The Secretary of State to the Chargé in China (Vincent)
Washington, March 30, 1943—midnight.
422. Reference Embassy’s 82, January 16, 10 a.m., 282, February 26, 9 a.m. and Department’s 123, January 23, 7 p.m., concerning [Page 670] five passenger transport planes for China National Aviation Corporation.
- Every effort has been made both with War Department and Munitions Assignments Board to arrange at least for minimum requirements of CNAC.
- Munitions Assignments Board which recently met to give further consideration to this request feels that because all Lend-Lease material allocated by the Board to China is subject to the disposition of General Stilwell, it cannot recommend the allocation of planes specifically for the interior air service desired by CNAC. However, the Board has approved the recommendation of the Munitions Assignments Committee (air) that the present scheduled allotment of two planes a month to CNAC be continued throughout 1943.
- Therefore in all probability CNAC will receive planes throughout 1943 at the rate of two per month but it appears under existing policy directives regarding Lend-Lease supplies that the Munitions Assignments Board feels it can only allocate planes to CNAC subject to the disposition of General Stilwell. Furthermore, it is reported here that under the terms of a contract between CNAC and General Stilwell all planes allocated by Lend-Lease must be utilized solely on the Assam-China run under Army direction. Is this correct?
- Please inform Bond of the foregoing in as much as he may wish to discuss this matter with General Stilwell and the Chinese authorities with a view to arranging for the release of a few planes for use on interior runs.
- Please keep the Department informed of developments.