Personal and most secret message from Winston Churchill to Joseph Stalin on the destruction of convoy P. Q. 17
“In the case of the last convoy which is numbered P.Q.17, however, the Germans at last used their forces in the manner we had always feared. The final story of P.Q.17 convoy is not yet clear. At the moment only four ships have arrived at Archangel but six others are in Nova Zemlya harbours. <…>
It is therefore with the greatest regret that we have reached the conclusion that to attempt to run the next convoy, P.Q.18, would bring no benefit to you and would only involve a dead loss to the common cause."