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Digital Archive International History Declassified

January 16, 1951

TELEGRAM FROM MAO ZEDONG TO I.V. STALIN, TRANSMITTING 14 JANUARY 1951 MESSAGE FROM MAO TO PENG DEHUAI WITH MESSAGE FROM KIM IL SUNG

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    Mao asks Stalin on his opinion regarding the incorporation of Korean troops into the Chinese army, as well as the possible response of the enemy.
    "Telegram from Mao Zedong to I.V. Stalin, transmitting 14 January 1951 Message from Mao to Peng Dehuai with Message from Kim Il Sung," January 16, 1951, History and Public Policy Program Digital Archive, APRF, f. 45, op. 1, d. 337, ll. 1-3. https://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/document/112095
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SECOND MAIN ADMINISTRATION OF THE GENERAL STAFF OF THE SOVIET ARMY

CIPHERED TELEGRAM No. 15603
Copies: Stalin (2), Molotov
From BEIJING Received 14 hours 45 minutes 16.1.1951
EXTREMELY URGENT T

To Comrade FILIPPOV [Stalin].

I send you a copy of my telegram of 14 January 1951 to Comrade Peng Dehuai for transmission to Comrade Kim Il Sung.

I ask you to familiarize yourself with it: "To Comrade Peng Dehuai. I ask that the contents of this telegram be transmitted to Comrade Kim Il Sung.

The approximately 100,000 Korean recruits being trained in Northeast China must be incorporated into various corps of the People's Army in the next 2-3 months, in the period of rest and reformation, so that the companies in all divisions of the People's Army will be fully manned. There must be more than 100 men in each company and 10,000 - 15,000 men in each division.

In the Korean army there are too many units of the division and brigade type. It is necessary that all personnel be consolidated into fifteen divisions (approximately) and Soviet arms be apportioned to them so that these Korean divisions, cooperating with the Chinese volunteers, provide major support to them during the spring offensive (April - May), with the goal of finally resolving the South Korean question.

In the next two to three months the Chinese volunteers and the Korean troops must carry out serious and major work, in particular to replenish the troops with newly trained soldiers, to make sure that the newly trained soldiers imitate the experience of the old soldiers, to strengthen the troop armaments, to rebuild the railways, to lay in store food and ammunition, to improve the work of transport and the rear service. Carrying out this work can secure the final victory.

It is possible that the enemy command will have two variants for conducting subsequent military operations:

1. Under pressure from Chinese and North Korean troops the enemy will make insignificant resistance and then withdraw from Korea. If this happens, it will be the result of our carrying out thorough preparations, because the enemy, having received information about the preparation work being carried out, will be convinced that our military forces have grown even greater, and therefore, fearing difficulty, he will withdraw from Korea.

2. The enemy will make stubborn resistance in the area of Busan-Daegu until he becomes convinced of the uselessness of resistance, and then he will withdraw from South Korea.

If this happens, it is necessary for us to carry out good preparation so that it will be possible to continue to fight. In the opposite case, we can repeat the mistakes allowed by the Korean troops in the period from June to September 1950.

But it is also possible that objective causes will force us to make a single operation in February, after which again to continue the respite and reformation for the purpose of completing the necessary preparation for the next operation. This also must be taken into account. However, if this does not happen, then conducting the last decisive operation after finishing the necessary preparation in two-three months, which was discussed above, will be necessary and practicable.

Chinese and Korean comrades must be patient and carry out the necessary preparation.

I ask you to communicate your opinion. MAO ZEDONG."

With Bolshevik greetings.

MAO ZEDONG

No. 260
15.1.51

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