The Ambassador in China (Stuart) to the Acting Secretary of State
[Received April 15—6 a.m.]
810. From Naval telegraphic interchanges between ComNavWesPac39 and Commanding General First Marine Division regarding ammunition operation referred to Embassy’s 804, April 14, noon,40 Embassy has impression that full intent of action and speed with which General Marshall desired it to be executed has not been fully grasped and that undue emphasis is being placed on salvaging ammunition.
In Embassy’s opinion intent expressed by General Marshall and was amplified by CNO41 in his 121726Z to CinCPacFlt was to the effect that (a) purpose is to terminate promptly the risk of further combat between Marines and Communists, and (b) it is acceptable to abandon excess serviceable ammunition if such action will achieve that purpose more promptly.
Dept’s attention is therefore urgently drawn to this situation for which we bear a measure of responsibility both because of General Marshall’s initiative in the matter and also in the light of Presidential directive (Deptel 326, March 20, noon42). Since the Naval representative in the Executive Office has not yet arrived, Embassy is without means of offering technical advice but is of the opinion that situation warrants immediate consultation between Dept and Navy Dept.
Sent to Dept 810, April 15, 2 p.m. Please repeat to Moscow as 14 for personal attention of General Marshall.