Marshall Mission Files, Lot 54–D270: Telegram

General Marshall to President Truman75

[884.] Dear Mr. President: Since promulgation of orders to cease aggressive actions and stipulation of three specified matters to be [Page 1039]settled within 15 days, my negotiations have been constant. Chou En Lai has consulted the Commu rning group in Yenan and returned to discussions with me. three things to be settled, agreements have about been completed regarding communication. Little trouble is anticipated in reaching agreements on the detailed arrangements for formally terminating hostilities in Manchuria. The great difficulties to be resolved relate to demobilization, reorganization and particularly to the redistribution of forces, especially in Manchuria and Shantung Province.

My problems of the past few days have also related to the sporadic but violent fighting in various localities, mostly in North China, which could not be halted on short notice and many of the actions were evidently planned and ordered ten or more days ago. However, I think we have secured a reasonable pause. Admiral Cooke left here this afternoon for Tsingtao with a Communist official bearing a letter from Chou En Lai to the Communist leader in Shantung.

The recent rather virulent Communist propaganda or attacks against the United States and my alleged support of the National Government in the recent fighting was due to two reasons, a continuation of an effort to arouse United States opposition to any military representation out here, and to offset in America the effect of the Generalissimo’s proposal to give American officers the deciding vote in case of disagreements. The fact that, just as we were on the eve of reaching an agreement, the Generalissimo remained absent in Mukden and Peiping for a considerable period while his armies exploited their successful action south of Changchun aroused great suspicion against his good faith and particularly against the impartiality of my attitude. I think the latter has now been dissipated but a great deal of harm was done.

This message is merely to keep you advised on the situation and of what progress has been made.

George C. Marshall
  1. Copy forwarded on June 13 by the War Department to the Secretary of State; telegram drafted on June 12 but not sent until 1:15 a.m. of June 13.