Mr. Max W. Bishop 15 to the Secretary of State
[Received February 3—6:38 p.m.]
74. From Harriman. T. V. Soong came to Shanghai to see me yesterday. He brought up among other things the Soviet claim to Jap industrial equipment in Manchuria as war booty and their present demand for a substantial interest in these properties in return for leaving the equipment in place. He recalled to me what he had told me in Moscow; namely, that when Stalin broached the subject of Soviet desires for some Japanese owned industrial equipment as war booty Stalin had indicated their demands would not be great. Stalin used the words “we will not be greedy”.
Soong also confirmed what I stated in my first telegram from Chungking that in his negotiations with Stalin in August the first Soviet proposal contained language which could have been interpreted to mean that a considerable number of Japanese industries should be included with the railroads and placed under joint control. Soong refused to accept this language and insisted upon the more restrictive language eventually included in the agreement in order to avoid any possible construction that an interest in Japanese industries in Manchuria should pass to the Russians.
Soong feels that the present Russian demands are in direct violation of the Sino-Soviet Treaty and should be declined. He says that he personally feels that the Chinese would be better off to let the Russians take by force the equipment they insist upon as war booty even though there would be an immediate loss to Manchurian economy rather than to permit the Russians to have a permanent interest in Manchurian industry. He considers that even a minority interest [Page 1104] would give them domination of Manchurian economy and permanently affect the sovereignty of China in Manchuria. [Harriman.]
- Foreign Service Officer on Staff of U. S. Political Adviser to the Supreme Commander, Allied Forces, Japan (MacArthur).↩