My Dad the U.S. China Marine

My Dad the U.S. China Marine

Monday, February 21, 2011

U.S. Bungling in China Said Dangerous: Wedemeyer On Spot

U.S. Bungling in China Said Dangerous: Wedemeyer On Spot
Honolulu Advertiser: November 11, 1945, page 9.

By Louis F. Keemle (United Press Staff Correspondent)

The situation in China has become so explosive that united States policy –whaever it is- appears due for revision or a clear statement of aims.

Whether the United States is “intervening” or “interfering” in China’s internal affairs is a subject of controversy. The Chinese Communists and their supporters insist that it is a military intervention. United States military and diplomatic authorities contend that the sole purpose is to facilitate the disarmament of 2,000,000 Japanese troops in China and the deportation of the troops and another 2,000,000 Japanese civilians.

U.S. Public Not Fooled
That explanation is given to account for the presence of United States Marines in North China and the movement of the Ghungking government troops northward to the Communist-dominated area by United States airplanes and ships. The explanation is too simple and has not been accepted by the American public as telling the whole story.

Much confusion has arisen because of conflicting statements by American authorities in China and Washington, and by the Communist and Kuomintang factions in China. Recent developments include the following:

Lt. Gen. Albert C. Wedemeyer, U.S. commander in China, told the press in Washington three weeks ago that the Marine strength in China would be built up by more than 50,000 by the end of the year. Yesterday he said on Peiping that evacuation of American forces from North china may begin in about a week. Secretary of States James F. Byrnes said the same thing in Washington.

Wedemeyer “Explains”
Previously Wedemeyer had said that if any really serious trouble started between the Communist and Central government forces, American forces would be withdrawn. He denied emphatically that American forces had aided the Chinese Nationalists in actual fighting. Nevertheless, American Marines have been wounded in rifle exchanges with the Chinese Communists. That does not belie Wedemeyer’s statement, although it shows the potential danger of a grave clash.

The Communists have just reported that Nationalist forces below the Great Wall have opened an attack to break through the Shanhaikwan pass into Southern Manchuria. The official Central News Agency reported almost simultaneously from Chungking that peace negotiations have been resumed.

The Communists also cited three specific examples of alleged American intervention. They charged that American forces have occupied the Communist office in Peiping and disarmed and questioned the personnel. An apology was demanded of Wedemeyer.

The Nationalist newspaper Tu Kung Pao said in Chingking that the 3,000 American airplanes now in China are being turned over to the central government. A State Department spokesman in Washington said a five-year military mission would be set up in China to reorganize and train the central government’s armies.