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Digital Archive International History Declassified

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  • July 27, 1958

    Letter, Mao Zedong to Peng Dehuai and Huang Kecheng

    Mao Zedong decides to deplay the planned bombardment of the nationalist-controlled Jinmen Island in the Taiwan Strait.

  • August 18, 1958

    Instructions, Mao Zedong to Peng Dehuai

    Mao instructs Chinese Minister of National Defense Peng Dehuai to hault military maneuvers and prepare air forces for the planned bombardment of Jinmen Island in the Taiwan Strait.

  • August 23, 1958

    Memoir by Wu Lengxi, 'Inside Story of the Decision Making during the Shelling of Jinmen'

    Wu Lengxi, a member of the CCP Central Committee, recalls events in August 1958 when Chinese Communist forces along the Fujian coast began an intensive artillery bombardment of the Nationalist-controlled Jinmen Island. He recalls a Politburo Standing Committee meeting in which Mao states that the bombardment was in part motivated by events in the Middle East.

  • September 05, 1958

    Speech, Mao Zedong at the Fifteenth Meeting of the Supreme State Council (excerpt)

    Mao Zedong speaks about American foreign policy and the tense international situation following the Chinese decision to begin shelling Jinmen Island in the Taiwan Strait.

  • September 08, 1958

    Speech, Mao Zedong at the Fifteenth Meeting of the Supreme State Council (excerpt)

    Mao speaks about the strategy behind the bombardment of nationalist-controlled Jinmen Island in the Taiwan Strait, stating that Taiwan is a "is a steel noose and it ties America’s neck."

  • September 10, 1958

    Telegram, Mao Zedong to Ho Chi Minh

    Mao informs Ho Chi Minh that he should not be concerned by the Chinese bombardment of Jinmen Island, as "the Americans are afraid of fighting a war."

  • September 13, 1958

    Letter, Mao Zedong to Zhou Enlai and Huang Kecheng

    Mao sends instructions about the shelling of Jinmen Island in the Taiwain Strait.

  • September 19, 1958

    Letter, Mao Zedong to Zhou Enlai

    Mao responds to a letter from Zhou Enlai summarizing the Chinese-American ambassadorial meeting in Warsaw September 15 on the Taiwan Strait crisis.

  • September 27, 1958

    Letter, Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union to the Chinese Communist Party, on the Soviet Union's Readiness to Provide Assistance to China in the Event of an Attack

    In the wake of the Taiwan Strait Crisis, the Soviet Union promises to intervene in the event of a nuclear attack on China from the United States.

  • September 30, 1958

    Memorandum of Conversation: Premier Zhou Receives Indian Ambassador to China Parthasarathy

    Premier Zhou and Ambassador Parthasarathy discuss Chinese representation at the United Nations, progress at the Sino-US Ambassadorial Talks in Warsaw, and the ongoing crisis in Taiwan. Zhou expresses frustration with American intransigence regarding Taiwan, particularly its insistence on a ceasefire, which Zhou views as an attempt "to fool the people of the world," and vows that China will continue to fight in Taiwan.

  • October 02, 1958

    Memorandum of Conversation of Mao Zedong with Six Delegates of the Socialist Countries, China, 2 October 1958

    To the other delegates, Mao discusses their shared goal of defeating imperialism, primarily through peaceful methods. He stresses widespread Marxist reeducation of the Chinese people and increased Chinese industrial and agricultural production as means for improvement. Mao also reminds them that socialist nations must be firmly united under the leadership of the Soviet Union to fight colonialism and imperialism, and while the communes are necessary to organize locally, the party remains the core administrative unite of communized peoples.

  • October 05, 1958

    Letter, Mao Zedong to Huang Kecheng and Peng Dehuai

    Mao sends instructions for a temporary cease to the shelling of Jinmen Island.

  • October 05, 1958

    Meeting Minutes, Zhou Enlai’s Conversation with S.F. Antonov on the Taiwan Issue (excerpt)

    Speaking with Soviet Charge d'Affaires Antonov, Zhou Enlai analyzes the American response to the Chinese bombing of Jinmen Island.

  • October 06, 1958

    Letter, Mao Zedong to Huang Kecheng and Peng Dehuai

    Mao decides to broadcast a statement to Taiwan about the shelling of Jinmen Island.

  • October 11, 1958

    Telegram, Mao Zedong to Zhou Enlai

    Mao sends instructions to Zhou Enlai, asking him to send information to the Soviets about the number of planes that were short down during air engagements in the Taiwan Strait. He adds that "[the Soviets] should sell ground-to-air missiles to us, and let us control the employment of them."

  • October 31, 1958

    Letter, Mao Zedong to Zhou Enlai, Chen Yi, Huang Kecheng

    Mao sends instructions to halt the shelling of Jinmen Island on even-numbered days, but continue it on odd-numbered days.

  • November 02, 1958

    Letter, Mao Zedong to Zhou Enlai, Chen Yi, Huang Kecheng

    Mao suggests resuming the bombardment of Jinmen Island on November 3, 1958.

  • November 29, 1958

    Memorandum of Conversation of the Chinese Minister of Foreign Affairs, Chen Yi, at Dinner in the Soviet Embassy in Honor of the Ambassadors of the Socialist Countries in China, 8 November 1958

    The Chinese Minister of Foreign affairs, Chen Yi, proclaims that the PRC and Chinese communist party are organizing the completion of the “great leap” of economic construction in China, thanks to the aid of the USSR and other socialist countries. He notes that the USA is not as strong as it seems, the relationship between the PRC and the USSR is growing stronger, and visits to China by ambassadors of the socialist countries are highly encouraged.

  • October 02, 1959

    Discussion between N.S. Khrushchev and Mao Zedong

    Khrushchev and Mao discuss current political situations in Tibet, India, Indochina and Taiwan.

  • October 14, 1959

    From the Journal of Ambassador S.F. Antonov, Summary of a Conversation with the Chairman of the CC CPC Mao Zedong

    October 1959 conversation between Mao Zedong and the Soviet diplomat and sinologist S.F. Antonov, in which Mao attempted to reassure the Soviets that China would not provoke war with the United States or with its Asian neighbors. In his conversation with Antonov, Mao attempts to lessen the impact of China’s displeasure with Soviet policies. He tries hard to show his agreement with Moscow on every issue—the United States, Taiwan, India, Tibet, disarmament.