393.11/1418: Telegram

The Minister in China (Johnson) to the Secretary of State

210. Hankow’s February 3 [2?], 5 [4?] p.m., regarding situation there and Legation’s 184, February 3, 11 a.m.

[1.] Following instruction to Hankow:

“Your February 3 [2], 4 p.m. (1) Legation does not feel in position to make the comment suggested in your paragraph number 9 until it learns the final result of your discussions with Admiral Williams. Although you state there is no actual emergency, it would seem prudent to formulate in advance some definite general plan of action, subject to change as circumstances may require, for the protection of Americans in the event of a communistic bandit attack on Wuhan.

(2) If it is to be assumed that the evacuation of foreigners from Wuhan is to be contemplated as a possible necessity, Legation suggests you consider the sending of very guarded advices regarding the situation to American citizens at interior points who might otherwise unduly delay withdrawal on the assumption of Hankow’s being able to afford them a permanent point of refuge in any circumstances.

(3) British Legation has received reports regarding Hankow situation but no recommendations or request for instructions. German Legation has received no reports.

(4) Lieutenant Wyman leaves today for Loyang and will endeavor to obtain information as to the plans of Chinese officials regarding protection of Wuhan against communist bandits.

(5) In your consideration of the situation, you are referred to the Legation’s circular number 7, February 14, 1930.”

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2. The Minister in his February 6, 12 a.m., from Nanking referred Adams to the Legation’s instruction quoted above and instructed him as follows: “Believe you and Admiral Williams should handle situation as emergency develops”.

For the Minister: