893.51/8–1149: Telegram

The Chargé in China (Clark) to the Secretary of State

Cantel 924. Ho Ying-chin67 asked me to call and spent more than hour pleading for another chance, saying without loan from US this stage Nationalist resistance [to] Communists was bound to collapse. Errors of past were admitted, but this time reform really would be instituted. We could name our own prime minister, our own commander in chief of armed forces and take any other measures we deemed necessary assure loan used effectively combat Communism. He understood White Paper68 ruled out further aid China so long as Gimo69 participating Government and promised if further aid forthcoming that “they” would “try” persuade Gimo cease interference. Obviously if Gimo is obstacle further aid, Ho and his aides are willing try throw him overboard. Although Ho thinks prime problem at moment is economic, he says Nationalists still have 3,000,000 under arms and 1,500,000 effective [combatants capable] moving [turning] tide military events if properly led. He admits Gimo has lost confidence troops and says that if American aid is forthcoming even on installment [Page 677] basis permitting US to stop it whenever government failed produce, he, Ho, would sacrifice himself and assume command of army if we desired. Of course if American aid is not forthcoming, he is unwilling sacrifice himself and command army. My visit with Ho Ying-chin was most depressing. It is, to me, further indication of complete bankruptcy present China leadership. There is no thought of dying for a cause, only tendency blame US for not doing for China what Chinese cannot do for themselves. There was in Ho complete inability comprehend that Nationalist Government had lost confidence people and could not conceivably prosper until that confidence had been regained. He was completely unrealistic.

Incidentally, returning to town from Tungshan, saw armored military train pulled by UNRRA70 locomotive.

Sent Department; repeated Nanking 610, Shanghai 490, Taipei 113.

  1. President of the Chinese Executive Yuan, March–May 1949, and Minister of National Defense, June–December 1948.
  2. Department of State, United States Relations With China (Washington, Government Printing Office, 1949). For correspondence regarding this publication, see pp. 1365 ff.
  3. Generalissimo Chiang Kai-shek, who retired as President of the Republic of China on January 21 in favor of Vice President Li Tsung-jen as Acting President.
  4. United Nations Relief and Rehabilitation Administration.