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Digital Archive International History Declassified

July 03, 1945

CABLE, SUMMARY OF AVERELL HARRIMAN MEETING WITH T. V. SOONG

This document was made possible with support from the Chun & Jane Chiu Family Foundation

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    Harriman reports on his meeting with Dr. Soong, in which Soong provides him with detailed notes from his July 2, 1945 meeting with Stalin. Soong is concerned that Stalin does not understand the importance of China's territorial integrity in regards to Outer Mongolia, asks for the stance of the United States' government on this issue. Harriman reports on Stalin and Soong's discussion of open ports and Korea.
    "Cable, Summary of Averell Harriman Meeting with T. V. Soong," July 03, 1945, History and Public Policy Program Digital Archive, W. A. Harriman Papers, Library of Congress. http://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/document/123411
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PARAPHRASE OF NAVY CABLE JULY 3, 1945, FROM MOSCOW

TOP SECRET

TOP SECRET AND PERSONAL FROM HARRIMAN TO THE PRESIDENT AND THE SECRETARY OF STATE.

This morning I called on Soong at his request. He gave me to read the detailed English notes of his second talk with Stalin which took place last night. Molotov, Lozovsky, Vice Commissar for Foreign Affairs, and Petrov were present at the conversation.

What most disturbed Soong is Stalin's insistence that the interpretation of the phrase "status quo in Outer Mongolia shall be preserved" means that the Chinese Government should recognize the independence of Outer Mongolia.

Soong argued that this should be interpreted to mean that China would not at the present time raise the issue but would allow the situation that presently exists to continue. He told Stalin that China could not agree to the cession of territory, that it would complicate the question of Tibet, and that no Government in China could last if it ceded Outer Mongolia. He explained to me that it was a matter of principle deep in Chinese psychology and that although they recognized they could not exercise suzerainty over Outer Mongolia at the present time, the Chinese would be unwilling to support a Government which gave up Chinese claims to this territory for all time.

The military importance of Outer Mongolia to Russia was emphasized by Stalin, as well as the dangers from possible Japanese recovery and the necessity of Russia having the right to move troops freely in Outer Mongolia.

China, Soong said, would assent to free movement of Russian troops in Outer Mongolia or any other formula which would not finally and permanently give up China's claims. Stalin suggested a secret agreement on the independence of Outer Mongolia which might be published after the defeat of Japan. This Soong objected to also. He is cabling for instructions from Chiang.

Soong asked me what the understanding of President Roosevelt was on this point, and said that he understood President Truman interpreted the Soviet proposal in the same manner that he (Soong) did. I told him that to my knowledge there had been no discussion of interpretation. The words were accepted as written. He has asked me to telegraph urgently to ascertain the interpretation of the United States Government.

[ILLEGIBLE] of these provisions and particularly what [ILLEGIBLE] connection with the "internationalization" of the port of Darien [Dalian]. He feels that if China herself does not control the operations of the port it would interfere with Chinese sovereignty.  Soong was reassured by Stalin's statements on the quest ion of the sovereignty of China in Manchuria. Stalin agreed that representatives of the Chinese. National Government should accompany the Red Army when it advances into Manchuria to organize the government. Stalin told Soong it was important that competent individuals be appointed by the National Government.

In response to Stalin's inquiry regarding the National Government's attitude toward the communists, Soong told him that the Generalissimo was prepared to bring communist representation into the government but that the Kuomintang should be in control. Soong said Stalin appeared to agree in principle but there was no detailed discussion or agreement as to the understanding to be reached with the communists. Again this discuss ion appeared to be preliminary.

There was no discussion of the problems in Sinkiang. However, Soong told me that the Generalissimo was considering the appointment of his son as Governor of Sinkiang, believing that this would improve relations with the Soviets in this province because of his sympathetic attitude toward the Soviets.

With reference to Korea, Stalin confirmed to Soong his agreement to establish a four-power trusteeship. Molotov interjected that this was an unusual arrangement with no parallel and that therefore it would be necessary to come to a detailed understanding. Stalin stated that there should be no foreign troops or foreign police in Korea. Soong understands that the Russians have two Korean divisions trained in Siberia. He believes that these troops will be left in Korea and that there will be Soviet-trained political personnel who will also be brought into the country. He is fearful that under these conditions the soviets will obtain domination of Korean affairs even with a four-power trusteeship.

RPM