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To Generalissimo Chiang Kai-shek
April 11, 1946 Radio. Washington, D.C.
I am leaving for China tomorrow, Friday the 12th, and should arrive the eighteenth weather permitting. I have just this moment completed an hour’s conference with Wedemeyer and am due to see the President at 12:30 and to lunch with Mr. Byrnes, Secretary of State. I hope that this will close up all of the various interests I have been working on since my return.
Yesterday I had a conference with American representatives of the Combined Food Board governing allocations all over the world.1 Also important UNRRA officials. Later I had an hour and a half with Mr. La Guardia the new head of UNRRA regarding supplies, especially rice for China.2
Another subject: I am greatly disturbed by the unfavorable political effect here of the character of the present press reports from China.3 Anything you can do to temper your press at this time will be of great importance here in the matter of the loan.
Document Copy Text Source: George C. Marshall Papers, China Mission, Memoranda-Messages-Cables, George C. Marshall Research Library, Lexington, Virginia.
Document Format: Typed radio message.
1. The Combined Food Board (Canada, Great Britain, United States) was established on June 9, 1942, to formulate plans relating to food resources utilization for the Allied war effort. Because of the critical food situation, it was continued after V-J Day. The board was dissolved on June 30, 1946.
2. Fiorello H. La Guardia had ended his twelve years as mayor of New York City at the end of 1945. On April 1, 1946, he became director general of U.N.R.R.A.
3. An example of this was Tillman Durdin’s April 9 story from Chungking (headlined “Deadlock in China More Embittered”): “Smouldering Kuomintang antagonisms against the Communists burst into rejoinders [in the press] of flaming resentment against yesterday’s personal attack on President Chiang Kai-shek by the Yenan Emancipation Daily News.” He also cited a pro-Nationalist World Daily News declaration that, in Durdin’s words, “the Communists want to start the civil war up again so as to prevent an American loan to China and thus utilize the impoverishment and resultant chaos in China as an aid to the seizure of power.” (New York Times, April 10, 1946, p. 4.)
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. 521.