893.6359/5–2747: Airgram

The Ambassador in China (Stuart) to the Secretary of State

A–112. Following is Tihwa’s 222, May 24, 9 p.m.:

“Mytel 215, May 22, section 3: c) Russia might also be motivated by need for certain strategic minerals reported to exist in this Province, presumably thoroughly explored by the several Soviet mineralogical advisers to Sheng Shih-tsai. Wusu oil wells are still working (antepenultimate para Mytel 184 May 923) and were observed with binoculars as we passed. There are said to be considerable wolfram deposits in Ashan zone (mytel 74, Mar 723) already being exploited by Russian engineers as well as some mines near Borotola, variously claimed to be of iron or some unidentified heavy mineral (Clubb’s despatch 20, July 28, 194325) conceivably uranium, though we saw no signs of operation on our way. Should any deposits of this ore exist, they alone would of course be enough to account for Soviet interest. USSR might accordingly be willing to make considerable temporary ideological [Page 556] compromise and even forego immediate political sovereignty, allowing the natives assemblage or the independence they desire (mytel 202, May 1526), provided Russian extraction of ores is permitted to continue. Chinese Central Govt could hardly be expected to consent to this if they exert eventual control over production areas as they do not now. Section 4 follows. Paxton.”

  1. Not printed.
  2. Not printed.
  3. Not printed, but see despatch No. 1449, August 9, 1943, from the Ambassador in China, Foreign Relations, 1943, China, p. 312. O. Edmund Clubb, Second Secretary of Embassy in China, was detailed as Consul at Tihwa in 1943.
  4. Not printed.