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Digital Archive International History Declassified

September 23, 1944

OPERATIONS IN FRANCE

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    Marshal Stalin and Clark Kerr discuss the strategy in France and hurting Germany by taking industrial centers.
    "Operations in France," September 23, 1944, History and Public Policy Program Digital Archive, Container 174, W. Averell Harriman Papers, Manuscript Division, Library of Congress, Washington, D.C. https://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/document/220004
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    https://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/document/220004

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                                                                         THE AMBASSADOR

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Conversation.   September 23, 1944.

Present: The American Ambassador, Mr. Harriman

Mr. Edward Page, Second Secretary of Embassy

The British Ambassador, Sir Archibald Clark Kerr

Major A. H. Birse, Second Secretary of Embassy

Marshal I. V. Stalin

Mr. V. M. Molotov, People’s Commissar for Foreign Affairs

Mr. Pavlov, Soviet interpreter

Subject: Operations in France.

In commenting on the operations in France, Marshal Stalin stated: “They are most bold and daring. Great risks have been taken in driving wedges in the German lines. But no success can be attained without risks. The operations in the west have never been equalled here.” [sic]

The Marshal indicated satisfaction at the plans to take the Ruhr and remarked that when the Russians took Katowicz and the Upper Silesia, Germany would be deprived of her coal and much of her industry.

The British Ambassador commented briefly upon paratroop operations near Arnhem. He then inquired whether the Marshal would like to prophesy as to when Berlin would be taken. Marshal Stalin stated that he was a bad prophet and did not like to make prophecies since he might be wrong. He remarked that the Germans were extremely tenacious and stubborn.

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