The Ambassador in China ( Stuart ) to the Secretary of State
[Received January 10—7:36 a. m.]
64. Perhaps we are unduly suspicious hut there is possibility which should not be overlooked that prior understanding between Chinese Government and Soviet Embassy already exists re Saturday’s approach for mediation (see Embtels 61, Jan. 8, and 62, Jan. 9). Should Soviets already have indicated willingness to mediate with CCP at Chinese Government request, it is obvious Chinese would have approached all four as they have done. Department will have noted that Chinese Government note does not suggest joint mediation but speaks only of “intermediary of the US Government”. Since USSR received identical note, it would not be inappropriate for them to proceed on unilateral basis in mediating role should that for any reason seem expedient. It may, therefore, be desirable for our Embassy Moscow approach Soviet Foreign Office promptly on its reaction and feasibility of joint approach in attempt to forestall possible unilateral action by USSR with accompanying prestige attaching to any successful move to end hostilities here.
Department please pass Moscow in its discretion.