a necessary and useful one, for their existence and causes should be noted and should serve as guideposts in the future.

Often the difficulties were the result of the manner in which the United States consulted and negotiated with Canada. On one occasion a communication to the RCAF member of the Permanent Joint Board in August 1941 tactlessly advised him that, as a result of discussions between the President, Maj. Gen. Henry H. Arnold, and Lord Beaverbrook concerning Atlantic aircraft ferrying, General Arnold desired Canadian authorization for the United States to establish three weather and emergency stations in Canada, and that it was "mandatory that definite decision be received promptly" as delay might defeat the entire project. This message reached a Cabinet War Committee meeting, where it was read and provoked a strong reaction not only to the use of the term "mandatory" (with the flavor of a British-U.S. ukase) but also to the use of military, rather than diplomatic, channels for presentation of the request. Canada promptly approved the request, but the incident was not as promptly forgotten.45

Similar lapses occurred on the part of the State Department. To cite an important instance, the United States had, throughout most of 1941, actively discussed with the other Pacific powers questions relating to the possibility of war with Japan. During the summer some consultation with Canada took place, although it was necessary for Canada not only to request that it be kept advised but also that this be done directly and not through the British Government. As the situation regarding Japan became critical, the United States after September 1941 carried on extensive political discussions with Japan in an effort to achieve a modus vivendi. During the talks the United States considered itself a trustee for the other governments concerned. On occasion during November, as the situation approached a crisis, the diplomatic representatives of the United Kingdom, China, the Netherlands, and Australia were consulted on the negotiations.46 Despite the clear Canadian interest in the political and security problems of the Pacific, Canada was not consulted. Mr. King expressed concern and regret on this score, and,


although Pearl Harbor soon made the question academic, for many weeks "the failure to include Canada among the powers invited to discuss the Pacific problems in late November continued, despite all explanations, to rankle."47

Many of the difficulties that arose after Pearl Harbor were the result of fundamental differences in the approaches of the two countries to mutual problems. Americans would attack each problem vigorously and impatiently, and in terms of the short-term military need, with only secondary consideration to long-term aspects or to the concurrent impact on other conditions in Canada. Canada, usually the grantor in all the requests presented, was interested, too, in "getting the job done," but it was also prone to give more consideration to the broader implications of the U.S. requests.

The initial U.S. request after Pearl Harbor evoked a response that exemplified this difference in approach. On receiving a U.S. request, transmitted to Ottawa by the State Department on 8 December, the Cabinet War Committee on the next day considered authorizing the United States to establish a radio direction finding installation in British Columbia involving some fifty personnel. The authorization was granted with several conditions relating to the relationship between the detachment and Canadian commanders and financial and procurement provisions that had been recommended by the Canadian Section of the Permanent Joint Board. One of these called for a commitment to leave the radar set in Canada if the U.S. requirement for an installation at that site ceased to exist. State Department officers reacted strongly to these conditions and declared them unacceptable, forecasting major reactions if such conditions were indicative of the Canadian idea of a basis for wartime co-operation. Needless to say, the problem was satisfactorily resolved, as were many others that followed it. As the fundamental points of view on each side became better understood and approached a common denominator, the handling of similar requests became routine and perfunctory.48

Canadian Staff Representation in Washington

Until the start of World War II, neither Canada nor the United States maintained service attaché representation in the other country. On Canadian initiative in February 1940, Air Commodore W. R. Kenny was assigned


to Washington as the first Canadian air attaché there, and was followed in August and September by Commodore V. G. Brodeur and Col. H. F. G. Letson, as naval and military attachés, respectively.49 The War Department sent its first attaché, an Air officer who served as both military and air attaché, to Ottawa in April 1940, while the Navy Department first assigned a naval attaché there in August 1940. This nominal and routine attaché liaison was supplemented, after the Ogdensburg Declaration, by liaison through the Permanent Joint Board on Defense.

Two types of liaison between the United States and the dominions were provided for in the ABC-1 report of March 1941: Canada, Australia, and New Zealand were to be represented by their service attachés on the British military mission to be established in Washington, and the United States might exchange liaison officers with the dominions for direct co-operation.50 These arrangements were not, from the Canadian point of view, enough. Canadian desire for liaison through a mission similar to the British mission, which was established during April 1941, were apparently first indicated in a Canadian working-level draft of an operational plan at the time of the joint drafting of defense plans.51 The operational plan provided for an exchange of military missions between Ottawa and Washington at the time that it was put into effect. In March, at least on the service working levels, the War Department had seemed willing to accede to the Canadian desire, but Canadian efforts to establish a staff mission in Washington were to travel a rocky road for many months.52

The Canadian Government. on 1 July 1941, after consulting with the United Kingdom, formally requested U.S. approval of the establishment of a military mission in Washington and stated that it felt "very strongly" that the recommendations concerning Canadian representation in Washington made in the ABC-1 report were inadequate. "Problems of joint action in the western Atlantic and possibly in the eastern Pacific," could, in the Canadian view, "best be handled by the establishment of a separate organization rather than by any method of Canadian representation on the United Kingdom Mission." Pending approval of the Canadian mission, the Canadian Government asked that its service attachés be allowed to attend joint meetings of the British Joint Staff Mission and the U.S. service departments. At


such meetings, it was to be understood that "the Canadian Service Attachés . . . [were] acting in their capacity as such, and not as members of the British Mission."53

Both the War and Navy Departments in July opposed a Canadian mis sion on the grounds that representation through the Permanent Joint Board on Defense and the British Joint Staff Mission met all the Canadian needs for liaison, and that an undesirable precedent would be established for similar requests by other dominions and the American republics.54 The Department of State replied to the Canadian aide-mémoire on 25 July, taking the position that, although as a matter of general policy a mission would be welcome, the matter was primarily a military one and the case made by the service departments seemed convincing.55

During the period that the United States was considering the formal Canadian request, the service members of the Permanent Joint Board were completing the drafting of the 1941 Canadian-U.S. defense plan (ABC-22). The final draft, dated 28 July 1941, provided for the establishment, when the plan became effective, of officers of each country as representatives of their chiefs of staff vis-á-vis their opposite numbers in the other country. Thus the joint drafters were able to go somewhat further than the provisions of ABC-1 in meeting the Canadian desires but were unable at this time to repeat the War Department's willingness to agree to an exchange of missions, even if their establishment were to await the time when the plan would be put into effect.

Soon afterward, on 18 August 1941, Prime Minister King informed U.S. Minister Moffat that the prolonged refusal of Washington to approve a military mission was the only aspect of U.S.-Canadian relationships that seriously troubled him. King felt not only that Canadian contacts with the War and Navy Departments were being funneled through British channels, but also that the British were consciously sidetracking the Canadians. He accordingly urged that the proposal be reconsidered in the light of its political implications and of the greater confidence that would be engendered in the Canadian public mind by direct military representation at Washington.56

While the War and Navy Departments re-examined the request, Moffat discussed with Department of State officers the true significance of the continued Canadian pressure for a military mission. The decision to continue the pressure had been taken at the highest political levels, and was a manifestation of dissatisfaction with the way the Canada-United States-United Kingdom


Kingdom relationship had developed during the preceding year. Although resentment was greatest against the British, there was disappointment that the United States should have allowed Canada to be pushed aside. A solution to the mission problem was psychologically important to prevent a transfer of active resentment to the United States. Moffat also surmised that considerations of domestic politics were a motivating force in the Canadian insistence on a mission.57

The political considerations relative to the mission did not weigh heavily in War and Navy Department deliberations. The Chief of Staff and the Secretary of War agreed "that foreign political considerations inimical to our military interests should not be allowed to determine the attitude of the War Department," and they approved a recommendation that the request should again be rejected. The substantially identical responses of the Secretaries of War and the Navy proposed, as an alternate solution, the establishment in Washington of a permanent office for the Canadian Section of the Permanent Joint Board on Defense. This proposal, which had already been explored in informal diplomatic discussions, had been rejected by Canadian officials on the grounds that the subject matter for discussions contemplated did not belong to the Board, and that the personnel making up the Canadian Section were not considered suitable for this purpose.58

The reason for the U.S. planners' reversal of position, from their initial working-level acceptance of the idea of a mission to their subsequent opposition when advising their chiefs in connection with the formal Canadian requests, is not clear. The answer may be that the question of command relationships under the 1941 defense plan came under joint discussion in the interim. Despite intermittent U.S. pressure beginning in March 1941, and lasting for over a year, the Canadian Section of the Permanent Joint Board and Canadian service planners vigorously opposed, as a general principle, assignment of parts of Canada and Newfoundland, or of Canadian forces located in either, to U.S. strategic or operational command.59 This Canadian position may well have led U.S. service personnel to use the mission question as a quid pro quo.

United States entry into the war provided the occasion for the next Canadian approach, for no longer would acceptance by the United States of


a mission from a belligerent necessarily establish a precedent to be followed for nonbelligerent American republics. Action on this renewed Canadian request was apparently delayed pending the outcome of the ARCADIA meetings and the command and liaison arrangements that emerged therefrom. On 10 February 1942 the Combined Chiefs of Staff received the approval of Roosevelt and Churchill on their recommendations for representation of the dominions and other powers. These recommendations envisaged the establishment of "staff missions" in Washington. As an intermediate step and pursuant to a Combined Chiefs of Staff invitation announced in March, Canada notified the United States that Maj. Gen. Maurice A. Pope was being sent to Washington as the military representative of the Cabinet War Committee to maintain, with the aid of alternates from the Navy and Air Force, continuous contact with the Combined Chiefs of Staff.60

After making this advance, Canada had not much longer to wait before reaching more important goals. By July 1942 U.S. service views on this and other points at issue had changed. The Canadian Government was able to advise the U.S. Secretary of State that informally it had found officers of his department and of the services in agreement on the establishment of a Canadian Joint Staff mission, and formally to propose this step.61 Canadian efforts of over a year were at last rewarded with success. Concurrently, the U.S. attitude on the command question had relaxed considerably. By 1 June 1942 the U.S. service members of the Permanent Joint Board had concluded that forcing acceptance of "unrestricted unity of command" not only would be resisted by the Canadian services and Cabinet but also would result in a diminution of Canadian co-operation.62 This conclusion, in turn, reflected changes wrought by Pearl Harbor. Where close Canadian co-operation had not always been sought before the United States entered the war, Canadian co-operation in making available its strategic resources, be they air-base sites, highway right of way, or something else, to the United States was now essential and to be courted.

The record of negotiations for establishment of the mission, with its undertone of acrimony, is one of the least happy aspects of the U.S.-Canadian World War II relationship. Canadian aspirations were understandable enough. The special geographic and historical relationships of the two countries would seem to have been adequate justification for a mission that


need not have become a precedent for acceptance of missions from other countries. Too, the desire of a soverign state, both for practical reasons and for political reasons at home, to speak to representatives of another government with its own voice and not through a third party should have been understandable. The importance of considerations of national pride, prestige, and sensitivity should also have been apparent.

Shortly after the Canadian Joint Staff was formally established in Washington, it raised the question of direct exchange of information with the U.S. services. The U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff approved the principle that the U.S. and Canadian chiefs of staff should deal directly on matters relating to joint U.S.-Canadian forces and spheres of activity, and the U.S. Joint Staff Planners committee was assigned responsibility for maintaining continuous liaison with the Canadian Joint Staff.63

The Canadian Joint Staff was the third and last type of wartime Canadian service liaison established with the War and Navy Departments in Washington, the others being liaison through the service attachés and the service members of the Canadian Section of the Permanent Joint Board. The general responsibility of the Canadian Joint Staff was to exchange information and co-ordinate strategic planning, deployments, and joint operational matters with the Combined Chiefs of Staff and its subordinate committees, and with U.S. counterparts in the Joint Chiefs of Staff committees.

The United States never attempted to establish similar representation in Ottawa. In January 1944 the U.S. Section of the Permanent Joint Board considered whether there might be military advantage in adopting the repeated suggestion of the U.S. Ambassador in Ottawa that the military attaché be placed in a position comparable to that of the chairman of the Canadian staff mission. The Senior U.S. Army Member concluded that there would be none. The Canadian mission was useful because the Combined Chiefs of Staff organization was located in Washington. No comparable need existed in Ottawa.64

Subsequent to the establishment in Washington of the Canadian Joint Staff, one more development in connection with the problem of representation served further to smooth ruffled waters. On 11 November 1943 Prime Minister King announced that the two countries were raising their diplomatic missions in the respective capitals to embassy status. This step was gratifying to Canadians, and was a logical one in light of Canada's increasingly important international stature.65


MEETING AT QUEBEC, AUGUST 1943. From left: Vice Adm. Lord Louis Mountbatten, Adm. of the Fleet Sir Dudley Pound, Gen. Sir Alan Brooke, Air Chief Marshal Sir Charles Portal, Air Marshal L. S. Breadner, Lt. Gen. Sir H. L. Ismay, Field Marshal Sir John Dill, Adm. E. J. King, Gen. H. H. Arnold, Adm. W. D. Leahy, Lt. Gen. K. Stuart, Vice Adm. P. W. Nelles, and Gen. G. C. Marshall.

The Combined Agencies

The establishment of the Permanent joint Board on Defense, CanadaUnited States, and the initial informal United Kingdom-United States military staff discussions in London in August 1940 were only the first steps in the creation of the complex international co-ordinating machinery for the conduct of all aspects of the war. As the European war expanded, agency after agency was established to meet the unprecedented needs for co-ordination of total war on a global scale. The United States played a major role or participated in practically all of them. Canada also played a role in certain of them, as a member as well as a contributor of resources with which the agencies were concerned. In other instances the direction of agencies had been assumed by the United States and the United Kingdom, and Canada stood outside along with other powers.66

When the Combined Chiefs of Staff committee was established in 1942,


the term "combined" was employed to distinguish this international agency and all its subordinate committees from the national interservice staff organizations that were called "joint" agencies. The term "combined" was thereafter generally applied to subsequent international co-ordinating war agencies established by the United Kingdom and the United States, whether military or civilian organizations.

President Roosevelt and Prime Minister King had, in the prior naming of the Permanent Joint Board on Defense, Canada-United States, established a contrary pattern, which was followed for most of the U.S.-Canadian co-ordinating agencies established thereafter. Both Canadian and U.S. officers who served in the various Canadian-U.S. agencies have indicated that a certain amount of confusion resulted from the "joint" terminology. Workinglevel proposals for adjustments to produced uniformity of usage of the word "joint" were made but were never advanced to the levels required for decision.

After the Permanent Joint Board on Defense was created, five additional U.S.-Canadian agencies were established, three of them before U.S. entry into the war and before the establishment of any of the United Kingdom-U.S. bodies. All were civilian agencies set up to meet needs arising from the conduct of the war.

The first of these, the Joint Economic Committees, was established as the result of a Canadian proposal on 17 March 1941 for the appointment of joint committees of inquiry, which would make studies, after "a great deal of research and analysis," for the dual purpose of effecting a more economic, more efficient, and more co-ordinated utilization of the combined resources of the two countries in the production of war requirements, and of minimizing the probable postwar economic disequilibrium consequent upon the changes the economy in each country was then undergoing.67

Some of the detailed subjects proposed for exploration were supplies and use of raw materials, co-ordination of production programs, use of transportation and power resources, and exchange of information in these areas. The United States accepted the proposals, and the agreement completed 17 June 1941 established the following committees:

United States Committee       Canadian Committee
William L. Batt       R. A. C. Henry
Harry D. White       W. A. Mackintosh
Alvin H. Hansen       D. A. Skelton
E. Dana Durand       J. G. Bouchard
A. A. Berle, Jr.--as desired       H. L. Keenleyside--as desired
L. D. Stinebower--liaison with
Department of State
      To be designated--liaison with
Department of External Affairs


The establishment of the Joint Economic Committees actually was the second step taken by the two countries in the area of economic co-operation, the first step having been the Hyde Park Declaration of 20 April 1941, issued while the agreement on the committees was being worked out.68 The Joint Economic Committees made many recommendations on diverse subjects. A typical recommendation was one, approved by the President and Prime Minister on 10 April 1942, providing for increased U.S. production of oil-bearing crops and Canadian production of oats, barley, and flax.69 Another, approved simultaneously, provided for easier movement of agricultural machinery and laborers across the boundary. Co-operation in this matter continued on into postwar years.70 Still another recommendation, of 9 August 1941, called for equal consideration of civilian and defense shipping requirements of the two countries.71

During 1941 the establishment of a Material Co-ordinating Committee, United States and Canada, was announced by William S. Knudsen, Director General of the U.S. Office of Production Management, with the primary purpose of making possible the free exchange of vital information relating to supplies of strategic raw materials required for defense production.72 Although officially designated the Material Co-ordinating Committee, the title was in some documents prefixed by the word "Joint."73 Membership comprised two men of Knudsen's staff--William Batt, who was concurrently designated to serve on the Joint Economic Committees, and Howard Sykes-together with Canadian counterparts from the Wartime Industries Board. The U.S. members were later to assume additional duties as U.S. member and executive secretary, respectively, of the Combined Raw Materials Board, upon its establishment.

By 19 September 1941 the Joint Economic Committees had concluded that the existing agencies did not adequately provide for the co-ordination of the defense production capacities of the two countries, and recommended establishment of a Joint Defense Production Committee "to the end that, in mobilizing the resources of the two countries, each country should provide for the common defense effort the defense articles which it is best able to produce." This purpose was a reaffirmation of one of the objectives of the Hyde Park Declaration and was generally similar to the objectives designated for study by the Joint Economic Committees. However, the objective of


minimizing postwar economic disequilibrium was now to be sought only "as far as possible and consistent with the maximum defense effort."74 The President and Prime Minister approved the recommendation, and the new committee was set up with the following membership:75

Redesignated the Joint War Production Committee after Pearl Harbor, the committee, which did not hold its first meeting until 15 December 1941, functioned principally through ten technical subcommittees made up of U.S. and Canadian production and procurement officers. The ten subcommittees were designated tank-automotive, artillery, artillery ammunition, small arms and ammunition, chemicals and explosives, communications, conservation, aircraft, naval vessels, and merchant vessels.76

United States entry into the war was also the occasion for a joint declaration calling for an all-out war production effort. Approved by the Canadian Cabinet War Committee and by President Roosevelt, who directed appropriate U.S. agencies "to abide by its letter and spirit so far as lies within their power," the declaration stated:

  1. Victory will require the maximum war production in both countries in the shortest possible time; speed and volume of war output, rather than monetary cost, are the primary objectives.

  2. An all-out war production effort in both countries requires the maximum use of the labor, raw materials, and facilities in each country.

  3. Achievement of maximum volume and speed of war output requires that the production and resources of both countries should be effectively integrated, and directed towards a common program of requirements for the total war effort.


  1. Each country should produce those articles in an integrated program of requirement which will result in maximum joint output of war goods in the minimum time.

  2. Scarce raw materials and goods which one country requires from the other in order to carry out the joint program of war production should be so allocated between the two countries that such materials and goods will make the maximum contribution toward the output of the most necessary articles in the shortest period of time.

  3. Legislative and administrative barriers, including tariffs, import duties, customs, and other regulations or restrictions of any character which prohibit, prevent, delay, or otherwise impede the free flow of necessary munitions and war supplies between the two countries should be suspended or otherwise eliminated for the duration of the war.

  4. The two Governments should take all measures necessary for the fullest implementation of the foregoing principles.77

It may be noted that this joint declaration of production policy objectives, issued after U.S. entry into the war, did not express concern over the need to minimize postwar economic disequilibrium as had earlier joint declarations. This shift in emphasis is perhaps another indication of one of the differences between the U.S. and the Canadian approach to wartime problems. Short-term wartime need was the primary U.S. motivation, while Canada tended to give weight as well to long-term aspects.

A detailed examination of the operations and achievements of these joint agencies is outside the scope of this study. It should be noted, however, that during 1941 neither the committees nor the Hyde Park Declaration had been successful in achieving their objectives. The several announcements had in turn restated the same objectives or added committee on top of committee with overlapping responsibilities, as if seeking the catalytic restatement of objectives or that combination of committee members which would produce the desired results. It appears probable that Canada, which provided the initial impetus to collaboration in the production and proceurement areas, had not thus far been able to attain the objectives it sought.78 Apart from their accomplishments, these prewar committees and their efforts were important in that they were the precursors of similar U.S.-United Kingdom "combined" organizations set up after Pearl Harbor.

The U.S.-United Kingdom combined boards and committees did not replace any of the joint U.S.-Canadian committees, which not only continued their work but also were augmented by the creation of two more agencies. In March 1943 a Joint Agricultural Committee was established to keep under continuous study and review joint food production and distribution, in order to further developments that might be of help in solving wartime agricultural and food problems. The enactment by the Canadian Parliament of a


mutual aid program generally similar to the U.S. lend-lease program motivated establishment of the last wartime joint committee. During the 1943 Quebec Conference, President Roosevelt and Prime Minister King established a Joint War Aid Committee, United States and Canada, as a means of co-ordinating the two arms assistance programs and of eliminating duplication of requests and deliveries.79

In addition to these joint U.S.-Canadian committees, Canada and the United States collaborated in varying degrees through a number of the combined agencies. On the purely military side there was the Combined Chiefs of Staff committee. One of its nominally subordinate bodies, the (Combined) Munitions Assignments Board, enjoyed special status. Segments of this board sat in London and in Washington, and both groups came within the framework of the Combined Chiefs of Staff organization. The Munitions Assignments Board in Washington had as its chairman the President's special assistant and confidant, Harry Hopkins. This board recommended allocation policies and priorities, which, after review by the Combined Chiefs of Staff and approval by the President (as to U.S. resources), became the basis for matériel allocations made by the board.80

Canada, which became the third largest munitions producer among the United Nations (exclusive of the Soviet Union), sought direct representation on the board in May 1942. The request was taken up by Mr. King with the President, and, in the Canadian view, his approval was obtained. Yet when the proposal came to Hopkins' attention, he succeeded in rejecting it, and Canadian participation did not materialize.81

A full pooling arrangement under which the Washington and London bodies allocated from the total output of the United States and the British Commonwealth never materialized. Later in 1942 Munitions Assignments Committees were established in Canada, Australia, and India, and, in practice, each of the five bodies allocated from the residue available after the producing country's own requirements were met. Under such a procedure Canada's prime interest in the Washington body was to be heard as a claimant, and Canada was able to work out informal arrangements under which Canadian representatives appeared before the Munitions Assignments Board subcommittees to submit and defend Canadian bids. Both U.S. and British members sat on the Munitions Assignments Committee in Ottawa. In


addition, War Supplies, Limited, the government corporation established to receive U.S. production orders and place them in Canada, also acted as a claimant in behalf of the United States before the Ottawa committee.82

Four other combined boards, civilian in composition, were established to meet wartime needs. The Combined Raw Materials Board and the Combined Shipping Adjustment Board, both created in January 1942, comprised only United Kingdom and U.S. personnel. No Canadians were included, although the U.S. member of the Combined Raw Materials Board was also a member of the United States-Canadian Material Co-ordinating Committee. Canada made several applications for formal membership on the Combined Raw Materials Board, but they were not successful.83

In June 1942 the last two boards were created by the United States and the United Kingdom. Neither included direct Canadian representation initially, but both did ultimately. The joint statement issued on 9 June 1942 by Roosevelt and Churchill established the Combined Production and Resources Board and charged it with combining the production programs of the United States and the United Kingdom into a single integrated program, adjusted to strategic guidance from the Combined Chiefs of Staff. On 7 November 1942 Canada was made a member of the Combined Production and Resources Board, and the revamped board was assigned the same task with regard to the pooled production resources of all three countries. The joint statement also established the Combined Food Board. Its purpose was to consider, investigate, inquire into, and formulate plans concerning the supply, production, transportation, disposal, allocation, and distribution of food. The Combined Food Board was also to work in collaboration with others of the United Nations toward the best utilization of their food resources. This board had had a predecessor in the Anglo-American Food Committee, which emerged in May 1941 after passage of the Lend-Lease Act.

The Combined Food Board worked through ten Commodity Supply and Allocation Committees, seven of which included Canadian representatives, although Canada was not then formally a member of the food board itself. Another subordinate agency of the board was the London Food Committee, which comprised representatives of most of the British Commonwealth countries, but not Canada. The London Food Committee was the mechanism through which Commonwealth resources and requirements were reported to the board and board recommendations were transmitted to the Commonwealth members.


According to one authority, United Kingdom partnership in this Combined Food Board rested, in the view of some Americans, on dubious grounds. Not itself a contributor of significant food resources, the United Kingdom was a major claimant for U.S. and other supplies, yet it had the prerogative of sharing equally in the decisions as to supply allocations.84 On the other hand, Canada, a major producer of food resources, was not a formal member of the Combined Food Board. Formal Canadian efforts to become a member were made in July, when the board was only a little over a month old. Both the United States and the United Kingdom looked unfavorably on these efforts. After several months of discussion, Canada accepted as a solution formal membership on several of the commodity committees and participated effectively on this level in the work of the board. Nevertheless, Canada continued to press for formal membership in the board itself.85

Formal Canadian membership finally materialized in October 1943. In August the U.S. War Food Administrator recommended admission of Canada, Australia, and New Zealand to the Combined Food Board in the light of the large food resources contributed by those countries. The proposal was approved by President Roosevelt and, for Canada only, by the United Kingdom. At London's request, Australian and New Zealand representation continued through the London Food Committee. On 29 October, Canadian acceptance of the Roosevelt-Churchill invitation was announced.86

With the exception of agencies established to deal with relief and postwar problems, the foregoing steps were the last involving the establishment of the international machinery for the conduct of the war and providing for Canadian representation in the various agencies.87

Throughout the greater part of World War II, the problem of Canadian representation in the war councils was a major irritant in U.S.-Canadian politico-military relations. On the U.S. side, Churchill's view that it was impossible to admit each of the other associated powers was shared. It was not a simple problem of Canada's being the third vertex of a "North Atlantic triangle," for many other participating allies were anxious to hold a corner of this polygon. Obviously the more voting members in the war councils,


the more difficult became the direction of the war effort. There was merit in this view, yet the matter of some appropriate relationship to the war councils was one of great import to Canada. Canada soon became a major contributor of resources among the Allies, and as such, and apart from considerations of pride and prestige, merited some means of regularly expressing its views. The long struggle for real recognition of Canadian sovereignty had made Canadians particularly sensitive on this score, especially to attempts to treat Canada as a not fully autonomous member of the British Commonwealth. Maintaining an exclusive U.S.-United Kingdom arrangement was essential for the directing bodies only. There was no valid reason why Canada and the other powers could not join in pairs with the United States, or collectively, in consultative and similar arrangements lacking powers of decision. This was finally done, and met the needs of Canada and the other powers reasonably well without interfering with the agencies for strategic direction of the war.

The U.S. reluctance to accept such arrangements until the fruit of Canadian resentment was overripe unfortunately was matched by an unnecessary maladroitness in dealings of interest to Canada within the North Atlantic triangle. In some instances matters clearly of interest to Canada were resolved by the United States with the United Kingdom without consultation with Canada. Where such consultation took place, a plain lack of tact occasionally occurred to the irritation of Canadians. Another irritation to Canadians was the U.S. tendency to deal with the United Kingdom on matters relating to the Commonwealth as a whole, as in the allocation of U.S. arms production, at the same time permitting the United Kingdom to ignore, override, or inadequately consider Canadian needs. In such situations the United States in failing to insure adequate consideration of the Canadian requirements shared with the United Kingdom the Canadian resentment. It is probable that the minor savings to the United States in administrative effort and convenience resulting from the too-long and too-rigid insistence on exclusive U.S.-United Kingdom arrangements were more than offset by the development, in Canadian dealings with the United States, of a Canadian wariness whose mark on postwar joint collaborative efforts was apt to be indelible.


Table of Contents
Previous Chapter (2) * Next Chapter (4)


1. For a discussion of these proposals and some interesting material on their relationship to the elections, see Herbert Feis, The Road to Pearl Harbor (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1950), pp. 126-27. As a matter of fact, after this rejection the Chief of Naval Operations instructed his representatives in London and Manila secretly to explore the problem with the British naval staffs in London and Singapore.

2. For a detailed account of the transition, see Matloff and Snell, Strategic Planning for Coalition Warfare, 1941-1942, Ch. II.

3. Morison, The Battle of the Atlantic, pp. 43-44; Feis, The Road to Pearl Harbor, pp. 138-39.

4. Full text of the report, "United States-British Staff Conversations, Report, 27 Mar 41, Short Title ABC-1", is reproduced in Pearl Harbor Attack, Pt. 15, pp. 1485-1541. Accounts of the conduct of the staff talks are to be found in testimony recorded in Pearl Harbor Attack, Pt. 3, pp. 991ff., 1053ff. More rounded accounts of the conversations are contained in Watson, Chief of Staff: Prewar Plans and Preparations, Ch. XII, and Matloff and Snell, Strategic Planning for Coalition Warfare, 1941-1942, Ch. III.

5. Minutes of the plenary meetings and other papers prepared during the conversations are filed in WPD 4402-89.

6. The 28 July draft of ABC-22 merely states that ABC-1 had been submitted to the Canadian Government for concurrence.

7. Ltr, Ambassador Halifax to Welles, 4 Jul 41), Roosevelt Papers, Secy's File, Box 74. It appears not unlikely that one or more of the dominions may have objected to this paragraph, which begins: "The High Command of the United States and United Kingdom . . . ." The Canadian Government also indicated its dissatisfaction with the provisions of ABC-1 relating to service liaison between Canada and the United Kingdom and United States in matters relating to ABC-1. (See below, pp. 71-76.)

8. The ABC-1 report provided for an exchange of missions after the United States entered the war.

9. Memo, BUS(J) (41)40, 4 Apr 41), WPD 4402-94; Kittredge Monograph, pp. 445-52; Matloff and Snell, Strategic Planning for Coalition Warfare, 1941-1942, pp. 42-43.

10. Department of State Bulletin, December 20, 1941, V, 541; Hull, Memoirs, II, 1121-24.

11. For an account of the ARCADIA staff meetings, see Craven and Cate (eds.), Plans and Early Operations, pp. 237-45.

12. Stark, after attending only a few meetings, left Washington in March and Admiral King assumed the duties of Chief of Naval Operations in addition to those of Commander in Chief, U.S. Fleet. Admiral William D. Leahy, when he became chief of staff to the President in the summer of 1942, joined Marshall, King, and Arnold as a member of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff and the U.S.-British Combined Chiefs of Staff.

13. For an account of the development of the CCS organization and its functioning, see Ray S. Cline, Washington Command Post: The Operations Division, UNITED STATES ARMY IN WORLD WAR II (Washington: Government Printing Office, 1951), Ch. VI.

14. For a historical survey of the interplay of Canada, the United States, and Great Britain, see John B. Brebner, North Atlantic Triangle (Rev. ed.; Toronto: Ryerson Press, 1947). See also J. B. Brebner and R. G. Trotter, "Relations of Canada and the United States", Canadian Historical Review, XXIV (1943), 117-35.

15. Dawson, Canada in World Affairs: 1939-1941, p. 220.

16. Cdn Leg Note 82, to Secy State, 5 Mar 40, D/S 841.24/208.

17. British Emb Note 315, to Secy State, 9 Jul 40, D/S 851.24/187.

18. Summary of Meeting of U.S. Section, PJBD, 23 Aug 40, PDB 100-4; Morgenthau Diary, 3 Jul 40, Vol. 279, p. 146.

19. Memo/Convs, Moffat and Morgenthau, 3 Jul 40, and Moffat and King, 5 Jul 40, Moffat Diary.

20. Journal, PDB 124.

21. British Emb Note 22, to Secy State, 14 Jan 41), D/S 841.24/425. The new council had been proposed some weeks earlier and had been discussed in the interim.

22. Journals, November 1940 and January 1941 meetings, PDB 124.

23. Dawson, Canada in World Affairs: 1939-1941, p. 220; Canada, Department of National Defense, Report for the Year Ending March 31, 1942 (Ottawa: E. Cloutier, King's Printer), p. 15.

24. See Ch. I, above; Journal, 27 Aug 40 PJBD meeting, PDB 124.

25. See Ch. IV, below; Dawson, Canada in World Affairs: 1939-1941, pp. 213-17; D/S Telg 973, to London, 22 Mar 41), PDB 107-9; Trotter and Corey (eds.), Conference on Canadian-American Affairs, 1941, p. 49.

26. Memo/Conv. Hull and King, 17 Apr 41), D/S 711.42/214; Memo/Conv, Robertson and Moffat, 12 May 41), Moffat Diary.

27. "Memorandum of Trip to Meet Winston Churchill, August 1941", 23 Aug 41, prepared by President Roosevelt, Roosevelt Papers, Atlantic Charter meeting file. See Ch. V, below.

According to Dawson, Canada in World Affairs: 1939-1941, p. 209, the Argentia meeting was a decided shock to King, who forthwith journeyed to London for several weeks of consultations. The meeting may have been a shock, but it is clear from correspondence in the Roosevelt papers that King had planned his trip to London before he was aware of the Roosevelt-Churchill meeting.

28. Great Britain, Parliamentary Debates, Vol. 377, cols. 610, 616.

29. CCS 21/1, 3 Feb 42. The CCS recommendations received governmental approval on 10 February 1942.

30. Memo/Conv, Robertson and Moffat, 19 Feb 42, D/S 711.42/237.

31. Memo/Conv, Welles and Moffat, 3 Mar 42; Notes on conversation between Welles and Moffat during latter's Washington visit 4-11 April 1942; both in Moffat Diary.

32. H. C. Debates, 12 Nov 40, pp. 58-59, and 17 Feb 41, p. 813

33. H. C. Debates, 27 Jan 42, pp. 58-59, 25 Mar 42, pp. 1632-33, and 21 Apr 42, p. 1791.

In addressing the President on 16 June 1944 on the relationship of the Canadian Government and armed forces to the CCS, Prime Minister King again stated that Canada had "recognized that the higher direction of the war should be exercised by the Combined Chiefs of Staff, under Mr. Churchill and the President," but he also pointed out that the Canadian Government had never "been requested to recognize the Combined Chiefs of Staff as the source of authority of the Supreme Allied Commanders." (JCS 808/1, 19 Jun 44.)

34. See Ch. IV, below.

35. Representatives of third powers participated in approximately 25 of the 200 CCS meetings that had been held by 14 July 1945.

36. CCAC 143, 29 Sep 44, and 143/1, 16 Oct 44.

37. Winston S. Churchill, The Second World War: Closing the Ring (Boston: Houghton Mifflin Company, 1951), p. 66; William D. Leahy, I Was There (New York: Whittlesey House, 1950), p. 174; Tucker, The Naval Service of Canada, II, 442-44, 466; CCS Conference Books, passim; "The Log of the President's Visit to Canada: 16 August-26 August 1943", Roosevelt Papers, H. Hopkins file, Box 24; R. K. Carnegie, "The Quebec Conference", Canadian Geographical Journal, XXVII (September 1943), 96-105; Wilson Brown, "The Allies at Quebec", Queens Quarterly, LVI (Winter 1949-1950), 465-78; Lingard and Trotter, Canada in World Affairs, III, 131n, 238, 257-58; Canada at War, No. 25 (Jun 43), p. 17, and No. 41 (Oct 44), p. 11; Samuel Rosenman (compiler), The Public Papers and Addresses of Franklin D. Roosevelt, XII, 1943 Volume: The Tide Turns (New York: Harper & Brothers, 1950), 363-64. For a general account of the international conferences, see Cline, Washington Command Post: The Operations Division, Ch. XII. The other international conferences were ARCADIA (Washington, December 1941-January 1942), in which Mr. King participated, SYMBOL (also called ANFA, Casablanca, January 1943), SEXTANT-EUREKA (Cairo-Tehran November-December 1943), ARGONAUT (Malta-Yalta, January-February 1945), and TERMINAL (Potsdam, July 1945).

38. Great Britain, Parliamentary Debates, Vol. 377, col. 611; H. C. Debates, 10 Feb 42, p. 598.

39. Ltr, L. McCarthy to Welles, 28 Mar 42, D/S 740.001 PW/2190-4/5; Department of State Bulletin, January 16, 1943, VIII, 186; H. C. Debates, 21 Apr 42, p. 1791; Sherwood, Roosevelt and Hopkins, pp. 509-10; Canada at War, No. 25 (Jun 43), p. 17; Lingard and Trotter, Canada in World Affairs, III, pp. 135-37; Canada, Annual Report of the Secretary of State for External Affairs, 1943 (Ottawa: E. Cloutier, King's Printer, 1944), p. 11.

40. Papers relating to these meetings are filed in ABC 334.8 M.R.P. (5-26-42). The ninth and last meeting was held on 18 June 1943.

41. See below, pp. 77-85.

42. Hull, Memoirs, I, 678-79; Dawson, Canada in World Affairs: 1939-1941, p. 6. The proclamations are 2349 (4 FR 3819), and 2359 and 2360 (4 FR 3857). Similarly, in telling King at Ogdensburg of his reasons for wanting a defense board, the President acknowledged the need for negotiating for bases in Canada with Ottawa, since Canada was an autonomous dominion, rather than with London, where the trade of destroyers for leased bases in British territories was being worked out.

43. Sherwood, Roosevelt and Hopkins, p. 452; Memo/Conv, Wrong and Berle, 31 Dec 41 and 1 Jan 42, D/S 740.001 EW1939/18384 and /18454.

44. Memo/Conv, Moffat and Under Secy State for External Affairs, 19 Feb 42, D/S 711.42/237; Memo, for Secy State, 20 May 43, D/S 711.42/255.

It is interesting to speculate on the extent to which this attitude on the part of U.S. officials was a reflection of the Department of State organization for handling British and Canadian affairs. The Canadian-desk officer throughout the World War II period sat in the Division of British Commonwealth Affairs, which in turn was a part of the Office of European Affairs. In addition to providing a governmental pattern for considering Canada within a British framework, this organization had the effect of placing Canadian problems for review and consideration before one officer whose responsibility was for the British Commonwealth as a whole, and before another whose responsibility was for European affairs. State Department officers queried on the point expressed divergent views to the author as to whether this organizational arrangement did in fact influence the handling of Canadian problems in the State Department.

45. Memo, Lt Col C. Bissell for Brig Letson, 20 Aug 41, WPD 4262-7; U.S. Leg Ott Desp 1867, to Secy State, 22 Aug 41, D/S 811.9243/27; Memo for Record, by Moffat, 22 Aug 41, Moffat Diary.

46. U.S. Leg Ott Telg 200, to Secy State, 5 Aug 41, D/S 840.51 Frozen Credits/2882; Telg 203, 6 Aug 41, D/S 701.4294/21; Memo/Conv, Moffat and Robertson, 29 Sep 41, D/S 742.94/13. For accounts of these negotiations and consultations, see Feis, The Road to Pearl Harbor, passim, and Hull, Memoirs, II, 1073, 1076.

47. Memo/Conv, Wrong and Welles, 25 Nov 41, D/S 711.94/2559; Moffat, Notes on Washington Visit, 1-4 December 1941, Moffat Diary. The explanations offered were the great rapidity of the November events, the lack of interest shown by the Canadian Legation in Pacific problems, and Hull's assumption that King was being kept advised by the President during their "constant and close contact." During this period Canada considered itself sufficiently concerned with the Pacific situation to send two infantry battalions to reinforce the British garrison at Hong Kong. They arrived just before Pearl Harbor and shared the defeat of that garrison by Japanese forces. (Stacey, The Canadian Army, 1939-1945, pp. 273-88.)

48. Memo-for Record, Moffat, 10 Dec 41, Moffat Diary.

49. Canada, Annual Report of the Secretary of State for External Affairs, 1940, p. 10.

50. Pearl Harbor Attack, Pt. 15, p. 1500; BUS(J)(41)24, WPD 4402-94.

51. Draft, joint Operational Plan 1, United States Army-Canada Army and Air Force, 14 Apr 41, PDB 133.

52. A U.S. Army draft of a joint Canada-U.S. Army defense plan, transmitted to SUSAM on 20 March 1941, provided for liaison between the War Department and Canadian War Office and Air Ministry through the exchange of missions between Washington and Ottawa. (PDB 133.)

53. Cdn Leg aide-mémoire, 1 Jul 41), WPD 4543.

54. Ltr, Secy Navy to Secy State, 21 Jul 41), PDB 111-6.

55. Memo/Conv, Hickerson and Wrong, 25 Jul 41), WPD 4543-1.

56. U.S. Leg Ott Telg 218, 18 Aug 41), D/S 842.20/197.

57. Ltr, Moffat to Hickerson, 5 Sep 41, D/S 842.20/203; Memo/Conv, Moffit and Robertson, 25 Sep 41), D/S 842.20/204.

58. Memo/Conv, Moffat and Pearson, 5 Sep 41), PDB 111-6; Ltrs, SW to Secy State, 8 Oct 41, and Secy Navy to Secy State, 30 Sep 41), WPD 4543. Despite the Canadian view on the U.S. counterproposal, Maj. Gen. M. A. Pope, who was designated chairman of the Canadian Joint Staff upon its establishment, had been a member of the Permanent Joint Board on Defense for over a year, and served in the dual capacity for approximately two years.

59. See Ch. V, below.

60. U.S. Leg Ott Telg 307, 15 Dec 41, D/S 842.20/206; Cdn Leg Note 203, 25 Mar 42), WPD 4543; CCS 21/1, 3 Feb 42). Pope actually arrived in Washington on 6 March.

61. Cdn Leg Note 459, 2 Jul 42), WPD 4543. In addition to General Pope as Canadian Army member and chairman, the initial Royal Canadian Navy and RCAF members were Rear Adm. V. G. Brodeur and Air Vice Marshal G. V. Walsh.

62. Memo, SUSAM for CofS, 1 Jun 42), PDB 135-2.

63. JCS 82, approved 18 Aug 42).

64. Memo, Hickerson for SUSAM, 25 Jan 44), and Reply, 29 Jan 44), PDB 109-7.

65. U.S. Emb Ott Desp 389, 1 Dec 43), D/S 124.42/69.

66. Two excellent works bearing on the subject of the U.S.-Canadian role in the British-American agencies are Robert W. James, Wartime Economic Co-operation: A Study of Relations Between Canada and the United States (Toronto: Ryerson Press, 1949), and S. McKee Rosen, The Combined Boards of the Second World War (New York: Columbia University Press, 1951).

67. EAS, 228; Privy Council 4500, 20 Jun 41).

68. See Ch. X, below.

69. Department of State Bulletin, April 11, 1942, VI, 313-15.

70. Ibid.; CTS, 1947, No. 42.

71. Rosen, The Combined Boards, p. 85.

72. Department of State Bulletin, January 16, 1943, VIII, 76.

73. For an example, see Department of State Bulletin, November 8, 1941, V, 360.

74. Ibid.; Privy Council 8441, 31 Oct 41).

75. Ibid.

76. Privy Council 22, 2 Jan 42).

77. Department of State Bulletin, December 27, 1941, V, 579.

78. For data concerning results achieved under the Hyde Park Declaration, see below, Chapters X and XII.

79. Privy Council 2044, 15 Mar 44); Elizabeth H. Armstrong, "Canadian-American Co-operation in War and Peace, 1940-1945", Department of State Bulletin, October 28, 1945, XIII, 676.

80. Department of State Bulletin, January 31, 1942, VI, 87-88. Lord Beaverbrook was chairman of the London agency.

81. Memo, Cdn Leg to Hopkins, 2 Jul 42), D/S 800.24/609; Memo/Conv, Moffat and Pearson, 29 May 42, Moffat Diary; James, Wartime Economic Co-operation, p. 234.

82. Army Service Forces, International Division, A Guide to International Supply, pp. 13-14, 28-29, 46; Lingard and Trotter, Canada in World Affairs, III, 236-37.

83. James, Wartime Economic Co-operation, pp. 236-37. Rosen, The Combined Boards, has been the main source for the remainder of this chapter.

84. Rosen, The Combined Boards, p. 225.

85. Cdn Leg Note 491, 15 Jul 42), D/S 800.5018/22-1/2; James, Wartime Economic Co-operation, pp. 332-39.

86. See Rosen, The Combined Boards, pp. 232-33, for a more detailed account of the negotiations.

87. The committees in which Canada participated in some degree were dissolved as follows: Joint War Production Committee and Material Co-ordinating Committee, 31 December 1945; Joint Economic Committees, 14 March 1944; Joint War Aid Committee, 25 October 1945; Joint Agricultural Committee, not formally dissolved; Combined Food Board, 1 July 1946; Combined Production and Resources Board and Combined Raw Materials Board, 31 December 1945 (except for certain commodity committees).

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