893.60 Manchuria/2–2046: Telegram

The Ambassador in the United Kingdom (Winant) to the Secretary of State

2101. During course of general conversation this morning, Sterndale Bennett24 mentioned account in today’s Times of Secretary Byrnes’ press conference where it was reported the Secretary had requested China and Russia for information regarding Sino-Russian [Page 1109] negotiations about Manchuria. British press has recently carried numerous stories of alleged Russian actions in Manchuria most of them taken from American press and Sterndale Bennett expressed considerable concern over what the true situation might be. He stated he would appreciate receiving information of any formal approaches which U. S. may have made to China or Russia as British are seriously considering what their policy in this area should be.

Sterndale Bennett said it was difficult to decide on the basis of present information whether the Russians intended to stay in Manchuria only until they had managed to get from that territory all they wanted in the way of industrial equipment or whether they intended to stay permanently there. In either case he said it was a matter of concern and would necessitate HMG25 giving thought on a high level as to what its policy should be and whether it might not be necessary “to show our teeth”. Sterndale Bennett said he did not know what Mr. Bevin26 had in mind on this problem but he did know that it was a source of worry particularly when viewed in the light of Russian action in other areas of the globe. Embassy would appreciate any detailed information on this subject which Department may have and which could appropriately be communicated to the Foreign Office.

  1. John Cecil Sterndale Bennett, head of the Far Eastern Department of the British Foreign Office.
  2. His Majesty’s Government.
  3. Ernest Bevin, British Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs.