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09-2425m

At 11:30 PM on September 13, 1944, Winston Churchill had a brief meeting with the British Chiefs of Staff which discussed the situation in Greece. This was followed fifteen minutes later by the first plenary session of the Second Quebec Conference. The meeting of Churchill and President Franklin Roosevelt with the Combined American and British Chiefs of Staff was held at the Citadel. Churchill opened the session by giving the general survey of the war that he had prepared during the voyage across the Atlantic. It covered both the European and Pacific theatres and included an offer of a British Fleet to serve under American command in operations against Japan. Roosevelt intervened to declare that the British fleet was “no sooner offered than accepted.” At the conclusion of the plenary session Churchill and Roosevelt had luncheon at the Citadel. At 7:00 PM the spouses of the two leaders, Clementine Churchill and Eleanor Roosevelt, made a joint radio broadcast to the people of Canada. An hour later Churchill attended a dinner at the Citadel with Roosevelt as well as Lord Cherwell (Paymaster-General), Lord Moran (prime minister’s physician), Lord Leathers (Minister of War Transport), Admiral Land, Admiral Leahy, Henry Morgenthau (Treasury Secretary), and Admiral McIntire. Discussions, which lasted until 11:15 PM, focused on the terms to be imposed on post-war Germany. The prime minister was vehemently opposed to the Morgenthau Plan for pastoralization and was said to have unleashed “the full flood of his rhetoric, sarcasm, and violence.” Churchill declared the plan would leave England chained to a dead body. That evening Churchill had a row with General Hastings Ismay (chief of staff to the Minister of Defence) over a cable from Admiral Louis Mountbatten (supreme commander, SE Asia) which reflected several changes in plans that the prime minister was unaware. During the day Churchill met with Sir William Glasgow (High Commissioner for Australia in Ottawa) as well as R.M. Firth (acting High Commissioner for New Zealand in Ottawa). He also spoke with Richard Law (Minister of State, Foreign Office), who had just arrived by train from Montreal. During the day Churchill cabled to the War Cabinet in London that “the conference has opened in a blaze of friendship.”

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