Command Problems in China Theater

Chapter VIII
Decisions to Attack

North and east of Burma, diplomatic and military battles of great significance for the future of Asia were fought in 1944. Both the Chinese and the Japanese resolved on major operations in China Theater. So vast was the arena of conflict that the two sides could make their offensive efforts many hundreds of miles apart. Unfortunately for the Allies, as they attacked in one area and tried to defend in another, they were divided among themselves on national lines, and within each nation on lines of policy. The united, resolute wholehearted effort that might aid a speedy victory did not exist.

The Chinese decision to take the offensive ensued upon a complete change in the President's point of view. Though the United States and the British Commonwealth at Cairo in December 1943 had gone back on their longstanding and oft-repeated commitments for a major amphibious operation in the Bay of Bengal, the President now supported Marshall and Stilwell in taking the line that China's self-interest required the Chinese to attack across the Salween River into Burma. This change in Roosevelt's thinking meant support for the thesis long advanced by the War Department, that the Chinese should be asked to take definite aggressive action with the lend-lease, credits, and air support they received from the United States. With Stilwell fully occupied in north Burma, it was the President who took the lead in calling on the Generalissimo to act, and with messages that had clear echoes of the bargaining or quid pro quo approach so long urged by Marshall, Stimson, and Stilwell.

"Money Is the Root of All Our Trouble"

The President's radio of 29 December 1943 was strong in tone, explaining that considerable equipment and instructor personnel were scheduled for movement to China to assist in preparing the Y-Force for Burma operations. The President told the Generalissimo that he wanted to "avoid at this time the use of the restricted airlift in the employment of these resources in an effort, the full impact of which upon the enemy will be delayed."1

With Stilwell in Burma, his own Chief of Staff, China, Burma and India Theater, General Hearn, had the duty of delivering the President's messages to


the Chinese. This, however, did not mean that General Hearn was in any sense a staff officer of the Generalissimo's China Theater. Hearn informed Stilwell of the contents of each of Roosevelt's messages and relayed Stilwell's occasional comments on them to whichever Chinese dignitary, usually Madame Chiang, might accept them for the Generalissimo.

Noting the President's changed attitude, Stilwell told Hearn to impress on the Chinese that if Y-Force did not co-operate in Burma operations, the President might lose interest, and might conclude that the Chinese themselves were not really concerned about breaking the blockade of China. Stilwell also suggested the Chinese be told to weigh the effect on themselves of SEAC's suggestion that Burma be bypassed.2

The President himself, on 14 January 1944, finally began to hint that lend-lease to China might cease if it was not to be used against the Japanese. Beginning with the remark that the opening of the Burma Road was ". . . the next and most immediate solution to our present problem," Roosevelt went on to tell the Generalissimo:

I am informed that the Ledo Road forces are trained, equipped and in position against the enemy in North Burma, and that the progress of the Ledo Road secured by these troops is making good headway. I am of the opinion therefore that all of us should concentrate our efforts with the means at hand to push vigorously all military operations as will assist this road project. Mountbatten's plan and extent of operations depend in large measure, as you are aware, upon support from Yunnan. I know that you are in agreement therefore that it is most important that all possible pressure with available means be exerted by your Yunnan forces in coordination with Admiral Mountbatten's operations from India. If the Yunnan forces cannot be employed it would appear that we should avoid for the present the movement of critical materials to them over the limited lines of communication and curtail the continuing build-up of stockpiles in India beyond that which will be brought to bear against the enemy.3

The President's messages and Hearn's comments on them made their impression on Madame Chiang. On 7 January she remarked to Hearn that the Generalissimo had not answered the President's December messages because Roosevelt had not yet agreed to the Generalissimo's request that the United States lend China one billion dollars in U.S. currency or pay for the Cheng-tu airfields at the 20 to 1 rate. General Hearn at once concluded that the Chinese were linking financial aid with operations in Burma.4

General Hearn was not alone in thinking so. In faraway Washington, the memorandums that passed among the Treasury, War, and State Departments as


they followed the negotiations of their Chungking representatives revealed similar reactions, and disclosed a growing feeling among their authors that the Chinese, by placing a dollar value on their share in the war, were overreaching themselves. Many of these officials believed the President shared their views.5

The Generalissimo's response to Roosevelt's December messages (the President's latest having crossed it in transmission) confirmed the impressions mentioned above. In tone, it was a virtual ultimatum. The Generalissimo stated that unless the billion dollars was forthcoming or unless the United States agreed to finance the Cheng-tu project at the rate of 20 to 1, the Chinese would no longer provide food and housing to the U.S. forces in China after 1 March 1944. The Generalissimo told the President that he had "even gone to the length of delaying the reopening of the Burma route so that essential amphibious equipment should be diverted to the European theater, thereby disappointing all classes of my countrymen."6

Sent to Washington through State Department channels, the Generalissimo's message met a mixed reception in Washington. The first draft of the United States answer, as prepared by Somervell, assured the Generalissimo that contrary to his charge the exchange transactions proposed by the United States were not commercial in nature; that while the United States was prepared to pay all expenses incurred by the U.S. Army it refused to do so at a fixed rate of 20 to 1 in a money market that was racing upward; that any such insistence by the Chinese would not be understood by the American people nor by the Congress; and that the President must insist on some reasonable arrangement for Chinese currency, either by outright donation or some form of reverse lend-lease.

The draft was shown to Marshall and Arnold on the ground that its dispatch might well lead to a break in Sino-American relations and the withdrawal of the United States forces from China. Marshall and Arnold approved the paper. It then went to the President who also approved, subject to the later concurrence of the Secretary of State, Cordell Hull.7 Hull demurred, urged the President to reconsider, and his more cautious approach carried the day. The President and his advisers drew back from risking an open breach with China, but that the highest political and military authorities in the United States were


willing to contemplate such action dramatically illustrated the change in China's diplomatic position vis-à-vis the United States.

An anxious ten-day interval followed while the United States and China considered their next moves. The silence was broken by Ambassador Gauss's delivery of the U.S. reply to the Chinese ultimatum. In it, the President remarked that he could not ". . . escape the feeling that because of the distance between us there may be danger that we may fail adequately to work out our common problems and may rush into decisions which would not be in the interests of either of our peoples." Roosevelt suggested that the Chinese send a representative to Washington to discuss the exchange rate with Treasury officials. There was no mention of the billion-dollar loan. Then came an indication of the President's attitude towards China. Roosevelt flatly stated that beginning 1 March 1944 U.S. Army expenditures in China would be limited to U.S. $25,000,000 a month.8

As of 15 March 1944, the open-market rate for the U.S. dollar in Kunming (rates varied from city to city) was 230 to 1. If the Chinese Government insisted on making its dollars available at only 20 to 1, U.S. expenditures in March, for example, would be equal to what would be permitted by purchasing U.S. $2,000,000 worth of currency in the open market. Since the actual exchange rate was working ever upward, Chinese insistence on 20 to 1 would ultimately force American units limited to U.S. $25,000,000 a month to withdraw from China. Conversely, if the United States acquiesced in the Chinese demand for the 20 to 1 rate, while the Chinese continued to finance their war by paper money, and the Chinese banks continued to lend to speculators who drove up the price level, the United States would ultimately be spending its dollars by the billion merely to clothe and feed a few thousand Americans in China.9

When the Generalissimo replied to the President, his message of 2 February linked China's financial and military problems:

I have received your message dated twenty-sixth January transmitted by Ambassador Gauss and I am deeply appreciative of your efforts to help me and my government. I have consulted with Dr. Kung [Minister of Finance] regarding the suggestions contained therein and have requested him to acquaint the Ambassador and General Stilwell's representatives with the decisions he and I have agreed upon [the Chinese were now offering 30 to 1]. I


trust that very shortly a solution satisfactory to both our countries may be reached. I wish to assure you that Dr. Kung and I have exerted our utmost to meet your wishes short of jeopardizing China's economic front to the breaking point, and short of endangering the morale of our people in the prosecution of continued resistance.

I wish also to acknowledge your telegram sent through General Stilwell's headquarters dated fifteenth January. I appreciate your desire to open up the Ledo Road, a desire which is also my great concern since it is only through the opening of this land route that China may quickly obtain the heavy equipment much needed by her army. You doubtless recall that at Cairo I reiterated and emphasized the fact that I am ready to send the Yunnan troops to Burma at any moment that large-scale amphibious landing operations can be effected at strategic points. I stand ready to adhere to this decision, and hope that we can carry out operations even before November of this year, which date you mentioned as possible and probable for the diverting of the amphibious equipment to Burma.

I am leaving for the Hunan front tomorrow and shall be away for a fortnight. Any message will forwarded. I know you realize that the year will prove a most critical period for China both in the economic and military sense, but I am confident that with your help we shall pull through. . . .10

The President's acknowledgement of this message was limited to assurances that the United States would continue to study both exchange rates and U.S. military expenditures in China.11

The foregoing communications from Washington had their effect within the Chinese Government. Apparently on his own authority as Minister of Finance, Dr. H. H. Kung undertook to advance Chinese National currency (CN) $15,000,000,000 to CBI Theater headquarters to cover U.S. expenditures for March, April, and May 1944. The credit was extended with no stipulation as to the rate of exchange for repayment. Of this credit, Hearn received an immediate grant of CN $500,000,000 for the Cheng-tu fields. There was, however, one obstacle to the prompt use of these funds. The actual currency involved was Chinese paper money, engraved in the United States and stockpiled in India. It would have to be flown over the Hump, like everything else the U.S. forces in China used.

The need of allocating Hump tonnage for these currency advances brought now familiar repercussions in China. Where air cargo was concerned Chinese currency was measured as tonnage rather than by dollar value. The bills in India were of small denominations lest they add to the general inflationary psychology. Experience revealed that a ton of currency might vary in value from CN $7,000,000 to CN $100,000,000. The Fourteenth Air Force complained that 4,500 gallons of gasoline were used in one day's lift of Chinese currency. Hearn tried to placate the Fourteenth by explaining that the chore was a necessity,


that each haul had to be charged against operational tonnage. Casting his eye on some of the less apparent aspects of war in China, he remarked to Chennault: "Money is the root of all our trouble."12

American Military Observers in North China

On 9 February 1944, the President raised a point with the Generalissimo which was part of an issue whose eventual outcome was possibly beyond the power of any man then living to foresee. And it was to grow until it dominated the diplomacy of the Pacific Ocean as once the problem of Japanese imperialism had done. This was the Chinese Communist issue. The episode began quietly enough, with a suggestion by Stilwell's political adviser, John P. Davies, Jr.

In 1943, on 24 June, Davies had suggested to the State Department that a consulate general be opened in the territory of the Chinese Communists, and that a military mission be sent to them.13 Stilwell's papers do not mention the project; his attitude then is unknown.

At the SEXTANT Conference, Davies had been present when Stilwell attempted to get some policy guidance from the President. It may be that Davies remembered the President's reaction to Stilwell's warning that a repetition of the Japanese Tung-Ting Lake operations of May 1943 might overthrow the Generalissimo: "Well, then we should look for some other man or group of men, to carry on."14 In any event, twenty-five days later Davies began to send Hopkins a series of memorandums on Chinese domestic matters, which Hopkins in turn relayed to the President.

In his first memorandum, of 31 December 1943, Davies began by observing, "The Generalissimo is probably the only Chinese who shares the popular American misconception that Chiang Kai-shek is China." He closed with the recommendation: "A realistic policy towards Chiang would be based on (1) recognition by us that the Generalissimo is highly susceptible to firm co-ordinated American pressure, (2) stern bargaining (in consultation with American representatives in China), and (3) readiness to support a strong new coalition offering cooperation mutually more beneficial to China and the United States."15

Davies a fortnight later returned to the suggestion he had made in June


1943, of a U.S. military mission to the Chinese Communists. After drafting his suggestions on 15 January 1944, he made a visit to Stilwell's headquarters in north Burma on the 20th. What Stilwell thought of the project Davies did not record, but presumably he approved. On 23 January Davies suggested to Hopkins that the President arrange for Stilwell's headquarters to send U.S. observers to Communist China. Davies offered Hopkins several reasons for the presence of such a mission in and around the Communist base at Yenan:

We need to despatch immediately while it is still welcome, a military and political observers' mission to Communist China to collect enemy information, assist in and prepare for certain limited operations from that area, obtain accurate estimates of the strength of Communist Armies, report on Russian operations in North China and Manchuria should Russia attack Japan, and assess the possibility of North China and Manchuria developing into a separate Chinese state--perhaps even as a Russian satellite. Chiang's blockade of the Communists and their consequent isolation, are forcing them toward dependence upon Russia. An American observers' mission would break this isolation, reduce the tendency toward dependence upon Russia and, at the same time, serve to check Chiang's desire to attempt liquidation of the Communists by civil war. The Generalissimo will naturally be opposed to the dispatch of American observers to Communist China. His permission cannot be obtained through ordinary diplomatic and military channels. The request should come to him directly from the President, who can overcome any initial refusal by exercise of our ample bargaining power.16

A contemporary example of such a mission to a Communist faction within an Allied state existed, for when Davies wrote his letter a British military mission under Brigadier Fitzroy Maclean had been for several months with Marshal Josip Broz Tito in Yugoslavia, and Maclean had been at SEXTANT when Davies was there.17

Apparently the President liked the suggestion, for on 9 February he asked the Generalissimo if an American observer mission might go to north China.18 The request arrived at an inauspicious moment. It nearly crossed a report from Stilwell to Marshall that a crisis in Nationalist-Communist relations might be at hand. Stilwell understood that the Nationalist armies facing the Communists in north China had been built up to 500,000 men, that the Nationalists were accumulating supplies for this force, while the Communists for their part were reinforcing. Stilwell thought it unlikely that there would be a civil clash before the end of the war with Japan. Reminding Marshall that this mutual hostility in north China was hindering the war against Japan, he reported that for obvious reasons the Japanese Domei News Agency was goading both sides.19

As predicted by Davies on 23 January, the Generalissimo refused the


President's request, in polite terms, by agreeing that such an American military mission might visit any territory in north China which acknowledged the authority of the Nationalist Government. The President accepted gracefully and stated that such a mission would be dispatched in the near future to north China.20 The President's reply did not mention the Generalissimo's limits on such a mission's movements, and very tactfully he soon began to persuade the Generalissimo to remove them.21

An indication of the attitude the Generalissimo's government might contemplate adopting toward the Chinese Communists was offered when his Chief of Ordnance, Gen. Yu Ta-wei, asked Hearn if lend-lease arms could be used against the Communists. Hearn was understood by Ambassador Gauss to have replied that the Chinese could not successfully explain such an action to the people of the United States.22

SEAC and Stilwell Obtain Pressure on Chiang

Though after January 1944 there were several major points at issue between them regarding Allied strategy for Southeast Asia, Mountbatten and Stilwell agreed that Y-Force should hasten to join the Burma campaign, and both wanted the President and the Prime Minister to put pressure on the Generalissimo to that end. Mountbatten and Stilwell had discussed their personal relationship on 4 March and patched up their differences. Then the long-expected Japanese attack on India had begun. The diversion of Hump transports it had caused and the obvious menace which it posed placed new strains on Anglo-American strategy in Southeast Asia.

Stilwell responded to the situation by suggesting to Mountbatten that an advance by Y-Force would create a major diversion in the Japanese rear area which would be the answer to SEAC's problems, and, by implication, to Stilwell's immediate troubles as well. Could not Mountbatten place the matter before his superiors and ask them to use their good offices with the Chinese?23 A day later Stilwell sent a similar request to the Operations Division of the War Department, with an information copy to General Marshall. Vividly and strongly, he told the War Department that if ever he needed help, now, right now, was the time. Pressure on the Generalissimo to move, pressure from the highest quarters, was desired. If the Y-Force took the old jade center of Teng-chung,


well north of the Burma Road, the Ledo Road could take that route and bypass the heavy Japanese concentration on the Burma Road.24

Stilwell's suggestion met with Mountbatten's hearty approval. General Sultan, Stilwell's deputy in New Delhi, was asked to relay SEAC's approval to Stilwell, while down in Ceylon the SEAC staff began to prepare an appropriate message to London and Washington.25 As sent, the SEAC radio placed Mountbatten's command squarely behind Stilwell's views on Y-Force:

I have discussed with General Stilwell question of advance by Chinese forces in Yunnan. We agree immediate advance would be of value because it will contain 56 Division and may cause diversion of other troops which would otherwise be used against Wingate or Stilwell or support offensive against 4 Corps front. We both feel that only a personal approach from the Prime Minister and the President through their representatives in Chungking is likely to succeed with Generalissimo. Line might be taken that Ledo Force is already achieving great success, while presence in Burma of Wingate's forces opens up possibility of victory in Imphal area where enemy may find himself committed to an offensive which he cannot sustain with his rear threatened. Participation of Chinese from Yunnan in victory which it is hoped to achieve would be of great value to morale of Chinese Army and people. Their chance of success is considerable since they will initially only have to overcome one division, at present holding a very extended front, and reinforcements can only be provided by Japanese at expense of forces already committed on other fronts. On the other hand position of China in eyes of the world is bound to suffer if only Chinese force which has taken part in victory is that trained and led by Americans. I should be most grateful if an approach could be made with extreme urgency.26

Mountbatten's urgings brought a quick response, for the President addressed the Generalissimo two days later, and used all of Mountbatten's arguments. In sequence, Roosevelt reviewed the "magnificent" pounding the Chinese Army in India was giving the Japanese 18th Division, the implications of the Arakan and Imphal fighting in tying down the major portion of the Japanese strength, and the Chindits' threat to the Japanese supply lines. The President warned that if the Allies failed to seize the opportunity thus presented, the Japanese might recover and take the offensive. Showing his grasp of the North Burma Campaign, the President predicted that the 18th Division would require reinforcements and that they would be obtained by withdrawing a regiment from the 56th Division along the Salween. The President wanted the Generalissimo to have these views "at length and in considerable detail in the hope that you will give orders to the commander of your Yunnan force to cooperate in developing what appears to be a great opportunity."27

After presenting the President's message to the Chinese, Hearn urged Stilwell to fly to Chungking because there appeared to be signs the Chinese


were willing to send two divisions to reinforce the Chinese Army in India.28 When he conferred with the Generalissimo on 28 March, Stilwell found the Chinese had answered the President.

The Generalissimo Warns of Trouble

By coincidence, the Generalissimo had chosen to address the President on 17 March, and naturally his radio crossed the President's response to Mountbatten's pleadings. The Chinese leader told Roosevelt:

For your personal information, I should like to advise you of recent significant developments which are matters of grave concern to the prosecution of the war in the Far East.

First, on the 11th instant while Chinese troops stationed at Sinkiang were engaged in suppressing bandits at Hopan, a place situated between Chengkwa and Kitai about 70 kilometers from the borders of Outer Mongolia, they were bombed and machine-gunned twice by planes which flew over from the direction of Outer Mongolia. The first batch consisted of two planes and the second ten. They all bore the soviet red Star insignia. On the 12th, planes bearing the same insignia came twice and dropped bombs. On the 13th, they re-appeared and machine-gunned. This cannot be construed as a local incident, but is a very significant indication of the Soviet Far Eastern policy both now and in the future.

Second, though the Chinese Communist party have outwardly professed support of the Chinese Government's policy of resistance against Japanese aggression, since February they have been secretly assembling their guerrilla units from various places and concentrating them in North Shensi, evidently preparing for an opportune moment to rise in revolt and take Sian [Hsian], the base of our operations in the Yellow River valley. The indications are manifest. Considering the matter objectively, it does not seem likely that the Chinese Communist party would dare to make such a move without some understanding having been reached between the Soviet and the Japanese.

Third, I have information that the Japanese in the near future will launch a large-scale offensive in the Chengchow-Loyang area on the Hankow-Peiping railroad line. The enemy is moving troops from Manchuria for this purpose.

Fourth, regarding definite intelligence reports of the Japanese navy, I shall shortly forward same to you.29

Having dispatched this warning, the Generalissimo then found himself obliged to answer the President's 17 March radio. This he did on the 27th. He said bluntly that American observers could not visit Communist territory, and said it was "impossible" to have an offensive from Yunnan. In his previous discussion of affairs in China, the Generalissimo had referred to a Japanese ground offensive in muted tones. Now, the topic disappeared into the general assertion that China should not launch an offensive into Burma because she was too weak:

The situation in China theater has recently become so grave that I deem it imperative to acquaint you with it. The state of affairs in Sinkiang has become very tense since its invasion by Soviet planes and Outer Mongolian troops about the middle of this month, with the result that our army and people's belief in concerted action by the United Nations has been


Map 17
Situation in China
15 March 1944


somewhat shaken; in other words, our army and people are beginning to ask themselves whether the United Nations' pledges and declarations still hold good.

At the present moment what China can possibly do to fulfill her obligation to the Allies as well as to discharge her duty to herself are: (1) to devote all her energy and resources to the maintaining of the various fronts in the China theater against any surprise attack by the enemy, this theater being the only land base from which to bomb Japan Proper on a large scale and with certain effect; and (2) To prepare herself for the day--may it not be distant--when Allied land and naval forces can be dispatched to the China coast and the Chinese Army can co-operate with them in consolidating our position in East Asia, which will be an important base for the invasion of Japan. These are the most important tasks which have devolved on China today and which constitute at the same time an obligation she has assumed to the Allies.

In this connection it may be observed that seven years of war have taxed China's material and military strength to such an extent that to insist upon her doing something beyond her power would be to court disaster, the consequences of which would seriously affect not only Yunnan and Szechwan, but also the whole situation in this theater of war. Should this happen, the Japanese would invade Yunnan and Szechwan, the revolt in Sinkiang and the communists activities in Shensi would assume a new aspect in furtherance of their plan of bolschevizing [sic] this country so that our Government would not be in a position to do its part in this global war, and the Allies in East Asia would be deprived of a base of operations against Japan.

For these reasons, and bearing in mind our obligation to the Allies and our duty to ourselves, I am of the opinion that as long as our line of defences has not been adequately strengthened, it is impossible for our main forces to undertake an offence from Yunnan. In the course of our conversations at Cairo I told you that as soon as the British began large scale amphibious operations along the Burma coast, our main forces would launch a vigorous attack on Burma with all their might. That promise will be made good when the time comes. I realize that reinforcements should be sent to Burma in view of the military situation there and that although this does not fall within scope of our work, still we should do what we can in compliance with your request. I have therefore decided to dispatch to India by air as many of our troops in Yunnan as can be spared in order to re-enforce the troops in Ledo, thus enabling the latter to carry on their tasks of defeating the enemy.

In conclusion I may add that so far as land operations in East Asia are concerned, China bears a very heavy responsibility; and, appreciative of the kind and sympathetic assistance you have been rendering her all these years, she is determined to discharge that responsibility to the best of her ability. I have explained to you quite frankly the present situation in this theater of war and the plan of coping with it, in the hope that you will continue to place confidence in my country and in one who is your good friend. China, on her part, will not fail to do her utmost in the discharge of her responsibility vis-à-vis the Allies.30

It must be noted that the Generalissimo's objections were of the most general nature. Possibly he felt that his 29 April 1943 pledge to the President--"The Generalissimo also wishes me [T. V. Soong] to transmit to you his personal assurance that in the event the enemy attempts to interrupt the air offensive by a ground advance on the air bases, the advance can be halted by the existing Chinese forces"--would cause an intolerable loss of face if for any reason he hinted that he could not defend the east China airfields.31 Or again


it may be that he saw no specific reasons for alarm. Certainly a SEAC amphibious assault on the Arakan coast could not remedy a crisis in east China.

Whatever his reasoning, the Generalissimo's radio was not well received in Washington. The President had been following the course of the North Burma Campaign with close attention in the White House map room. He saw the pins that marked the Chinese Army in India move deeper into Burma. On the far side of the map he saw the massed array of pins that represented the Y-Force along the Salween. Facing the Y-Force were the few scattered red pins that marked the Japanese 56th Division. The President saw a great strategic opportunity, and simply could not understand why the Generalissimo was so hesitant to attack one Japanese division.32

When in December 1941 Churchill had come to Washington, he found the President and his closest advisers believing that China was a great military power and classing her armies with the Russian.33 Now, in 1944, the Generalissimo was reluctant to send a whole group of these armies, which the President had rated on a par with the Russian, against the 56th Division.

What the map room pins did not show, but what the Generalissimo may well have had in mind, was the current state of the Y-Force. In the last year, considerable progress had been made in supplying artillery and ammunition to that force, and by 20 April the Chinese had been given, for example, 244 75-mm. pack howitzers. But the Chinese had never brought the Y-Force divisions up to strength, either by supplying replacements or by merging understrength units. With regard to the intangible but vital elements of training and morale, the picture was uncertain. The Chinese staffs and services of supply did not inspire confidence in those Americans who worked with them, for they did not appear up to their professional responsibilities. The underlying reality of the situation was that the Generalissimo was being urged to attack about 11,000 well-trained and well-led Japanese and 36 guns with 72,000 Chinese of indifferent quality whose several headquarters had been issued 244 American cannon in addition to their Chinese ordnance.34

The President Demands Action

The first reaction from the President to the Generalissimo's excusing China from any offensive effort was a mere formal acknowledgment. Then in the next few days a message from Stilwell to Marshall arrived in Washington describing the situation created by the Japanese attack on India in somber tones to prepare higher authority for a possible success of the Japanese offensive.35 In


all probability, the grave prospects for the Allied cause in Asia which this message placed before the Chief of Staff and the President led to the drafting of a note from the President in language that showed Mr. Roosevelt's attitude had completely changed from his complaisance of March 1943. His radio of 3 April 1944 said:

The present offensive by the Japs in the Imphal area is directed primarily against the line of communication which makes possible the transportation of materials to China. If the Japanese succeed in their intentions in this drive, they can then concentrate against and destroy the Ledo Force and turn against your YOKE Force at their leisure.

The British are ably meeting the strong Japanese threat to the line of communication to China and the supply route which supports your troops in the Mogaung Valley.

While heavy fighting is in progress in West Burma and on the Arakan Coast, the Salween front has remained quiet and as a result the Japanese have been able to divert elements of the Fifty-sixth Division to meet Stilwell's thrust down the Mogaung Valley and the threat of the Long Range Penetration Groups in North Burma. It is inconceivable to me that your YOKE Forces, with their American equipment, would be unable to advance against the Japanese Fifty-sixth Division in its present depleted strength. To me the time is ripe for elements of your Seventy-first Army group to advance without further delay and seize the Tengchung-Lungling areas. A shell of a division opposes you on the Salween. Your advance to the west cannot help but succeed.

To take advantage of just such an opportunity, we have, during the past year, been equipping and training your YOKE Forces. If they are not to be used in the common cause our most strenuous and extensive efforts to fly in equipment and to furnish instructual personnel have not been justified. They should not be held back on the grounds that an amphibious operation against the South Burma coast is necessary prior to their advance. Present developments negate such a requirement. The Jap has deployed the bulk of seven divisions in his operations on the Arakan, the Chindwin, and in the Mogaung Valley.

I do hope you can act.36

In this radio the President did not refer to the question of the American military mission to north China, and the subject was dropped for the time being. The War Department believed it was far less important than persuading the Generalissimo to send his armies across the Salween and to permit the Chinese Army in India to continue its advance down the Mogaung valley of north Burma.37

When the President's strong message arrived in Chungking, the Generalissimo was ill, so Hearn gave it to Madame Chiang for delivery. At a tea party in honor of U.S. Army Day, Madame Chiang called General Hearn to one side and expressed her concern over the tone of the President's message. She feared that such a communication from Roosevelt would jeopardize rather than improve the chances of moving the Y-Force across the Salween River. As Madame Chiang continued, Hearn concluded that the message had not been


delivered. He so reported to Marshall who relayed Hearn's impressions to Roosevelt.38 The President immediately ordered that future messages from him to the Generalissimo were to be delivered in person to the Generalissimo by the senior U.S. Army officer present in Chungking. The English text was to be accompanied by a translation.39

Within a few days after the President had rejected the Generalissimo's protestations of 27 March 1944, fresh warnings of trouble in China were delivered, this time by Chennault to Stilwell. Where the Generalissimo had spoken in general terms, Chennault was specific. Sharing the general unawareness that the Japanese since the summer of 1943 had moved five good divisions from China to face the Allies elsewhere, and looking rather at the new and menacing Japanese concentrations to the north and south of Honan Province, Chennault put his warnings in the dramatic phrase that the disposition of the Japanese ground forces was the most menacing since Pearl Harbor. He believed that they had planned two offensives, one to overrun the Honanese link of the Peiping-Hankow railroad, the other to take Changsha. "In considering the likelihood of effective resistance to these anticipated offensives," wrote Chennault, "I need not point out to you the underlying weakness of the Chinese Armies." Chennault did not believe he could meet a determined Japanese air offensive and still give proper air support to the Chinese Armies.

General Chennault argued that his problems were basically those of logistics. His supply level in east China was but 40 percent of that necessary, and the eastern line of communications could deliver but 2,500 tons a month. Chennault suggested the following steps: (1) deliver 8,000 tons of aviation supplies to China in May 1944 and build up thereafter to 10,000 in July; (2) give fullest support to improvement of the eastern line of communications; (3) establish first reserves of 10 percent of total air strength in China and an equal amount in India. If these steps, or a massive diversion of supply tonnage from the B-29's, could not be taken, then there was nothing left but to tell Washington the security of the China base was in doubt, and to tell the Generalissimo he could not have effective air cover for his armies.40


Chennault's requests reached Stilwell at an awkward time. The Japanese were placing heavy pressure on India, and Mountbatten, who was Stilwell's superior, had diverted twenty transports from the Hump only three weeks earlier. If the Japanese went on to Assam, all would be over in CBI. In his reply, therefore, Stilwell stated that until the Imphal situation improved he saw no possibility of increasing the flow of supplies to Chennault. In Stilwell's opinion, the Combined Chiefs of Staff would not give priority to meeting an anticipated Japanese offensive in China when there was an actual and current crisis in India. "You will simply have to cut down on activity to the point where you can be sure of reasonable reserves for an emergency." Chennault's 8 April letter did not reach Stilwell until about 21 April. Meanwhile on 12 April, Stilwell warned Chennault (presumably because of the current attempts by the President to persuade the Generalissimo to commit the Y-Force) not to send a gloomy estimate of the situation to the Chinese leader.41

The Chinese Decide To Cross the Salween

No formal reply was ever sent by the Generalissimo to the President's final demand that China attack. However, over the next ten days, the members of the National Military Council argued the merits of crossing the Salween River among themselves and with General Hearn. Hearn ordered Dorn, chief of staff of the American personnel working with the Y-Force, to come to Chungking to present the latest and most complete data on Y-Force's state. Dorn in turn persuaded Gen. Wei Li-huang to include Gen. Hsiao I-hsu, chief of staff of the Chinese Expeditionary Force, in a Chinese deputation.

During the first few days of the discussions it seemed obvious to the Americans that even the Chinese senior officers closest to the Generalissimo were not familiar with the contents of the President's 4 April message. However, the gist of a subsequent message of 10 April from Marshall to Hearn was given to the Chinese staff. Making a logical extension of the President's views, the radio from Marshall told CBI Theater authorities that unless the Y-Force moved, lend-lease shipments for it should end. Stilwell instructed Hearn to comply at once. Accordingly, Hearn told the War Department that he proposed to transfer the Y-Force's April allocation of Hump tonnage, 734 tons, to the Fourteenth Air Force. Furthermore, he planned to cancel the China National Aviation Corporation's contract to fly lend-lease to China and return the corporation's lend-lease aircraft to the Air Transport Command.42


Word of Hearn's intentions soon reached Gens. Ho Ying-chin, Lin Wei, and Liu Fei, whom the members of Stilwell's staff had long believed to be opposed to the Burma campaign. Meanwhile, General Hsiao, who realized the implications of Hearn's intended action, was urging the principal Chinese military personages, including the Generalissimo, to order an advance by Y-Force. On 12 April, Gen. Lin Wei asked Hearn to hold back orders on the tonnage cut for Y-Force because he was sure that there would be "positive action" on the use of Wei's troops within forty-eight hours. Hearn of course agreed to wait for two days, but, considering that the Chinese tended to vacillate and delay, he meanwhile insisted that the Chinese agree among themselves on a definite plan of attack, a command arrangement, and a date.43

On the evening of 12 April, Dorn held a dinner party for the various Chinese dignitaries present for these exchanges over the Y-Force. He may well have had in mind the ancient practice of the Persian general staff, which, it has been said, offered the advantage of combining the impetuosity of youth, the genius of experience, and the caution of maturity by the simple device of considering a plan in all stages of intoxication and sobriety. As Dorn and Hsiao moved about the room, the trend of the guests' comments was all toward an offensive. At the end of the evening, General Ho was willing to confer with the Generalissimo about the matter. Next morning, Ho was still sure that matters could be arranged.

True to his promise, General Ho, as Minister of War and Chief of Staff, gave formal approval to the Salween crossing on 14 April. In accord with Chinese custom, he gave the word before witnesses and made it binding by stamping his chop on the order. But before he placed the irrevocable seal in place, Ho made what Dorn thought a final attempt to block the operation.

At the last moment, Ho asked Dorn for his personal assurance that the American Y-Force Operations Staff (Y-FOS) would assume four responsibilities during the early phase of the campaign: (1) to ferry 50,000 Chinese troops across the Salween; (2) to give air support; (3) to co-ordinate the American-trained artillery battalions; (4) to share Wei Li-huang's command responsibility of feeding and supplying munitions to the Chinese Expeditionary Force. Dorn was intimately aware of the neglected state of Wei's forces, and he believed that he would have to act for Stilwell in agreeing. Dorn surmised that Ho expected him, a junior staff officer, to decline, thereby excusing the Chinese from the operation. Ho pressed his seal upon the paper; the operation was formally agreed to.44

Having promised to attack the 56th Division, General Ho hastened to assume for China full responsibility for the decision to cross the Salween River. Addressed


to Marshall, his radio of 14 April was understood by the Americans to be China's reply to the President's 4 April message:

China has been working on plans for offensive action against Japanese with full intention to put them into effect, using troops which have not received American equipment as well as YOKE Force. China has always realized her position with regard to offensives by United Nations, and it has only been because of time and lack of essential equipment that such action has not taken place before this time. You can rely on China doing her share, but it is hoped that you understand her difficulties. Decision to move part of YOKE Force across Salween was made on initiative of Chinese without influence of outside pressure, and was based on realization that China must contribute its share to common war effort.

Marshall acknowledged Ho's pledge, and promised to relay the good news to Roosevelt at Warm Springs, Georgia. Meanwhile, Hearn restored Y-Force's full tonnage allocations.45

Chennault Renews His Warnings

Immediately after the Chinese agreed to drive across the Salween toward Burma, Chennault again warned that the Japanese were about to move in east China, and by implication urged cancellation of the Salween offensive. On 15 April, at the Generalissimo's request, Chennault as Chief of Staff, Chinese Air Force, submitted to the Generalissimo an estimate of the situation with respect to the air war in China. Chennault's air estimate was very similar to his 8 April letter to Stilwell, but with some significant additions. It will be recalled that on 12 April Stilwell had ordered Chennault not to submit such a paper to the Chinese leader.46

General Chennault wrote to the Generalissimo: "It is unnecessary to point out that all the new military equipment brought into China in the past two years has been assigned to the Chinese Armies on the Salween Front. Both equipment and many tens of thousands of troops have actually been borrowed for the Salween front from the Chinese forces which must meet the enemy offensives in Central and East China." In his next paragraph Chennault continued "In addition to resisting the two enemy offensives [which he was predicting], it is desired that the Chinese ground forces assume the offensive themselves, with the objective of taking Ichang, Shasi, and perhaps Hankow."47 Chennault therefore in mid-April 1944 set a very high rating on the capabilities of the Chinese forces, for the Japanese held Hankow with eight divisions. A Chinese attack on eight Japanese divisions was of a different order of magnitude from one across the Salween on the 56th Division.

After listing for the Generalissimo the logistic difficulties that hobbled the Fourteenth Air Force, Chennault closed with the warning:


Under the circumstances, therefore, it is necessary to inform your Excellency that the combined air forces in China, excluding the VLR [B-29] project, may not be able to withstand the expected Japanese air offensive and will certainly be unable to afford air support to the Chinese ground forces over the areas and on the scale desired. In order to put the air forces on a footing to accomplish these missions, drastic measures to provide them with adequate supplies and adequate strength must be taken. As the Japanese threat appears to be immediate, such measures should be taken without further delay.48

On completing his study, Chennault tried to give a copy to General Hearn. Hearn was ill, so without further delay, Chennault presented his estimate to the Generalissimo. The following day a copy was left with General Ferris, who was acting as chief of staff vice Hearn. Circulated among Stilwell's principal staff officers in Chungking, Chennault's estimate drew emphatic dissents. G-2 stated that while officially the Chinese professed great fear of an offensive by the Japanese, Chinese intelligence saw no indications and was unconcerned. G-3 rejected Chennault's statement that the Chinese divisions in Yunnan had been borrowed from other fronts in China, observing: "The implication of this paragraph is that China will fall because the ground forces are employed in the wrong place."49 Apparently, Chennault's 15 April estimate was about three weeks in coming to Stilwell's attention.

At this time, informational copies of the 8 and 10 April 1944 exchanges between Chennault and Stilwell were circulating among interested headquarters all the way up to General Arnold of the AAF in Washington. Throughout April, and indeed later, Chennault believed his warnings were being ignored. Actually they caused serious concern all along the chain of command. General Stratemeyer in India was alarmed because final preparations were being made for reception of the B-29's in China. MATTERHORN would be useless if Stratemeyer and his staff read Chennault's radios correctly. Other echelons reacted similarly. Headquarters, CBI Theater, considered curtailing Chennault's operations so that there might be ample fighter cover for MATTERHORN against the Japanese air offensive Chennault was predicting. Arnold suggested that the Fourteenth Air Force receive the major share of all Hump tonnage. Operations Division was so alarmed that it persuaded the AAF to delay MATTERHORN until Stilwell was sure the B-29's could be safely based in China. Stratemeyer immediately queried Chennault on this point and suggested a conference at Dinjan, India, to cover the entire matter with Stilwell.50

On 16 April Chennault declined to meet Stilwell and Stratemeyer. He assured


General Stratemeyer that he could defend the Cheng-tu B-29 base. Claiming that his 8 April letter had been misunderstood, Chennault explained his "intentions were to acquaint and point out the increased danger of hostile air attack if Peking-Hankow Railroad is held by Japs." Chennault, therefore, saw grave danger, but now appraised it as "increased danger of hostile air attack."51

Operation ICHIGO

The planning for Japan's 1944 offensive in China, an operation whose opening phases would form an ominous background to the Chinese offensive across the Salween, began in the fall of 1943. Japanese staff studies then weighed the advantages to be gained by taking the east China airfields and preventing air raids on Japan, the disruption of Chinese activities in south China, the opening of secure land communications to Southern Army via Indochina, and the overthrow of the Nationalist regime. Further study focused on one objective that would satisfy the concern felt by Imperial General Headquarters about the menace of the B-29's, and meet the situation that faced China Expeditionary Army as a result of the Fourteenth Air Force's attacks on its lines of communications. This objective was the east China airfields, the current base for Chennault's tactical aircraft, and a potential base for the B-29's.52 (Map 18*)

In the later opinion of General Okamura, who in January 1944 commanded North China Area Army and subsequently assumed command of all the Japanese forces in China, the "extremely effective" attacks of the Fourteenth Air Force made it very difficult to supply the Japanese forces in the Hankow area. Because the Japanese air force was unable to check Chennault's airmen, the Japanese had no alternative "but to plan to destroy Chennault's bases of operation from the ground."53

On 17 January 1944 Imperial General Headquarters resolved to order China Expeditionary Army, Gen. Shunroku Hata commanding, to seize the east China airfields, and take the Hunan-Kwangsi, Canton-Hankow, and Peiping-Hankow railways. After the war, General Okamura recalled that the Peiping-Hankow line had to be taken over by the Japanese because the Fourteenth Air Force attacks on Japanese river shipping along the Yangtze River were making that line of communications "extremely unsafe."

ICHIGO, therefore, had its limits. It did not at any time aim at taking China's capital, Chungking, or the Hump terminal, Kunming. Nor was there any co-ordination between ICHIGO and the Japanese drive on Imphal. Looking back on the war years, Hata thought it unfortunate that Imperial General

*For an explanation of enemy unit symbols, see note 82(3), page 42, above.


Map 18


Headquarters had given no instructions about co-ordination or co-operation between the two operations. Hata's staff paid little attention to Stilwell's operations in north Burma and did not consider that the Japanese offensive against Imphal concerned them:

That is, it believed that the operational objectives of the U.S. forces were to reopen the North Burma land route to support Chiang Kai-shek's forces and to check Japanese forces' advance on India and it thought very little of them. It did not have the acute perception to see that the U.S. forces operations in Burma were a part of the India-Burma-China-Pacific Operation.54

The reinforcements that Imperial General Headquarters sent to China seem to have been planned to provide artillery and service troops for Hata's divisions, most of which had little of either and so were ill adapted to active campaigning. From Manchuria there came one division, the 27th, four battalions of field artillery, four battalions of mobile antiaircraft artillery, two mortar battalions, three battalions of engineers, four field replacement units, six animal transport companies, and fifteen motor transport companies. Three air regiments were also transferred. These were all to return to Manchuria by the beginning of 1945. From Japan Imperial General Headquarters sent one independent infantry brigade, two battalions of mobile antiaircraft artillery, two companies of antiaircraft machine guns, four field replacement units, plus signal, road construction, transport, and medical units. In China Hata organized two regiments of engineers, two battalions of artillery, and signal units.

Since a number of Hata's divisions were organized as Class C units, and therefore had no artillery, Imperial General Headquarters intended to raise some to B standard, with six batteries of artillery, and others to A, with three battalions.55 It may be assumed the artillery reinforcements were for that end. But since the 32d and 35th Divisions were to be sent out of China in the spring of 1944, obviously Hata was not going to receive major reinforcements for ICHIGO. And, after the completion of ICHIGO, two more divisions were to be sent from China to Manchuria, and three from China to French Indochina.56

Imperial General Headquarters also ordered Hata to make maximum use of local resources. All that was sent to China to augment Hata's supplies were 10,560,000 gallons of gasoline for trucks and 2,640,000 gallons of aviation gasoline, plus enough ammunition, as a postwar Japanese account rather vaguely put it, to sustain four divisions in one engagement. In 1943 Chennault and his adherents had argued that the Japanese could find troops to overrun the east China airfields only by withdrawing garrisons from the Pacific and thereby


sacrificing their conquests. But when the time came for their major effort in China, the Japanese continued their policy of transferring veteran divisions from China to face the Allies elsewhere.57

Beginning in early February 1944 the significant Japanese redeployments for ICHIGO were made south of the Great Wall, within Hata's command. Japanese units from north China moved south and east, leaving vacuums into which it seems reasonable to assume Communist guerrilla units moved. Thus, the Mongolia Garrison Army (Lt. Gen. Yoshio Kozuki) lost the 3d Tank Division. The North China Area Army (General Okamura) reassigned the 110th Division. In all, 7 of the 23 divisions of the Japanese military establishment in China were involved in such shifts. On the eve of its last offensive, China Expeditionary Army had 24 divisions, 12 independent mixed brigades, and 14 independent infantry brigades, plus 230 aircraft of the newly activated 5th Air Army (Lt. Gen. Takuma Shimoyama). Total personnel numbered approximately 820,000 men.58 From the above, fifteen divisions, four independent mixed brigades, and one independent infantry brigade were ultimately to take part in the ICHIGO operation.59

General Hata divided ICHIGO into two major parts. The first, KOGO, was a preliminary to his major effort, TOGO. KOGO was to clear the Chinese off the railway lines that ran north to the Yellow River from Hankow. For the operation, North China Area Army, to drive south across the Yellow River, would use the 12th Army (one armored and three infantry divisions, one independent mixed brigade, one cavalry brigade, and one independent infantry brigade), under Lt. Gen. Eitaro Uchiyama, and would feint toward the west with some elements of the 1st Army, commanded by Lt. Gen. Teiichi Yoshimoto. About six weeks were allowed for the operation.

After KOGO had scattered the Chinese forces between the Yangtze and the Yellow River, "particularly the Nationalist," cautioned Imperial General Headquarters, and had cleared the rail lines from Peiping to Hankow, TOGO would unfold in three phases. Capture of Heng-yang was to be first. Kweilin and Liuchow were to be taken in the second. Phase three would include capturing Nan-ning, opening the Canton-Hankow railroad, and overrunning the Fourteenth Air Force's fields at Sui-chuan and Nan-hsiung. For TOGO, 11th Army (Hankow) would have nine divisions, the 23d Army (Canton), under Lt. Gen. Hisakazu Tanaka, would have two divisions for its drive north to meet the 11th Army, and one or two divisions would be in central reserve. TOGO was to begin in the summer and be completed in five months.60

To protect the great Japanese supply center at Hankow, General Hata


formed the Wuchang-Hankow Defense Army, and to it allotted the 39th Division, one independent mixed brigade, four independent infantry brigades, and three field replacement units. Up the river from Hankow, in order to protect Chungking from a drive up the Yangtze, the Generalissimo had the V and VI War Areas with forces that in October 1943 the Japanese had estimated at eleven armies. The size of the garrison the Japanese left at Hankow suggests a high degree of confidence that these eleven Chinese armies would not attack Hankow while ICHIGO was under way.61

East China's Defenders on the Eve of ICHIGO

The exact strength and quality of the Chinese forces that faced Hata were unknown to either Stilwell's or Chennault's headquarters.62 In Hata's path lay the IX War Area (Gen. Hsueh Yueh), and the IV War Area (Gen. Chang Fa-kwei). In Kweilin was the headquarters of Li Chi-shen (who bore the honorary title of marshal). He held powers of command over the east China war areas that the Americans believed to be nominal and purely honorary, though they regarded him as a powerful politician. Kweilin was also important as the headquarters of Gen. Pai Chung-hsi, who in the Nationalist Government hierarchy held the post of head of the Board of Training. He was important in his own right in that he commanded the loyalty of a group of divisions in east China whose exact strength was unknown but whose ability was highly rated by Americans and Chinese both. After the war the Japanese wrote they had expected to find the Changsha area held by 13 to 14 Chinese armies totaling perhaps forty divisions, and that about 20 Chinese armies numbering perhaps fifty-five divisions had been committed to the defense of Heng-yang.63

These forces had been little improved by the ZEBRA Force project, Stilwell's effort to build thirty good divisions in east China. As graduates of the Kweilin Infantry Training Center had begun to rejoin their units, Stilwell had wanted to capitalize on their training. By organizing Americans into traveling instructional groups and sending them into the field he hoped to create the beginnings of a liaison system such as that with the Y-Force on the Salween.

Accordingly, on 1 January 1944, a Z-Force Operations Staff, modeled on the Y-Force Operations Staff, was organized. As he had with the Y-FOS American staff, Stilwell kept command of the little group of Americans and named Brig. Gen. Malcolm F. Lindsey as chief of staff.64


General Lindsey set up a headquarters in Chungking, assembled his aides, and began work. Discussions with General Ho and the Chinese General Staff soon suggested to Lindsey and the Americans that the War Department decision to limit ZEBRA Force to 10 percent of its full complement of lend-lease had had an adverse effect on the Chinese. As the weeks went by, Lindsey and his staff received the very strong impression that so far as the Chinese were concerned lend-lease in quantity must precede any action on their part. The Chinese would not set up an over-all command structure for the ZEBRA divisions, and American hopes for an improved Chinese force in east China rapidly faded.65

After weeks of conferring, Lindsey's G-4, Col. Frederic W. Boye, on 26 March 1944 in effect urged scrapping the plan to build a second thirty divisions and accepting instead a Chinese suggestion:

  1. As has been and as will be brought out at G-4 conference, equipment for both Chinese and Americans will be meager. . . . It is to be noted however that we are getting some equipment which can be put to immediate use. . . .

  2. Personnel ordered to the [CBI] theater for Z Force has been cut on two occasions and is being side-tracked on all sides with the approval of the Theater Commander [Stilwell was using Z-Force personnel in Burma since the Chinese were not offering a great deal of cooperation to Z-Force]. In effect, therefore, we do not have sufficient for our initial essential group for our second 30 divisional installation. . . .

  3. The National Military Council has designated 30 divisions which are to comprise the Z Force. [Boye's marginal notes located these as eight in the Kweilin area, six along the Yangtze, and 16 near Hsian.] These divisions are so widely separated and so distant from possible supply bases that it would be impossible to maintain supply and communications to them under the limitations in this [China] theater. . . .

  4. The Chinese are reluctant to have Americans go empty-handed to their units to take over any training without equipment. If the equipment which will be available within the next year [under the War Department's 10 percent policy] is divided into 30 parts each such part will be practically zero. My information leads me to believe that in many divisions there is no training going on at the present time. This fact the Chinese wish to conceal and it is for that reason that they do not wish the Americans there.

  5. If we concentrated our Chinese equipment in the hands of a smaller number of units we would have something to work on with this fewer number. Likewise, the problem of turning equipment over to the Chinese would be solved in that we would retain American control along established routes to delivery to Army Headquarters. The Depot facilities at Kweilin are adequate to handle the storage and distribution involved. . . .


It is my conclusion and recommendation that we accept the Chinese proposal on the concentration of equipment now available and that we secure approval of the Theater Commander toward concentrating our immediate installations and training attentions to the four Armies generally located at Luichow, Kukong, Hengyang, and Changsha; that as soon as the basic essential equipment is in our hands we dispatch Army and Division teams by rail to those places and otherwise proceed with our training plan; that until other equipment is


forthcoming we supply no equipment to the other Armies and divisions in the river valley areas and to those further to the north.66

The pressure of events eventually began to force American plans into the shape Boye had recommended.

With the arrival in east China by the end of May 1944 of a very meager amount of arms for ZEBRA, the Generalissimo sent Lt. Gen. Lo Cho-ying to Kweilin to accept delivery. General Lo acted as a representative of the National Military Council and was in no sense a commander for the divisions the National Military Council had earlier named. As the Japanese were moving to their assembly areas, Lindsey in mid-April began preparing to move to Kweilin. He probably hoped that since a trickle of lend-lease was actually beginning to flow to east China, Lo might arrange for Lindsey to send U.S. instructional teams to the divisions designated by the Chinese for the ZEBRA project.67

On the night of 17 April, the Japanese 37th Division crossed the Yellow River. Was it one more training expedition, or a rice raid? That day, Headquarters, CBI Theater, radioed G-2 in Washington that recently 239 Japanese troop trains had been reported as passing through Hsinhsiang. Stilwell's staff also reported that the Japanese were building their independent mixed brigades into full-scale divisions, that there were ominous troop movements around Hankow.68 On 19 April, the Japanese 110th and 62d Divisions began moving south along the Peiping-Hankow railway, and the KOGO phase of ICHIGO was under way.69

Initial Reactions to ICHIGO

While the Japanese waited in their assembly areas along the Yellow River, Stilwell and Stratemeyer had been discussing the problem presented by Chennault's warnings of a Japanese air offensive. Obviously, Stilwell took Chennault's warnings at face value, for on 17 April Stilwell directed that Chennault's primary mission be defense of the B-29 fields at Cheng-tu "even at the expense of shipping strikes and support of the Chinese ground forces, dependent upon Japanese reaction to operations from the Chengtu area." The order reached Chennault about 26 April.70

Since the Japanese offensive was now under way, and was emphatically a ground offensive, Chennault was startled by a directive that tied him to defense of a remote area in west China. A strong force of fighters was based between


the Japanese and Cheng-tu. Weighing the problems of giving fighter cover to Cheng-tu against those of helping the Chinese to stop the Japanese drive and preparing to support the steadily approaching Chinese offensive on the Salween front, Chennault assured Stilwell that the defense of Cheng-tu was "child's play" in comparison and asked that Stilwell reconsider his directive.71

Stilwell replied:

I am glad to hear that the defense of Chengtu is child's play. I had gathered from your letter of April eight that the security of China as a base for MATTERHORN and other military operations against Japan might be in doubt. It is a relief to know that we have no problem at Chengtu and under these circumstances of course the question of action in emergency will not arise. Until it does, there is no intention of limiting the scope of your operations in any way.72

Therefore, Chennault would have operational freedom in meeting the Japanese threat. SOS in China went on with its plans to improve the eastern line of communications to Chennault's bases and approved Colonel Sheahan's recommendations.73 Attempts were made to make up the April shortfalls in tonnage deliveries to the Fourteenth Air Force. However, Stilwell refused to declare that there was an emergency under which he, as U.S. theater commander, could divert the B-29 stockpiles to the Fourteenth Air Force as Chennault had requested on 8 April. Simultaneously, Roosevelt refused a bid from the Generalissimo for command of the B-29's, giving him instead purely honorific control as Supreme Commander, China Theater.74

The Japanese launched the KOGO phase of their offensive as the Chinese-American Composite Wing was establishing itself on the airfields at Hsian, En-shih, Liang-shan, and Nan-cheng. The wing comprised six fighter and one medium bomber (B-25) squadrons, and its mission was to protect the B-29 fields at Cheng-tu, to destroy the Yellow River bridges in Japanese possession, and to neutralize the railway yards at Cheng-hsien and Kaifeng. The first mission against the Yellow River bridges was therefore flown by the Fourteenth Air Force on 28 April by twenty-seven B-24's escorted by ten P-51's. They found the bridges hidden under a low ceiling, and the mission was not effective. On 5 May a P-40 knocked out one span by dive bombing, but the Japanese quickly repaired it and supplemented the regular bridges with two ponton bridges across the silt flats of the river east of Kaifeng. Throughout the war the duel


BRIDGES ACROSS THE YELLOW RIVER were repeatedly bombed by planes of the Fourteenth Air Force.

between the airmen and the Japanese antiaircraft gunners continued, with the Japanese successful in keeping the crossings open for operation.75

As April ended, defense of Honan Province seemed hopeless. The fear of an attack by the Japanese toward Hsian, gateway to Chungking and Cheng-tu, thoroughly alarmed the Generalissimo. His commanders along the Yellow River were ordered to prevent a juncture by the Japanese in Tung-kuan (East Gateway) Pass, whose capture would open the way to Hsian. In turn, Hsian's fall might blow up a storm of dissatisfaction among the Generalissimo's war area commanders south of the Yangtze, for many of them, the Americans reported, were now hinting of their dissatisfaction with his conduct of the war.76

At this moment, Stilwell reacted to Chennault's sending the air estimate of 15 April to the Generalissimo. Considering that Chennault had acted in defiance of his explicit orders not to lay such a paper before the Generalissimo, Stilwell demanded an explanation in writing.77


While Chennault drafted his answer, the Generalissimo began applying pressure to bring more U.S. air power to bear against the Japanese. Calling General Ferris, then acting as chief of staff for Stilwell, to meet with him, the Generalissimo on 11 May asked that Stilwell order the fighter aircraft stationed at Cheng-tu to protect the B-29's in moving to Nan-cheng to support the Chinese forces in and around Loyang. He also asked that 500 tons of gasoline from the B-29 stores be diverted to support the fighters. The Generalissimo told Ferris that the next two weeks were vital, that he wanted the Fourteenth Air Force and his armies in close co-operation to try to stop the Japanese.78

Promptly transmitted to Stilwell by Ferris, the Generalissimo's request placed before Stilwell the problem of deciding when conditions in China Theater would reach a point that would force him to divert supplies from the B-29 project, MATTERHORN, to which the President attached such importance. Stilwell's remark at TRIDENT that "air coverage over nothing is in my opinion of little value" suggests he now hesitated to divert supplies from MATTERHORN for a tactical air effort because he expected it to be futile in view of the low quality of the troops for whom it was exerted. He may also have recalled Chennault's statement that the greatest danger was from a Japanese air offensive, which would surely strike at the menace to the Japanese homeland which the B-29's presented. But other measures Stilwell could approve. He approved Stratemeyer's suggestion that the B-24's of the 308th Bombardment Group haul gas and oil to Chennault, and permitted Chennault to use the Cheng-tu P-47's. Feeling little sympathy for the Generalissimo in a predicament that Stilwell believed the Chinese leader had brought on himself by failing to reorganize his army, he thanked Stratemeyer for the suggestion, then added: "We must remember that he [the Generalissimo] has been assured by experts that air power can do the trick, and now he craves to see it done."79

On 12 May a radio from Chennault presented the Fourteenth Air Force's reasons for its inability so far to stop the Japanese. Chennault told Stilwell what he had been able to do to meet the Generalissimo's demands for more air support. Three hundred and seventy tons of gasoline had been given to the Chinese Air Force and twelve P-51's had been sent to Liang-shan to reinforce the fighters there. Lack of airfields, limited supplies, dust, and poor communications made it difficult for the Fourteenth Air Force to operate in the Loyang- Cheng-hsien area. Chennault concluded: "lack of tonnage for aviation supplies, and a general disbelief in Japanese offensive plans" handicapped him in his efforts to prepare for the Honan campaign.80

Then Chennault's reply to Stilwell's demand for an explanation arrived.


In it Chennault pointed out that he was chief of staff of the Chinese Air Force, which post gave him direct access to the Generalissimo. He had tried to present the paper to Hearn before giving it to the Generalissimo but Hearn had been ill. Such conflicts as this were perhaps implicit in his dual status as Commanding General, Fourteenth Air Force, and as Chief of Staff, Chinese Air Force, Chennault continued, but he had left a copy of the study with Ferris so that Stilwell would be informed. Weighing this answer, Stilwell found himself far from satisfied with it. He concluded that Chennault had been insubordinate and should be relieved.81

Looking over Chennault's radios to him and the air estimate to the Generalissimo, Stilwell concluded that Chennault was beginning to prepare a case to which he might appeal in years to come. Taking up his pen, Stilwell poured out the bitterness accumulated in the long feud that had so handicapped his efforts to prepare an effective Chinese Army, and wrote his analysis of Chennault's tactics:

Chennault [stated]: The Chinese ground forces can protect the bases with the help of the 14th AF. . . .

Chennault has assured the Generalissimo that air power is the answer. He has told him that if the 14th AF is supported, he can effectively prevent a Jap invasion. Now he realizes it can't be done, and he is trying to prepare an out for himself by claiming that with a little more [Stilwell's italics], which we won't give him, he can still do it. He tries to duck the consequences of having sold the wrong bill of goods, and put the blame on those who pointed out the danger long ago and tried to apply the remedy.

He has failed to damage the Jap supply line. He has not caused any Jap withdrawals. On the contrary, our preparations have done exactly what I prophesied, i. e., drawn a Jap reaction, which he now acknowledges the ground forces can't handle, even with the total air support he asked for and got.82

The East China Army Written Off

Soon after Stilwell angrily penned the analysis quoted above, Chennault on 18 May asked that a directive be issued to meet the increasingly grave situation which threatened to involve loss of the east China bases, that adequate supply tonnage be given the Fourteenth Air Force, that CBI Theater headquarters furnish information on what action it was taking to meet the threat, and that information be furnished as to just what would constitute an emergency justifying Stilwell in using the B-29's and their supplies within China Theater to stop the Japanese.83


General Chennault supported his request for more supplies and a priority overriding that of the B-29's with an intelligence estimate by his staff that dismissed the Chinese Army as a factor in defending the east China airfields and by clear implication left the Fourteenth Air Force as the only Allied force that might save the situation. Estimating the strengths of the contending ground forces, Chennault's Assistant Chief of Staff, A-2, Col. Jesse C. Williams, set the Japanese strength in north China and in the Yellow River bend as eleven divisions, four independent mixed brigades, four infantry brigades, and one cavalry brigade. The Chinese, Colonel Williams went on, had not been willing to reveal their strength but no less than thirty-four divisions had been mentioned in reports from the front, some of them units with a reputation of being excellent troops.

Colonel Williams was not optimistic about the performance of the Chinese soldiers. He told Chennault: "Only at Szeshui [Ssu-Shui, Honan] have these troops offered advancing Japanese forces substantial resistance. Everywhere else Japanese columns have moved virtually at will. The Chinese have shown only slight evidence of either plan or capability to hamper Japanese movement or to regain lost territory." For the first time, he wrote, the Chinese were faced with Japanese divisions from Manchuria with plenty of mobile artillery and armor. This estimate, as has been noted, was in error, for General Hata had but one division (the 27th) from Manchuria. Because it was the first time since December 1941 that the Japanese had put forth a major effort in China, the contrast with their previous operations led Allied observers to explain it in terms of massive reinforcements from Manchuria.84

The speedy initial successes scored by ICHIGO, the poor combat performance of the forces of the east China commanders, the acute supply problems of the Fourteenth Air Force, and the discord among the local American headquarters were a somber backdrop to the proposed Chinese effort along the Salween.


After the conferences at Cairo and Tehran in December 1943, President Roosevelt's attitude toward China changed greatly. The Generalissimo's conduct at Cairo, the Soviet promise to enter the war against Japan, the Generalissimo's linking his request for a loan of $1,000,000,000 with the cancellation of the Andamans operation (BUCCANEER), Chinese insistence on making the Americans literally pay to fight in China, the contrast between Stilwell's defeating the Japanese 18th Division with three Chinese divisions and the


Generalissimo's reluctance to engage the weakened 56th with twelve Chinese divisions, all played their part in the President's appraisal of Chiang Kai-shek as a soldier and as a statesman. The President's messages to the Generalissimo grew steadily harsher in tone, culminating in a threat to cut off lend-lease if the Generalissimo continued his refusal to attempt to break the blockade of China.

While the President's attitude was changing, and as he leaned more toward support of Stilwell's views rather than the Generalissimo's, there were ominous Japanese stirrings in China. The Generalissimo as Supreme Commander, China Theater, had not organized an army able to meet eleven Japanese divisions on even terms, and Chennault's east China bases were now the object of a major Japanese effort. Unfortunately, Chennault blunted the effect of the Fourteenth Air Force's warnings by stressing, now the danger of a Japanese air attack, now the danger of a ground offensive, and by suggesting that the Chinese drive the Japanese from central China. The Japanese opened their own attack in mid-April, just after the Chinese, in response to the President's proddings, finally agreed to attack across the Salween into Burma.


Table of Contents ** Previous Chapter (7) * Next Chapter (9)


1. (1) Memo 103, Roosevelt for Generalissimo, 29 Dec 43 (delivered by Hearn). Item 1578, Bk 5, JWS Personal File. (2) See Chs. II and IV, above.

2. (1) Ltr, Hearn to authors, 16 Feb 50. OCMH. (2) Rad RELOT OT 80, Hearn to Stilwell, 21 Dec 43; Memo 104, Hearn for Mme. Chiang, 29 Dec 43. Items 1552, 1585, Bk 5, JWS Personal File. (3) Memo, Stilwell for Hearn, 11 Jan 44. Item 263, Bk 3, JWS Personal File. Hearn permitted Madame Chiang to read this memorandum.

3. CM-OUT 4277, Roosevelt to Generalissimo, 14 Jan 44. Item 1629, Bk 5, JWS Personal File. The text of this message was presented to the Generalissimo as Memorandum 118 on 15 January 1944.

4. (1) See Ch. II, above. (2) Rad RELOT 9, Hearn to Stilwell, 9 Jan 44. Item 1608, Bk 5, JWS Personal File.

5. (1) Teletype Transcript, Conv between Morgenthau and Somervell, 15 Jan 44. Memo with incls, Somervell for McNarney, 15 Jan 44; Rad, Morgenthau to Adler, Treasury Dept Representative in Chungking, 15 Jan 44. Somervell File, Vol IV, CBI 1944. (2) Memo, Somervell for Marshall, 15 Feb 44, sub: Exchange Policy With China. Somervell China File, A47-81. In this memorandum, Somervell reviews problems of the exchange rate.

6. (1) Rad STATE 105, Generalissimo to Roosevelt, 16 Jan 44 ABC 336 (China) 26 Jan 42, Sec 1A, A48-224. (2) Rad RELOT 26, Hearn to Stilwell, 18 Jan 44. Item 1640, Bk 5, JWS Personal File.

7. (1) Draft, Suggested Msg from President to Generalissimo, undated. Somervell China File, A47-81, and Somervell File, Vol IV, CBI 1944. (2) CM-OUT 8054, Somervell for Marshall to Stilwell, 20 Jan 44. (3) CM-OUT 8256, Somervell to Stilwell, 21 Jan 44. (4) Memo, Lt Col Paul G. Pennoyer, Asiatic Sec OPD, for Col Charles H. Caldwell, Asiatic Sec OPD, 20 Jan 44, sub: Chinese Currency Negotiations. ABC 336 (China) 26 Jan 42, Sec 1A, A48-224. Colonel Pennoyer followed the financial negotiations for OPD.

8. Messages exchanged during this ten-day period among State, Treasury, and War Department representatives in Chungking and officials in Washington, including the President, are in Somervell's China File, A47-81. The contents of Somervell's file suggest that it was his job to co-ordinate all policy statements among the interested departments after they had received and circulated the Generalissimo's ultimatum of 16 January 1944. Though the President's reply was sent to Chungking on 20 January 1944 as CM-OUT 8054, it was subsequently altered and was given to the Generalissimo on 26 January by Ambassador Gauss. Two days later Gauss, Hearn, and Treasury representatives were received by H. H. Kung, who had been designated by the Generalissimo to discuss the details of President Roosevelt's proposals. The 20 January text of the President's message and subsequent changes are in CM-OUT 8054, Roosevelt to Generalissimo, 20 January 1944, and CM-OUT 9567, Somervell to Hearn, 24 January 1944.

9. Memo, Dr. Edward C. Acheson, Financial Adviser to CG, USAF CBI, for Director of Material, Hq ASF, 20 Mar 44, sub: Course of Financial Negotiations in China, Rpts 3 & 4 (Feb-Mar 44). Somervell China File, A47-81.

10. Rad AGWAR 79, Generalissimo to Roosevelt, 2 Feb 44. Item 1697, Bk 5, JWS Personal File. Hearn and Gauss doubted that the Generalissimo was touring the "Hunan front" since they believed none existed. Hearn reported that the Generalissimo and his wife desired to vacate Chungking for Hunan for a short rest and to avoid decisions on the exchange rate. CM-IN 3024, Hearn to Somervell, 5 Feb 44.

11. Rad WAR 4457, Roosevelt to Generalissimo, 7 Feb 44. Item 1714, Bk 5, JWS Personal File.

12. History of CBI, Sec. III, Ch. XI, China Exchange.

13. Memo by Davies, Second Secy of Embassy detailed to Gen Stilwell, 24 Jun 43, sub: The American Stake in Chinese Unity: Proposals for Preliminary American Action. History of CBI, Sec. III, Ch. I, Item VI.

14. (1) See Ch. II, above. (2) The Stilwell Papers, on page 252, quotes Roosevelt to that effect.

15. Memo, Davies, New Delhi, 31 Dec 43, sub: Chiang Kai-shek and China. On 7 February 1944 Hopkins sent the memorandum to the President with the note: "Here is another interesting letter I got from John Davies Jr., who was with our Embassy in China and is now with Stilwell and Mountbatten." Bk IX, Hopkins Papers. Hopkins' note would suggest that Davies had written even earlier. However, such correspondence was not seen by the authors, and Davies' own covering letter suggests this is the first of a projected series. See Ltr, Davies to Hopkins, 31 Dec 43. Bk IX, Hopkins Papers.

16. Ltr, Davies to Hopkins, 23 Jan 44, with Incl, Memo, 15 Jan 44, sub: Observers' Mission to North China. Bk IX, Hopkins Papers.

17. Fitzroy Maclean, Escape to Adventure (Boston. Little, Brown & Company, 1950).

18. (1) A copy of the original 9 February radio is in Book IX, Hopkins Papers. (2) In Chungking, the President's radio was copied as a memorandum from General Hearn to Madame Kung on 19 February 1944, and presented to her with the request that she give the President's radio to Madame Chiang for the Generalissimo. Item 1726, Bk 5, JWS Personal File.

19. CM-IN 2373, Stilwell to Marshall, 4 Feb 44. (Probably originated by Hearn.)

20. Memo, Generalissimo to Hearn for President, 22 Feb 44; Memo, Hearn to Generalissimo for President, 2 Mar 44. Items 2023, 2054, Bk 6, JWS Personal File.

21. Memo, Hearn to Generalissimo for President, 22 Mar 44. Item 2126, Bk 6, JWS Personal File.

22. Copy, Memo for Admiral Leahy, no date, sub: U.S. Observers Mission to North China. Initialed "VE" (Vernon Evans), this copy was in the G-3 files of Hq CBI Theater, and was brought back to OCMH with other miscellaneous documents by Col. Harry L. Mayfield, former India-Burma Theater Historian, in August 1946. KCRC.

23. (1) See Ch. IV, above. (2) Rad FG 63, Stilwell to AMMDEL, 16 Mar 44. Item 71, Bk 6A, JWS Personal File.

24. CM-IN 11455, Stilwell to Marshall, 17 Mar 44.

25. Rad RE 473, Sultan to Stilwell, 17 Mar 44. Item 75, Bk 6A, JWS Personal File.

26. Rad SEACOS 116, Mountbatten to COS and JSM, 17 Mar 44. SEAC War Diary.

27. CM-OUT 4762, Roosevelt to Generalissimo, 17 Mar 44. Hearn relayed this message as Memorandum 163 to the Chinese. Item 2109, Bk 6, JWS Personal File.

28. Rad CFB 15004, Hearn to Stilwell, 19 Mar 44. Item 2117, Bk 6, JWS Personal File.

29. Rad AGWAR 184, Generalissimo to Roosevelt, 17 Mar 44. Item 2110, Bk 6, JWS Personal File.

30. (1) CM-IN 21368, Stilwell to Marshall, 30 Mar 44. (2) Msg, Generalissimo to Roosevelt, 27 Mar 44 (sent as Rad CFB 15407, 29 Mar 44). Item 2145, Bk 6, JWS Personal File.

31. Stilwell's Mission to China, Chapter IX, quotes the full text of the Generalissimo's 23 April 1943 pledge to Roosevelt.

32. Marshall Intervs, 6, 13 Jul 49. OCMH.

33. Winston S. Churchill, The Hinge of Fate (Boston. Houghton Mifflin Co., 1950), p. 13.

34. (1) A more detailed description of the Y-Force is given on pages 333-34, below. (2) SNF 215 has several rather disparaging reports on the Y-Force, dated October 1943. (3) The 56th Division had seven and a half battalions in May 1944. (Japanese Officers' Comments.) Its strength is given in Japanese Study 93, p. 41.

35. (1) Rad CFB 15442, Stilwell to Marshall, 30 Mar 44. Item 2146, Bk 6, JWS Personal File. (2) Rad, Stilwell to Marshall, 31 Mar 44; Rad TK 24, Stilwell to Marshall, 4 Apr 44. Items 98, 103, Bk 6A, JWS Personal File.

36. (1) Stilwell's Mission to China, Ch. VIII. (2) Rad WAR 17956, Roosevelt to Generalissimo, 3 Apr 44. Item 2164, Bk 6, JWS Personal File. Hearn relayed this message as Memorandum 175 to the Generalissimo on 4 April 1944.

37. (1) CM-OUT 25588, Marshall to Stilwell, 20 Apr 44. (2) The President renewed his proposals for a mission to north China during Vice-President Henry A. Wallace's mission in late June 1944. See Chapter X, below.

38. Rad CFB 15828, Hearn to Stilwell, 7 Apr 44; Rad CFB 15835, Mme. Chiang to Stilwell, 8 Apr 44; Rad CFB 15917, Hearn to Marshall, 10 Apr 44. Items 2179, 2181, 2194, Bk 6, JWS Personal File.

39. (1) Memo, Roosevelt for Marshall, 3 May 44; Memo, Gen McNarney for Roosevelt, 8 May 44, sub: Delivery of Msgs to Generalissimo from President. Item 58, Folder 1, Generalissimo Chiang Kai-shek (GMO CKS), OPD Exec 10. (2) CM-OUT 33493, Marshall to Stilwell, 7 May 44.

40. (1) Rad CAK 456, Chennault to Stilwell, 6 Apr 44. Item 2174, Bk 6, JWS Personal File. (2) Ltr, Chennault to Stilwell, 8 Apr 44; Rad CAK 595, Chennault to Stilwell, 10 Apr 44. Ltr, Chennault to Wedemeyer, 6 Jul 45 (hereafter, The Chennault-Wedemeyer Letter), Items 25, 26. WDCSA 091 China, 15 Aug 45. (3) Gen. Yasuji Okamura differed with Chennault's estimate of the Japanese situation on the ground that between summer 1943 and April 1944 the Japanese transferred four good divisions from China to Pacific areas and replaced them only with raw brigades. Okamura apparently forgot the 15th Division, which left China for Burma in summer 1943. Japanese Officers' Comments, Incl 3, Okamura. (4) Japanese Study 129, map facing page 30, shows the concentrations that Chennault referred to. Page 11 of the monograph lists Japanese troop movements in China.

41. (1) See Ch. V, above. (2) Rad SH 7, Stilwell to Chennault, 9 Apr 44. Item 112, Bk 6A, JWS Personal File. (3) Rad SH 18, Stilwell to Chennault, 12 Apr 44. SNF 31. (4) Rad SH 19, Stilwell to Chennault, 12 Apr 44. Item 2205, Bk 6, JWS Personal File. Chennault received Stilwell's message on 13 April 1944.

42. (1) CM-OUT 20146, Marshall to Stilwell, 7 Apr 44. (2) Rad CRA 966, Sultan to Hearn, 8 Apr 44; Rad CFB 15917, Hearn to Marshall, 10 Apr 44; Rad CHC 192, Stilwell to Hearn, 11 Apr 44; Rad CFB 15985, Stilwell to Marshall, 11 Apr 44; Rad CFB 15986, Hearn to Chennault, 11 Apr 44; Rad CFB 16010, Hearn to Stilwell, 12 Apr 44; Rad CFB 16029, Hearn to Stilwell, 12 Apr 44. Items 2185, 2194, 2195, 2196, 2197, 2201, 2203, Bk 6, JWS Personal File.

43. (1) Rad CFB 16029, Hearn to Chennault and Stilwell, 12 Apr 44; Rad SH 23, Stilwell to Hearn, 13 Apr 44; Rad 16021, Hearn to Stilwell, 13 Apr 44. Items 2203, 2209, 2210, Bk 6, JWS Personal File. (2) Stilwell Diary, 12 Apr 44.

44. (1) Ltr, Dorn to Stilwell, 16 Apr 44. SNF 35. (2) Interv with Dorn, May 48.

45. Rad CFB 16100, Ho for Hearn to Marshall, 14 Apr 44; Rad CFB 16145, Hearn to Marshall, 15 Apr 44; Rad WAR 23478, Marshall to Ho, 15 Apr 44; Rad CFB 16384, Ho for Hearn to Marshall, 21 Apr 44. Items 2214, 2220, 2225, 2250, Bk 6, JWS Personal File.

46. (1) Ltr, Ferris to Chennault, 8 May 44, with 1st Ind, Chennault to Ferris, 14 May 44, sub: Info for Theater Comdr. SNF 31. (2) Stilwell's order is radio cited in note 41(4).

47. Memo, Chennault for Generalissimo, 15 Apr 44, par. 4. SNF 31.

48. Ibid.

49. (1) Ind cited n. 46(1). (2) The comments of Stilwell's Chungking staff are on the covering slip with which Ferris circulated Chennault's estimate to G-2, G-3, G-4, and the air officer. SNF 31.

50. (1) Ltr and Rad cited n. 40(2). (2) Rad CAK 879, Chennault to Stratemeyer, 16 Apr 44; Rad SH 58, Stilwell to Chennault, 21 Apr 44; Memo, Stratemeyer for Chennault, 20 Apr 44, sub: VLR Opns from China; Rad CAK 1215, Glenn to Chennault, 24 Apr 44; Rad CAK 1284, Chennault to Stilwell, 26 Apr 44; Rad CHC 1016, Stilwell to Chennault, 30 Apr 44. The Chennault-Wedemeyer Letter, Items 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33. (3) Memo with Incls, Arnold for Handy, 17 May 44, sub: Opns of U.S. AAF Units from China. Case 375, OPD 381, A47-30.

51. Rad CAK 879, Chennault to Stilwell and Stratemeyer, 16 Apr 44. The Chennault-Wedemeyer Letter, Item 29.

52. (1) See Ch. I, above. (2) Japanese Study 45, p. 109.

53. Japanese Officers' Comments, Incl 3, Okamura.

54. (1) Japanese Studies 78, 129. (2) Stilwell's Mission to China, Ch. IX. (3) IGH Army Order 921, 17 Jan 44. (4) Japanese Officers' Comments, Incls 2, 3, Hata, Okamura.

55. (1) Japanese Study 129, p. 22. (2) Contemporary U.S. divisions all had thirty-six 105-mm. howitzers and twelve 155-mm. howitzers as an organic part of the division. This was regarded as the absolute minimum for operations against a weak adversary. Normal practice, on entering combat, was to attach added battalions of artillery.

56. Japanese Study 29, p. 22.

57. Bks VII, IX, Hopkins Papers. (2) Japanese Studies 78, 82, 129.

58. (1) Japanese Studies 78, 82, 129. (2) Japanese Officers' Comments, pp. 23-24. (3) IGH Army Order 928, 1 Feb 44; Order 933, 5 Feb 44; Order 945, 15 Feb 44. (4) Ltr, Murphy to Ward, 18 Nov 52. OCMH.

59. Japanese Officers' Comments.

60. (1) Japanese Studies 78, 129. (2) IGH Army Dirs 1810, / Jan 44; 1830, 1 Feb 44.

61. Japanese Studies 77, 78, 129, 130.

62. See notes 64(2) and 84(2), below.

63. (1) See section "The East China Crisis Grows," Chapter XI, below. (2) Japanese Study 78.

64. (1) See Ch. I, above. (2) History of Z-FOS, 1 Jan-31 Oct 1944. (Hereafter, History of Z-FOS.) OCMH. (3) Stilwell's keeping command of the Y-Force and Z-Force Operations Staffs was interpreted by Dorn as largely motivated by personnel problems within the American organization in CBI, not by any plans of personal advancement in China Theater. Moreover, correspondence from Dorn and Lindsey to the Chinese would then be by Brigadier Generals Dorn and Lindsey on behalf of Lieutenant General Stilwell so that the relatively junior Dorn and Lindsey would not be as it were directly addressing very senior Chinese officers.

65. (1) History of Z-FOS. (2) Z-Force Journal. KCRC.

66. Memo, Boye for Lindsey, 26 Mar 44, sub: Observations on Z-Force Problems. Boye's italics. OCMH.

67. (1) History of Z-FOS. (2) Recordings of Diary of 1st Lt Dwight E. Brewer, Adjutant Gen, Z-FOS. OCMH. (3) Extracts from Col Boye's diary. OCMH. (4) CM-IN 8737, Stilwell to Marshall, 11 Jun 44.

68. (1) Japanese Study 129. (2) CM-IN 13041, Hearn to MILID G-2 WDGS, 18 Apr 44.

69. Japanese Studies 78, 129.

70. (1) See pp. 314-16, above. (2) Memo, Stratemeyer for Chennault, 20 Apr 44, sub: VLR Opns From China. The Chennault-Wedemeyer Letter, Item 30.

71. Rad CAK 1284, Chennault to Stilwell, 26 Apr 44. The Chennault-Wedemeyer Letter, Item 32.

72. (1) Rad CMC 1016, Stilwell to Chennault, 30 Apr 44. The Chennault-Wedemeyer Letter, Item 33. (2) Chennault, Way of a Fighter, page 286, quoted Radio CHC 1016 but eliminated the passage: ". . . and under these circumstances of course the question of action in emergency will not arise. Until it does, there is no intention of limiting the scope of your operations in any way."

73. (1) See pp. 292-93, above. (2) Bykofsky MS.

74. (1) Rad CFB 16169, Hearn to Marshall, 15 Apr 44. Item 2224, Bk 6, JWS Personal File. (2) Rad cited n. 72(1). (3) Rad CFB 16433, Generalissimo to Roosevelt, 22 Apr 44. Item 2253, Bk 6, JWS Personal File.

75. (1) Fourteenth AF History. (2) Japanese Study 82.

76. (1) Japanese Study 78. (2) Rad 460, Lindsey to Stilwell, 13 May 44. Item 2534, Bk 7, JWS Personal File. (3) General Okamura stated after the war that the Japanese did not have the resources to attack Hsian. Japanese Officers' Comments, Incl 3, Okamura.

77. Ltr cited n. 46(1).

78. Memo, Mme Chiang for Stilwell, 5 May 44; Rad CFB 17237, Ferris to Stilwell, 11 May 44. Items 2507, 2525, Bk 7, JWS Personal File.

79. (1) Memo 197, Ferris for Generalissimo, 14 May 44. Item 2535, Bk 7, JWS Personal File. (2) Rad CHC 1054, Stilwell to Stratemeyer, 13 May 44. SNF 130.

80. Rad CAK 1946, Chennault to Ferris for Stilwell, 12 May 44. Item 2531, Bk 7, JWS Personal File.

81. (1) Rad CFB 17552, Ferris to Stilwell, 19 May 44. Item 2542, Bk 7, JWS Personal File. (2) Indorsement and Stilwell's handwritten notes attached to letter cited in note 46(1).

82. (1) The passage deleted for brevity's sake gives Stilwell's understanding that Chennault had promised 100 fighters, 35 bombers, and 5,000 tons a month of supplies would be enough for him to drive the Japanese from central China. The paper, handwritten in ink, was found in SNF 31, clipped to a radio dated 14 May 1944 and just before a letter from Ferris dated 11 May 1944. (2) Chennault, Way of a Fighter, p. 304. (3) Stilwell's Mission to China, Ch. IX.

83. Ltr, Chennault to Stilwell, 18 May 44, sub: Estimate of Enemy Intentions in China. SNF 31.

84. (1) As a measure of the increased effort that they put forth, the Japanese military expenditures in China jumped 700 percent between 1943 and 1944. USSBS, Effects of Strategic Bombing on Japan's War Economy, Table B-2, p. 85. (2) Memo, Williams for Chennault, 18 May 44, sub: Estimate of Japanese Capabilities on the China Front. The Chennault-Wedemeyer Letter, Item 37 with Incl.

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