The Ambassador in China ( Johnson ) to the Secretary of State
[Received August 31—2 p.m.]
572. My 566, August 30, midnight [12 noon].32 Please communicate the following to Commander-in-Chief Asiatic Fleet:
“I have following to offer regarding control, training and discipline of Chinese aviators after a conversation this noon with Malley, British adviser on aviation to the Chinese Government. Control has only been centralized during past year under an Aldermanic [Aeronautical?] Commission headed by Madame Chiang.33 It was previously and for a considerable time shot through with petty politics. Ground command has been driving fliers continuously since beginning of hostilities who are now suffering from nervous tension and lack of sleep. This applies particularly to few youngsters who have shown some skill, [Page 476] courage and nerve in their operations. I do not believe that what has been done has in the least been intentional on their part or due to defiance of instructions, discipline or control. The above is not offered as an excuse for incident to President Hoover but in an attempt to answer your 0030–2054.”33a
Sent to Shanghai.