11. Telegram From the Embassy in the Republic of China to the Department of State 1
680. At two and one half hour meeting with President this evening, Ambassador, visitor, FinMin, Ching-kuo and interpreter Shen. After generalities President asked how we viewed the future. We replied three steps: first, prevent French-Communist [China] consummation of their proposed establishment relationships, second, urge other nations not to follow, third, support GRC, and fourth, strengthen and develop backing for GRC in United Nations.
Asked President if he had any proposals. President answered, under US policy of open door and accommodation very little to suggest. If commie regime not overthrown or destroyed PM [PRC?] will swallow up GRC and all others opposed.[Page 20]
After discussion President said first step to study French objectives. Three years ago De Gaulle sent emissary to President who suggested GRC abandon exclusive reliance on USA and make France third partner. Quid pro quo would be exchange of Ambassadors. This first unmistakable indication French motives to expel US and UK, restore French influence all Southeast Asia and to pursue alliance with Chicoms for this purpose. Latest attitudes towards Laos and Cambodia neutralization, and Chicom recognition all verify.
President said US failed to realize the effect on morale of GRC people and forces caused by deteriorating situation in East. State of mind frail and brittle. Danger Chicom will seize and capitalize on this and overcome his country by infiltration and subversion.
President said he must have some way of reassuring his people that he will never agree to two-Chinas situation. So long as there is no two-Chinas there will be hope for return to mainland and high morale in his people and forces. If we had taken steps to recover mainland three years ago, French recognition would not have happened. If we move against the mainland French recognition of us would be of no importance. Once we take this action it will have reassuring effect on morale of people and forces. He said if GRC had been left alone they would have taken such action to restore the mainland three years ago. However, he is well aware of US attitude and has no intention to act at present time.
If we fail to take some action which will have a similar effect on maintenance of morale we will open the gates to infiltration and subversion in which the people and forces would be demoralized and the Chicoms could take over without the use of force and by their well-known tactics of “peaceful liberation”, in which the Seventh Fleet would be helpless.
Knowing US policy well, could not the GRC ask the United States come forth some formula to maintain morale of people and armed forces?
The President said he had some views on this subject. There are three interrelated war zones: South Vietnam, Korea, GRC. Collapse of one will affect the other two. French recognition creates a new situation in South Vietnam where commies will use French influence to sabotage US actions with view to forcing US to pull out. Effect of pull out would be such that US prestige would suffer so much that no reassurances would prevent demoralization in Korea and the GRC.
The President said he would submit three proposals: Plan one. US take the lead to establish a four-nation alliance of US, Korea, South Vietnam and GRC, such that armed forces of one would be at disposal of others for movement to troubled areas.
Plan two. A three-nation alliance of Korea, South Vietnam and GRC with US to give only its blessing, air cover and naval support.[Page 21]
Plan three. The GRC make separate bi-lateral agreements with South Vietnam and Korea with same US support which would permit exchange of forces for mutual support.
Note that in plans two and three US could officially stand aside providing only support. He said plans two or three were a minimum requirement for the maintenance of stability and morale in the area. Frankly he does not see how US can maintain position in South Vietnam without some such alliance which would permit use of GRC troops. There followed detailed discussion three plans including effect on Laos, Burma and Thailand.
Asked about Japan. President said Japan was out. Her constitution would not permit it. Communism and infiltration have gone too far and her country is now divided in two, one under Ikeda and one under communists. US should not overestimate role of Japan in the East.
President said at his last meeting with General Marshall that if US persists in its policy mainland will fall to communists. Same applies today to all Southeast Asia and GRC.
Discussion concluded with assurances of careful US consideration and generalities.
Foregoing is a brief of long discussion much along previously reported lines.
- President appears to think French-Chicom relations an eventual fact.
- President seems deeply concerned over morale of nations in area and particularly people and military forces of GRC.
- Source: Department of State, Central Files, POL 16 CHICOM. Secret; Immediate; Limdis.↩