3.8.42

D[avid] A[stor] says Churchill is in Moscow. [1] He also says there isn’t going to be any second front. However, if a second front is intended, the Government must do all it can to spread the contrary impression beforehand, [and D.A. might be one of the people used to plant the rumour.

D.A. says that when the commandos land the Germans never fight but always clear out immediately. No doubt they have orders to do so. This act is not allowed to be published – presumable reason, to prevent the public from becoming over-confident.]

According to D.A., Cripps does intend to resign from the Government [2] and has his alternative policy ready. He can’t, of course, speak of this in public but will do so in private. However, I hear that Macmurray [3] when staying with Cripps recently could get nothing whatever out of him as to his political intentions.

[1] Churchill arrived in Cairo on this day, then, via Teheran, reached Moscow on 12 August. He and Stalin did discuss the opening of a second front (see The Second World War, IV, pp. 411, 430-33).

[2] Cripps came near to resignation but did not leave the War Cabinet until 22 November 1942, the day he was appointed Minister of Aircraft Production, a post he held until the end of the war in Europe.

[3] John Macmurray (1891-1976) was Grote Professor of the Philosophy of Mind and Logic, University of London. 

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