811.30 Asiatic Fleet/961: Telegram

The Ambassador in China (Gauss) to the Secretary of State

477. Reference Department’s 276, November 28, 5 p.m.86 In my opinion plans should be made for decommissioning the Tutuila in event of American-Japanese hostilities. This gunboat would be exposed at Chungking to Japanese air attacks against which her armament would be useless.

The gunboat now furnishes following essential services to the Embassy: radio communications; services of medical [officer], which under present conditions here are important; and facilities for bringing in official supplies and equipment and as space permits food supplies for the Embassy personnel and attaches on the Navy truck convoy between Lashio and Chungking over the Burma Road. These essential services could be continued after the ship is decommissioned by transferring personnel and equipment to the control and supervision of the Naval Attaché.87

  1. Not printed.
  2. On December 15 the Department of State informed the Navy Department that the question of decommissioning the Tutuila was entirely a military matter except for such essential services as had been furnished the Embassy at Chungking (811.30 Asiatic Fleet/963).