5-558 To Brigadier General Thomas S. Timberman, September 24, 1946

Publisher: The Johns Hopkins University Press
Date: September 24, 1946

Subject: China

To Brigadier General Thomas S. Timberman

September 24, 1946 OSE 461 Nanking, China

Dear Timberman:

The details concerning Chavin’s report on the Anping-Hsiangho area brought to me by Mr. Robertson worrys me.1 Aside from the serious embarrassment resulting from the submission of such a report, it seems to me that much of this could have been avoided by some supervision of the activity of an officer engaged in such a delicate and internationally important incident. I was especially surprised that his preliminary report containing a critical confusion of dates should have been received and filed without even being brought to your notice, not to mention Mr. Robertson’s.

Please eliminate from important posts officers who can not be relied upon for a reasonable exhibition of good judgment, and also please have supervisory checks made on the work of officers who are handling matters of critical importance.

Faithfully yours,

Document Copy Text Source: Records of the Department of State (RG 59), Lot Files, Marshall Mission, Military Affairs, OSE Letters, National Archives and Records Administration, College Park, Maryland.

Document Format: Typed letter.

1. Concerning the attack on a U.S. Marine Corps convoy near the village of Anping on July 29, see note 2, Marshall to Truman, July 30, 1946, Papers of George Catlett Marshall, #5-513 [5: 639]. Executive Headquarters created Sub-Team 25 to investigate the incident. Continuing lack of agreement on procedures and conclusions between the Communist member on the one hand and the Nationalist and U.S. members on the other caused the U.S. member, Colonel Raphael S. Chavin, to submit a Nationalist-American report on September 7. On September 24, Marshall directed Timberman to tell Chavin that, “in view of the fact that your statements of dates pertaining to various operations are too general and involve possible misunderstandings regarding incidents at Anping on July 29th, you are directed to submit a supplementary report giving exact dates for various events so far as indicated by the testimony taken by the Sub Team.” (Marshall to Timberman, Radio No. GOLD 1555, September 24, 1946, NA/RG 59 [Lot Files, Marshall Mission, Military Affairs, GOLD Messages].) The supplementary report was submitted on September 29.

Recommended Citation: ThePapers of George Catlett Marshall, ed.Larry I. Bland and Sharon Ritenour Stevens(Lexington, Va.: The George C. Marshall Foundation, 1981- ). Electronic version based on The Papers of George Catlett Marshall, vol. 5, “The Finest Soldier,” January 1, 1945-January 7, 1947 (Baltimore and London: The Johns Hopkins University Press, 2003), p. 691.

Digital Downloads




Holding Rights: Public Information
Holding ID: 5-558

Rights: Public Information