893.00/14309: Telegram

The Chargé in China (Peck) to the Secretary of State

53. The opening address by General Chiang Kai Shek at the inaugural session of the fifth plenary session of the Central Executive Committee was made public in Chungking on January 26.

Declaring that “the primary mission at present is to recognize the object and the conditions of Japan and ourselves and to be firm in our resolution and in our confidence,” General Chiang reiterated his conviction that China must emerge victorious. He asserted that Japan would fail for the following reasons:

deviation from fixed program in continental policy;
inability to achieve its aims of “conquest without war”, “speedy decisions through quick struggle” and “speedy conclusion of war through early compromise”;
failure of Japanese military strategy through ignorance of own situation, seeking victory through ingenuity and lack and isolation of military forces through deep penetration into China;
failure of political strategy in consequence of use of corrupt politicians in organization of puppet regimes, isolation of military forces resulting from contradictions in policy; and
failure to understand the history and the strength of the people of China and especially failure to recognize the special characteristics of the current age and of the development of the revolution in China.

General Chiang called for intensification of efforts in the struggle ahead, declaring “we certainly must not at this stage compromise or yield.” General Chiang emphasized “the development of international conditions is undoubtedly toward maintenance of justice and peace. The various democratic states are daily strengthening their preparations and determination to check aggression. We must follow this expanding road of justice and thoroughly carry out our policy of resistance to the end”.

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General Chiang went on to say that China must overcome Japan through use of national unity, development of agriculture, practice of economy, war time construction and carrying out of San Min Chui.9

General Chiang asserted that in the course of hostilities Japan has suffered about 700,000 casualties and incurred war expenditures amounting to yen 9 billion bringing in its wake poverty, dislocation of commerce and industry and social and political disorder. Japan he states had been forced to send twice as many troops to China as originally planned and Japanese casualties had exceeded 31 per cent of her aggregate fighting forces.

General Chiang repeatedly declared that the Chinese nation had never been subdued and alluded to the fall of the Sung and Ming dynasties as the collapse of one family and one dynasty. Referring to the present day national spirit General Chiang said “the National Government of today is a revolutionary government and a government of the people. This revolutionary government will fight for the welfare of the nation because that is the sole reason for its existence. We realize our duty and will not be intimidated. Our duty is to consummate the revolution and carry out the Three People’s Principles in defiance of armed aggression. The resistance we have been putting up in a closely knitted and interrelated action sprung from the will, spirit and strength of the Government and the people”.

Referring to the economic situation General Chiang declared that hostilities had not seriously impaired the financial structure of China because of China’s predominantly agricultural character. Saying there is no want because of good crops last year and the frugal nature of the people, he went on, “I am deeply convinced that wartime economy will not be much of a question”.

In comments on Japanese diplomacy General Chiang said Japs had failed in attempting to appease Russia, in endeavoring to woo the friendship of the United States and in trying to avert the forming of a common front among the United States, Great Britain and France. In referring to world unrest, he alleged that the main subterranean trend was toward the maintenance of world faith and peace especially among the European and American democracies who were coping with the crisis with the greatest prudence.

Repeated to Peiping. Peiping mail Tokyo.

  1. The Three People’s Principles of Sun Yat-sen.