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Posted by: johnny_bi December 02, 2003 05:18 pm
I have read the "Romania’s answer to the British ultimatum of 30 November 1941" from it is very interesting.
What about the war declaration against United States... Does someone know some details about this? Which were the events related to this war situation between Romania and United States?

Posted by: dragos December 03, 2003 09:26 am
Following the, on 12 December 1941 Romanian officials announced state of war with USA, according to the Tripartite Pact conditions. However, this declaration was considered as formal by USA, which did not reply. The external policy of Romania was of non-aggression with USA, as confirmed by Antonescu's public declaration: "I am with Germany against Russia, I am neutral between Great Britain and Germany, and I am for Americans against Japanese."

At the pressure of Stalin, Roosevelt declared war with Romania on June 1942.

Posted by: Victor December 03, 2003 01:39 pm
At the pressure of Stalin, Roosevelt declared war with Romania on June 1942

Actually the US declared war because a few days later, on 12 June, the US bombers conducted their first raid over Ploesti.

Posted by: johnny_bi December 03, 2003 03:57 pm
Actually the US declared war because a few days later, on 12 June, the US bombers conducted their first raid over Ploesti

I didn't know about a raid against Ploiesti in June 1942 ohmy.gif . Could you provide more details?

Posted by: Victor December 03, 2003 04:54 pm
On 18 April, 16 B-25Bs under the command of Lt. Col. James H. Doolittle took off from the USS Hornet with the mission to bomb Tokyo. The raid did not cause too much damage, because only 16 tons of bombs were dropped, and was rather costly: several bombers managed to make belly landings, while the others were abandoned by their crews in mid-air. But the morale boost made the losses less important.
After this success, Col. Harry A. Halverson came up with the idea to bomb Tokyo from the Chinese mainland, using two B-24D squadrons. The itinerary he proposed was very ambitious: Florida – Natal (Brazil) – Takoradi (Ghana) – Khartoum (Sudan) – Karachi – Tchen-Kiang (Sichuan province, China). Nevertheless, the plan was approved and named “Halverson Project 63”. In short HALPRO. On 22 May, the B-24s left the US and got as far as Khartoum, before he received the order to stop. The Japanese forces on the offensive in China had captured the airfield from which he was suppose to operate. The 22 bombers were transferred to the Fayd airfield in Egypt were they were prepared for the first USAAF raid over Europe. The target: the Astra Română refinery in Ploeşti

After Germany declared war on the USA on 11 December 1941, Marshal Antonescu, who was a renowned anglophile, was forced to join his ally. However, only on 5 June 1942 did the US return the “favor”. Thus the stage was set for the first USAAF raid on Ploeşti. The 13 B-24Ds designated to take part in the mission took off from Fayd at 10:30 pm on 11 June. They flew over the Mediterranean and Aegean Sea, going around neutral Turkey, and over the Balkans to Constanţa. They were suppose to regroup there and head west towards Ploeşti, via Galaţi. The airplanes entered Romanian air space at 3:44 am and at 3:57 am the alarm was given at Bucharest. The Ploeşti defense was announced at 4:05 am, but the guns were firing around the city since 4:00 am

At 4:10 am, the first bombs were dropped at Medgidia. Ten minutes later, the B-24D "Little Eva", flown by Wilber C. West, which was experiencing some engine problems dropped its bombs on the Constanţa harbor area. Two bombs fell between the port and the slaughterhouse and the other eight into the sea. The bomber then headed to Turkey and landed at Ankara later.

At 4:33 am, a B-24 dropped five bombs in a forest 40 km north of Bucharest. However, three bombers managed to find Ploeşti at 4:44 am and dropped 12 bombs. Three houses were destroyed and made six casualties: three dead and three wounded. Six bombs fell near Vălenii de Munte. One was demolished and a woman was wounded.

Approximately forty minutes later, a bomber identified as "Soviet", dropped five bombs near Buzău and destroyed 150 m of railroad and a building, killing two and wounding six. This obvious misidentification lead some to believe that also VVS aircraft participated in this raid, which is very doubtful, because the only airbase from which they could have flown was at Sevastopol, in Crimea. The Soviet base was then under assault by the German and Romanian troops of von Manstein’s 11th Army. Most likely this was also a B-24D of the Halpro Detachment.

At 5:40 am, a B-24D dropped six bombs on the German barracks and several buildings near them. One man was killed. It was the last reported bombing.

At 6:02 am, the state of alarm was canceled at Ploeşti. Things returned to normal. Of the 12 B-24s, two landed at Alep (Syria), seven in Irak and three in Turkey. As mentioned earlier the thirteenth bomber was already at Ankara.

The American report stated that ten aircraft hit the "Astra Română" refinery, one hit the Constanţa harbor and two an unidentified target. However, the RAF experts that requested the raid initially, analyzed the reports and came to the conclusion that the effect of the raid was most likely zero

The USAAF records do not mention any losses, except for a pilot and gunner who were wounded in a fight with a Bf-109.

In conclusion, the raid was a failure, since it did not affect in any real way the Romanian oil processing facilities, but it showed that Ploeşti was no longer an out-of-reach target.

From the Romanian side, most of the fighters raised to intercept the bombers could not find them or failed to attack them. Only adj. stg. av. Vasile Pascu claimed one B-24D shot down, which was not confirmed.

Posted by: Dénes December 03, 2003 06:52 pm
A Luftwaffe pilot also claimed a B-24D victory on June 12, 1942.

Posted by: mabadesc December 03, 2003 11:32 pm
I found this document in a congressional electronic archive. It's an official letter from Roosevelt to the US Congress in which he requests a declaration of war on Romania, Bulgaria, and Hungary.
My question is, do you think there were any talks/negotiations between Romania and the UN nations before this declaration of war?

Congressional Record, June 2, 1942, H Doc. No. 761, pg. 4946.


The Governments of Bulgaria, Hungary, and Rumania have declared war against the United States. I realize that the three Governments took this action not upon their own initiative or in response to the wishes of their own peoples but as the instruments of Hitler. These three Governments are now engaged in military activities directed against the United Nations and are planning an extension of these activities.

Therefore, I recommend that the Congress recognize a state of war between the United States and Bulgaria, between the United States and Hungary, and between the United States and Rumania.



June 2, 1942

Posted by: PanzerKing December 04, 2003 01:28 am
I've never seen or heard about any negotiations between the U.S. and Romania during WW2. I have been known to be wrong though sometimes. smile.gif

Posted by: Victor December 04, 2003 11:18 am
A Luftwaffe pilot also claimed a B-24D victory on June 12, 1942.

This was probably the guy who wounded the two American airmen.

Posted by: Chandernagore December 04, 2003 12:34 pm
My question is, do you think there were any talks/negotiations between Romania and the UN nations before this declaration of war?

I never heard of it and there was really not much to discuss :roll: More like paperwork to anchor the reality of past decisions. I'm also amazed at the mention of the United Nations in that letter. UN was only born in october 45.

Posted by: dragos December 04, 2003 12:38 pm
I have reference to a meeting of Romanian and American officials before the declaration of war, I will post it here when I have the book at hand.

Posted by: Carol I December 04, 2003 03:32 pm
I'm also amazed at the mention of the United Nations in that letter. UN was only born in october 45.

I think that the Organisation of United Nations was founded on 24 October 1945 when the United Nations Charter (signed on 26 June 1945) has been ratified, but the Allies called themselves "United Nations" much earlier. The organisation was more or less built around their alliance. In fact, the permanent members of the Security Council are the main countries known as the Allies in WWII.

From the

The name "United Nations", coined by United States President Franklin D. Roosevelt, was first used in the "Declaration by United Nations" of 1 January 1942, during the Second World War, when representatives of 26 nations pledged their Governments to continue fighting together against the Axis Powers.

Posted by: dragos December 05, 2003 08:41 am
The USA and the Restauration of Romania’s Sovereignity over Bessarabia and Northern Bukovina, by Dr. Florin Constantiniu (Romania in World War II, ISOSIM, Bucharest 1997, p.67-69)

On the 4th of September, 1941, Brutus Coste, Romania's charge d'affaires in Washington, was received by the Secretary of State of U.S.A., Cordell Hull. The Romanian diplomat handed over to the head of the American diplomacy a note of the Romanian Government concerning both the recovering of Northern Bukovina and Bessarabia, as a result of the military operations started on the 22nd of June and the historical, ethnical and juridical foundation with refference to the belonging of these Romanian terntories.

The above mentioned note was underlining the following idea: "The annexation by U.S.S.R.".

According to Brutus Coste's statement, when he asked for this meeting he had in view "to set part upon the directions of his government regarding the on-going hostilities in Eastern Europe". He said that joining Germany in waging the war against U.S.S.R., Romania's only purpose was to regain the teritories that U.S.S.R. had occupied a year before, namely Northern Bukovina and Bessarabia and that these military operations therefore were not representing an aggression; a change had occured in the character of the Romanian participation as regaining the occupied territories, Romania's operations would reduce themselves from that moment on to the obligations pursuant to an occupation force. He also stated that from strategical reasons, the Romanian Army had been obliged to move forward beyond the claimed territories but even as occupation force. The area of its operations would be reduced to the region between Dniester and Bug rivers. Following the directions he was given, he stated that Romania was not claiming any territories and that the occupation of certain areas had happened due to strategical requirements and "indirectly" to the damages caused by U.S.S.R. in Bessarabia. He was also given orders to inform the Secretary of State that his Government had officially notified the German Government about its standing point and explained the Germans properly that Romania would not agree with any expansion in East in exchange for giving up her revendications concerning Hungary in Transylvania which continued to be a primordial problem of her national policy.

The Secretary of State thanked Mr. Coste for this communication and asked Mr.Canon (an oficial of the State Department) who was present at the meeting to draw up a memorandum for the Secretary of State.

Then Mr. Coste asked permission to add some more personal remarks to his statement. He said that Romania had always supported the principle of collective security and it had been one of the most passionate adherents of the Nations League.

In his view, the fact that Romania, unlike Italy, Hungary and Bulgaria, had rejected Germany's invitation to invade and divide up Jugoslavia was not given enough appreciation abroad.

After a whole generation lived in the shadow of the "red threat" at the very border and after the invasion, much of the Romania's policy was related to the enormous danger represented by U.S.S.R.

He added that the Romanian Government had actually proved that U.S.S.R. intented to occupy further Romanian territories and that one of the reasons of the limitation of the Romanian military operations at that time was the intention to preserve the army for the future security of the country.

The Secretary of State mentioned that the spreading of the communist system is a problem in itself, while the American Government considered hitlerism to be the world's enemy; that since before 1938, the U.S. had promoted and constantly put into being the principles of international agreement and cooperation, which are no longer necessary; also in the same period the hitlerism proved to be the enemy of the peaceful nations destroying them one by one. He mentioned the fact that the U.S. concentrated its energy and would spend thousand millions of dollars in order to defeat hitlerism and this state of affairs brings about our attitude towards the countries supporting Hitler's views or simply prolonging the conflict against his purposes.

In reply, Mr. Coste said that Romania hopes to be free again to peacefully cooperate with other countries and that he considered that Romania's special problem at that time relating to her relationship with U.S.S.R. seemed not to be understood as it followed from Mr. Churchill's statement who grouped her together with Italy, Hungary and Bulgaria, considering these countries to be "jackals of the tiger".

The Secretary of State mentioned that this was Mr. Coste's and British Government's problem.

The dialogue between Romania's representative and the Secretary of State reveals the limits within which U.S.A. understood our country's position. During the negociations between Coste and Hull, the Roosevelt administration engaged itself to provide stipulated support to the Soviet Union.

Beside the material assistance, U.S.A. endeavoured to support the U.S.S.R. persuading Romania and Finland to give up participating in the Antisoviet war.

A few days following Brutus Coste's audience at the State Department, Cordell Hull suggested Finland's minister in Washington, Hylmand Procope, that his country should follow Romania's example specifying its objectives.

On the 25th of September, 1941 the American Subsecretary of State, Summer Welles, sent Brutus Coste a note in which he was confirming the receiving of the note had of the 4th of September, 1941 where he called Bessarabia and Northern Bukovina "the Romanian provinces". Conveying this to Bucharest, Brutus Coste draw Mihai Antonescu's attention to the fact that "not overestimating the signifiance of the term Romanian provinces, one had firmy reason to consider it the proof of a friendly gesture. Mr. Summer Wells has the reputation of a diplomat both reserved and cautious in his expression and very accurate in his wording. Even in a receiving confirmation he would not leave the considerations and statements opposite to the point of view of the Department without making comments or an attitude of reserve. In other words I think that if the Department had fundamental objections to the idea in the above mentioned quotation, he would have confirmed himself to a vague indication concerning the context of our note mentioning only what was strictly necessary in order to identify it".

Maybe Brutus Coste was right insisting upon the idea that the formula "Romanian provinces" was not used by change in the note signed by Summer Wells. However, U.S.A.'s attitude had to be explained - as it was already mentioned - by her concern to determine the ceasing of Romanian's and Finland's military operations against the Soviet Union. Cordell Hull let Brutus Coste know that the American Government considered nazism to be its deadly enemy and whoever joined it was to face U.S.A.'s hostility; as long as Romania would not go beyond her old borders she could count on a certain comprehension from the American Government's part who even if de facto - had already given the acknowledgement of the Romanian-Soviet border as mentioned in the Country Council (Sfatul Tarii) in Kishinev on the 27th of March/9th of April 1918. Indirectly the Roosevelt administration required Romania to cease any military operation against U.S.S.R. once the "Romanian provinces" regained.

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