893.00/6–2349: Telegram

The Minister-Counselor of Embassy in China (Clark) to the Secretary of State

Cantel 636. Took advantage reception previously arranged to stress on personal basis to Chiu Chang-wei,12 who promised inform Li Tsung-jen, to Acting FonMin George Yeh, to Vice Minister FonOff Tung [Page 1103]Ling, to Minister Education Han Li-wu and to Chen Tai-chu, chief American section FonOff, that American sympathy was intangible thing that might prove invaluable to China and might be lost irretrievably through mistaken tactics. In each case pointed out great difference between surface blockade Shanghai and more or less indiscriminate bombing that city or vessels attempting enter port (Cantel 635, June 22, repeated Nanking 425, Shanghai 363, London unnumbered, Taipei 44).

Found apparently complete understanding each case. Cabinet I am told met 3 hours today to consider just that problem. Initiative has apparently come from Generalissimo13 camp and people here do not like it and are trying find means counteract. Trouble seems to be that Taiwan and Generalissimo camp established there are going own way in complete disregard what might almost be called rump government Canton. People here are going through motions governing, but they can’t move without Generalissimo. There is much evidence Generalissimo promised Hsu Kan only enough of treasure to keep him from refusing assume office as Finance Minister. All with whom I talked expressed perturbation at trend events and hoped nothing would be done alienate sympathy US public. I gathered distinct impression Canton was unable control action forces established Taiwan and Government here is very definitely disturbed.

This seems to me further evidence of the disintegration I have previously reported.

Sent Department, repeated Nanking 426, Shanghai 365, London unnumbered, Taipei 47.

  1. Secretary and Political Adviser to Li Tsung-jen.
  2. Chiang Kai-shek, who retired as President January 21, 1949.