Letter to the Chairman, North Atlantic Council, Requesting the Release of General Ridgway as Supreme Allied Commander, Europe.
[Released May, 12, 1953. Dated May 9, 1953]
- Dear Lord Ismay:
I am addressing you as Chairman of the Permanent Council with the request that appropriate action be taken at an early date to secure the release of General Matthew B. Ridgway from assignment as Supreme Allied Commander, Europe, in order that his services may be available to the United States to fill the position of Chief of Staff, U.S. Army. In making this request through you to the member nations who appointed him, I ask that they give favorable consideration to his release.
The United States regards the position of SACEUR as of the highest importance and has solemnly accepted the responsibilities inherent in the appointment to that position of a United States officer, General Ridgway. I have carefully weighed this factor against our own need to select the next leader of the U.S. Army.
By tradition we, as in other countries, fill that post by a selection from among our most able officers. General Ridgway's experience in his present command will contribute immeasurably of itself to the experience needed in guiding a major portion of the U.S. defense effort to further achievements.
The Council will, I am confident, provide the selection of an able officer to fill the post left vacant. Certainly no nation, if called upon, could do other than to assign its most eligible officer that is available. The trust extended to General Ridgway by all nations conveys a strong confidence in the future under another commander.
In meeting the needs for military leadership of U.S. Armed Forces, it is necessary to provide also for the appointment of a succeeding Chief of Naval Operations. I desire to place Admiral Robert B. Carney in that position and therefore feel it necessary to withdraw the availability of his services to N.A.T.O. as Commander-in-Chief, South. I assume that the Council is prepared to accept the appointment of a successor on nomination by SACEUR.
DWIGHT D. EISENHOWER
The Honorable, The Lord Ismay
Secretary General, North Atlantic Treaty Organization
Palais de Chaillot, Paris, France
Dwight D. Eisenhower, Letter to the Chairman, North Atlantic Council, Requesting the Release of General Ridgway as Supreme Allied Commander, Europe. Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/231760