800.0146/9–1644: Telegram

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

1219. On the subject of civil affairs administration in areas recovered by the military (telegram 1166, September 2, 5:00 p.m.) Joint Chiefs of Staff have informed the Department that it has authorized General Stilwell or his Chief of Staff, in company with you, to call on Chiang Kai-shek and inform him of our broad over-all policy for civil affairs administration along the lines communicated to you in paragraph 2 of the Department’s reference telegram.

In response to a request from the Department for a statement of the Joint Chiefs of Staff’s attitude, should the Chinese Government request a civil affairs agreement, the Joint Chiefs of Staff have expressed the following opinion: If for political reasons the Department of State deems it expedient to do so, we perceive no military objection to entering into a civil affairs agreement with the Chinese, should they express a desire for such an agreement, provided the agreement is limited to broad policies. It is our opinion that the agreement should make no reference to specific areas; should be limited strictly to military purposes [Page 1169]during the period of military occupation; and should be consummated on a military level. All similar agreements by the United States with occupied countries of Europe have been negotiated and consummated on a military level.

It is not contemplated or desired, of course, that you initiate or encourage discussion of a civil affairs agreement with the Chinese but the Department will appreciate being informed promptly and fully with regard to your call on Chiang and with regard to any developments therefrom.

Hull