5-568a Editorial Summary of Meetings with John Leighton Stuart and

Publisher: The Johns Hopkins University Press

Subject: China

Editorial Summary of Meetings with John Leighton Stuart and Tung Pi-wu and Wang Ping-nan

October 3-4, 1946 Nanking, China


John Leighton Stuart, October 3, 10:00 A.M.

Wang Ping-nan of the Communist delegation had called on Stuart the previous evening and inquired about U.S. policy vis-à-vis the present situation in China. Almost anything he told the Communists would quickly become public information, Marshall observed. Furthermore, the government was probably going to insist on taking Kalgan no matter what the Communists proposed, in which case Marshall said he would have to recommend his recall. Marshall proposed that Stuart tell Wang that the Communists might demand that the government halt its advance on Kalgan and offer to make three concessions: designate their delegates to the National Assembly, accept a State Council membership of nine Communists and four Democratic League members, and evacuate north Kiangsu. Later that morning, Marshall sent Stuart a note suggesting a fourth concession: withdrawal from the vicinity of Tatung. (Foreign Relations, 1946, 10: 274–76.)

Tung Pi-wu and Wang Ping-nan, October 4, 10:30 A.M.
Mr. Tung reported on Stuart’s suggestions to Mr. Wang the previous day; they had been transmitted to Chou En-lai in Shanghai and party headquarters in Yenan. He then gave his opinion on various issues, such as National Assembly representation and troop dispositions. Marshall said he had little to add to statements and memoranda he had already discussed with the Communists.
The Communists, Tung said, were ready to abide by past agreements. “We have a saying at home,” Marshall responded: “Chickens come home to roost.” The government’s stand on Kalgan might well be couched in language similar to that General Chou had used after the Communists had captured Changchun in mid-April: “the situation has greatly changed,” and this required an alteration of the February 25 military agreement on Manchuria. At that time, Marshall recalled, he had told Chou that if the Communists insisted on changes, the government would insist on corresponding changes. “These comments do not help in the solution of the problem but they at least give point to some of my difficulties.”
The government had concentrated 85 percent of its troop strength in North China and Manchuria, Tung said, and party headquarters insisted that half of these forces be withdrawn. This was the first he had heard of such a demand, Marshall said. Moreover, the Communists had not complied with the February 25 agreement requiring them to provide data on their troop dispositions, so it had been difficult for him to make informed judgments. (Ibid., pp. 281–87.)

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