The Ambassador in China (Johnson) to the Secretary of State
[Received 3:50 p.m.]
8. My 1 , January 7, 4 p.m.5 On January 7, information was received from Reuter’s office in Nanking that possible necessity for the Government to use force in compelling Yang Hu Cheng to comply with personnel changes and troop transfers decreed on January 5 was being seriously considered and suitable southwesterly directions of Government troops were being made. The increased likelihood thus indicated that American citizens in Sian might be subject to the danger of an attack on Sian increased the anxiety felt by the Embassy on their behalf and I called on Vice Minister Hsu Mo in the afternoon and reiterated request made in my note on December 246 that instructions be issued to military and frontier officials concerned to take all possible measures for the safety of Americans in Sian. The German Embassy courteously informed me that an opportunity to send a communication to the Americans in Sian was presented by the departure of a German pilot for Sian by a German plane on the morning of January 9. A letter in guarded terms addressed to the Scandinavian Alliance Mission was therefore entrusted to the German Embassy. In the letter it was suggested that if the addressee regarded it as prudent an attempt be made to send a reply by the same agency reporting on their situation. No reply has been received to the telegram sent to Swenson7 by Chinese telegraph on January 7.
Sent to the Department, Peiping, Hankow, Shanghai.