5-453 To Harry S. Truman, May 26, 1946

Publisher: The Johns Hopkins University Press
Date: May 26, 1946

Subject: China

To Harry S. Truman

May 26, 1946 Radio No. GOLD 776. [Nanking, China]


Dear Mr. President:

Since my message of May 22d GOLD 740 and Generalissimo’s departure for Mukden, I have had continuous conferences with Chou En-lai. This noon I received letter from Generalissimo formally stating conditions he demanded for restoration of peace. In brief he demands execution of agreements for cessation of hostilities of January 10th which specifically relates to freedom of action of Government in taking over sovereignty in Manchuria, and agreement of February 25 for military demobilization and reorganization. He placed first importance on Communist demonstration of good faith by permitting Government agencies to restore communications in northern China, and stipulated that in Executive Headquartes and teams, American member should cast deciding vote or make decisions in case of Communist-Central Government disagreement on action or interpretations of agreements. He also made a peculiar statement of query if I could guarantee Communist good faith in carrying out agreements. Chou En-lai discussed letter with me but was not in position to commit himself on certain points. He will give me a partial statement of agreements late tonight for transmission to Generalissimo at Mukden. Meanwhile, I have dispatched a message to Generalissimo requesting explanatory details regarding his general statements, proposing immediate movement of a section of Executive Headquarters to Changchun, and urging him to issue an order immediately directing cessation of attacks, pursuits or advances while details of truce are being arranged. I urged him to avoid painful results of previous Government error in forging ahead in Manchuria without granting permission for presence of teams to prevent unnecessary skirmishing and more recent similar unfortunate results of attitude of belligerent Communist generals at Changchun. I also requested him to explain the meaning he gave to his use of the word “guarantee” in reference to me. I will keep you advised from now on more closely on progress of events. I think any statement at this time would be premature.

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

Document Format: Typed radio message.

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), pp. 568-569.

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