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of American troops, horses, guns and supplies, foodstuffs, &c., which must be sent to maintain our ever increasing army in France. [[underlined]] These considerations render it most urgent that hereafter in sending supplies to France you be guided by information secured from the Red Cross as to the articles required at the time and which the Red Cross can undertake to transport to and distribute in France. [[/underlined]] The American Red Cross for France and Belgium is operating in close co-operation with many important relief organizations which have heretofore been independently working in France, such as American Distribution Service, National Surgical Dressings Committee and American Ambulance Hospital. Therefore, in establishing standards for hospital supplies, etc., information furnished by the Red Cross in America will be based upon the joint experience of the American Red Cross for France and Belgium and prominent American relief organizations in France. As indicating the difficulties attending the transportation and distribution of supplies, it should be pointed out that they must be first packed or boxed and delivered to a warehouse in New York; there they often need to be repacked with special reference to ocean transportation, marked, contents scheduled, and delivered at a steamship pier. Many weeks often elapse--and the condition is constantly becoming more grave--before it is possible to secure space on any desirable boat. Then when transportation is secured, the contributions, generally uninsured, are subject to submarine peril, which, with respect to all slow speed boats, is very menacing. We regret to say that during the past few weeks various boats carrying shipments of Red Cross and other supplies have been sunk by submarine attack and over 2,600 cases of relief supplies lost. If, luckily, your contributions are at last landed at some French port, there is often great delay, breakage and sometimes loss from theft, before transportation to Paris can be secured. At Paris, they must be unloaded from cars, taken by motor trucks at very high operating cost to a warehouse, and there be unpacked, resorted, and again, at great cost, delivered to the consignees. The above considerations suggest the desirability in many instances of making contributions for relief in France in the form of cash instead of in articles or supplies, [[underlined]] having especially in mind that all articles or supplies hereafter sent from America for distribution by the American Red Cross for France and Belgium should necessarily [[/underlined]]
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