Memorandum of the Substance of a
Conversation, by William O. Anderson of the
Office of Chinese Affairs
- Mr. Allison, FE, Tak Tser,1 Mr. Perkins and Mr. Anderson, CA, Mr. Weil, SOA,2 Mr. Hussey and Mr. Eckvall, FE/PC.
US has followed closely developments in Tibet and deeply sympathizes with misfortunes of Tibetan people. With reference to most [Page 9] recent secret letter from Dalai Lama to Tak Tser,3 Mr. Allison wished to assure Tak Tser that the US fully understands difficult situation in which Dalai Lama finds himself, is not vexed at Dalai Lama’s decision to adjust temporarily to superior force and wishes to reassure Dalai Lama that US sympathy will continue. He said that US has not changed the position which was stated by his predecessor, Mr. Rusk. Mr. Allison stressed necessity for approaching present difficulties with courage and patience. He pointed out US sincerely sympathetic with Tibetan people for their loss of traditional religious and political freedom. Mr. Allison asked Tak Tser convey these thoughts to his brother, the Dalai Lama. He then asked for suggestions from Tak Tser as regards ways in which the US can be helpful.
Recapitulated compelling necessity that US not allow temporary adjustment of Dalai Lama to Communists to foster misunderstanding or to break present contact with Dalai Lama and Tibetan people through himself (Tak Tser). He assured Mr. Allison that Dalai Lama and the Tibetan people are now clinging to hope that “something” can be done “afterwards”; he stressed that continued friendship of US is critical in continuing that hope.
Assured Tak Tser that US friendship and sympathy will continue. He explained his hope that fall of Tibet to Communists will resemble tactics of Japanese judo experts who fall in order to rise and gain the final victory.
Interjected summary of discussion which had occurred prior to Mr. Allison’s arrival. He stated that Tak Tser felt that US should not invite undue attention to Tibet at this time through possible public statements.
Stated that he was pleased to hear this view since he shared the same opinion.
Mr. Allison then took the opportunity to assure Tak Tser of his willingness to help him personally in any appropriate manner.
Tak Tser:[Page 10]
Thanked Mr. Allison and those present for their friendly reception July 1951, for their continued understanding of Tibetan problems and for their reassurances.
- Brother of the Dalai Lama. The Dalai Lama was the traditional, spiritual, and temporal ruler of Tibet.↩
- T. Eliot Weil, Deputy Director of the Office of South Asian Affairs.↩
- A copy of a portion of the letter, unsigned and undated, attached to a memorandum of Feb. 12 from Perkins to Allison, states that the Chinese had given no open indication that they wanted to suddenly change matters in Tibet or injure the Tibetans. Under the circumstances, since the Chinese were being correct and careful it seemed best to treat them in the same way, but the U.S. “official friends” should not feel vexed because of this, since Tibetan policy remained and would remain the same. It instructed Tak Tser to maintain contact with the Americans and not to allow misunderstanding or lack of confidence to develop between the United States and Tibet. (CA files, lot 59 D 228, folder 7p)↩