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Digital Archive International History Declassified

August 10, 1945

RECORD OF A MEETING BETWEEN T.V. SOONG AND STALIN

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

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    T.V. Soong, Stalin, and others discuss the status of the war with Japan, the borders of Inner and Outer Mongolia, and the right of Soviet use of Manchurian railroads.
    "Record of a Meeting Between T.V. Soong and Stalin," August 10, 1945, History and Public Policy Program Digital Archive, Victor Hoo Collection, box 6, folder 9, Hoover Institution Archives. Contributed by David Wolff. http://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/document/134355
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Record of Meeting Between T. Soong and Stalin

10 August, 1945 9:00 – 11:30 p.m.

Stalin: The Japanese want to capitulate.

Soong: Thanks to you.

Stalin: Thanks to all. They want to keep their emperor.

Soong: Do you like him?

Stalin: Now we must wait. Now it is conditional and we want unconditional.

They want their emperor.

Soong: Face saving.

Stalin: Perhaps yes. They got what they deserved. Tojo remains.

Soong: Good many of them will make hara-kiri.

Stalin: It was in the past.

Soong: Expects Tojo to commit it.

Stalin: Tojo will not. He catches butterflies.

Soong: We can leave him at that.

Stalin: You're too easy going. Are we going to sign the treaties?

Soong: We are anxious to sign them before Japanese capitulate. Easier to present to our people.

Stalin: We cannot accept excluding Dairen from military zone. Nothing in nature of military arrangements now necessary. But in 15 years we cannot sign treaty when time comes. We must sign treaty to foresee what may happen.

Cannot exclude Dairen from military zone.

Ready to establish zone inside Dairen and from 2 or 3 kilometers outside which will not be under military control in peace time. As regards railroad cannot be excluded from zone.

Traffic will be free, no inspection, nor obstacles.

This question must be decided otherwise nothing will come out.

As to two railways administration can be combined in one railway and then we can accept your status: Parity, Chinese Chairman, Manager Russian. If we settle these questions things will move forward. Re port installations, lease of land but not of installation. Installation should be joint property like railroad. Security: certain requirements of military command to be taken into account. Re islands, not to be armed without mutual agreement. We can drop. Not pressing. The declaration connected with treaty of friendship we have certain amendments. Re Mongolia ready to leave out "and in future".

Re frontiers Chinese map is not well founded. Existing frontiers should be recognized. If these questions are cleared up, things will proceed forward quickly. I suggest following procedure: take Chinese drafts and go point by point.

Soong: Please.  

Stalin: Molotov will take care. If there are big important questions I can come. I am very busy.

Molotov: We've got to reach agreement.

Soong: Anxious to agree before surrender. After we will have more difficulties with our people. Eight years of war. People will say, why do you make such concessions.

Stalin: People will understand and will like and alliance with USSR.

Soong: Yes, but we have made many concessions, Outer Mongolia, etc.

Stalin: Outer Mongolia was lost any way declared war on Japan.

Soong: Almost one half of China.

Stalin: It is a desert.

Soong: Does not look so on map.

Stalin: Smallest piece of land of Kwantung is twenty times more valuable.

Soong: Schoolchildren look at map and see size of Outer Mongolia.

Wang: May I be allowed to make a plea to Stalin re Dairen. When I departed from Chungking to Moscow General Chiang wanted me to state this case to Stalin. Port of Dairen is similar in nature to port of Kowloon. We have been contemplating that after war we will get back Kowloon, perhaps Hong Kong. Therefore we have been so anxious preserve administrative power of Dairen. If not it will be difficult if not impossible to get back Kowloon and Hong Kong.

Stalin: British consider Hong Kong as theirs. Dairen in 30 years will be Chinese.

Wang: Kowloon also leased to Britain. Important to South China as Dairen for Manchuria. Chiang asks Stalin to give sympathetic consideration to this. We are struggling for emancipation of China.

Stalin: I do not want China to renounce Dairen. What am I called upon to do to satisfy you?

Wang: Let Dairen to be under Chinese administration, we will use soviet experts. If you accept this we can easier get back Kowloon.

Stalin: We cannot exclude Dairen from military zone. In case of war we would have to interfere. Chinese will want us to interfere. War may come in 10, 15, 20 years. Right to interfere should be reserved to Russia in case of war. We shall have no troops, no warships, no coastal artillery the port: Russian. His assistant, Chinese. Let us state in treaty that Russians will have no troops in Dairen and that in case of war Russia will defend Dairen.

Wang: In time of war Dairen will be subject to military control?

Stalin: Yes, as it is in military zone.

Wang: In time of peace, administration should be entirely Chinese?

Stalin: With exception of Chief of port.

Wang: We don't consider any municipal council. Foreign representation on Council. In Kowloon, Shanghai, same question will arise. Russian representatives will give Russian character.

Stalin: All right. Will give thought to this.

Wang: Have strict instructions on this.

Stalin: We will return to this later. After consulting Molotov we can agree that administration, like for zone, will be entirely Chinese.

Soong: Next question railroad. We want to have Chinese manager of South Manchurian Railway, assistant will be Soviet. Chinese Eastern Railway manager, Soviet, assistant Chinese.

Stalin: Cannot accept. The two railways should have two Russian managers. Otherwise confusion. You do not lose anything by agreeing.

Soong: In some countries many railways have different managers.

Stalin: If private railways. Here it is a state property.

Soong: Ask Stalin to be fair and have two managers as we suggest.

Stalin: Difficult. Conflicts may arise. Source of friction. If Russian unsatisfactory we appoint another one. He will be under control. Chairman is Chinese. Do you think we shall not take into account Chinese interests?

Wang: We want entire parity: two boards of directors with two managers. Chairman Chinese, then manager Soviet.

Molotov: This could create administrative difficulties.

Lossovski: Japanese have now one railway.

Wang: Before Mukden incident there were two railways until Chinese Eastern Railway sold to Japan. I made personnel suggestion without having consulted my colleagues.

Stalin: We prefer Russian manager for both railways and Chinese chairman.

Wang: If basis is absolute equality easier to convince our people.

Stalin: Railroad was built by Russians. Inequality is with regard to us.

Wang: People have different opinions.

Stalin: Question of subsidiary undertakings and branches serving railroad, built by C.E.R. and South Manchurian Railway. They should be left to railroads. But if locomotive shops for instance were built by South Manchurian Railway, are they excluded?

Soong: Enterprises built by Russians and directly serving railway.

Stalin: Only those branches and enterprises built by Russians on Chinese Eastern Railway and serving railways. We do not claim branches not built by Russians.

Soong: Even for Chinese Eastern Railway the branches were not included.

Stalin: They serve railway. It's in the interest of Chinese that they form part of railway as it is partly Chinese and will revert to China in thirty years.

Soong: We agreed in undertakings built in Russian time, we did not agree on branches.

Stalin: Short branches - serve only railway not those built by Russians for other purposes but what serves railroad.

Soong: Only for Chinese Eastern Railway and not for South Manchurian Railway.

Stalin: Yes, we do not insist for South Manchurian as regards branches not built by Russians.

Molotov: More explicitly state responsibility of China to supply coal and fuel, and that lines and profits be equally divided.

Soong: We already agreed to that.

Stalin: We insist very much that manager Russian for both railroads.

Molotov: Rest easy to agree.

Stalin: Re declaration as part of treaty of friendship, paragraph 1 – in accordance with spirit, etc., Soviet Government agree to render to China any moral support… to go entirely to National Government as the Central Government, change after which the Soviet Government is convinced will realize national unity and democratization of China.

(He reads the two concluding lines).

Wang: We can make modification, but your formula is not suitable. We will think of a formula agreeable to us both.

Stalin: Paragraph 3: we suggest different language. As for the recent development in Sin-kiang the Soviet Government confirms that it has not had and, as stated in article 5 of the Treaty of Alliance and Friendship, has not the intention of interfering in the internal affairs of China.

In paragraph 2, delete "solemnly" in Chinese text – it is not in English text.

Soong: Suggests add "and will prevent" etc.

Stalin: Not necessary. One cannot repeat all the time that one is honest. I could also think out innumerable declarations and assurances.

Wang: We can accept your formula without additions. Our government would like to have cooperation in case of necessity if there are troubles.

Stalin: This is a matter for China. Sin-kiang is Chinese. You can do what you like there, like we in our territory.

Wang: Re paragraph 1. If we have no better formula to replace yours let us drop our last line and your formula as well.

Stalin: You do not wish to democratize China?

Soong: For same reasons as you said we do not want to be obtrusive.

Stalin: If you continue to beat communists are we expected to support Chinese government? We do not interfere, but hard for us to support morally when you fight communists.

Wang: It seems internal matter is made subject of international agreement.

Molotov: Suggest: "To China which thrives to complete national unity and further democratization".

Soong: Prefer leave it as it is.

Stalin: Why are you against "democratization"?

Soong: Deeds matter, not words.

Stalin: Say democratization in deeds! O. K. You see how many concessions we make. Chinese communists will curse us.

Soong: We do not want civil war.

Stalin: You wanted recently.

Soong: No, no. We are not so silly to start trouble. It's the communists who said so. They don't want us to be in good relations, to sign treaty with USSR.

Stalin: If it were true it would be sad and unintelligible.

Wang: They don't want you to support us.

Stalin: Re withdrawal I did not state that within 3 months. I said that 3 months as a maximum would be sufficient for completion of withdrawal.

Soong: I accept.

Stalin: Is that an agreement?

Soong: Agreed minutes to be signed.

(Stalin laughs)

Soong: Stalin said if Chiang writes a letter I will write reply. If he prefers letter, it can be letter.

Stalin: Please. If Chiang asks me I shall reply. Since you ask me I'll reply. The ‘minutes' is correct. I accept it.

Wang: What about the frontiers of Outer Mongolia?

Stalin: Leave the existing ones.

Wang: You want to avoid frictions?

Stalin: Yes.

Wang: Frontiers of Outer Mongolia have been chief cause of friction. We don't want any advantage; therefore we brought an atlas used in all colleges in China. It is regarded as authoritative. We are asked to recognize independence of Outer Mongolia. We must tell our people what territory we are to recognize. We must have fairly general settlement. We do not want deceive or draw undue advantage. Frontiers in this map correspond with Soviet maps we have.

Stalin: Frontiers existing for 26 years is established without any disputes with China. Our topographers went there and drew on map a line which separated Chinese and Mongolian guards. That's west and south. Re east there were disputes with Japanese. Then there was an agreement concluded. If we re-examine, it will take time, certain pieces will be taken, others given.

Your Russian map is not valid.

Molotov: It was presented by Tojo after Kalkhim (?) government.

Stalin: There were no military topographers.

Molotov: Leave existing frontiers.

Soong: We do not know your map.

Stalin: You have your guards. There are signs, marks on frontiers. No disputes have ever taken place.

Wang: There were disputes last year between Sin-kiang and Outer Mongolia.

Stalin: Not about frontiers. It was about (Ospan) Khazak leader who crossed the frontier. Mongols did not surrender him. Dispute was not about frontier.

Wang: This is a difficult matter for us. We want to remove all causes of friction. I have not consulted my colleagues. Suggest to add in our declaration that recognition will take place after Chinese and Mongol authorities agree on frontiers.

Lossovski: There are 4.400 kilometers of boundary.

Wang: Of course not accurate, but demarcate on map.

Stalin: We cannot accept that. It is denial of independence. What was agreed would be postponed for a long time. You withdraw your agreement.

Soong: We don't withdraw, we want clarity.

Stalin: Frontiers exist which you never challenged. If you look for pretext to withdraw what you have accepted better state it frankly.

Soong: No pretext. We agreed. We want to know where the line is.

Stalin: Frontier has not been challenged by you or Mongols.

Soong: We always considered Outer Mongolia as Chinese and there was no need to challenge.

Stalin: But there are Chinese guards on frontier on side of Sin-kiang.

Wang: None of us is competent on question of boundary. We brought atlas because it is considered as authoritative and used everywhere in China. If Stalin objects to my words we might postpone conclusion of our negotiations until some competent man can go to Chungking to try reach agreement on frontiers with our topographers.

Molotov: The Mongols should participate.

Stalin: Mongols would riot if their frontier is to be changed. Mongols dream to unite with Inner Mongolia. Better not to raise the question, if in addition you tell that their frontier will be cut down.

Wang: We do not want to cut, but we must know the line.

Stalin: To prevent Mongols to have dreams, recognition should be given and if they want Inner Mongolia, threaten them with war. Russia will by no means help them to extend their frontier. They can't do alone and we'll keep quiet. It's now five o'clock in Far East and our troops will continue movement.

Soong: Any resistance?

Stalin: Hailar, Manchuli. Now less. Few surrender. Less means of war and less troops than we. We are already crossing Hingan. They have not got many forces. Prisoners tell us they are going to defend Moukden, Changchun, Korea.

Soong: Your troops entered Korea?

Stalin: No, they reached the frontier.

Wang: How many divisions you think the Japanese have.

Stalin: 20-22 Japanese divisions +35 to 40 Manchu brigades.

Soong: Manchus fought?

Stalin: First day, now surrendering. No first class weapons with Japanese.

Wang: Any Japanese aircrafts?

Stalin: Few.

Wang: If they don't surrender how long will they collapse?

Stalin: One week. Poorly armed, no fighting spirit. Seem to be afraid of Russians. Few tanks. Seems they have transported weapons to South-Shanghai.

Soong: About railway why can't you accept Chinese manager on South Manchurian railway.

Stalin: There will be frictions between Russian and Chinese managers.

Soong: Why? There are assistant managers.

Molotov: South Manchurian Railway only to connect with Port Arthur and Dairen.

Wang: Manager will be subject to board.

Stalin: Why don't you agree?

Wang: Principle of equality. We want to train our men to leading posts.

Stalin: If you accept for Chinese Eastern Railway a Russian manager as not against principles of equality why can't you accept for South Manchurian Railway?

Soong: Fair that you have one manager and we one manager.

Stalin: Afraid connection will not work smoothly and we have troops in Port Arthur. Frankly speaking, we are afraid at that.

Wang: South Manchurian Railway has many branches with which Chinese manager can help remove friction.

Stalin: Assistant manager will be Chinese. He can undertake connections. We are still not in agreement. I thought we could finish.

Soong: We made proposals.

Stalin: Afraid no regular communication can be maintained with Port Arthur. We can punish Russian manager, not the Chinese.

Soong: We are as anxious that connection be safeguarded. We will punish our manager too. We are anxious to work with Soviet Russia. You can count on it.

Stalin: I believe Soong but it will not be you who will run South Manchurian Railway.

Soong: When we enter into these agreements we intend to cooperate with you. Whoever runs the railway must follow our policy. Foolish for us not to do utmost to meet your needs.

Stalin: Opposed to military commission in Port Arthur. Settlements can be done between governments. Let us take point by point with Molotov tomorrow.

Soong: Military commission – only to work out joint use does not hurt you interests. We entrust you the defense of Port Arthur. It is to explain to our people.

Stalin: An agreement should be reached between governments. We shall not conceal our plans from Chinese.

Soong: This Commission will really not interfere with defense of Port Arthur.

Stalin: What functions?

Soong: Joint use, merely a word.

Stalin: Who is subordinated to commission, not clear.

Soong: We can make it clear. This is largely presentation, article 4 says defense entrusted to Soviet Government.

Wang: Chinese use of Port Arthur should not be solely under Soviet authority, but under joint authority. Soviet side alone will decide how to use port.

Stalin: That can be done by agreement of two governments.

Wang: We don't know how often questions will arise.

Stalin: If there are Chinese vessels, Chinese will command but they will have to obey orders of Russian command. Joint command is impossible like for fronts. French troops were subordinated to Chief allied commander.

Wang: Yes, in time of war.

Stalin: Same in peace time.

Soong: We agreed to that article 4.

Stalin: We have different plan than Czars for defense.

Soong: Meet tomorrow with Molotov.

Molotov: 2 p.m.

Fu: With whom is General Hsiung to meet?

Stalin: With Antonov, Chief of General Staff.