Memorandum of Conversation, by General Marshall

Notes on Meeting With the President and the Under Secretary of State at 11:30 a.m., Friday, December 14, 1945

The President handed me a final draft of his letter of instructions together with the enclosures37 and asked me if these were satisfactory to me. I replied in the affirmative. The President stated that if I desired a directive from him in any other form for me to prepare it and he would sign it, that he wished to back me in every way possible.

I stated that my understanding of one phase of my directive was not in writing but I thought I had a clear understanding of his desires in the matter, which was that in the event that I was unable to secure the necessary action by the Generalissimo, which I thought reasonable and desirable, it would still be necessary for the U. S. Government, through me, to continue to back the National Government of the Republic of China—through the Generalissimo within the terms of the announced policy of the U.S. Government.

The President stated that the foregoing was a correct summation of his direction regarding that possible development of the situation.

The Under Secretary of State, Mr. Acheson, confirmed this as his understanding of my directions.

The President repeated his assurances that the U.S. Government, that he would back me in my decisions, that he had confidence in my judgment.

  1. See Department of State, United States Relations With China, pp. 605–609.