No. 88
Memorandum by the Deputy Under Secretary of State (Matthews) to the Secretary of State1

top secret

I believe that you should be aware of the worries of our Joint Chiefs of Staff arising from the delivery of US F–84 Aircraft to the [Page 170] Chinese Nationalist Government as reflected in the attached memorandum. As you know, Chiang Kai-shek will be very unhappy if an armistice is achieved in Korea: he wants to broaden the conflict, not end it. He may well be tempted to undertake some adventures with his F–84’s either with or without a deliberate intention of involving the US in a broader war with Communist China.

I think we should study possible ways to prevent this happening.2

  1. This was a covering memorandum attached to a Mar. 28 memorandum by Charles C. Stelle of the Policy Planning Staff, which summarized the concerns of the Joint Chiefs as expressed at the Mar. 27 State–JCS meeting.
  2. Secretary Dulles replied in a personally drafted memorandum of Apr. 4, filed with the Matthews and Stelle memoranda, which reads:

    “I have your memorandum of March 31 with reference to the worries of the JCS arising from the delivery of US F–84 Aircraft to Formosa. I share these worries. I understand we are attempting to get an agreement with Chiang Kai-shek that he will not use the new equipment we give him against the China mainland without our prior consent. I consider this of the utmost importance, and I believe that the Defense Department should suspend any deliveries of aircraft capable of attacking the mainland until we get the political agreement we want.

    “General Smith mentioned this same topic to me and I expressed to him the same views.”