794A.5 MSP/2–452: Telegram

No. 5
The Chargé in the Republic of China (Rankin) to the Department of State


972. Gen Chase and his Air Section Chief Col Rector left Taipei today via Tokyo for TDY in Washington connection recruitment mil personnel for MAAG and matériel procurement.

Request Dept extend all possible assistance to Chase and Rector in expediting arrival both personnel and equip. MAAG now well set up as regards HQ and gen organization but needs remainder auth complement to complete teams actually working with Chi units. They shld be able show results out of all proportion to number involved.

While early arrival addit equip urgent from purely mil standpoint this no less important politically. Well-known in Chi mil and civil circles that US has contemplated mil aid to Formosa for FYs 1951 and 1952 approximating US $300 million which covered by funds already appropriated by Cong. Yet with less than five months remaining of these two fiscal years, actual arrivals in Formosa of mil equip supplied under US aid programs amount to approx $25 million.

While aware of tremendous demands on US stocks and production to meet urgent needs at home and in many foreign countries, officials and public here are wondering whether Formosa being relegated to minor position as regards mil aid in contrast to prospects few months ago. This problem more serious because comparatively few shipments to date consist of items one can [garble]. For example, although fighter aircraft have been at or near top of priority list from the start, and there has been no question of delivering other than World War II planes from moth ball stocks, not a single plane has yet been shipped to Formosa. Moreover, latest report is that first lot earmarked for Chi Govt has been switched to Tito. Chi seem not have heard this report but may shortly and repercussions shld be expected.

Doubtless good reasons exist for above sitn but it emphasizes importance of expediting shipments, particularly of items to impress [Page 5]public and rank and file of armed forces. Old problem of need for mutual confidence between US and Chi Govt requires treatment which arrival of arms wld provide in most effective fashion.