Memorandum of Conversation, by the Ambassador in China (Gauss)6

Present: Lieut. Gen. Stilwell, U. S. A.
Brig. Gen. Hearn, U. S. A., Chief of Staff
Mr. Gauss

I called in at military headquarters this afternoon to see General Stilwell and informed him of the instructions contained in the Department’s telegram no. 18, January 4, 7 p.m., in reference to criminal jurisdiction over American military personnel in China following the coming into force of the Sino-American treaty relinquishing American extraterritorial rights in China.

I mentioned that it was my understanding that China and India had reached some arrangement regarding military jurisdiction in criminal cases in respect to the Chinese forces now at Ramgarh, India; and that there is also an understanding with Britain regarding American military personnel in India—and in the United Kingdom. I inquired whether he had the texts of any of these arrangements. He had not; but General Hearn, his Chief of Staff, had a copy of the British orders in India regarding jurisdiction over American and Chinese military personnel, and upon examining it General Stilwell mentioned that the provisions are similar in the two instances except that in the case of the American military establishments there is exemption from search by the British authorities while this exemption does not hold true in reference to the Chinese encampments.

I asked General Stilwell whether he had any comments or suggestions to make in connection with my approach to Dr. Soong, the [Page 695] Foreign Minister, in accordance with my instructions from Washington. He replied that he had nothing to offer; the proposed move is entirely in line with the desires of the military.

C[larence] E. G[auss]
  1. Copy transmitted to the Department by the Ambassador in his despatch No. 848, January 11; received February 13.