The Ambassador in China (Gauss) to the Secretary of State
[Received March 5—9:33 a.m.]
“TF–18. 1. Hall-Patch30 told board meeting on March 3 Bank of England cabled him that after furnishing board with pounds sterling 750,000 to meet sterling requirements since outbreak of Pacific War it need presumably expect no further calls from board in view of changed situation and pound sterling 50 million loan. Hall-Patch therefore inclined to favor suspension of board operations but yielded to consensus of meeting including chairman which was strongly opposed.
Suspension of board operations at this time would be very unfortunate. It would emphasize China’s isolation, further weaken American and British prestige and influence here and would be welcomed by certain groups in Chinese Government. It would be difficult for board to resume operations once suspended. There is still some commercial cargo in Wanting and Lashio, import of which board should finance, and trickle of goods is expected from Burma and India over existing mule track even before regular new route is established. [Page 499]Finally as Fox originally suggested existence of board may provide convenient instrument for use of loan because of confidence it enjoys.[”]