893.00/1–546: Telegram

The Chargé in China (Robertson) to the Secretary of State

32. General reaction except in Government circles to Generalissimo’s85 New Year’s Eve speech is that it is restatement of Government position and contains little that is new. Only indication of influence of President Truman’s statement86 [is?] expressing [of] Govt readiness “to invite, before convocation of National Assembly, leaders of society and representatives of other political parties to take part in the Govt either in the policy making councils or the executive branches”. This offer has been previously made and it is not believed that opposition parties [will?] accept invitation, unless Youth Party does so. (Latter said by Democratic League and nonparty sources to have been approached privately by Govt with offer of posts and money and while Youth Party is still nominally part of League, it has split off to extent of having five separate delegates to forthcoming PCC.) Some foreign observers describe speech as having new note of urgency not heretofore apparent. (Repeated Moscow as 5.)

Speech strongly emphasizes importance of national unity, necessity of realizing San Min Chu I and revolutionary role of Govt. Communists not referred to by name but clear reference to that party in explanation of prerequisite to solution current conflict: “Authority to issue military and administrative orders must be unified, and troops must serve the state, the carving up of spheres of influences, the destruction of communications and the obstruction of the work [Page 134] of returning to normalcy must be avoided”. Restoration of communications and reorganization of troops placed in order of priority before reorganization of Govt.

Speech indicates no change in Govt determination to consider valid election of delegates to National Assembly in 1935 although it expressed Govt willingness to increase number of delegates. Speech also makes no mention of possibility of revision of May 5 draft constitution.

Democratic League has issued statement on speech and related matters which was reported by Ta Rung Pao January 2 as follows:

League demands revision [of] organization and election law for National Assembly in order to ensure representative body and feels retention of delegates elected 10 years ago not [in] accord either [with?] democratic spirit. League feels reorganization of Govt must be discussed and points out that it would be fitting to have participation in both policy-making and policy-executing Govt organs. League agrees with necessity of nationalization of armies but feels this must be achieved through “political democratization”. League proposes all parties cooperate in establishment local self-govt as well as reorganization Central Govt. Regarding truce proposal, League approves cessation hostilities and restoration communications but feels all troops should remain present positions and railways should not be used for movement of troops. League proposes representation on military inspection mission by other than Kmt Communist representatives.

  1. Chiang Kai-shek, President of the National Government of the Republic of China.
  2. Of December 15, 1945, entitled “United States Policy Toward China”, Department of State, United States Relations With China, p. 607.