Logistics and Administration
Behind the successes in north Burma and Manipur State lay successes in the field of logistics. Probably the most important of these was the improvement in the Assam line of communications that followed its passing under Anglo-American military control. There were also major administrative changes in both SOS and theater organization. These may have contributed to victory in the field, though with less obvious directness than did the increased flow of supplies to the front.
The Headquarters Reorganized
In India, responsibility for American supply, maintenance, and construction operations lay with the Commanding General, Services of Supply, save for a few exceptions. In China, the situation was extremely complex and is treated separately below. In CBI after 15 November 1943, General Covell commanded the SOS, while his predecessor, General Wheeler, became Principal Administrative Officer, SEAC.1 General Covell, after surveying his new command in the light of the added resources that would come to CBI as a result of the QUADRANT decisions and give him a freedom of action Wheeler had never enjoyed, suggested certain major changes.
He proposed to reorganize the SOS along lines suggested earlier by the War Department to meet the world-wide problem of an efficient division of responsibilities between theater headquarters and SOS. Theater headquarters approved generally, but preferred to keep Signals, Postal Service, Censorship, Special Services, Military Police, and Malaria Control under its own jurisdiction. (Table 4) Covell at once moved to set up general depots and Engineer and Transportation Services under SOS control. The American port activities at Bombay became an exempted station under the Chief of Transportation, SOS.
General Covell wanted to simplify the geographical setup by merging Advance Section No. 1 (Gaya) with Base Section No. 2 (Calcutta), but hesitated for a while because Calcutta was not working to his satisfaction. Covell also wanted to merge Advance Section No. 2 and Base Section No. 3 into an
STRENGTH OF U.S. ARMY FORCES IN THE CHINA-BURMA-INDIA THEATER:
End of month Total Theater troops Services of Supply Army Air Forces Unassigned Air Transport Command Other January 105,073 21,064 37,353 11,363 35,293 (a) February 116,903 19,835 42,574 11,568 42,926 (a) March 131,323 17,282 47,239 12,202 52,054 2,546 April 154,521 17,543 48,005 12,660 72,997 3,316 May 162,506 17,963 50,355 12,974 77,214 4,000 June 169,111 22,206 51,707 13,480 80,787 931 July 175,546 22,436 51,521 14,102 85,445 2,042 August 186,364 24,245 53,186 16,160 91,586 1,187 September 188,565 23,306 54,315 19,133 90,825 986
a Data not reported.
Source: G-4 Personnel Rpt, quarter ending 30 Sep 44, Hq USAF CBI. OCMH.
Intermediate Section, but being anxious not to interfere with Colonel Pick, who commanded Base Section No. 3, and the road-building effort, he contemplated waiting until Pick was ready to displace forward as the Ledo Road progressed.2
In his own headquarters, Covell set up a chief of administration and a chief of operations, dividing the general and special staff functions between them. His aim was to reduce the number of officers reporting to him. Ultimately, SOS reverted from this organization to the customary general and special staff organization.3
Once the Engineer Construction Service had been set up under Col. Thomas F. Farrell, SOS chief engineer, Engineer Division No. 1 (Base Section No. 1) and Engineer District No. 2 (Advance Section No. 2, Base Section No. 3, exclusive of the Ledo Road), plus Engineer Division No. 3 for the Delhi-Agra area, were organized to take care of all the SOS major engineering projects.4
Possibly feeling that with Covell changing the SOS the time had come for a renovation of the theater's organization, General Hearn on 17 January suggested to General Sultan, Deputy Commander, CBI Theater, that theater headquarters itself should be established in New Delhi, and that Chungking headquarters should be redesignated Headquarters, Forward Echelon. (See Chart 2.)
This would result in an administrative structure more closely related to existing circumstances. One circumstance was that since Stilwell had spent most of his time in India and Burma, it would be appropriate for his principal headquarters to be on that side of the mountains. Another was that because of geographic barriers, most of the American men and material in CBI were in India and Burma, and there of necessity were the bulk, even if not the most complex, of the theater's administrative problems. For Stilwell's brief visits to Chungking, a small headquarters would serve very well.5
For whatever reason, Sultan did not take up Hearn's suggestions with Stilwell until March 1944. Stilwell promptly approved them. The general order which announced the change on 31 March 1944 made plain that there was a certain shift in the center of the theater commander's interest away from China. Theater headquarters at New Delhi was made responsible for "formulating general overall policies and announcing them to the Command, for planning and for the administration of the Theater. . . ." Forward Echelon headquarters was given strictly limited responsibilities:
Liaison and coordination with the Chinese Government on all matters of common interest to the United States Army Forces and the Chinese Government.
Securing and transmitting information from China as required by instructions from Theater Headquarters.
Coordinating and supervising the execution within China Theater of orders, directives, et cetera.
Assisting Theater Headquarters in the preparation of policies, conduct of planning, and establishment of procedures concerning the operation and the administration of United States Army Forces and supporting installations in China.6
When the order was put into effect, word of the change quickly spread through higher Chinese social and governmental circles in Chungking, in the distorted form that the United States Army was withdrawing from China. U.S. Ambassador Clarence E. Gauss was disturbed by the rumor and took the matter up with Hearn. Hearn quickly reassured him, but the fact that reassurance was necessary suggested that liaison between the Embassy and theater headquarters was not what it might have been.7
On surveying his far-flung command, Covell noted that most of his problems came from two factors not under SOS control, the port of Calcutta and the Assam line of communications. Despite the firm conviction of local authority
that the Assam line of communications could not be improved in time to support the projected operations in Burma, Covell had been told by Somervell that the line could and must be substantially improved in a matter of weeks.8 The first problem Covell proposed to attack was that of the line of communications. Solution of this would permit the more rapid flow of supplies to SOS's great engineering projects, and other major projects--the Ledo Road, the pipelines, and the airfields. It would also permit supplies in quantity to reach the British forces on the Manipur and Arakan fronts, whose supply problems had been so severe that in some areas troops had suffered from malnutrition.9
The most immediate problem, and the one with aspects of emergency, was the supply situation in Assam. Because low water on the Brahmaputra River impeded barge operations, and because the meter-gauge lines of the Bengal and Assam Railway were clogged with traffic, stocks in Assam dwindled to a seven-day level. Since it then required sixty-seven days for supplies to go by rail from Calcutta to Assam, it was possible to foresee a situation in which supplies would be below the subsistence level, and in which timely replenishment would be most difficult.10
To forestall this emergency, and to impress upon local authority the grave situation resulting from the inefficient and lethargic operation of the line of communications, requests were made for several complete trainloads of specified items to be made up and shipped to Assam on passenger-train schedules. The Indian rail authorities and the Bengal and Assam Railway agreed, and the emergency passed.11
Negotiations with the British to arrange military control of the port of Calcutta and the line of communications began in a favorable atmosphere, with the British and American military authorities soon finding themselves in accord as to what had to be done to improve matters. Both sides wanted a British port controller with a U.S. assistant to regulate and control port facilities and personnel; definitely assigned dock areas to permit each party to concentrate its resources in its area; a central pool of dockside labor; pooling of lighters.12 Putting a British officer with an American assistant in charge of the entire line of communications seemed desirable to both parties.
The British and American supply authorities who engaged in the preliminary talks secured the assent of CBI and SEAC to their proposal for a port controller and military control of the entire line of communications from
Calcutta north. The lower echelons of the Government of India approved in principle. Then the proposal seemed to encounter heavy weather. While SOS waited for clearing skies, it urged Army Service Forces to have a supremely well qualified man ready to represent the United States as assistant port controller.
By 21 January, Covell was ready to write:
Probably our biggest headache has been with the L of C from Calcutta to Assam which is in British civilian hands. We get all kinds of promises but nothing happens. As a result, for the last two weeks I have been raising hell, but still feel that more drastic action may be necessary.
In December with an approximate equal amount of tonnage allocated to the U.S. and British military, the U.S. Army lost 14,981 tons while the British lost only 723 tons. As a result of our vigorous protests we received the promise that this shortage would be made up in January 1944 and the deficiencies divided equally thereafter. Now we have just learned that the line is congested and we still will not get what was promised to us. The whole situation looks bad to me, and I am having great difficulty in digging out necessary information. I get the impression that the Indian Civil Railway Administration is not much concerned about military traffic. I have been trying for two months to find out reliable total figures over the broad gauge road north of Calcutta, but have been unable to get any true figures on civilian traffic, but I am still trying.13
The drastic action Covell wanted was immediately forthcoming. General Marshall put the matter before the President. Describing the situation on the line of communications as "precarious," and pointing out that three of the ATC airfields in which the President took such close interest were out of gas, Marshall said that Anglo-American military control of the line of communications was the only solution, and asked that Roosevelt write to the Prime Minister.14 The President agreed and, pointing out that the operations of the ATC had been embarrassed by lack of vigorous management on the line of communications and that the results of civilian administration had been disappointing, he urged that Churchill intervene in person to obtain full military control of the line of communications from Calcutta to Assam. In reply, the Prime Minister promised a personal investigation.15
A few weeks later, SOS learned that the War Transport Department of the Government of India had been strongly opposing any move to place the port of Calcutta under military control. The civilian authorities wanted a commissioner who had been prominently identified with the existing regime to have charge of the port. The military, British and American, vigorously opposed the suggestion. They swept the field when the Viceroy, that distinguished soldier, Field Marshal Lord Archibald P. Wavell, decided personally
that there would be a complete change in Calcutta. Perhaps remembering how his own operations in Burma had been hobbled by logistical problems that were called insoluble, the Viceroy, "with the accompaniment of a little desk pounding," made his wishes known. The civilian departments heard and obeyed.16
The agreement on the line of communications that resulted on 6 February provided that an outstanding man should control the entire working of the port, and all agencies concerned with it. Under him would be two deputies, one of them an American. To meet civilian objections, it was agreed the port director would be a civilian, and responsible to the War Transport Department of the Government of India.17
Another agreement, completed the same day, provided a new set of controls for the line of communications. Responsibility was placed on the Calcutta representative of General Headquarters (India), advised by the regional controller of traffic priorities for the Government of India, a representative of the U.S. Army, and representatives of the railway and barge lines.
The mechanism for implementing the above decisions will be as follows:
The total capacity of the L of C will be estimated periodically by D. D. Mov., CALCUTTA [Deputy Director, Movements], in conjunction with the Railway and Steamship Companies concerned, and in consultation with the Officer Commanding U.S. Railway Troops. This estimate of capacity will be telegraphed immediately to PAO (I) [Principal Administrative Officer, India], and PAO (SEAC).
Proposals as to the allotment on each sector and in both directions of this capacity as between military, essential civil, and railway construction and maintenance requirements, and the routing of three tonnages, will be prepared in CALCUTTA . . . by . . .
D. D. Mov., CALCUTTA
Representative of Commanding General, SOS
Representative of Army Group, S.E.A.
Regional Controller of Priorities, CALCUTTA NORTH
Representative of B & A Railway,
and submitted to DELHI where they will be agreed or amended by representatives of GHQ (I), War Transport Department, H.Q., S.A.C., S.E.A.C. and the Railway Board, the approved constitutional procedure being followed in the event of failure to agree.
Responsibility for implementing the agreed allotments of (b) will be placed on a panel constituted as in (d) below. . . .
The panel . . . will consist of D. D. Mov., CALCUTTA, who will be chairman . . .
Regional Controller of Priorities, CALCUTTA NORTH
Commanding General, S.O.S.
B & A Railway
Rivers Steam Navigation Co.
India General Navigation Co.
Movement Control (Railway)
Movement Control (IWT [Inland Water Transport])18
THE KING GEORGE DOCK AREA in Calcutta, India.
Clearing the Port of Calcutta
Clearing the congested port of Calcutta was unwittingly facilitated by the Japanese. Submarine activity in the Bay of Bengal during December 1943 forced the convoying of ships from Ceylon to the mouth of the Hooghly River, upon whose banks Calcutta is built. This threat slowed the arrival of cargo and permitted the dispatch of much that had accumulated on the docks and in the warehouses. For the Americans, the burden fell on two port companies of Negro soldiers, the 540th and the 541st (Transportation Corps). For months these men had worked like Trojans, sometimes right around the clock.19
During the winter months, British consent to SOS control of part of the great King George Docks was obtained. In the week of 29 December 1943-5 January 1944, seven companies (the 497th and 508th Port Battalions, TC) of veteran longshoremen with complete equipment for unloading ships arrived. In the month of January, the ten U.S. port companies then on duty unloaded 98,859 long tons, as against 42,325 long tons the month before.20
In addition to the tripling of the U.S. force at hand and the leasing of the King George Docks, other steps contributed greatly to faster movement of cargo through the port.
The procurement of large floating cranes and other modern dock equipment.
The diversion of barge line equipment to augment port facilities.
The partial replacement of native labor with troops having stevedoring experience, the training of other units along these lines and the pooling of native labor.
The establishment of a 24-hour work day with shifts to maintain it.
The more efficient use of transportation facilities in removing cargo from the docks.
The improvement in the Assam LOC.21
On 15 March 1944 the King George Docks were completely cleared for the first time. During the next thirty days the dock workers handled 97,000 measurement tons of freight. By 20 April, General Covell could report: ". . . no special concern need be given to the capacity of the port of Calcutta, nor has any indication been given at this time that it has reached its saturation point."22 The port director, Mr. F. A. Pope, arrived 22 May 1944.
On 23 January Brig. Gen. Gilbert X. Cheves was assigned to the command of Base Section No. 2, succeeding Brig. Gen. John A. Warden, who went to the west coast of India to take command of Base Section No. 1 (Karachi). General Cheves found a problem in relations between U.S. troops and the people of Bengal. SOS personnel had not been well disciplined. The port of Karachi under General Warden continued to work with smooth efficiency. Its rate of discharging cargo never ranked below fifth among 110 ports in which the U.S. Army operated.23
The steady flow of reinforcements to CBI after the QUADRANT Conference, August 1943, made it desirable to bring troops in through Bombay. For one reason, some of the transports were too large to use the Karachi facilities, and for another, the rail connections out of Bombay were better. In 1943, 118,983 U.S. troops passed through Bombay, some of them intended for the Persian Gulf Command.
Local authorities at Bombay were most co-operative in finding office space, hospital accommodations, and staging area quarters for American use. As a rule, troops remained on board their transports until the troop trains appeared. If it was necessary for the ship to leave before the trains came, then the staging areas were used. The principal drawback to this arrangement lay in the fact that British rations as prepared by Indian kitchen personnel were not satisfactory to American troops. Some relief was found in supplying the difference between the two rations, close supervision of the kitchens, and the partial use of
American mess personnel. An American staging area, initiated in February 1944, received its first troops on 24 July.24
Restricting factors that affected tonnage moving up over the railway lines of the Bengal and Assam Railway lay both in the physical structure of the line itself and in the methods of those who operated it. The railway was partly of broad gauge and partly of meter. The broad-gauge line seemed capable of hauling more traffic than the meter-gauge line could receive; bottlenecks lay in the transshipment points, where coolies lethargically carried stores from broad-to meter-gauge cars and vice versa. There was no bridge across the Brahmaputra River, and the ferry between Amingaon and Pandu was an obstruction. Together with the stretch of steep-gradient track between Lumding and Manipur Road (near Dimapur), the ferry was regarded as a major obstacle. (See Map 1.)
Remedial construction was under way. The double-tracking of the Lumding-Manipur Road section had been begun by Indian authority but the pace of the work drew blistering comment from American railwaymen. Between July 1943 and April 1944, 3.25 miles had been completed.25 The Government of India had made plans for a bridge across the Brahmaputra River, for double-tracking the main line, and for new yard facilities. However, such projects would require years to complete and would themselves be a major burden on the line of communications.26
Signal communication along the Bengal and Assam Railway was lacking. Daily traffic figures were therefore not available, and trains would be "lost" four or five hours at a time.27
Operating methods seemed strange to American railwaymen. The railway authorities of the Government of India thought it possible to analyze the existing facilities of a line of communications and from them determine its capacity. This estimate in turn would be set as a target. When the target had been reached, the mission would be regarded as accomplished. Moreover, the operating echelons on occasion took the target figure as literally indicating the limit of the line and refused to go beyond it.28 A major element in attempts to set target figures was the local belief that railway management had to keep the number of loaded cars moving up to the front equal to the number of empties returning from the front. The American approach, on the other hand, concentrated
on moving loaded cars to the front and accepted the resulting lack of balance until the returning empties corrected the situation. To American railroadmen, the quantity movement of freight was most important; to Indian railroadmen, the careful balancing of loaded and empty freight cars to avoid even a temporary drain on the resources of other lines.29
Military Railway Service Begins Its Work
Anticipating a share of responsibility in operating the Assam line of communications, SOS established the Military Railway Service on 25 December 1943, under the Chief of Transportation, SOS, CBI. The main body of American railway troops whose assignment to India had been agreed to in the fall of 1943, arrived in India on 11 January 1944.30 Advance elements of the railway troops had meanwhile engaged in reconnoitering the sections of line that the U.S. was to assist in operating. Officials and officers of the Government of India and of SOS framed a series of agreements under which the American railwaymen would function.
The basic principle of the agreements was that American personnel to the number of about 4,600 would be superimposed on the existing railway staff. No employees of the Bengal and Assam Railway were to lose their jobs. The Military Railway Service took over operation of 804 miles of main and branch lines. At Parbatipur, the Military Railway Service transferred its traffic between the broad- and meter-gauge lines and operated the bottleneck ferry at Pandu. Military Railway Service did not affect commercial traffic which continued to be completely under the Bengal and Assam Railway.
On the administrative side, the Military Railway Service and the Bengal and Assam Railway were each responsible for discipline of their own personnel. The railway management undertook to supply all expendable railway stores. The current construction program continued. The Military Railway Service agreed to ask for new construction through the existing railway channels.31
Headquarters of the Military Railway Service was set up at Gauhati, a central location and close to the two principal bottlenecks, the Pandu ferry and the Lumding-Manipur section of track. Headquarters personnel were members of the 705th Railway Grand Division. Colonel Appleton, formerly general manager of the New York Zone of the Pennsylvania Railroad, commanded. The operating battalions deployed, and the Americans took up their work at 0001, 1 March 1944, on the eve of the Japanese invasion of India.32 The relation between the two events was a coincidence, but it is interesting to speculate on what might have happened had the Assam line of communications been unable to meet the responsibilities soon thrust on it.
Changes in Operating Procedure
Colonel Appleton at once moved to break the bottleneck at the Pandu ferry. Work was begun immediately by using two locomotives simultaneously: one engine moved cars off the barge, and another, already coupled up, was ready to move cars on the barge. Prior to taking over, the Military Railway Service had agreed to a daily target of 305 cars eastward over the ferry; a daily average of 327 cars was achieved. A movement of 350 cars plus construction trains was projected for April. By 21 April the daily average was up to 413 cars eastward, and still rising, as shown by the 540 cars moved on that day.33
For Parbatipur, the transshipment point from broad to meter gauge, Appleton directed that the target figures be dispensed with, that cars be loaded as fast as they were available. Appleton's directive plus the improvement of the ferry operations meant that an increased number of loaded cars began moving east. An increase in the operating efficiency of the railroad was called for. Changes in operating procedure provided this. Train lengths were doubled, permitting more efficient use of motive power. Hundred-car trains were not uncommon. Train speeds were increased. U.S. locomotive engineers took the throttle on difficult stretches (and eased the long "drags" over the high iron on the approaches to the Naga Hills).
The Indian block system was retained, in conformance with the policy of keeping Indian operating rules. The method was "not basically inefficient," but slow, lackadaisical operation made it appear so. "Reports of numerous inspections of the lines invariably included reference to stops at all stations whether necessary or not, halts of much longer than necessary duration to obtain clearance, inefficient methods of dispatching. . . . The placing of U.S. Army Station Masters at many of the dispatching points along the lines and close supervision of all personnel resulted in considerable speed-up of traffic movement."34
With the steadily increasing forward movement of freight, the number of cars from other lines on the Bengal and Assam Railway inevitably increased. On 1 March the debit balance had been 9,600 cars. As Appleton disregarded all short-term considerations of balancing the movements of loaded and empty cars, the debit balance rose steadily. This attracted local criticism, but Appleton stood firm, for he expected that the cycle of return movement of empties would soon appear and stabilize the situation at a much higher level of traffic. In late April, the debit balance was 12,000 cars.
By the end of March it was apparent that the problems of meter-gauge operations were well on the way to solution. Figures furnished by British Movements Control revealed that military traffic from Pandu and Gauhati for
RAILROAD OPERATIONS IN INDIA. The loading of cars on the Pandu ferry shown, above. A loaded train moves toward the front, below.
March increased 44.6 percent over that for February, and that tonnages delivered to the forward areas at Manipur Road, Ledo, and Chabua were up 43 percent, or 34,568 tons. The meter-gauge lines now handled more traffic than the broad-gauge line could bring forward from Calcutta.
The broad-gauge line from Calcutta north began as multiple track, reducing to double track for a distance of 124 miles, and finally to a single track for the last 108 miles to Parbatipur. Because of inefficient and indifferent operation, the line was badly congested, and loading of cars actually had to be suspended.
Trains have been set off on sidings the length of the line definitely reducing the capacity by the lack of passing sidings. Crews have drawn the fires on engines, have left originating terminals after expiration of sufficient time to have reached final destination. Many reasons have been given for such a condition, such as lack of communication, insufficient motive power, and lack of tractive effort of power in service. It is hardly conceivable that a Broad Gauge system would be incapable of moving tonnage in greater volume that could be absorbed by a connecting Meter Gauge Railroad. But such has been the case. With proper supervision and operation the picture can be reversed.35
Their attention directed to this state of affairs, the British took remedial action. A director general of railways took over the Calcutta area, and Army officers with experience in railroading were stationed along the line. A pool of 100 broad-gauge freight cars was provided at Parbatipur to handle sudden increases in freight from the meter-gauge lines.36
Operations Under Military Railway Service
Because of the delay inherent in administrative communications the sharp increases in meter-gauge traffic under the Military Railway Service were not known in Washington until April 1944. General Arnold followed the situation closely. The critical supply situation in Assam, alluded to earlier in this chapter, moved him to tell Somervell on 17 March: "Unless the improvement of the rail and river lines, and the construction of the Calcutta-Assam pipe line, is given a more determined push, I shall be unable to furnish the service demanded [from the ATC]."37 Unaware that Covell was about to report a 34-percent jump in rail traffic for early March, Somervell at once sent him the gist of Arnold's strong memorandum. Meanwhile, in Delhi, General Sultan on 21 March was taking a pessimistic view of the line-of-communications problem. Delhi being a great deal closer to the scene, Sultan knew of Appleton's progress, but even so he thought that "no matter how much they do the communications will never be stretched to the point where they carry all the stuff that the British and Americans want to send to Assam."38
The concern felt by Arnold and Somervell was speedily dissipated when Covell's and Appleton's reports reached their superiors. The messages came very close to crossing in passage. After March 1944, the Assam line of communications ceased to be a major problem; Arnold's memorandum was the last of its kind.
From 1 March to 25 April 1944, or during the time when the Japanese were on the flood tide of their drive into India, the Military Railway Service moved all traffic offered to it. No restrictions on traffic were requested of higher authority. Even more indicative of the swift change in the condition of the line of communications was the fact that between 23 March and 18 April sixty-four troop trains were moved in addition to scheduled traffic. "In fact during the month of April . . . the average daily tonnage over the Assam LOC exceeded the British estimate of 4,400 long tons for October 1944 made by the Director of Transportation, GHQ (I). . . ."39
The War Department relieved Colonel Appleton on 27 April 1944 to send him to another theater. On the occasion of his departure, General Lindsell, Principal Administrative Officer (India), after stating that all traffic offered to Military Railway Service had been accepted, added: "In addition to these admirable technical results Col. Appleton gave us a fine example of inter-allied cooperation and I know that all my officers who were privileged to work with him will be full of regret at his leaving India." Lt. Col. Stanley Bray of the Railway Grand Division acted as director until Colonel Yount took command on 17 May 1944. There was one ugly little note. Covell reported that discipline among the railwaymen was not good, that there had been considerable stealing of military supplies.40
When tonnage bids were submitted by British and American authorities asking for priorities on rail cargo space for the month of June, they were accepted in full, just as March had marked the meter-gauge line's ability to receive all the cargo brought to it. "In July allocations for military traffic exceeded the target figure established at the Quebec Conference of 220,000 short tons per month for 1 January 1946." Indeed, the Military Railway Service soon found the meter-gauge line had surplus capacity.
During August, an all time high of 16,439 wagons [freight cars] was handled eastward over the Amingaon-Pandu Ferry which amounted to a daily average of 530 wagons. This figure when compared with the average of 327 wagons per day handled in March gives an idea of the steady increase in capacity achieved as operating experience was obtained. Although more American supplies were moved forward to Assam during this month than ever before, a part of the capacity previously allotted to the U.S. Army was turned back for civilian use.
Military dispatches over the Assam LOC had grown to 6,537 long tons per day in September although the total available capacity was not being used. The new wagon ferry
between Amingaon and Pandu and completion of many construction projects on the system began to be reflected in increased capacity sufficient to provide an excess of capacity often percent over actual requirements. In October the capacity for movement of military stores (exclusive of POL, personnel, and vehicles) exceeded demands by approximately 20 percent.41
Physical Improvements on the Railway
In the fall of 1943, floods had done so much damage to the Bengal and Assam right of way as to cause serious concern in General Headquarters (India).42 If the monsoon rains of 1944 did the same, Appleton's reforms might literally be washed away, and the Burma campaign endangered by supply failures. Thirty-odd streams cross the right of way and quickly flood during the monsoon. With the monsoon approaching, flood-control measures were taken in hand. Bridges were reinforced with heavy stone riprap to shield their piers from the swirling currents.
One of the most sensitive points was the Mora Manas River bridge. It was necessary both to strengthen the bridge and to keep the river from flooding the right of way. Lt. Col. George Branch, commanding the 725th Railway Operating Battalion, decided to cut a diversion channel from the Mora Manas to the near-by Bulkhadhoba River. The 725th Battalion completed the half-mile-long channel in June 1944. Thanks to the several measures of flood control, for the first time in thirty years the monsoon did not interrupt rail traffic. In October, Brig. Gen. Paul F. Yount could report that Colonel Branch's channel had kept flood waters from doing any more than cover the tracks for a brief period of time, without stopping traffic.
The right of way itself was improved and its capacity increased. New ballast was laid, kinky rails straightened, and low points lifted. In general, efforts were consistently made to bring the right of way nearer to American standards. By the end of 1944, the Government of India had double-tracked about 20 percent of the line. Of more immediate importance was the construction of a number of passing sidings and the enlargement of the main railway yards. Because it was doubtful that the double-tracking could be completed in time to benefit current operations, General Yount finally persuaded the Government of India to concentrate its attention on improving the passing sidings to speed two-way traffic. Though the burden of construction fell on local authority and resources, in many cases it was possible to furnish American earth-moving equipment to aid the long files of Indian laborers patiently carrying baskets of soil on their heads.
The problem of rolling stock was attacked by improved maintenance and the acquisition of U.S. equipment under lend-lease. On beginning its work, Military Railway Service found the rolling stock badly run down, and the
758th Railway Shop Battalion was faced with a problem. The Bengal and Assam Railway, under the operating agreement, was responsible for providing necessary spare parts and repair facilities. Unfortunately, it had few parts at hand. In practice, the Military Railway Service had to requisition matériel through the Transportation Service. Until spares could arrive from the United States, there was no alternative to cannibalizing engines and cars. Despite these several handicaps, from 1 March to the end of 1944, the 758th Battalion repaired 47,044 cars.
A great portion of the Bengal and Assam's motive power was of U.S. origin via lend-lease. When the Military Railway Service took over operations on 1 March 1944, 167 of the 396 locomotives on hand were War Department engines. By 30 September, the number was 203, over half the total on hand, and by the end of the year the figure was 238. With the engines came a steady flow of American meter-gauge freight cars, adding up to some 6,500 by the end of 1944. These were the commodious American boxcars, with twice the capacity of the little four-wheel cars used by the Bengal and Assam. Military Railway Service estimated that the capacity of the lend-lease rolling stock was, by the end of 1944, equal to that of the railway's own equipment.
Operation of the lend-lease boxcars was made more difficult because Indian shops, in erecting them, omitted brakes and vacuum hose. This often caused collisions and the breaking-in-two of trains. By the end of 1944 the shopmen were able to equip a sizable number with proper brakes. The end of this problem was foreshadowed when, in October, the Railway Board of the Government of India promised that all cars assembled by them would be properly equipped, and that they would provide 600 brake sets per month for cars already in operation.
A British Appraisal
The quick and dramatic improvement in the operations of the Bengal and Assam Railway was perhaps the outstanding example of successful application of American technology to the logistical problems of war in the China, Burma and India Theater. An editorial in the Indian press stated:
THE AMERICAN WAY
Railway communications in Eastern Bengal and Assam were never good. Difficulties of terrain and climate had been taken as excuse for sloth. Defence needs were ignored in India's north-east corner in odd contrast to its north-west one where there was lavish construction of strategic railways and roads. When the Japanese threat developed in 1942, there ensued sudden sharp deterioration in the efficiency of railways near the Eastern Frontier, particularly in Assam, owing to the wholly unwonted and unforeseen increase of traffic. External pressure and internal administrative stress on the communications system coming about just at the time when the need for quick movement was imperative were moreover soon aggravated by India's political disorders. The situation became insufferable; journeys took days; even deaths
en route were not infrequent. This state of affairs prevailed in the latter part of 1942 and continued, little modified, throughout 1943; drastic action was obviously necessary.
This came at last in the beginning of 1944 when sections of the Bengal and Assam Railway were turned over to American operational control. U.S. enterprise and hustle have succeeded in this instance, most remarkable results being achieved which (according to common report) British and Indian experts on the basis of much local experience had stoutly predicted were impossible. What has been done must be most gratifying to Maj-Gen Covell . . . completion of a job of extreme difficulty which must be regarded as a major contribution to the Allied victories in Burma. Both the Government of India's Railway Member and the Manager of the B and A Railway have praised the work of the U.S. railway battalions, first under Col. J. A. Appleton and later under Brig-Gen P. F. Yount. Thousands of Indian railwaymen cooperated with the Americans and though difficulties were inevitable, they were surmounted through a "remarkable degree of tolerance on both sides."
As the Railway Member said recently, the Americans "got their coats and shirts off to the task" in Assam. That is their way and perhaps was the only way to have completed at a critical juncture what the official statement . . . describes as the lifeline for the troops in Burma.43
In his final report to the CCS, Mountbatten contented himself with remarking: "The immediate increase in deliveries to Assam over the railway was not as great as Lieut.-General Somervell had hoped, but during the latter part of 1944 and the early part of 1945 the lift rose very rapidly; and the introduction of military control was unquestionably justified by the results obtained."44
Attempts To Use Indian River Transport
Since the Assam line of communications lay in the valley of the Brahmaputra, one of the world's great rivers, the use of inland water transport to supplement the rail line seemed an obvious approach, and a great deal of effort was expended in trying to make the river a more efficient artery. Barge lines under civilian operation were bringing up small quantities of supplies to the various river ports--many of them little more than landing stages. After the TRIDENT Conference (Washington, May 1943) decided not to attempt to retake all Burma and reopen the line of communications from Rangoon north, SOS planners suggested that barge equipment originally intended for use on the Irrawaddy River be placed on the Brahmaputra. The project was approved at the QUADRANT Conference, Quebec, August 1943, with the target date of 1 April 1944.
Over the six months' period September 1943-March 1944, experiments in the United States and in the CBI Theater revealed that the tugs and barges procured were not very well suited to their task. The question became one of using them to best advantage somewhere in India. Meanwhile, the sharp improvement in operation of the meter-gauge rail lines made the issue less urgent.
By July 1944 Transportation Service concluded that the equipment and men at hand, many of the latter highly skilled in barge-line operation, could best be used for lighter and towing service around Calcutta, ferry and terminal service on the Brahmaputra River, and moving POL (gasoline [petrol], oils, and lubricants) and dry stores to airfields in East Bengal.45 Initial hauling of POL by barge from Goalundo, on the broad-gauge rail line, and Dacca in East Bengal was begun on 17 August. Hauling of dry stores from Khulna to Dacca began soon after. In September, the peak month of fall 1944, 1,934 long tons of stores and 601,474 imperial gallons of POL were carried from Goalundo to Dacca.
The civil barge lines on the Brahmaputra River came under the jurisdiction of the Assam Line of Communications Panel, which integrated their operation with that of the railway. The principle followed was that of cutting long barge hauls from Calcutta to Assam to the minimum, using instead rail from Calcutta to Sirajganj Ghat and Dhubri, ports on the Brahmaputra, thus cutting down the barges' turnaround time.46
Pipelines in India
There were two major U.S. pipeline projects in India, one supplying the B-29 bases around Calcutta,47 and one from the Budge-Budge oil terminal of the Burma-Shell Co., about sixteen miles below Calcutta, to a tank farm at Tinsukia in upper Assam. The latter line was an integral part of the Assam line of communications.
For construction purposes, the line was divided into four areas, each under an area engineer. The American portion of the construction work was done by the 700th, 708th, 709th, 776th, and 777th Engineer Petroleum Distribution Companies. Col. William C. Kinsolving was in charge of the project for Engineer Construction District No. 12. Because of the problems of labor recruiting, land use, housing, and local procurement, a British garrison engineer and five assistant garrison engineers were attached, and the project, as usual in India, became a combined one. Approximately Rupees 4,000,000 worth of work was contributed by agencies of the Government of India.
Following a period of reconnaissance and design on the 752-mile line, work began 25 February 1944. Because the Assam line of communications was badly congested at this time, deliveries of material were slow, and the work did not really get under way until April. The material itself was a headache to the construction crews. Pipe came in tons before couplings were delivered. Inexperienced port and freight personnel lost and damaged a good many pieces of equipment. Very few standard spare parts ever arrived. To the pipe-laying crews,
sweating away in the Indian heat, it must have seemed as though a malign goblin was deliberately hiding the essential small parts, fittings, and screws without which the imposing devices of modern industry will not work. But the work went on, with the Indian artisan, ingenuity, and field expedients doing their best to fill the gaps.
The first 300 miles of pipe north from Budge-Budge were on the Bengal and Assam's track just outside the rails. The water table in that area is so high during the monsoon that ditches were not practicable, and the local road net was so poor that there was no other means of access. The staff of the railway could not have been more co-operative. The Indian railwaymen scheduled work trains so carefully that pipe was always in place along the tracks before the pipeline crews arrived. Rivers were crossed by pulling prewelded sections of line across them by tractor.
The fragility of the invasion-weight pipe used and the heavily populated countryside offered serious problems of construction and operation. The Westerner, and particularly the American, really does not comprehend the phrase heavily populated until he has seen the Indian countryside, with village following on village, sometimes only a mile or two apart, and the space between filled with little plots like suburban gardens. Where the safety of the villagers seemed to require it, the pipe was buried, and because of the dense population this meant burying long stretches of pipe. This in turn created two more problems: finding the labor to bury the pipe, and the rapid corrosion of the thin-walled pipe once laid.
Coolies were hired by the garrison engineer and his assistants through piecework contractors. The local contractors had never been faced with a job of such magnitude, particularly since it involved keeping a labor force moving forward. The laborers could not go far from their villages, for no surplus of food or housing would be available in the countryside. And the contractors' personnel policies, if they can be so dignified, were blends of inefficiency and time-honored skulduggery. When the Calcutta area was left behind, it proved best to put the laborers on the payroll directly, give them an identity token, pay them daily, and supervise them with American noncommissioned officers. Construction of three pipeline plows by District No. 12 shops proved very successful. They equaled 1,000 laborers for digging ditches in which to lay the pipe.
The thin-walled pipe was not only an operating problem but a hazard. Experience with 160 miles of it in West Bengal, in the B-29 supply system, suggested that the loss would rise steadily as the pipe remained in the ground and that it would not require many months to reach significant proportions in a long line. Hundred-octane gasoline seeping ever farther through the soil of a populated area is a deadly hazard.
On 26 June 1944 a leak was found where the pipe crossed the Hooghly River near the village of Ulabaria. The crews began to repair the line, following normal operating and safety procedures. Water was pumped into the line
and all gasoline seemed to be clear. The odor of gasoline in the vicinity did not seem heavy; moreover, a soldier was posted in the street warning the villagers not to start any open fire. Everything appeared in order and the crew prepared to test the pipe with compressed air for leakage. As the sergeant in charge walked toward the open end of the pipe, there was a vapor explosion. There was no subsequent vapor fire but the villagers' thatched huts promptly ignited. In the resulting holocaust, seventy-one people were burned to death, and about twenty buildings destroyed. After the Ulabaria tragedy it became customary to use standard-weight pipe in dangerous areas.
The pipeline was complete from Budge-Budge to Tinsukia on 8 July and testing began on the 13th. The entire system was in operation on 14 August, though, as noted above, sections of it began operating earlier to relieve pressure on the railway.
The same month, August, that saw completion of the first pipeline from the Calcutta area to upper Assam also saw War Department approval of a 6-inch line from the port of Chittagong to Tinsukia. Such a route would be shorter, have no major river crossings, be flood-free during the monsoon, and give the advantage of dispersal and extra facilities. Its capacity was estimated at 36,000 long tons a month. Construction began on 16 October with emphasis on completing the section from Chittagong to Tilagaon to connect with the East Bengal fields of the ATC.48
Supply Problems in India
After General Covell's reorganization of SOS, and until late 1944, there were no major structural changes in the SOS. A War Department change in the authorized supply levels was successfully complied with, thanks to the improved Assam line of communications, and the supply of reciprocal aid from India gave signs of approaching the maximum. It was a period of steady improvement in efficiency of operations, in stocks on hand, and in ability to carry out the SOS mission.
General Covell's reorganization plan called for Advance Section No. 2 to become an Intermediate Section and expand northward to take over the Ledo base. Covell had postponed implementing this project lest it interfere with General Pick's building the Ledo Road. When in May 1944 the issue was raised anew, Pick opposed the change on the ground that his organization, fully extended in support of current operations, would suffer if such a major amputation was performed on it. His views prevailed, and though an order directing the change was published 23 August 1944, shortly after Myitkyina fell, the actual changes were not made until considerably later.49
In January 1944 the War Department took on itself the responsibility of determining supply levels. Immediately thereafter, it cut the maximum level of supply in CBI for Class I and Class III supplies from 180 to 120 days, of which 30 were operating and 90, reserve. Theater headquarters protested that the 30-day operating level was insufficient because of the length of time it took to move supplies from Calcutta to the front. Fortunately, the sharp increase in deliveries over the Assam line of communications that ensued in March 1944 relieved concern on this point. Indeed, such was the over-all improvement in the theater supply situation that in compliance with a War Department directive ordering periodic review of supply levels to reduce them where possible, SOS recommended that authorized levels for Class II and IV supplies also be cut from 180 to 120 days.50
New Agreements on Local Procurement
Because the U.S. forces in CBI had been directed to make the maximum use of local resources, and because the Government of India was most co-operative in supplying them as reciprocal aid, local procurement was a major interest of SOS.
In the summer of 1942, SOS, CBI Theater headquarters, and the Government of India reached an agreement which worked so well that in fall 1942, General Wheeler, then commanding SOS, could report to General Stilwell that the U.S. forces were living off the land.51
A group of new agreements with the Government of India in spring 1943, following the visit of a lend-lease mission from the United States, extended and speeded the reciprocal aid process. The sometimes-debated question of the scale on which India would issue supplies to U.S. troops was settled in June 1943 by India's agreement to issue supplies without reference to the British scale. The SOS agreed not to ask for supplies in excess of the normal American scale, and further, that save in emergency it would not requisition imported stores from India, except for oil products, which had a special status. India speeded the process of supply by permitting SOS to requisition rations from the nearest Royal Indian Army Service Corps depots. SOS in turn promised not to buy imported stores on the open market in excess of Rupees 10,000 without permission from the Government of India. To keep this latter agreement by SOS from hampering the American supply position in emergencies, the Government of India soon after agreed that the SOS could apply to the nearest Indian Army depot for imported or domestic stores other than foodstuffs in amounts up to Rupees 10,000.52
In February 1944, the process of liberalization reached a probable limit when U.S. forces in the field were enabled to requisition certain items common to
Indian and U.S. Army use directly from the local Indian Army depot without securing approval from SOS headquarters or General Headquarters (India). In effect, this gave U.S. organizations the same status as that of neighboring Indian units in drawing common-user items from Indian stocks.
During 1943 and 1944, reciprocal aid from India steadily increased until it finally began to seem that the upper limit was being approached even though various U.S. agencies took steps to improve Indian productivity. Indians were trained in the United States. Teams of U.S. technicians toured Indian factories to teach improved production methods. Raw materials, such as steel and alkaline-reclaimed rubber, and capital goods, such as rolling stock and mining equipment, were furnished where advisable and possible.53
Indian civilian employees, ranging from Anglo-Indian secretaries in headquarters installations to Indian technicians to unskilled Indian laborers were an essential and invaluable reinforcement. Since the American effort in India was primarily air and supply, employment of these Indian civilians meant that fewer American troops were needed. These Indians were paid by the Government of India under reciprocal aid. By 30 September 1944, the SOS and AAF's Air Service Command employed approximately 79,000, of whom 21,000 were skilled and semiskilled, and 58,000 unskilled. Many of the skilled people learned their trades while working for the U.S. Army. Training and supervising them were added to the responsibilities of many U.S. Army enlisted men, so that the advantage was not without its indirect cost.54
In 1944, SOS could only estimate the dollar value of the reciprocal aid extended by the Government of India. That government claimed its administrative resources would not permit furnishing an appraisal of the dollar value of reciprocal aid. The SOS therefore was obliged to set up its own system for appraising reciprocal aid received so that it might have data both for current operational purposes and for the anticipated postwar settlement of accounts.55 The SOS estimates for the period from January 1943 through October 1944 are given below:
1943 1944 January-February $5,710,370 $35,662,824 March-April 6,413,377 46,042,316 May-June 9,049,295 52,482,591 July-August 13,113,736 56,203,485 September-October 16,881,941 57,050,847 November-December 27,469,293 --------------
In February 1944, the Finance Member of the Government of India, by an address to India's Legislative Assembly, gave clear warning that the Government of India was about to combat inflationary tendencies in the Indian
economy by cutting back military production. He hinted that if India was to furnish more support to operations in Southeast Asia, then her commitments for support of Middle Eastern and Mediterranean operations would have to be reduced. At the same time, official circles of the Government of India commented that 1944 supply would not be greatly affected by the new policy but that major cutbacks in military production could be expected in 1945.
Soon after, production of woolen cloth for military use stopped. All output was reserved for civilians, and by the end of 1944 many types of cotton goods were reserved for civilian use. Trying though this may have been for American supply personnel, nevertheless, the Indian point of view should not be overlooked. The cash income of that statistical fable, the average Indian, was about $20.00 a year (Rupees 60). From that sum, he had to buy such cash items as cooking oil and salt, and supplement his meager diet. Very likely the peasant family wardrobe included one set of garments per person. Thus, there was no slack to be taken up, and the peasant counted on being able to replace clothing as it wore out. If no cloth was available at the bazaar, the little spinning wheels of the villages could hardly make up the difference. Sullenness in the villages, whence comes the Indian soldier, could soon imperil the whole Indian war effort, and the Government of India had to realize that there was a point beyond which the patient farmer could not be overloaded.
In the light of the warnings referred to above, SOS could not have been surprised to learn in July that 183 of 336 items previously available at Indian depots on blanket sanction would be unavailable in differing percentages, some as high as 100 percent. Similarly, the Government of India estimated that 246 items of 648 would be unavailable in 1945. Beginning 1 August 1944, the quantity of dairy products, meat, sugar, and fish that India would supply was cut back to the May 1944 level. Indian authorities said that they wanted to cancel supplying steam-laundry facilities, office supplies, and printing. General Covell personally interceded to have that action rescinded.56
In addition to applying pressure at the policy level, the Government of India took unilateral action to cut the flow of reciprocal aid. General Covell commented:
Commitments in India had come to have none of the firm connotation associated with them in America. Promised delivery dates were ignored or quantities reduced without advance notice, often months after promised delivery dates. Many commitments for supplies were made but actual delivery was frequently late, often in quantities less than required, making it difficult for SOS to plan future supply. Frequently emergency shipments from the United States became necessary because last minute cancellations by Indian agencies would not permit requisitions on the U.S. to be processed normally.57
The Indian attitude affected Sino-American relations because the United States understood that His Majesty's Government in the United Kingdom would
supply the Chinese forces based on India through British lend-lease to China. But, in "many cases" this had not been done, and approximately 33 percent of the total value of supplies to the Chinese Army in India came from U.S. sources, $9,000,000.00 worth.58
The situation was complex. Neither SOS nor the Government of India desired to go beyond a certain point, and so there was room for compromise, adjustment, and negotiation. SOS took full advantage of the diplomatic opportunities open to it, and succeeded in actually raising the dollar volume of reciprocal aid as between the May-June 1944 period and that of September-October. Examination of physical volume suggests that oil products increased, subsistence held steady, and textile items dropped. Despite the present success of its diplomacy, SOS felt concerned about the future.59
Difficulties in the movement of supplies to the forward areas in Assam, further complicated by inadequate warehouse space, made stock control in Assam very difficult in 1942 and 1943. Since the base depots automatically forwarded balanced stocks, the lack of proper stock control ultimately led to an actual overstocking of certain items, particularly quartermaster supplies. Because the quartermaster had to provide food for an extraordinary collection of races and sects (Hindu, Moslem, Burmese, Chinese, hillman, British, and American) each with different dietary requirements or regulations, it was necessary to keep an extremely varied inventory, with all the administrative problems involved. Beginning in September 1943, a stock record system for quartermaster items was set up. It did not work well because the warehouses were not well organized.
The War Department in September 1943 instituted a system of automatic supply based on reports from overseas theaters, which in turn had to be an accurate reflection of stocks on hand. This required changes in CBI procedures. Stock control and inventory teams were sent out from the United States to place the system in operation, a task of several months.
Another problem was that of securing an adequate supply of spare parts. War Department procedure required spare parts to be requisitioned on a formula basis. Unfortunately, the formula did not fit operating conditions in Assam and Burma. Abrasive dust in the air wore down engine parts. Fungus and rust attacked delicate instruments. Not until requisitions could be based on usage factors as determined by actual experience in the theater, was it possible to obtain adequate stocks of spare parts.60
For SOS, Chinese lend-lease was a housekeeping problem, for its responsibilities were executive, not policy-making. Housekeeping in the most literal sense was badly needed for Chinese lend-lease, for as late as the fall of 1943, 4,200 tons of Chinese lend-lease were still to be seen lying in the Assam rice paddies where the agents of China Defense Supplies, Inc., had dumped them in the spring of 1942. They had lain there through three seasons of monsoon rains and scorching heat. For example, there were in India 261,000,000 rounds of 7.92-mm. ammunition for China. One hundred million of them were in Assam. By February 1944, it was estimated that heat and moisture had oxidized 80,000,000 rounds. SOS asked General Headquarters (India) to renovate the whole store in Indian arsenals.61 Not only was lend-lease not properly stored, but the number and nature of items on hand were unknown.62
The process of honoring earlier lend-lease commitments to the Chinese created what SOS knew as the stockpile problem. As the shipping situation on the high seas eased, lend-lease for China began to move to India, there to wait shipment to China. Since by Presidential decision, the bulk of Hump tonnage was to go to the Fourteenth Air Force, the prospects of moving these stockpiles to China were remote. Moreover, the International Division of Army Service Forces had been shipping matériel as it was available, against General Stilwell's requisitions for sixty Chinese divisions.63 This meant that the stockpiles were out of balance, with critical items in short supply, and warehouse facilities filled with less vital needs.
The ever-growing bulk of the stockpiles, evenly divided between military and civilian goods, was a handicap in procuring items of current necessity because the Munitions Assignments Board in Washington (which allocated lend-lease in accord with directives from the Combined Chiefs of Staff) tended to see the bulk of the piles rather than their composition. Moreover, SOS officers could see little logic in their having to requisition items for the U.S. Army from the United States, with all the delay involved, when identical pieces of lend-lease equipment were on hand in India with their prospects of delivery to China very remote.64
On 31 December 1943 Col. William S. Gaud, Jr., took up his duties in Chungking as representative of the War Department in "all matters pertaining to the assignment of military supplies and equipment to the Chinese Government." This arrangement made it possible for the Chinese Government to deal directly with the War Department on the sensitive issue of lend-lease and
SUPPLIES IN OPEN STORAGE IN INDIA included M3 tanks parked along Hospital Road in Calcutta (above) and fuel drums at Ranaghat (below.)
freed CBI Theater headquarters of the unpleasant duty of commenting on Chinese lend-lease requisitions.
Colonel Gaud's survey of the physical aspects of the lend-lease situation in Assam disclosed some of the arguments against pouring lend-lease into a command without the physical resources to handle it, and of shipping some of it under the auspices of an organization, in this case, China Defense Supplies, Inc., which did not function with administrative efficiency. Colonel Gaud found that no one knew exactly how many tons of Chinese lend-lease were in India nor exactly what was on hand. China Defense Supplies, Inc., did not always give adequate identification of what it shipped to India, nor did it always furnish manifests or shipping lists. Once goods arrived in India, they were handled by SOS, which was perennially short of American personnel and dependent on the Government of India for warehouse construction. Goods were manhandled from ship to train to shed by coolies ignorant of what fragile or this side up might mean. Once in the sheds, supplies were simply piled there, with no attempt at physical inventory. Records showed only "CDS supplies" or "spare parts." CDS storage areas in Assam were not fenced in, and were guarded only during daylight hours by a few unarmed Chinese civilians. Colonel Gaud believed the basic cause of wastage was a shortage of American enlisted personnel. He found SOS fully aware of the problem, but completely handicapped by the simple lack of men to do the work. Therefore, a situation had arisen in which Headquarters, SOS, and the subordinate sections gave totals of lend-lease on hand that differed by as much as 50 percent.65
Since SOS was fully appreciative of the situation, the corrective measures and proper storekeeping could be applied as reinforcements came to the theater in accord with the QUADRANT decisions to provide an adequate logistical foundation for the Allied effort in Asia. Thus, SOS personnel strength increased from 31,074 on 30 November 1943 to 42,574 on 29 February 1944. (See Table 4.) And so, on 28 February, Colonel Gaud could report to the War Department that the situation in Assam was "markedly different" from what it had been in December.66 With the inventory problem being solved, Gaud thought that the warehouse construction problem was the principal one to be faced in handling Chinese lend-lease.
In spring 1944 the inventorying and proper storage of Chinese lend-lease made diversions from it to fill U.S. supply needs administratively simple even if diplomatically complex. Ever since the opening of the first U.S. base at Karachi, the Chinese had been willing to permit diversion from their lend-lease stocks to the SOS. With the decision of the War Department in the spring of 1942 that General Stilwell should decide when and where title would pass to the Chinese, there were no legal barriers to repossession of War Department-procured Chinese lend-lease that arrived in India after the summer
of 1942. However, Stilwell knew what the effect of a policy of wholesale diversion would be on the Chinese. Therefore, until May 1944, SOS was ordered to follow a policy of securing the consent of Chinese authorities before diverting any lend-lease item to American use.67
In April, the Munitions Assignments Board in Washington ordered CBI Theater to repossess all War Department-procured lend-lease vehicles, tires, and spare parts in India beyond those needed for the Chinese Army in India, for the U.S.-sponsored Chinese divisions along the Salween, and for Ramgarh Training Center. The order specifically exempted nonstandard trucks and parts ordered by the Chinese for use in China. The Munitions Assignments Board further authorized the theater to divert any War Department-procured lend-lease that might be used to advantage in the war effort.
Gen. Ho Ying-chin, Chief of Staff of the Chinese Army, was told on 3 May that the Chinese would be informed of all diversions. The Chinese would be allowed to requisition replacements, but the Munitions Assignments Board reserved the right to pass on all such. The reason for the policy, General Ho learned, was to make effective use of all supplies that could not be transported to China.68
The Chinese asked that Headquarters, CBI Theater, promise to replace all diverted lend-lease, and in Washington, T. V. Soong protested strongly. The reply to Dr. Soong said:
There existing in the United States a growing aversion to idle stockpiles, especially in view of spoilage and wastage, and an ever-increasing desire that all materials be used to the best possible advantage in the war effort. . . . The State Department and Foreign Economic Administration are in complete agreement that under the Master Agreements title to all lend-lease material of whatsoever nature and to whatsoever country transferred remains with the United States Government. . . .
The United States Government retains full authority for the diversion of such China Lend-Lease supplies as are incapable of serving the end use for which they were originally provided. . . .69
In compliance with the Munitions Assignments Board directive, SOS was authorized to divert War Department-procured matériel to U.S. troops or issue such to U.S.-sponsored Chinese divisions, without consulting the Chinese. Initially, diversions under this policy were small, and until 1 July 1944 totaled only $5,000,000 for medical, ordnance, signal, and engineer supplies.70
Medical Problems in the Rear Area
The medical problems of operations in India and Burma were potentially grave. They reflected an environment that was either inherently unhealthful, as in Burma, or one that had, as in India, become unhealthful through the unsanitary
practices of the inhabitants. In India, fevers and alimentary disorders were endemic. In Burma, the insect-borne diseases such as malaria and scrub typhus were everywhere, while the difficulties of maintaining sanitation on campaign in a hot, moist climate spread alimentary diseases. Fortunately, the American medical authorities in the theater, who functioned as part of the SOS, were able to draw on local experience and resources. Hospital space, supplies, and counsel were freely given by British and Indian medical organizations.
In October 1943 the SOS medical organization was deployed from Karachi to Ledo. There were probably close to 10,000 beds available for patients. The exact situation is obscure because hospitals operated more beds than their T/O's provided--about 75 percent more on the average. At Ledo the 20th General Hospital and the 14th, 48th, and 73d Evacuation Hospitals had 3,250 T/O beds. In central India, at Agra and Delhi, were the 97th and 100th Station Hospitals, with 100 T/O beds each. At Karachi was the 181st General Hospital, with 1,000 T/O beds. In China, whose support was the aim of all American effort, was the 95th Station Hospital, 100 T/O beds, at Kunming.
Working with the 20th General and 14th, 48th, and 73d Evacuation Hospitals in the Ledo area was the 151st Medical Battalion. The function of the 151st was to link the combat area with base medical units. Initially, it established a clearing station and a chain of collecting stations, which were eventually outmoded by the growing practice of air evacuation. The most significant work of the medical units from Ledo forward was medical care for the Chinese Army in India.71
The dispersal of American resources among the airfields of Assam and the United Provinces (Agra and Oudh), along the line of communications from Calcutta north, and in the port cities--a dispersal resulting in a great number of small extemporized detachments--forced an equal dispersal of medical care. Sixteen dispensaries were being operated in Calcutta and Karachi. Pipeline construction crews, railway personnel, and Signal Corps crews were followed by small provisional medical units. In early 1944 unauthorized provisional hospitals (not activated as T/O units) were operated at Kweilin, China, Kurmitola, Bengal, and Kanchrapara and Camp Angus, Bengal. Three more unauthorized hospitals were under construction. Personnel for these many ad hoc installations came from the several hospitals which were correspondingly strained when they needed facilities to care for the American and Chinese troops in their vicinity. The necessity of providing hospitalization for the Chinese in medical installations whose facilities had been calculated by the number of U.S. troops on hand was a further severe strain. Hospitals, perhaps 50 percent of whose personnel were on detached service, had to cope with a patient load far above their normal capacity.72
Theater authorities believed that the situation was not understood in Washington, for medical statistical reports reflected only the hospitalization provided for U.S. personnel. In June 1944, the Tables of Organization for hospitals in the theater provided 8,800 beds. Of these T/O beds, 7,787 were occupied, so that, formally, the picture was comforting. Actually, there were 18,635 beds available, or 212 percent of the T/O capacity. Of these, 12,530 were currently in use, 7,130 by Americans and 5,400 by Chinese. Since medical personnel had been allotted for only 8,800 beds, the strain was obvious. Energetic representations were made to the War Department, and the CBI Theater surgeon, Col. Robert P. Williams, presented them in person.
While CBI Theater waited for these requests to bear fruit, a program of reorganization and redeployment was begun within the theater. For example, the 1,000-bed hospital at Karachi, a port declining in importance as Calcutta grew, was reorganized as a 500-bed unit. The personnel and facilities thus released were used to activate the 371st Station Hospital which, in turn, went to Ramgarh, there to operate a 750-bed hospital. Other static hospitals were enlarged.
The Surgeon General's Office agreed to send two 1,000-bed general hospitals, one 400-bed field hospital, and two 100-bed station hospitals to the theater, plus medical personnel to permit expanding units in CBI and activating others. In the fall of 1944, the enlargement of six hospitals and the arrival of others from the United States greatly eased the personnel shortage.73
The 1943 hospital admissions suggest the problems faced in India. There were 8,136 admissions for malaria; 6,744 for alimentary disorders; 2,637 for venereal disease, and 1,150 for dengue fever.74 The first malaria control and survey units arrived in early 1943. A program of mosquito control was embarked on, but results were not satisfactory. In this connection, it must be recorded that DDT was not available in quantity in CBI until the end of 1944, nor was atebrin suppressive therapy used in India proper. Only in the combat zone (roughly, forward of Ledo) was atebrin used, and it was late 1943 before the use of it was made general.75
Because theater medical authorities believed their attempts to control mosquitoes were effective, they were disappointed at the results obtained in 1944. The CBI malaria rate in 1943 was 206 per thousand per year (250 in the Calcutta area).76 In 1944 it dropped to 167 per thousand per year. This did not seem to compare well with experience in the Southwest Pacific. The medical men were therefore inclined to believe that there had been a failure in discipline and personal protective measures, by implication, a failure in command and morale. In the light of this estimate, a campaign was undertaken in late
1944 to indoctrinate all echelons of the theater in command responsibility, malaria discipline, suppressive atebrin, and the use of DDT.77
The number of alimentary disorders admitted to hospitals was not a fair index of the seriousness of that problem. In the hot season of April to August 1944, the time of the year when disease rates always rose sharply, there were 16,562 cases serious enough to be marked either hospital or quarters. The doctors estimated that three times that number of men were affected, but able to stay on duty at whatever cost in discomfort and loss of efficiency. Nor can the factor of lowered vitality and predisposition to other diseases be ignored. All in all, perhaps 200,000 man-days were lost from this cause in 1944, a serious matter in an undermanned theater. "It is believed that this high rate was caused by poor mess sanitation, employment of native food handlers, inadequate refrigeration, inadequate water heating facilities, failure to control flies, insanitary disposal of human excreta, contaminated water, eating at civilian restaurants, and a defeatist belief among officers and men that such diseases were inescapable in this Theater and that the sanitary problem was unconquerable."78
That alimentary disorders were endemic in India was no secret and the first American arrivals sought to meet the problem by radical measures. The base section veterinarian at Karachi in 1942 surveyed the local abattoir, ice plant, and dairy, and condemned them all. He recommended that the SOS build and operate its own food-processing installations, a step that became standard at all major U.S. troop concentrations. As American personnel were deployed across India the burden on the Veterinary Corps grew apace. "In addition to food inspection, they supervised the operation of abattoirs; supervised the production of dairy products; operated small farms; scoured the country for beef animals; assisted in vaccination of local herds against rinderpest and anthrax; and assisted local Quartermasters in closing contracts for food, and in the overhauling of subsistence stores."79 The Sanitary Corps took analogous precautions with the water supply.
In addition to providing pure food and water, the medical authorities sought to prevent later contamination of foodstuffs. The personnel shortage, which made it hard to obtain kitchen help and waiters, made it necessary to employ Indian civilians. So far as possible, they were assigned duties which did not involve food handling. Attempts were made to provide adequate supplies of hot water, refrigeration, screening, garbage disposal facilities, and DDT spray.
Unfortunately, these efforts did not bring the results desired. Admission rates per thousand per annum for diarrhea and dysentery were, until August 1944, substantially higher than in 1943. Beginning in May 1944 the malaria admissions rate showed improvement over the preceding year, but it was not
great. Preventive medicine did not come into its own in this theater until the winter of 1944-45.80
Logistical Problems in China
The logistical problems of operating in China and India had a family resemblance. Neither India nor China had a well-advanced industrial structure. In both, the American forces were ordered by the War Department to make the maximum possible use of local resources of all sorts. In both, the population weighed heavily on the land. In both countries the U.S. forces depended on one major line of communications whose operation was perforce left in the hands of local authority, since the War Department directed that local resources be used and American operation would necessarily involve a heavy commitment of American resources of men and machines. Despite the family resemblance, the logistical problems in China represented the ultimate development of their species.
India was isolated by distance, but China was blockaded. Inflation was a grave concern of the Government of India, but it was out of control in China. Indian industry was hard-pressed, but growing and making a major contribution to the Allied cause in the Middle and Far East. Chinese industry retrogressed under the pressure of isolation and inflation. The Assam line of communications had as its principal component a railroad whose capacity had never been fully exploited; the eastern line of communications had a 500-mile-long road, scratched out of the mountains and navigated by a collection of dilapidated trucks. Until 1944, both arteries were the sole responsibility of local authority. In India, the American forces drew their food and clothing from the Government of India through the SOS. In China, the Americans were in the most literal sense guests of the Chinese, for they lived in hostels operated by the Chinese War Area Service Corps, known to every American as WASC.
Three logistical problems beyond the control of SOS greatly affected its operations in China. The Hump may be mentioned first. Suffice it to say the SOS problems diminished or increased as the amount of tonnage arriving from India fluctuated. The second problem was inflation. Because the U.S. forces were directed to live off the country and, in view of China's isolation, had no option in the matter, the galloping inflation which steadily weakened the Chinese war effort made it ever less possible for SOS to obtain goods and services, for example, spare parts and building construction, in the open market.
The Chinese Government insisted that the exchange rate between Chinese and American dollars should be $20 Chinese for $1 American. As of January 1944, the open or black market rate was 100 to 1. That was bad enough, but
prices were rising about six times as fast as the value of the dollar. Notably, prices of items used by the Chinese, such as blue cloth and rice, rose far faster than those used by Americans. In any event, there were too few Americans in China to affect so great a market as the 200 million plus Chinese in unoccupied China. The sophisticated and practical Chinese had long before discovered the magic of credit, and had an elaborate and nationwide net of small banks or "cash shops." Control of these myriad little banks was beyond the administrative resources of the central government. Speculators borrowed heavily from the banks, then accumulated inventories which increased in value far more rapidly than even the 9 percent a month the banks were charging by early 1944. As a result, from July 1937 to June 1944, the expenditures of the Chinese Nationalist Government increased 120 times; the purchasing power of its currency decreased by 384 times. In terms of actual goods and services, the Chinese Nationalist Government effort of 1944 was about one third that of 1937. Its budget was about 3 percent of the national income.81
The eastern line of communications from Kunming to Chennault's east China air bases was not under American control. Consistent with the policy followed in India, the American authorities had left the matter to the Chinese. There were considerable stretches of railway in the eastern line of communications that functioned with reasonable efficiency and a high degree of safety. The worst bottleneck was the Kutsing-Tushan Highway, a 500-mile stretch, and therefore longer than the 483 miles from Ledo, Assam Province, India, to Wanting, China. (See Map 1.)
The majority of the distance is characterized by rugged, mountainous terrain with a practically continuous series of hair-pin turns with grades as steep as 27%. The road-bed has a crushed rock foundation with a clay soil surface. Much of the road is extremely rough and caused a high incidence of spring failures and a rapid deterioration of chassis and bodies. The clay surface made travel extremely hazardous during the rainy season. The route has a large number of deep cuts and high fills and during the wet season, landslides and cave-ins frequently completely blocked all movement for days until native crews could clear the obstruction.82
In January 1944, the Southwest Highway Transport Administration, the principal Chinese Government agency operating on the eastern line of communications, owned 1,196 two and three-ton trucks of which 183 were operable. The agency was able to contract for the services, at one time or another during the month, of 2,958 privately owned vehicles. Maintenance was of the most rudimentary sort. Because inflation steadily cut the salaries of the Chinese
Government employees operating the trucks, they perforce loaded their vehicles with passengers and goods for private gain. There were no facilities for the truck drivers along the route beyond the few little roadside inns. Therefore, in February 1944, an average of sixteen trucks a day was moving eastward, when ninety should have been the minimum. Wrecked trucks dotted the highway. Not unnaturally, the Chinese trying to operate the eastern line of communications were thoroughly disheartened. The most hopeful sign was that Chennault, his attention now fixed on the eastern line of communications, demanded remedial action.83
Though Chennault had been extremely skeptical of the worth of the Ledo Road, he had not hesitated in May 1943 to place his air squadrons at the end of the much longer eastern line of communications. Not until October 1943 did he begin to draw the attention of his superiors to the problem of increasing its efficiency. The response of CBI Theater headquarters to his pleas and warnings may justly be compared to its response to the problems of the Assam line of communications.84
As 1944 began, the SOS in China had a strength of 452 men, suggesting the scale of the logistical effort in China. It was organized into Advance Section No. 3 with 354 men, working mostly in and around Kunming, and Advance Section No. 4 with 98 men stationed at Kweilin and Heng-yang. The sharp disparity in strength reflected the circumstance that the Fourteenth Air Force was largely supported by the Air Service Command (ASC). On 20 January 1944, the two SOS sections merged to become Advance Section No. 1, Col. Lewis P. Jordan, commanding. At Kunming and Yun-nan-i were airfreight reception and discharge stations to handle Hump tonnage. The Ordnance people had a shop at Kunming for 3d and 4th echelon motor maintenance. The shop had facilities for manufacturing a few spare parts. There were no ordnance facilities on the eastern line of communications. The 95th Station Hospital at Kunming and a hospital improvised by the SOS at Kweilin met medical needs. Until March 1944 Chinese nurses were used. Because of the fact that each American in China increased demands on Hump tonnage, it was Stilwell's policy to keep U.S. personnel in China to the absolute minimum. It was believed that American women would need special types of housing and require allocation of Hump tonnage to certain modest luxuries such as cosmetics which would be better devoted to the stuff of war.85
As for subsistence, the War Area Service Corps' support of U.S. operations in China was a major project for the Chinese.86 In the Kunming area the
WASC operated thirteen hostels. The hostels were numbered consecutively, with one exception. The sentiments of pilots who might find themselves assigned to Hostel No. 13 were respected. Consequently, the numbers ran 11, 12, and 14. Under U.S. supervision, the WASC operated an abattoir. The Chinese purchased cattle, hogs, and chickens, and delivered them to the abattoir. There they were inspected, butchered, and dressed under supervision of U.S. personnel and delivered to the several mess halls in U.S. trucks. The WASC furnished butcher, coolies, ice, and everything else needed to operate the abattoir. In the Cheng-tu area, the XX Bomber Command's base, the hostels were so far apart that WASC operated five abattoirs and a large co-operative market. All laundering was done by WASC. Fresh vegetables and staple products were purchased by WASC and delivered to the several mess halls in accord with the ration strengths.
The arrangement was not entirely satisfactory to the United States. Chinese intentions were good, but the WASC did not have the administrative ability to meet its commitments. Food was often very bad, buildings were not maintained, and sanitary conditions were often below the acceptable minimum. WASC padded the daily returns on U.S. personnel accommodated, presumably with a view to postwar settlement. By February 1944, the situation appeared "critical" to Stilwell.87 In February, conferences began to see if the United States could not become a paying guest in China, with more control over the accommodations. The Quartermaster Section did what it could to supplement the WASC ration by supplying such items as butter, jam, coffee, powdered milk, and sweets, which were flown in from India. Liaison and radio teams in the field were given special rations of canned meats, fruits, and vegetables.
Transportation was hampered because operation of trucks in China was most difficult, due to China's isolation, lack of developed oil resources, and lack of an industry to supply spare parts in adequate quality and quantity. Replacement vehicles were bought on the open market. The trucks necessarily used a locally compounded fuel that was 25 percent gasoline and 75 percent alcohol. The alcohol formed acid compounds which attacked the bearings and crankshafts, forcing frequent cleaning and repair. The washboard roads over which the trucks operated subjected them to a terrible pounding which inevitably shook loose every joint and fitting.
Construction was principally a Chinese function. Until March 1944, the SOS contracted directly with individual Chinese firms for nonoperational construction. For operational construction, the SOS prepared plans and submitted requests to the Chinese Government. Such projects were paid for by the Chinese as part of their contribution to the United Nations war effort. The procedure was open to criticism because the Ministry of Finance was reluctant to advance the funds even after other Chinese agencies had concurred in the project.
In February 1944 a division of responsibility between the SOS and the Air Service Command was arranged that gave the latter almost complete local responsibility in east China. The SOS would see to it that supplies came to Kweilin after which the ASC would take over. That shift in responsibility left construction for the instructors with the Second Thirty Divisions, transportation operations, and Kweilin hospital the only SOS activities in east China.
Very likely one of the major factors behind the new and clear-cut division of responsibility was Chennault's representations. The poor operation of the eastern line of communications so hampered his operations that in December 1943 he sent a sharp letter to Stilwell demanding either that the SOS set up an adequate line of communications to east China or let him have control over his own line of communications. In January 1944, Chennault flew to New Delhi to present his case in person. This resulted in the assignment of Lt. Col. Maurice E. Sheahan to be transportation officer of Advance Section No. 1. Colonel Sheahan's arrival on 2 February marked the beginning of better times. Soon after, Headquarters, SOS took more notice of problems in China. Since his arrival, Covell's attention had been fixed on India. Not until 23 February do his reports to Somervell mention the eastern line of communications, but then he describes it as a real problem.
Surveying the eastern line of communications, Colonel Sheahan found it in a depressing state and quickly proposed a series of remedies, dependent of course on Hump tonnage. They were grouped together as TIGAR 26 A, or TIG-26A. The mission of TIG-26A was to move supplies for the Fourteenth Air Force over the line of communications Kunming-Chanyi-Kweiyang-Tushan-Liuchow-Kweilin to be distributed around the east China airfields. The target for the period July-December 1944 was set at 8,000 tons a month. From the termini of Liuchow and Kweilin, Chinese agencies were to move the supplies. For means, Sheahan wanted to fly in 700 trucks (500 ½-ton 4x2 Chevrolets and 200 6x6 General Motors) and spare parts, engines, tires, and devices to convert gasoline-fueled engines to charcoal burning for the Chinese. He also requested three quartermaster truck companies, a heavy automotive maintenance company, and a military police platoon, plus overhead to supervise and control the American convoys Sheahan would operate. Simultaneously, SOS contemplated TIGAR 26 B, bringing in 500 5-ton truck-trailer combinations from the Persian Gulf to China via the Soviet Union. Colonel Sheahan's proposals began moving up the chain of command.88 Until they were approved
and the means to implement them arrived in CBI, Chennault's operations would be limited to what could trickle forward over the eastern line of communications.
After twenty months' experience proved that the Assam line of communications was not efficiently run under civilian control, and after the QUADRANT decisions resulted in service troops being allotted to CBI, it was possible to place the control of the line of communications in the hands of an Anglo-American military panel, and to use American personnel in key positions at Calcutta and on the Bengal and Assam Railway. The result was a great increase in tonnage brought forward at a most opportune time, when the Japanese were crossing the Indian border. Within the SOS, its administration was simplified, and though the Government of India feared that inflation might force it to cut back military production, the natural impact of such a move on the supplies India could give the U.S. forces on reciprocal aid account (reverse lend-lease) remained in the future. There was increasing dissatisfaction with the health of the command, but as yet little improvement in the fight against the effects of a contaminated environment. In India, the SOS picture in 1943-44 was a steadily brightening one.
In China, the picture remained one of problems and projects that outran the logistical support at hand. China's isolation, the unchecked inflation that was gradually but certainly wrecking her economy, and the extreme difficulties of transportation all combined to hobble the U.S. effort. In 1943, the President and the Generalissimo had defined the U.S. effort as being in the air, and had set it at a level beyond the ability of the CBI Theater to support. That having been done, there followed no co-ordinated effort to provide logistical support.89 As the spring of 1944 came to east China, the manifold consequences of the President's and the Generalissimo's decision were about to unfold.
Table of Contents ** Previous Chapter (6) * Next Chapter (8)
1. Rpt, Covell to CG, USF IBT, 20 May 45, sub: Final Rpt, 15 Nov 43-20 May 45, pp. 1-2. (Hereafter, Covell Report.) OCMH.
2. (1) Ltr, Covell to Somervell, 16 Dec 43. Somervell File, Vol III, Hq ASF, Ts of Opns, CBI 1942-43, A46-257. (2) Roland G. Ruppenthal, Logistical Support of the Armies, Vol. I, Chs. I, III, V, UNITED STATES ARMY IN WORLD WAR II (Washington, 1953).
3. (1) SOS in CBI, p. 24. (2) GO 16, Hq SOS USAF CBI, 1 Feb 44. (3) GO 114, Hq SOS USAF CBI, 11 Aug 44.
4. Ltr, Covell to Somervell, 27 Jan 44. Somervell File, Vol IV, CBI 1944.
5. (1) Stilwell's Mission to China, Ch. X. (2) Rad CFB 12494, Hearn to Sultan, 17 Jan 44. Item 1635, Bk 5, JWS Personal File.
6. GO 5, Fwd Ech, Hq USAF CBI, 31 Mar 44.
7. (1) Rad CFB 15614, Hearn to Marshall, 2 Apr 44. Item 2160, Bk 6, JWS Personal File. (2) CM-OUT 18999, Marshall to Hearn, 5 Apr 44. (3) Ltr, Gauss to Hearn, 2 Apr 44; Memo, Hearn for Gauss, 3 Apr 44; Ltr, Gauss to Hearn, 12 Apr 44. Items 292, 294, Bk 3; JWS Personal File.
8. Covell Report, pp. 1-2.
9. Ltr 3872/17/Q, Slim to GHQ (India), 30 Oct 43. SEAC War Diary.
10. Covell Report, pp. 27-28.
11. (1) Ibid. (2) SOS in CBI, pages 425-26, has an excerpt from the Covell Report in a discussion of the general difficulties of supplying U.S. installations in Assam.
12. (1) Ltr cited n. 2(1). (2) Ltr, Covell to Wheeler, 16 Jan 44; Ltr, Covell to Somervell, 1 Feb 44. Somervell File, Vol IV, CBI 1944.
13. Ltr, Covell to Somervell, 21 Jan 44. Somervell File, Vol IV, CBI 1944.
14. Memo, Marshall for President, 29 Jan 44, sub: Failure of Calcutta-Assam Line of Communications. Somervell File, Vol IV, CBI 1944.
15. Col. Charles K. Gailey, Exec Off, OPD, for Handy, 31 Jan 44. Item 55, OPD Exec 10. Attached to the memorandum is a draft radio, Roosevelt to Churchill, which Colonel Gailey says was dispatched on 29 January. Colonel Gailey also reports Churchill's 30 January reply to the President.
16. Ltr, Covell to Somervell, 11 Feb 44. Somervell File, Vol IV, CBI 1944.
17. Incl to Ltr cited n. 16.
18. Ltr, Ferris to Marshall for OPD, 11 Feb 44, Incl, sub: Calcutta Port and Assam LOC. Somervell File, Vol IV, CBI 1944.
19. (1) SOS in CBI, App. 3, History of Base Section No. 2. (2) Ltr, Covell to Somervell, 4 Jan 44. Somervell File, Vol IV, CBI 1944.
20. App. cited n. 19(1).
21. Covell Report, p. 8.
22. Ltr, Covell to Somervell, 20 Apr 44. Somervell File, Vol IV, CBI 1944.
23. (1) GO 10, Hq SOS USAF CBI, 23 Jan 44. (2) SOS in CBI, p. 35. (3) Rpt, Covell to Somervell, 26 May, 21 Jun 44. Somervell File, Vol IV, CBI 1944.
24. SOS in CBI, pp. 35-36.
25. Ltr, Col Appleton, Director, MRS USAF CBI, to Brig Gen Thomas B. Wilson, CG, Transportation Service, 4 Apr 44. Somervell File, Vol IV, CBI 1944. Appleton thought there was a deliberate slowdown.
26. Ltr, Appleton to Wilson, 25 Apr 44. Somervell File, Vol IV, CBI 1944.
27. Ltr cited n. 25.
28. (1) Ltr, Covell to Somervell, 12 Apr 44. Somervell File, Vol IV, CBI 1944. (2) Ltr cited n. 25.
29. Ltr cited n. 25.
30. SOS in CBI, pp. 23, 63.
31. SOS in CBI, pp. 90-93, Summary of Agreements for Opn of Portions of B&A Ry by USAF, MRS.
32. SOS in CBI, pp. 63-66.
33. (1) Rpt, Appleton to Wilson, 25 Apr 44, sub: Opns by MRS of B&A Ry (meter gauge). Somervell File, Vol IV, CBI 1944. (2) SOS in CBI, p. 70.
34. SOS in CBI, pp. 68, 69.
35. Rpt cited n. 33(1).
36. Bykofsky MS.
37. Memo, Arnold for Somervell, 17 Mar 44. Somervell File, Vol IV, CBI 1944.
38. Memo, Sultan for Stilwell, 21 Mar 44. Item 290, Bk 3, JWS Personal File.
39. SOS in CBI, p. 74.
40. (1) Ltr, Lindsell to Covell, 26 Apr 44; Rpt, Covell to Somervell, 22 May 44. Somervell File, Vol IV, CBI 1944. (2) Bykofsky MS.
41. SOS in CBI, pp. 75-76.
42. For this section, the authors drew heavily upon the Bykofsky MS.
43. The editorial (Statesman, May 27, 1945) appears as an inclosure of the Covell Report.
44. Mountbatten Report, Pt. A, par. 46.
45. (1) Bykofsky MS, pp. 115-16. (2) SOS in CBI, pp. 96-98.
46. (1) Bykofsky MS, p. 119. (2) SOS in CBI, p. 99.
47. See Ch. III, above.
48. The above is based on: (1) SOS in CBI, Appendix 12, entitled Construction Service, which contains a Report on Pipeline Program Carried Out by Engineer District No. 12. (2) SOS in CBI, pp. 115-16.
49. SOS in CBI, pp. 335-56.
50. SOS in CBI, p. 344.
51. Stilwell's Mission to China, Ch. VI.
52. SOS in CBI, pp. 144-47.
53. SOS in CBI, pp. 149-50.
54. G-4 Per Rpt, Hq USAF CBI, quarter ending 30 Sep 44, pars. 3i, 9g. OCMH.
55. Stilwell's Mission to China, p. 209.
56. SOS in CBI, pp. 153-55.
57. Covell Report, pp. 31-32. Substantially the same passage is in SOS in CBI, p. 156.
58. SOS in CBI, p. 156.
59. (1) Covell Report. (2) SOS in CBI, tables facing p. 167.
60. SOS in CBI, pp. 334-400.
61. SOS in CBI, pp. 465-67.
62. Memo, Col William S. Gaud, Jr., WD Mil Aid Representative to China, for Director of Matériel, Hq ASF, 10 Dec 43, sub: Lend-Lease to China, in Gaud Rpt 2, 4-10 Dec 43. (Hereafter Gaud Report --------.) AG (ASF ID) 319.1, A46-299.
63. (1) SOS in CBI, p. 470. (2) For a discussion of the origins of the sixty division program, see Stilwell's Mission to China, Chapters VII and VIII.
64. SOS in CBI, p. 471.
65. Gaud Reports 1 and 2.
66. Gaud Report 7.
67. SOS in CBI, p. 475.
68. Ltr, Ferris to Ho, 3 May 44. Gaud Report 12, Tab A.
69. Ltr, Walter W. Fowler, Special Representative, to T. V. Soong, 5 Jun 44. Gaud Report 14, Table B.
70. SOS in CBI, pp. 475-76.
71. SOS in CBI, App. 16, Medical Section, Sec. I, 1942-44, pp. 31, 47.
72. App. cited n. 71, Sec. I, pp. 52-53.
73. App. cited n. 71, Sec. II, 1 Jul-24 Oct 44, pp. 13-18.
74. App. cited n. 71, Sec. I, p. 46.
75. (1) Stone MS, II, 381. (2) App. cited n. 71, Sec. II, pp. 37-38.
76. App. cited n. 19(1), Sec. IIf.
77. App. cited n. 71, Sec. II, pp. 37-38.
78. App. cited n. 71, Sec. II, pp. 34-35.
79. App. cited n. 71, Sec. I, p. 15; quotation, p. 45.
80. History of India-Burma Theater, 1944-1945, II, 298-300. OCMH.
81. (1) The Chinese Government financed the bulk of its war expenditures by issuing paper money, as has been noted in Stilwell's Mission to China. (2) SOS in CBI, App. I, SOS in China, Sec. II; App. F, Incl 4, Economic Conditions in Free China and Their Effects on Army Procurement. (3) Ltr, Col Coke S. Matthews, Pres, Bd of Investigation, to CG, USFCT, 31 Oct 45, with Rpt, sub: Housing and Construction for American Personnel and Installations in Kunming, China; Exhibit N. CT 40, Dr 4, KCRC.
82. SOS in CBI, App. I, SOS in China, Sec. II; App. C, p. 4.
83. Bykofsky MS.
84. (1) See pp. 19-20, 23, above. (2) Memo, Chennault for Stilwell, 30 Dec 43, sub: Transportation Facilities from Yunnan Eastwards. The Chennault-Wedemeyer Letter, Item 6. (3) Bykofsky MS.
85. SOS in CBI, App. I, SOS in China.
86. (1) A fuller treatment of WASC is in History of CBI, Section III, Appendix XII, War Area Service Command.
87. History of CBI, p. 215.
88. (1) App. cited n. 85. (2) Bykofsky MS. (3) See Ch. I, above. (4) Implementation of TIGAR 26 B was delayed by the refusal of the Soviet Union to allow vehicles to cross its territory. Permission was not granted until fall 1944, and a convoy, code name LUX, was organized in the Persian Gulf Command. Uprisings in Sinkiang Province, China, resulted in last-minute changes in LUX plans. The LUX movement was changed to enter China via the Ledo Road. With the arrival of the LUX convoy in China in March 1945, transportation problems were considerably relieved.
89. See Stilwell's Mission to China.