21. The Long Road to China

The news of Pearl Harbor and the astonishing success of the Japanese elsewhere cast a gloom over Americans but the tidings caused joy in the Nationalist Chinese capital of Chongqing. Chiang Kai-shek assumed that the United States, along with Britain, would take on the burden of defeating Japan and Nationalist China could avoid decisive battles, build military strength, await war's end and then turn on the Chinese Communists and destroy them.1

Almost all Americans failed to see that the Nationalists considered the Communists the primary enemy, not Japan. Americans and Chinese never bridged this conceptual difference. The result was disagreement and disillusionment on both sides.

The Chinese Communists also shared the Nationalist attitude. To them, the war was an opportunity to carry out the revolution. The Reds focused more than the Nationalists on patriotism and the cruelties of the Japanese in order to rouse the people to their side. But the Reds no more than the Nationalists were interested in dedicating their primary efforts to ousting the invader. Their goal was to defeat the Nationalists.2

Although Chiang Kai-shek had no intention of committing the bulk of Chinese forces to fight Japan, he did not make this plain to American officials. Rather, he demanded from the outset an immense amount of supplies, armaments and money with the ostensible purpose of prosecuting the war. Otherwise, he threatened, China might seek a separate peace with Japan. This was wholly a bluff because Chiang's only hope of survival was if the Allies won the war. However, American leaders were not willing to take the chance and continually appeased Chiang.3

Chiang also called upon the Allies to make their main effort against Japan.4 President Roosevelt paid no attention to Chiang's proposal but at the Arcadia strategy conference in Washington beginning December 22, 1941,5 FDR got the British-American Combined Chiefs of Staff (CCS), which were taking over direction of the war, to set up a China theater and name Chiang supreme commander. As a contribution to the war, the theater was meaningless and served only as a gesture to Chiang.6

Very early, FDR also adopted a policy expressed cogently by General George C. Marshall, army chief of staff, as being "to treat China as a great power."7 In other words, China wasn't a great power but Roosevelt chose to act as if it were. Roosevelt did not translate this "treatment" into any concrete military or other programs.8 He excluded China from participation on the Combined Chiefs of Staff and Munitions Assignments Board (MAB), which allocated lend-lease supplies. He never allowed Chiang to play any significant role in deciding strategy.9 However, Roosevelt treated Chiang gingerly and bowed to his demands on a number of occasions.

FDR's logic in elevating China to great-power status was political. He foresaw that the imperial powers would fade from the scene in the Far East, soon if not immediately after the war. There would be a massive power vacuum which the Soviet Union would rush to fill. With a combination of pragmatism, romanticism and wishful thinking, Roosevelt came up with the idea of joining American power to the Kuomintang and creating an effective ally in war and a solid anti-Communist counter to the Soviet Union in peace. This vision was not welcome to Britain and Prime Minister Churchill. Britain wanted to resurrect its powerful role in Asia after the war and Churchill had little interest in losing its colonies or promoting China.10

Roosevelt did not understand he had linked the U.S. with a dying regime. He thought he might prod Chiang into military and political reforms that would transform China. There was no hope for this because any change would destroy the Nationalist power base and throw the Middle Kingdom into wild disorder. U.S. aid and money served rather the opposite purpose: permitting Nationalist China to degenerate further into cliques and semi-independent military commands. These trends encouraged the agent of social revolution, the Communist party, to grow stronger, accelerate the internal crisis and shatter the illusory American policy.11

Roosevelt's tragedy was that he assumed a friendly and cooperative China depended upon its being ruled by the Nationalists. In fact, any unified Chinese government, including a Communist regime, would have followed policies that supported American interests in East Asia. China, whatever its government, wanted peace and open trade so it could build a more modern and prosperous economy. It wanted to exclude the Soviet Union and end colonialism. China was not expansive, having neither the means nor desire to do so while the Middle Kingdom remained a vast world awaiting development.

For a long time FDR's constant nightmare was that Chiang might make a separate peace. As John Paton Davies, Jr. wrote, FDR "showed no sign of recognizing that after December 7 Chiang had no reason for capitulating to the Japanese—or for fighting them."12 Chiang thus acquired power over the United States, which he used mercilessly. The most extreme example was Roosevelt's ready agreement to accede to Chiang's pressure for a "loan" of 500 million dollars. Roosevelt recognized it was a political payment to keep China in the war. China never repaid the loan and much of the money went to enrich persons in Chiang's close circle.13

FDR had another reason for supporting Chiang because China was the favorite ally of the United States. Because of generally laudatory reporting about the Nationalists in the nation's press (especially Time magazine, which eulogized Chiang), they assumed that China was democratic.14 Few Americans knew of Chiang's police-state methods and his suppression of all opponents he could reach. This inaccurate and unrealistic conception of Chiang Kai-shek and the Nationalists was to bedevil American policy for a long time, because it affected judgment.15 When foreign correspondents began to report the truth, the Kuomintang imposed strict censorship.16

There was one other misconception about China which colored American thinking. This was that China could become a major theater to pursue the war. Secretary of War Henry Stimson believed this. General Marshall was less enthusiastic but saw China as the best site for airfields from which to attack Japan.17 Lieutenant General Joseph W. Stilwell, who became the senior American military officer in China and Burma, felt more strongly than either and proposed that China be the major theater and that the U.S. should deploy a large number of troops there.18 Stilwell also believed he could organize a modern Chinese army and use it to drive the Japanese into retreat. This hope sustained Stilwell for a long time but it was always a mirage. Chiang had no interest in creating a powerful military force, dependent upon American arms and training. Such a force would spawn new leaders who, in traditional Chinese fashion, could count on the loyalty of their soldiers and thereby could build power bases to oust Chiang.

Marshall saw little sense in sending major American military forces to China, although he entertained hopes along with Stilwell that the Chinese themselves could build an effective army.19 Since Marshall's views generally represented American military policy, Stimson's and Stilwell's ideas for a large operations theater in China never had a chance and the task force Marshall sent with Stilwell amounted to only about a thousand men.20

There was a limiting factor about China that only a few Americans grasped at the outset. This was that the only overland route for supplies was the 717-mile, ill-maintained Burma road, hacked out of jungles and mountainsides by the hand labor of 200,000 men, women and children between 1937 and 1939.21 From Burma Railways' terminus at Lashio, the road crossed a high mountainous rampart and the deep gorges of the Salween, Mekong and Red rivers to reach Kunming on the Yunnan plateau. Parts of the road's rock-and-dirt surface washed out during the monsoon season; other parts went through a belt where a deadly form of malaria was endemic. As an added disadvantage, British colonial officials made no effort to operate Burma Railways efficiently. The railways' leisurely, peacetime pace allowed enormous quantities of American lend-lease supplies to pile up in Rangoon.22

Only about 10,000 tons of supplies moved up the Burma road into China in a month, most of which vanished for private profit with the connivance of Nationalist officials. Although American highway experts believed the Burma road might carry 30,000 tons a month under competent management, this figure was wholly inadequate to maintain even a moderate military campaign. Combat support of only a hundred B-17 bombers would have required every ton carried over the Burma road.23 Lieutenant General Hugh A. Drum, nominated first as the chief of the U.S. effort in China-Burma, told General Marshall the limited capacity of the road made impracticable rearming Chinese forces and building up a great front against the Japanese. Marshall replied that "more of the equipping of the Chinese forces could be done with resources within China proper."24 Yet Marshall's hopes were illusory. Drum, though he was pompous and depicted by Stilwell as "the biggest stuffed shirt we've got," was right.25 Because Drum was negative, he didn't get the job and Stilwell, who said he'd go wherever sent, did.

* * * * * * * * * *

As the Japanese invasion forces advanced almost without hindrance over southeast Asia immediately after Pearl Harbor, the primary concern of the Allies was where they could be finally stopped.

Japanese airplanes caught most of the American B-17 bombers and P-40 pursuit planes inexplicably still on the ground in the Philippines eight or nine hours after the Pearl Harbor attack and destroyed most of them. These attacks eliminated the bomber deterrent in which American military leaders had put so much faith. Japanese forces then invaded Luzon at several points beginning December 10. The Philippine commander, General Douglas MacArthur, left his 110,000 low-grade Philippine army troops to deal with these but they quickly melted away. MacArthur withdrew his 31,000 Americans and Filipino Scouts to the Bataan peninsula on January 6, 1942, after almost doubling in his estimates the actual number of Japanese troops (57,000) landing at all points. On Bataan the Americans and Filipino Scouts began a defensive battle with no hope of relief that lasted until May 6, 1942, when MacArthur's successor, Lieutenant General J.M. Wainwright, finally surrendered the fortress Corregidor. MacArthur, on orders from Washington, departed for Australia on March 10.26

Other Japanese forces took only fifty-four days to capture Malaya. Because the British had only 158 aircraft in Malaya, the Japanese quickly gained air supremacy and their transports faced little danger from air attack. The Japanese easily infiltrated on foot through the jungles or from the sea to get behind roadblocks while British, Indian and Australian forces remained largely tied to the all-weather roads and their vehicles. On February 8, 1942, Japanese troops attacked the huge fortified British naval base on Singapore island from the Malayan land side, where the British had built no defensive emplacements. The British had 85,000 troops at Singapore but poor leadership. The 30,000 Japanese troops who the general commanding, Yamashita Tomoyuki, got across the straits forced a surrender on February 15. It was Britain's worst single defeat and the quick capture of the great symbol of imperial power permanently shattered British, and European, prestige in Asia.27

The denouement in the East Indies came on February 27, 1942, in the Java sea when Japanese naval forces sank or scattered the combined British, American and Dutch fleet (none larger than a cruiser) and opened the islands to quick capture. The Japanese then advanced into the Bismarck archipelago northeast of New Guinea and into the Solomons. Allied leaders feared these moves were preludes to attacks on New Caledonia, the New Hebrides and the Fijis which would close off easy sea access to Australia.

The six carriers and supporting vessels of Admiral Nagumo Chuichi which had attacked Pearl Harbor now were free to raid the Indian ocean. They ranged at will from March 25 to April 8, striking Ceylon (Sri Lanka), sinking a British carrier, two heavy cruisers, several other combat ships and about 136,000 tons of merchant shipping. The British withdrew their carriers to Bombay and battleships to the African coast, abandoning the Bay of Bengal.28 Admiral Nagumo turned back to the Pacific for a decisive confrontation with the American navy.

Because of their commitments elsewhere, the Japanese allocated only a hundred warplanes to the Burma operation. These were sufficient because the British had only thirty-seven planes, although Claire Chennault's "Flying Tigers" had a few dozen P-40s in Burma.29

Field Marshall Sir Archibald P. Wavell, commander in chief, India, and also responsible for Burma, virtually spurned Chiang Kai-shek's offer of help. He replied archly he would accept one Flying Tigers squadron, supplies of various types from Chinese lend-lease stockpiles in Burma but only a single Chinese division. Wavell's deprecating attitude made the Chinese bitterly angry.30

Wavell didn't want a British colony protected by the Chinese. "Obviously it was desirable that a country of the British empire should be defended by imperial troops rather than foreign," he wrote.31 U.S. Secretary of War Henry Stimson thought Wavell had been "peremptory and tactless." President Roosevelt descended into a positive funk, fearing Chiang would use Wavell's slight to withdraw from the war.32

There was a fundamental difference between the United States and Britain concerning Burma. U.S. leaders wanted to keep China in the war and hold on to Burma to supply the Chinese. The British expected little from China and felt a strong effort to help China was a waste.33 The British concern was India. With a million men under arms and the large Indian rail and road net behind them, the British felt they could hold India along the high, heavily forested, roadless mountains that divided India from Burma.34

When the main Japanese ground assault came on January 20, 1942, the only defending forces in Burma were low-grade local units, plus a couple of British battalions and an Indian brigade. At the end of January, Wavell finally sent in the semitrained 17th Indian Division. The Japanese force, under Lieutenant General Iido Shojiro, consisted of only two divisions. The Japanese were little worried about native units because most Burmese wanted their freedom and supported the Japanese. The British had refused to promise even dominion status after the war.35

Before the Japanese attacked, the Chinese were anticipating the loss of Rangoon and proposed two alternative supply routes. One was by air over what came to be known as "the Hump" and the other was by road from the terminus of a railroad from Calcutta at Ledo in Assam in northeast India across north Burma to the Burma road north of Lashio. Both routes posed difficulties of awe-inspiring magnitude.

T.V. Soong proposed the Hump air-supply route on January 31, 1942, saying the 700 miles traversed "comparatively level" stretches from Sadiya, northeast India, to Kunming. He failed to mention this route went directly over the snow-capped and often dangerously turbulent Himalayas, 15,000 feet above sea level, twice the normal operating altitude of transports, and thus described the single most difficult and dangerous air route on earth. Though FDR knew about the mountains, he immediately approved and officers planned to pull DC-3s off commercial airline routes to get the necessary aircraft.36

The Ledo road trace traversed a route through high mountains, monsoon forests and wide rivers. It was at least as forbidding on the ground as the Hump was in the air. American specialists said it would take two and a half years to build. Laughlin Currie, a presidential aide who had visited China early in 1941 to work out plans to supply China, said the road was important and FDR and the War Department gave their blessing. Thus, despite incredible difficulties, planning for the Ledo road commenced.

However, with completion likely to be postponed into 1945, the Ledo road could not take the place of the Burma road. And the Hump route would never deliver enough supplies to sustain major armies in combat and also a strong air assault against Japan.

* * * * * * * * * *

The Japanese main assault came against Moulmein, captured by January 31. A British historian complained that the Japanese didn't "come down the road in a straightforward manner" but slipped through the jungle in small parties. Unlike the roadbound British and their colonial troops, the Japanese carried light weapons and ammunition and wore sneakers, shorts and gym shirts and hauled enough food on their backs for four days marching.37

This quick and decisive movement caused Wavell to change his tune abruptly about the need for Chinese troops. After formally asking for the already-promised Chinese 93rd Division on January 19, Wavell asked for another division two days later. In all, Chiang ultimately sent nine divisions into Burma. But they took a long time getting into place and were hamstrung by Chiang's extreme hesitancy to commit them and the fact that the British were not determined to defend Burma.38

Meanwhile, the Japanese slipped around the main British force, the 17th Indian Division, by jungle tracks and blew up the vital Sittang river bridge on February 23, leaving most of the division on the east bank. Only 3,500 Indians got back, having abandoned all of their heavy equipment and most of their rifles.39

By March 4, the Japanese were only about forty air miles from Rangoon, where frantic Indians streamed into the Burmese countryside seeking ways to get back to India. The Burmese hated the million Indians the British had imported into Burma and they knew their lives might be forfeit if they remained without the British to protect them.40 The Japanese entered Rangoon on March 8, finding a city deserted of troops and most of the population.

Into this confused and chaotic situation descended General Stilwell, new senior American officer in China.41 When he left Washington on February 11, 1942, he was one month shy of his fifth-ninth birthday. He had graduated from the U.S. Military Academy in 1904, had an excellent record in World War I and had served twice before in China, in 1926-29 with the U.S. 15th Infantry Regiment in Tianjin and 1935-39 as military attaché with the embassy in Beijing. He spoke Chinese well. But he was most respected by military professionals as the best corps commander in the U.S. Army.42

What the United States needed in China was a Talleyrand, a diplomat of the first order who could skillfully and shrewdly manipulate, guide and influence Chiang Kai-shek to follow policies the United States wanted. Instead, the U.S. got a profane and direct soldier who perhaps would have had no peer if he had been placed in a field command and allowed to fight battles. Stilwell was sadly out of place in the byzantine cabals, political intrigues and connivance for power that preoccupied Chiang Kai-shek and most of those around him. Stilwell also proved to be a man who sought out publicity, was sometimes abusive and unreasonable to subordinates, held tenaciously to his own view and was often unwilling to acknowledge mistakes.43 General Sir Alan Brooke, chief of the British imperial staff, met Stilwell in Washington in May, 1943. Brooke liked few Americans and didn't like Stilwell, whom he said "had little military knowledge and no strategic ability of any kind."44

Stilwell's various responsibilities placed him in a position of inevitable conflict with Chiang. He was chief of the Generalissimo's joint Allied staff (really not a staff at all but only Stilwell himself) and thus under the direct authority of Chiang. He also commanded American forces in India, Burma and China. He was the military representative of the president of the United States. And he was in charge of lend-lease aid in the theater. Stilwell's American superiors ordered him to get the approval of Chiang to policies the Americans and British desired. This was not always possible. And Stilwell usually caught the blame from both sides when Chiang balked.45

A further factor which complicated Stilwell's job was the existing political situation in Nationalist China. General He Yingqin was chief of staff and the 3,000,000-man China army was unlike Western armies. It was a coalition of armed factions and provincial levies under generals who were often warlords. Chiang had a core of thirty divisions personally loyal to him but the loyalty of the 270 or so other divisions depended upon their commanders. Stilwell discovered it was difficult to commit any major portion of the army to offensive action. General He was faithful only to Chiang and considered his job to keep the army loyal through manipulation of cliques and control of supplies and funds. Furthermore, General He saw Stilwell as a rival.46

The Nationalist army also differed from Western armies in other crucial respects. Recruitment was generally by press gang and those who entered the army were principally those poor peasants who could not run away or pay a 100-yuan fee which permitted them to avoid service. Sometimes recruits were marched to their units like prisoners, tied together with ropes to prevent desertion. Clothing, food and medical care were extremely poor. Commanders got allowances for food based on the number of troops they had and commanders generally "squeezed" a portion of this for their own use. Some commanders padded their rosters to get larger food allowances. Other commanders allowed their soldiers to go hungry for days. Men frequently suffered from malnutrition, dysentery and disease. Losses from death and desertion were extremely high, sometimes running 40 per cent a year. This required constant efforts to impress new men into the army, severely affecting morale and training.47

* * * * * * * * * *

Before leaving Washington, Stilwell had been promised by Chiang Kai-shek that he could command the two Chinese armies deployed in Burma. Chiang doubtless meant this only as a complimentary gesture and probably had no idea Stilwell would seize the chance and attempt to use Chiang's troops in offensive ways that Chiang, morbidly defensive-minded, was not prepared to accept.48

After meeting Wavell at Calcutta, Stilwell left for Chongqing, stopping on the way at Lashio, where Chiang Kai-shek and Madame Chiang had come down to order dispositions for the Burma campaign. Stilwell had met the Chiangs while he was U.S. military attaché in China and the reunion was brief, as Stilwell headed on by air to Kunming, where he saw Colonel Claire Chennault and agreed to merge the Flying Tigers (American Volunteer Group) into the army air forces.49

At his first conference with Chiang and Madame Chiang in Chongqing on March 6, Stilwell announced the only way to save Burma was by offensive action. Chiang agreed. He also affirmed he did intend to give Stilwell command in Burma but it soon became clear this was a formality only.

When Stilwell and his staff of Americans left for Burma on March 11, the situation in Burma already was beyond repair and the British were retreating steadily. Meantime, the Japanese had brought in two new divisions and two tank regiments by sea. They kept one division in reserve, sent one toward the Chinese 200th Division at Toungoo, another wide to the east and a third up the Irrawaddy valley toward the British.

The situation now was getting desperate, especially because of Chiang Kai-shek's delays in sending troops to the front. This, Stilwell wrote Secretary of War Stimson on March 23, had "fatally compromised any chance we might have had here in Burma."

Japanese forces surrounded the Chinese 200th Division at Toungoo on March 24. After halts ordered by Chiang Kai-shek and malingering by Burma Railways, Stilwell got the Chinese 22nd Division down to break through the Japanese cordon and relieve the 200th Division. But the 22nd Division did not attack. Lieutenant General Du Yuming, commanding 5th Army, gave prolific excuses but Stilwell realized Chiang Kai-shek was commanding from Chongqing and Chiang was hesitant. The 200th Division finally had to cut its own way out, losing many killed and giving the initiative to the Japanese. The Chinese fell back northward. The British also retreated up the Irrawaddy valley without stopping.

By mid-April, Stilwell recognized the easternmost Japanese column had Lashio and cutting of the Burma road as its objective. This would close the only easy Chinese escape route.

In Burma, as throughout their lightning conquests since December 7, Japanese frequently practiced the barbaric habits they had demonstrated in China. They tied Indian prisoners to bamboo houses and set the structures afire or doused prisoners with gasoline and ignited them. In some cases they used captured British officers or Burmese natives for bayonet practice. When they captured Hong Kong they bound and bayoneted fifty British officers and men. They raped and murdered nurses in Hong Kong and Singapore. They bayoneted or shot thousands of starving, sick American and Filipino prisoners who straggled during the Bataan death march to prison camps in April. In Malaya they tied Englishmen to trees and tortured them to death, sometimes stuffing severed genitals into the victims' mouths. In the East Indies they killed more than a hundred Dutch civilians as a reprisal for destruction of the oil fields there. Although the Allies did not possess all of the details of Japanese atrocities at the time, there was enough evidence to arouse the same hatred of the Japanese among the Allies that possessed most Chinese people and guaranteed that the war would be savage. The immediate result was that Allied fighting men almost never surrendered voluntarily to the Japanese and, except to capture soldiers for interrogation, showed little interest in saving Japanese lives. A kill-or-be-killed attitude developed everywhere in the Pacific, fueled not only by the Western Allies' contempt for and hatred of the Japanese but by the Japanese soldiers' own concept that they must never surrender. Most Japanese obeyed the orders of their commanders and feared ostracism upon their families if they gave up.50

* * * * * * * * * *

Stilwell recognized the Allies were going to be beaten and he came up with a plan of reconquest. He proposed that enough Chinese to make up six divisions be brought to India to be trained and equipped, since supplying them over the Hump would be difficult. Stilwell proposed that the effort to recover Burma be made by these divisions, with the help of other Chinese forces from Yunnan.

While Chiang was giving his approval "in general," news arrived of the spectacular reprisal raid on April 18 on Japan by Lieutenant Colonel James H. Doolittle with sixteen B-25 medium bombers which flew off the carrier Hornet. Since the carrier deck was long enough to launch the bombers but too short for recovery, the B-25s had to fly to friendly fields in China. But a Japanese patrol boat spotted the carrier force 668 miles east of Tokyo and Doolittle launched his craft immediately. Not knowing of the B-25s, the Japanese expected the raids a day later, believing the Americans would draw close enough for naval aircraft to strike. Admiral Nagumo's carriers by then would have reached a position for a counterstroke against Hornet and its escorting carrier, Enterprise. This would have been a disaster, for the U.S. had only four carriers in the Pacific.51

The early launch fatally reduced the B-25s' ability to reach the Chinese fields. All sixteen bombers made crash landings or splashed off the coast. The Japanese, who routinely bombed civilians in China, executed three of the captured American flyers for bombing civilian targets. They also vengefully destroyed the airfields where the B-25s were supposed to have landed and tried to kill all Chinese who had helped crew members. A number of the Chinese rescuers of the American airmen were Communist troops and villagers.52

Meanwhile, the defense of Burma disintegrated. On the critical eastern front, General Chen Liwu, commander of the 55th Division, withdrew without instruction and went on the defensive, though he had several times more men than the Japanese. The Japanese filtered past the sitting Chinese, then attacked from the front, side and rear. The division simply vanished into the hills. Its disappearance opened the road to Lashio and the Japanese moved rapidly north. Stilwell was unable to get new Chinese forces massed to defend Lashio and the city fell on April 29 to a single Japanese regiment.

There was no longer any hope of keeping a campaign going in Burma. The Allies agreed that general retreat was the only course. Although the new commander of the Hump ferry command personally brought a C-47 into Stilwell's headquarters at Shwebo to fly everyone out, Stilwell insisted on departing by land. His view was that, if he rushed out, he would never be able to command Chinese forces again. This was questionable and evidence of perversity and possible grandstanding. The Chinese commanders in Burma made for the exits as fast as possible and no one thought the worse of them. As U.S. commander in China-Burma-India, Stilwell's task was to make decisions affecting the war. No one but he could advance the program to train Chinese troops in India. He could have eased the care and treatment of the Chinese troops fleeing into China by being in India instead of incommunicado on a jungle track in Burma. Stilwell's staff certainly felt their chief's position was at headquarters in Delhi. Stilwell did send his main staff back to India on the C-47. But he led out a party of about a hundred, including twenty-four American soldiers, by a long and circuitous route over jungle tracks, arriving at Imphal after a three-weeks trek.

On May 24, Stilwell flew into Delhi and held a press conference. There he decided to speak the truth and in so doing won lasting fame: "I claim we got a hell of a beating. We got run out of Burma and it is humiliating as hell. I think we ought to find out what caused it, go back and retake it."

Chapter 22: The War Turns Away from China >>

1. Cambridge, vol. 13, chapter 11, "Nationalist China during the Sino-Japanese War 1937-1945," by Lloyd E. Eastman, p. 568; Romanus & Sunderland, Mission, pp. 36, 82-83.

2. Varg, p. 32, 36.

3. Tuchman, p. 304; Varg, pp. 41-42.

4. Romanus & Sunderland, Choice, pp. 56-57; Davies, pp. 223-4.

5. The record of the Arcadia conference is contained in FRUS, Washington and Casablanca, pp. 3-415. At Arcadia the Western Allies reconfirmed the decision they reached at the ABC (American-British staff conversations) in Washington in February, 1941, that Germany was the predominant member of the Axis powers and consequently the Atlantic and European theaters were the decisive arenas. See above, pp. 145, 210-7.

6. Ibid., pp. 134-5, 140, 143; Dallek, pp. 312, 318-21; Schaller, p. 93; Romanus & Sunderland, Mission, pp. 62-63. Adolf Hitler declared war on the United States on December 11, 1941, and Italy followed the same day, thereby saving Roosevelt from having to initiate a declaration in Congress against the two European powers.

7. Romanus & Sunderland, Mission, p. 62; Tuchman, pp. 306-07.

8. Tsou, p. 35.

9. Romanus & Sunderland, Mission, p. 158; Tuchman, pp. 388-9; Schaller, pp. 93, 103.

10. Britannica, vol. 9, p. 421; Davies, pp. 236-8; White, pp. 89-96.

11. Schaller, pp. 90-92.

12. Davies, p. 224.

13. FRUS, China, 1942, pp. 419-95, contains a full record of the 500-million-dollar transaction. See also Varg, pp. 42-45; Feis, p. 22-23; Tuchman, pp. 322-3; Schaller, pp. 96-99.

14. Dallek, pp. 328-9. Time magazine named Chiang and Madame Chiang "Man and Wife of the Year" in 1937. Henry Luce, publisher of Time, was born in China of missionary parents, and he produced an idealized, almost worshipful view of the Chiangs. The missionaries in China rallied to the Chiangs because they were Christians, thus proving to the missionaries, at least, that the missionary effort in China was valid. As Barbara Tuchman writes, "They overpraised Chiang Kai-shek and once committed to his perfection regarded any suggestion of blemish as inadmissible." The Missionary Review of the World proclaimed that "China has now the most enlightened, patriotic and able rulers in her history." See Tuchman, p. 238.

15. Griswold, p. 382.

16. Varg, p. 49.

17. Romanus & Sunderland, Mission, pp. 64-65.

18. Feis, p. 15; Romanus & Sunderland, Mission, p. 75; Tuchman, p. 315.

19. Romanus & Sunderland, Mission, pp. 25-27, 235-8, 385-6.

20. Feis, p. 17.

21. Tuchman, p. 269.

22. Romanus & Sunderland, Mission, pp. 44, 46-47, 104-05. In July, 1941, 79,000 tons of Chinese goods were stored in Rangoon. At the Burma Railways rate of movement it would have taken eight months to move this amount to Lashio. Yet more lend-lease goods were arriving in Rangoon constantly. At the end of the the rail line at Lashio, 30,000 tons were stored.

23. Romanus & Sunderland, Mission, p. 57.

24. Ibid., p. 68-69.

25. Davies, pp. 221-2; Tuchman, p. 308.

26. Liddell Hart, World War, pp. 212-38; Morison, pp. 77-101.

27. Dower, pp. 5-7.

28. Morison, p. 100; Romanus & Sunderland, Mission, pp. 99-100.

29. The Flying Tigers trained at a Royal Air Force base near Toungoo in southern Burma about 160 air miles northeast of Rangoon. Chennault developed a system of tactics to take advantage of the P40's superior diving speed but inadequate maneuverability and turning capability (which distinguished the faster, lighter Japanese Zero fighter). Chennault used a two-aircraft team to fight together at all times, diving in, making a quick pass, and then breaking away. The Flying Tigers refused the turning combat for which the Japanese aircraft were designed. The Tigers started out with a hundred obsolescent P40Bs, but training took a heavy toll and the aircraft were in need of proper equipment. Romanus & Sunderland, Mission, p. 19; Tuchman, p. 301.

30. Romanus & Sunderland, Mission, pp. 55-60.

31. Feis, p. 24; Tuchman, p. 302-03.

32. Tuchman, p. 305.

33. Ibid., p. 307.

34. Tuchman, p. 365.

35. Dallek, p. 327; Romanus & Sunderland, Mission, pp. 77, 77n, 110-1; Tuchman, p. 331; Liddell Hart, World War, p. 235.

36. Romanus & Sunderland, Mission, pp. 76-78, 93; Tuchman, pp. 315-7, 324, 387. Above about 17,000 feet, people had to take oxygen, but the C-47s were not designed with pressurized interior space. Thus, at 15,000 feet, the transports were operating at about the limit of their capability. The Hump air service began on April 5, 1942, when ten aircraft diverted from Pan American Airlines' trans-African service began flying. Another twenty-five DC-3s (C-47s) were on the way after having been taken over from U.S. domestic airlines.

37. Tuchman, p. 314.

38. Romanus & Sunderland, Mission, pp. 84-85; Tuchman, pp. 332.

39. Liddell Hart, World War, pp. 234-6; Romanus & Sunderland, Mission, pp. 83-90.

40. Tuchman, p. 325.

41. Romanus & Sunderland, Mission, pp. 71-74, 78.

42. Tuchman, pp. 308-13; Romanus & Sunderland, Mission, pp. 66-67, 70-76; Schaller, pp. 93-94.

43. Tuchman, pp. 317-8; Davies, p. 226. Brigadier General Boatner, after publication of Barbara Tuchman's biography of Stilwell, wrote an essay deposited in the Asian Studies Center at Harvard University which claimed Stilwell abused subordinates, made serious mistakes in judgment, put on acts for the press, neglected staff work and made other errors. Field Marshall Viscount (William) Slim, in Defeat into Victory, New York: David McKay Company, 1961, pp. 36 and 118, also said Stilwell loved publicity, held to his views in staff conferences and was abusive on occasion. However, Slim, who served with Stilwell in Burma in 1943 and was his commander in the north Burma campaign in 1944, praised Stilwell as a tactician and for his imagination and drive. See Varg, pp. 141-2.

44. Bryant, pp. 505-06.

45. Romanus & Sunderland, Mission, pp. 87-89, 91.

46. Ibid., pp. 89-90; Tuchman, p. 336.

47. Romanus & Sunderland, Mission, pp. 217, 294-5, 299; Tuchman, pp. 338-40, 463-4, 618-9.

48. Romanus & Sunderland, Mission, p. 76; Tuchman, p. 328; Davies, pp. 225-6; Schaller, p. 102.

49. Tuchman, pp. 328-31, 333-4; Schaller, p. 101; Romanus & Sunderland, Mission, p. 93; Davies, pp. 226, 233.

50. John W. Dower, War without Mercy: Race and Power in the Pacific War, New York: Pantheon Books, 1986, pp. 12, 42, 44, 67-71. Dower's book is an excellent summary of the attitudes on both sides in the Pacific war.

51. Liddell Hart, World War, pp. 344-5; Layton, pp. 385-8; Morison, pp. 139-40.

52. The Chinese Reds had cause in 1948, when relations between Reds and Americans had changed, to mention their good deeds in rescuing and taking to safety a number of the American airmen on Doolittle's raid. See FRUS, China, 1948, vol. vii, p. 649.