4-114 To Lieutenant General Joseph W. Stilwell, September 22, 1943

Publisher: The Johns Hopkins University Press
Date: September 22, 1943

Subject: World War II

To Lieutenant General Joseph W. Stilwell

September 22, 1943 Radio No. 3430 Washington, D.C.


Personal from Marshall for Stilwell.

I gather from Bissell1 and others repeat others, that you have consistently overworked and are much in need of a short rest and that you refuse to spare yourself in accordance with the congenital affliction of all higher commanders.

I want you immediately to take two weeks rest. I think it especially important that you do this before Mountbatten gets out there.

In accordance with the above I have gone ahead through Sir John Dill and you will probably receive an invitation from General Auchinleck2 for the Vale of Kashmir or some other pleasant spot and my instructions are to you to accept it. Your expense account can be increased to whatever extent you feel necessary. Please acknowledge.3

Document Copy Text Source: George C. Marshall Papers, Pentagon Office Collection, Selected Materials, George C. Marshall Research Library, Lexington, Virginia.

Document Format: Typed radio message.

1. Major General Clayton L. Bissell had relinquished command of the Tenth Air Force in India and Burma and returned to the United States in August 1943; in September he became assistant chief of Air Staff for intelligence.

2. General Sir Claude Auchinleck had been British commander in chief in India since June 1943.

3. Stilwell replied on September 24: “I have already complied with your instructions . . . and have had more than equivalent of two weeks rest since returning to Chungking. At present, I am at critical point of a maneuver which may smooth out many difficulties. Possibilities are far reaching if I can sit on the eggs for a while longer. When this thing either develops or dies, the hills can be considered. Your interest is highly appreciated, and I hope you are practicing what you preach.” (Riley Sunderland and Charles F. Romanus, eds., Stilwell’s Personal File: China-Burma-India, 1942-1944, 5 vols. [Wilmington, Del.: Scholarly Resources, 1976], 3:950.) The chief of staff was not convinced by Stilwell’s argument; see Marshall to Stilwell, September 30, 1943, Papers of George Catlett Marshall, #4-118 [4: 139].

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. 4, “Aggressive and Determined Leadership,” June 1, 1943-December 31, 1944 (Baltimore and London: The Johns Hopkins University Press, 1996), p. 135.

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