tv U.S. Military in China CSPAN June 18, 2017 10:30pm-11:47pm EDT
spirit and appeased the extremists. >> you can watch this and other american history programs on our website where all of our video is archived. c-span.org/history. >> next, the military historian discusses the u.s. military's relationship with china beginning in the late 18th century up to the korean and vietnam wars. the kansas city public library hosted this event. it's about an hour and 15 minutes. >> i am with the library's public affairs department and really appreciate you all being here tonight. it's great to have you. what turns out to not necessarily be by design, but by happenstance our second look in , as many nights into international politics and relations. who was here last night for condoleezza rice? thank you guys for coming back.
you have a hard act to follow. believe me, this is the guy to follow it. because what we have done is now we are following it up with maybe our favorite programming partners, the u.s. army command and general staff college in fort leavenworth. for the better part of the past century, it seems, we have been trying to figure out our relationship with china. are we allies, adversaries? sometimes it seems we are both at the same time. world's two biggest economies. right now, we see china as a linchpin in what might happen with north korea.
we are fortunate to have with us one of the foremost authorities on u.s.-china relations. he will examine a key 50 years in the relationship of the two countries, in this case from 1900 and 1950 that really set the stage for a lot of what was to come, including south korea, the korean war and the vietnam war. it's a period he's looking at the started with american involvement in conjunction with the boxer rebellion of 1900. this of course was before xi jinping was even a twinkle in donald trump's eye, or maybe it's vice versa, i'm not sure. as i said before, the event continues. i think our favorite and most successful programming partnership with the command and general staff college, they are specialists. i am sure many of you have been to their presentations before. they do not fail. they are engaging, they are enlightening, and th are
entertaining. they are terrific to have here. i think this is geoff's first time here. he is long overdue. he's taught there since 1991. he is a retired u.s. army special forces officer. he was a lieutenant colonel. he was trained by the army as a china foreign area officer, which is one of the military branch experts of the region he served on the joint staff. he was in the defense intelligence agency, so he has an intelligence background. he was a senior china analyst and deputy director of current intelligence with the u.s. civic -- pacific command, he served with the army pacific command. he is steeped in asian and china relations. he has a masters degree in east asian languages and cultures and a doctorate in history from k.u. there's nobody better to walk us
through one of the world's thorniest political relationships. ladies and gentlemen, please welcome geoff babb. [applause] geoff: hi, great to be here tonight. i have been working china since 1979. it has been an adventure. i will start off by saying anybody who says they are an expert on china is a fool. i'm going to run you through the history and then you can make up your mind whether my take on it is the one that you believe in or not. i started off with john k. fairbank who was the foremost , american historian on china. he and his wife both served in china during worldar ii. he was a professor at harvard.
what he basically outlined in this one slight is how we get started. believe it or not, there was a pivot to asia before november of 2011, when the soon not to be president clinton announced it during the obama administration. as you can see, we are a pacific power. manifest destiny did not stop in san francisco, it kept going. with alaska, the opening up of japan, and 10 years before the opening up of japan, the united states made their first treaty with china. and that is the treaty where we andmost favored nation extraterritoriality for american businessman that were in china. and you can see this next slide, the united states navy was in
china for a long time. we were patrolling the internal rivers of china in 1854. now i wanted to do this prelude because i did not want to start with the boxer rebellion like we just arrived that day. for all intents and purposes, we actually start trading with china with this shift, the empress of china in 1784. and with those ships, the trade with china begins, and it is still out there. as a matter of fact, we are usually the number one or number two trading partner with china. the end of the day, we did that all the way up until 1949.
minginterestingly, young was the first chinese graduate, graduated from yale. it was later taken away from him. but in 1872, there were 120 students that went to connecticut and started to study in the united states. it was part of something called the self-strengthening movement. the gentleman over here is essentially the foreign-policy advisor for the ching dynasty. you will see his name in a lot of different places doing a lot of different things, because he was basically their key diplomat. he also helped form one of their armies during the taiping rebellion. the chinese actually should have
done better than the japanese, in building a modern military. but somewhere down the road, somebody needs to come in and talk to you about the restoration and what the japanese did so you can compare and contrast the japanese to the chinese. because the chinese leadership in beijing under the emperor -- empress dowager didn't exactly want to follow the westernization model. so there was a lot of trouble in china in terms of building a modern military. the foreign militaries were certainly there and capable of doing it, and some of them wanted to do it. so the pictures are of factories that were building weapons that were european factories of the chinese thought. -- that the chinese bought. but they also made the problem
of finding different guns from different people at different times, different calibers, and that essentially doesn't go ll. and it didn't and it doesn't. the warlords will do the same thing. the warlords will buy airplanes, guns from different people at different times, and so china has a hard time getting its stuff, getting together and arsenal and a system of arsenals that will work. now we are ready to start. we have a little bit of a background. in 1900, the emperor, based on the success of an indigenous religious movement called the boxers, decided that she would declare war on the west and japan and the united states. and in doing that, began the seeds of the legations in beijing. because of that siege, the western powers plus japan plus the united states mounted an
expedition which today we would call a non-combative evacuation, to send a force in to relieve an embassy and to get the americans out is what we were going to do. so, there are about 500 or 600 foreigners that are besieged in beijing. a small group of about 3000 leave and try to go up, and are unable to move further on. it's about 110 miles from the coast of china to beijing. it is probably 60 or 70 miles. and so, a force of 17,000 to , move in, andnd eventually relieve the 3000 that
are trapped. are trapped. they will form this larger group that will make it to beijing. if you like, the movie "55 days" -- might just go watch that, you it will be more fun. at the end of the day, the chinese don't call it the boxer rebellion. this is a picture i took at the pla museum in beijing and this is what they call it, the war against the invasion of the eight-power allied force. it wasn't a very happy affair. within 11 years, the ching dynasty, the last of the chinese dynasties, will fall. one could argue that the major blow was the sino-japanese war of 1894, 1895. in the boxer rebellion, the two largest groups of allies will be the russians and the japanese.
the united states will have a little over 2000 people that will be part of this. here are the different nations. and the allied chinese troops were essentially troops trained by the british. these are the americans. would, order number would be the order that you take listthe aging general the -- adjutant general so you could get credit on your record for having served in the boxer rebellion. these are the crafts of five of the regiments that took part. artillery regiment, defend artillery, sixth cavalry, and the ninth, 14th, and 15th infantry regiments. we will not leave china, militarily, for the next 49 years.
so, i got it. we have been in iraq for a long time. my son is serving there right now. we have been in afghanistan for a long time. we have been in germany for a long time. we have been in japan for a long time. one can argue the united states military when itoes someplace, stays. this is as good example as any. we wouldn't have left when we did if it hadn't been for mao and the winning of the chinese civil war. so, if you are over there, you can get your china ribbon. these regiments still exist. they are very famous regiments of the united states army. since i mentioned those places and everybody doesn't have a map of china in their head like i came to have right now, these are the forts down here.
you have to come ashore. these are terrible mud flaps. you can see this meandering river, you can see the road, and railroad. we tried them all. this is the 55 days to peking, and we will eventually get to peking and relieve the delegation. "the new york times," in terms of fake news, had reported the chinese had overrun the legation and had massacred them all. and the relief formation under a british general went, well, is there still a reason to go? the answer was, it's not verified. we need to go. so, they still mounted it even though there was news it was too late. it was not a popular thing to do back home. anybody here from connecticut? hartford?
been to mark twain's house? mark twain isn't from missouri. he's a yankee. well, if you go to his house, you can see some of the different writings that he had as essentially running against u.s. imperialism. so, as far as the boxers were concerned, from mark twain's perspective, they were the patriots and we had no right to be there. one can argue the people of the united states were split right down the middle on whether or not to do the imperialist thing globally or whether to stay home. so, one can argue that we have come by our current desire to look at neo-isolationism
rightly. there's another thing that happened though, at the end of shat war, the eight power i basically presented a bill to the chinese government for the cost of the war. no, president trump did not dream of the idea of making iraq pay for it. it is something that had happened before. we actually cut in half the indemnity that was going to come to the united states, and then used the indemnity to provide scholarships to chinese students. i don't know whether their immigrant visas were played with or not but it wasn't on the seven-country list at the time. at the end of the day, there's a social legacy out there of the united states being different than the european powers and different than japan.
there is, and some would say, a myth out there that china and the united states have a special relationship. but if that myth is true, a good place to start is here. they are using the indemnity for educational purposes. we will have soldiers and especially marines in ina from 1900 on. we guard that corridor from beijing to the fort so we can always evacuate our citizens. 15th infantry regiment in permanently. permanently means until 1938. and we probably wouldn't have left in 1938 but for the second world war beginning in china in 1937. so, this is the regiment to be in. today if you are in the united
states army and you are a fired up young captain or fired up young new recruit, you want to go to the 82nd airborne. you want to jump out of airplanes, go everywhere. well, in 1912 to 1938, this was the regiment to go to. and you can tell they were on road marches just like the guys bragg. at any point in time, one of the new colonels showed up and decided that we were getting soft and we needed to do more pt, physical training. off we go on these 20-mile road marches. what's interesting is in this regiment, in this time frame, will serve the some of the most famous officers from world war ii. so this regiment will have many
officers. there's an argument that i tried to make that the united states army understood china, it lived in china. when we began to be advisors to the chinese which will begin in we have a cadre of office errors and in co'sicers that have been to china and still ll personally puthe culture language program into this regiment. so, like today, when we want our soldiers that are going to iraq or afghanistan to speak arabic, there is a long-standing tradition of having soldiers understanding the culture of a nation they are going into, will be stationed in. then there is the airplanes. in 1934, the colonel took airplanes into china. everybody knows the flying tigers.
before claris and all, the united states was in there working with the chinese on building an air force before the war with japan. now, the problem was we sold them these weapons, taught them how to fly them, and then shane kai-shek used them against one of his own warlords. one of the warlords supposedly on his side. kind of went off track. we apparently went up to chang kai-shek. and chastised him for using these planes fighting his own folks. i wish point he told us to pound sand and we left. we will be replaced by the italians. name a good italian plane. so, the curtis planes we were selling them eventually died for lack of parts and lack of maintenance. and the italians came in, the planes were not very good, the
training of the pilots was worse. and what you see is a disaster in 1937 in terms of the chinese air force. the chinese in the early 1920's, 1924, established the military academy. at the military academy, chang kai-shek will begin to build the professional army that should have been built in 1854. is a guyer in this named zhou enial. tongue -- mao se tong's until they both die in second 1976. he is the deputy to chang
kai-shek. because at that time, the nationalist party that had grown basically the same party. it was the left wing and the right wing of the party. chang being the right, joe being the left. but they were training young officers to build the new chinese army, the chinese republican army. this is how it starts. tone kai-shek had gone military high school in japan, had visited the soviet union. the other had gone to france, studied in france, and picked up -- communist or committees communist proclivities there. the first advisor to shanker scheck are the soviets the best -- shanghaischeck
scheck's advisors are the russians. one of chang kai-shek's sons, will basically replace him when he dies as the head of taiwan, is sent to live in the soviet union. will marry a russian lady and stay there more than a decade. he will eventually come back, not particularly friendly with his father until later. so, chang kai-shek will eventually kick the soviet advisers out because he does not appreciate the way they want to do the political training among the troops. d so, he wl kick them out. and then he will bring in the germans. the germans will promise to build 60 divisions. they get about 20 of them built when the japanese attack. as you know, the japanese and germans will be allies during world war ii. the japanese will basically call up the germans and say, would you might stop training the chinese? they are getting better and they are starting to beat us, and
that's not a good thing. most of the german advisors will leave. there are several german advisers who don't like hitler who will stay. so, you will see these stories of these strange colonels and lieutenant colonels from the german army in china working and training. but the germans built and equipped 20 divisions before 1937, and they were chang kai-shek's best divisions. one of chang kai-shek's sons goes to germany. now, i'm going to make the case down the road. chang kai-shek was no great democrat. he was our friend, sort of. if you are a stilwell fan, he is a peanut on a raft. if you're a taiwan fan and using
think the mesh and you think chang kai-shek is the best thing since sliced bread for what he did on taiwan, you can float another story. but the story at the beginning is he is a far right national socialist and he is accompanying , and working with until 1927 the communist left wing. there happens to be a guy named roberts who is related to senator roberts, who in 1937 thhappens to be a guy named happens to be catching a ride up the river with the navy, when the japanese attack it. and major roberts, who will become colonel roberts and be chang kai-shek's intelligence officer in the china-burma-india theater is awarded a distinguished service cross for his actions as the senior officer on this ship when this tragedy happens. the japanese will apologize, pay
reparations, but they certainly sent us the message that we were no longer wanted. and later that year in beijing, the second world war will begin in asia. this is a picture of what is known as the marco polo bridge, and it doesn't take long for the japanese to take that. now, i don't have the slides on manchuria. but the chinese were fighting the japanese that were encroaching from the puppet state they had set up in manchuria. the head of that puppet state was the last emperor. at the end of this time, the japanese will move to shanghai and will begin to move inland.
and so in 1937, the war for shanghai. they will move upriver to nanjing, and the nanjing massacre everybody has heard about. in that process, chang kai-shek will lose most of his 20 divisions. chang kai-shek's diaries were released several years ago and were translated. several people have written new biographies of chang kai-shek. they try to paint him in a better light, as typical historians, like to revise things once they get a new piece of information. my thought is, he wasn't a od general. he wilnever be a good general. he was a pretty good politician to hold the mess that was china together, but what he did to his best divisions in shanghai was wrong. because in shanghai, where he fought, he did not have either air cover or enough artillery to
deal with the japanese artillery. and in parts of shanghai, the chinese troops are actually being hit from japanese warships offshore. why didn't you just backup 30 miles? chang kai-shek doesn't know how to retreat, or nicely, conducts retrograde operations to save his troops and fight in better places. he does another stupid thing. he orders his units to hold in place and not surrender. absolutely giving away great troops that could have been used later. so yes, chang kai-shek is successful moving against the japanese, causing a lot of casualties, but eventually he will end up in chongqing and the best of his army will have been killed and defeated, and we will start all over again. guess who is going to help him
start over again. while the battle is going on planeanghai, in a given to him by mrs. chang kai-shek clears it all. the one circled on this is united states army air corps retired, is wearing the creature meants -- accoutrements of a chinese air force officer. i get it. the flying tigers were a chinese unit. until we get into the war, and he becomes a major general in the american air force. but, he does a hell of a job. he is a great air force tactician. and as this picture kind of depicts, he makes friends with and gets in tight with chang kai-shek and madam chang kai-shek. and that is a good thing. madam chang kai-shek went to wellesley, spoke better english
than i do, and was very charismatic. and she made a difference when she came to the united states and met with american politicians. but we will build over the next several years a chinese air force that is pretty damn good because of him. but i guess absolutely hammered in 1937. he will moved to southwest of chongqing to setup the new school. there's another guy you might've heard of by the name of evans carlson, united states or in -- marine corps. according to some in the united states marine corps, he was just a communist. as a captain, he is in charge of fdr's security detachment down in georgia. when he gets done with his time there, he gets the opportunity
to ask ask the president for the next assignment. he says, i would love to go to china and i would like to see what the communist are doing. and so, captain carlson goes to china, meets with the ambassador and says, i would like to meet with the communist. what is the ambassador going to say, no? the president said he could go, he could go. he went up and wrote a book. and then there's a wonderful model called "once an eagle." anton meyer is a marine. he writes this book. there's a chapter in this book i a guy named matt damon. matt damon goes out and spends time with the communists. you can scratch out damon's name and write in carlton's name. it's essentially carlton's story told in a novel.
the interesting thing is, the other guy in "once an eagle" looks a lot like general wedemeyer. but carlson gets out of the air force, writes a book, "when stars over china, when world war ii begins, he will rejoin the marine corps, form a unit called carlson's raidors, be wounded badly, will be returned to the united states, and that is eleanor roosevelt seeing him there. he will later retire as a two star general in the marine corps. let's talk about the press. the lying press. these are all the press that wrote harshly about chiang kai shek. if president trump wants to know what it is like to be written about badly by the press, he should just read theodore white.
or he could try the local favorite, anchored snow. edward snow. he will fall in love with and married a chinese martial -- then the movie was made about hemingway --china just seemed in the best of the journalists. on the other side, there is time fily.nd the luce it is a totally different story becausthey a in love with chiang kai shek and vice versa and he will make sure that is chngctured on time magazine four times. stillwell somehow get his picture on there because they try to work with chiang kai shek but it finally fell off.
this is clear loose booth -- clare luce booth in burma and there meeting with chiang kai shek. from the side of the house, you get a totally different story from and about chiang kai shek. the stories coming out of china are very different. that's depending on who is out in the field and what they are doing. you also have to remember, chiang kai shek's wife had converted to christianity and the missionaries in the united states that has lived and worked in china and there were literally hundreds of thousands of them through the 1800s and 1900s, saw china as 400 million possible christians and that was not going to happen under the communists. there is a story underneath this
that is similar to some easy today. in 1941, the united states and decided along with franklin delano roosevelt that china will be part of a program. we will send in 600 guys to advise and assist. the mission of the u.s. soldiers in iraq today is called advise and assist. there is not much new under the sun. the missions we are doing in iraq in afghanistan are security forces assistant mission. it is what we were doing here in 1941. this was before we were at war with the japanese and everything is having to go into burma. it will not be long before the japanese conquest can't go on. it begins and then it in. -- then it ends. one of the japanese see we are getting supplies to china through burma, they cut it off.
the japanese, who are in thailand will move up for divisions into burma and will cut off a burma road. this is where the walkout happens. lease supplies that were in the docs in burma -- on the docks in burma. we gave it to the brits to fight the war. if they were chiang kai shek supplies, we did not really asked. -- did not really ask. chiang kai shek offered two armies to the brits. two chinese armies to fight in burma. the british's first response was no.
further research and i was in burma for 10 days back in august of this year and some of the research i did, the british story is they knew they could not supply two wars and six divisions. chiang kai shek offers these divisions that they do not come with the supply base to do the fighting. the brits said no and then they talk and said yes. there were two chinese armies, six chinese divisions. the british army and to divisions fighting in burma in march and april of 1942. one americans said we will not supply any combat troops, ground combat troops to burma until merrill's marauders in 1944.
he is not committing any americans other than his immediate staff. what did stillwell think of chiang kai shek? this is my narrative. chiang kai shek and stillwell really begin not to get along right here. those six divisions that were sent down were supposed to follow stillwell's orders and the regiment commanders would not follow his orders and less
they called back and got chiang kai shek to agree. that is not how you fight a war. stillwell was given four state department advisors. today our commanders are given for policy advisors. we have a relationship with the state department in a lot of ways. general petraus had his state department guys testify. at the end of the day, these two especially, this is john service and this is john pat davies. these guys are going to get pilloried during the mccarthy era as being soft on congress -- soft on communism. they were absolutely vital to
stillwell. a lot of the work they did was in india. india just wants much more to do with the brits and that whole political situation in india, it is not much talked about but the british regiments of better going to fight in burma from the next three years are indian regiments. they are of mostly -- there are a few scottsmen but it is the british indian army that is going to take burma back and a small detachment called merrill's marauders. one of the journalists here, he and john pat davies were flying over burma and the plane had mechanical issues.
they would be picked up by a native burmese who had been working with our officers of strategic services. the state department guys were in the thick of it with stillwell. this is what the japanese to do, they go from thailand in a they go and drive the chinese back and the british back. there are two chinese divisions that will make it to india. they will make it to a place called ramgarh. stillwell says we will train the division army in india, the brits will supply the uniforms and the money.
the first group of americans --there are about 65 american soldiers that will leave savannah georgia --savannah, georgia and 65 days later go to pakistan and then moved to india up to ramgarh and build this training school. we will eventually build a lot of chinese division. --divisions. we will be helped now by what is -- we will also be helped by what is now the cia. which then was the office of strategic services. it had two parts. one was the office of war information. this is john king fairbanks, who, with his wife, was in china collecting information and writing studies. the intel piece of the federal intelligence agents of today was born here. the operational part of the cia is also born here.
the final american cooperation organization is the front for the office of strategic services in china. they will work for chiang kai shek's chief of gestapo. dai-li who will later die in an airplane crash will make sure there is no opposition to chiang kai shek. it does not matter who that opposition is. it is communist, nationalist, democratic, it doesn't matter. if you are against chiang kai shek dai li is against you. our state department is working for him.
i have a memo that says are you sure he wants is working for dai li, you know what he really does. general donovan is the head of the cia. john pat davies will write in his letter saying is this the want to play with. you can go to china today and very near this spot -- when i was there in the 80's it was called the american war crimes museum. now it has a nicer title. and there, the communist government of today has set up a museum and in that museum they pay should be to the china-american cooperation organization because we were fighting the japanese. you can go to china today and see pictures of chiang kai shek in various places. one of the things that we needed once we started flying in china and we tried to find desk we try to fly a lot of missions in china.
we try to hit mainland japan from china. we knew that we would have downed pilots. we started with the downed pilots in china with the doolittle mission. they are counting on chiang kai shek to get us -- to let us put a detachment there. it is not often they see an american army general getting an award from mao. we had a 25-30 man group with mao from 44-47. we did exactly what he was doing. we knew exactly how the communist operated. if you were up there and he wanted to operate and you are
watching chiang kai shek operate, guess who you thought was a better choice? the report that are coming back from the soldiers and the press that looks less is less. when a soldier goes in and see soldiers, they know who is capable and not capable. mao's forces were capable or appeared to be. this is a conference --the cairo conference. roosevelt and churchill will go later on to meet stalin after this conference. we will promise at this conference to build 90 chinese
divisions. they will be equipped with basically everything, artillery, tanks, machine guns, weapons, 490 divisions. -- for 90 divisions. if the war had gone on to 1949, we would have gotten there. this is the southeast asian command. they are planning at cairo the plan for retaking burma. it is a mess. the brits are barely hanging on and all of the shipping that we need to do what we need to do to get back into burma --we need a plane come over from northern india and the south by see. -- south by sea. all of the amphibious shipping is an europe in the middle east -- in europe and the middle east.
chiang kai shek said no, sort of. everyone keeps working. everything is on this chart except stillwell is holding six jobs simultaneously. he should be in savon, sri lanka, burma, india and china all day, all the time doing his job. he cannot do all this. whose fault is the? -- is this? arguably his. it is not easy to call up george washington -- george marshall in washington dc and say i need four or five more general.
-- more generals. stillwell deserves some criticism. he cannot do the job and he is not dedicating all his time to the chiang kai shek account. that is why they call him the squad leader. he wants to be on the ground fighting down in burma as that is not where he is supposed to be. he is the senior chinese military officer in the china-burma-india theater. he should be spending most of his time working with chiangai shek. that is not what -- what he does. he gets relieved by a man from the obama national guard, silver star in world war i.
he was a politician in an army uniform, had served in very powerful positions. the story of him getting off the plane to meet with mao and doing an unlawful war -- an oklahoma war whoop. he will recommend to roosevelt that stillwell should be relieved and he will be relieved. this guy, with a -- whittimyer, he will become the guy. he is a strategist. he is going to do what stillwell should have done. sit down with chiang kai shek and get the job done. we have at cdsc a cheer named
for wedemeyer as the strategist that he is. this is the problem, when wedemeyer take paper, the japanese will launch a program. the japanese had --the united states had blocked the japanese home islands. if they're are going to get anything it must come by rail or road across china up to the northeast, down the tree and hezbollah and then across the -- down the korean penusula and then to japan.
a couple places they might go might be a real problem. if they sling this way, they may go after chiang kai shek's headquarters. if they sling this way, this is the terminus to where they are bringing everything in at home. we are pretty sure this is what they are doing. chiang kai shek does not want to take any chances. he will not let the divisions that we have trained down here go down into burma because he is scared of this offensive. what happened in northern burma is the british 35th division, the task force, in august of 1944, stillwell's forces, merrill's marauders take the town at a cost.
they are totally destroyed as a fighting unit. they will pull one regiment out, join with the with 24th calvary regiment call the texas national guard and it will form into the force that will move to china. what stillwell wants to do, have composite divisions. two chinese regiments and an american regiments. never reallyappe bause the thr ends. gentleman here gets an oer from wedemeyer and says, i've had about 500 generals in my life and i would rate this guy
about 499. he was stillwell's chief of staff. wedemeyer was not happy with him and he was not happy with wedemeyer. batiste. he commanded -- we do not command the chinese units. we advise of the chinese units. the leverage that we have our air power and logistics -- are our air power and logistics. with logistics we can these people without commanding them -- we can move people without commanding them.
we were on our way to 60 but the x, y, the force and this is what we get to by august 1945. they would have punched into burma from india. several of these armies would have been punched down into burma from yunnan --we not only build the army's but we built the corps over them. we build an iraqi army, it did not do very well. build an afghan army, it may not be doing so good on sundays.
if you keep the advisors with the units, keep the logistics flowing, keep the air power with the unit, it will work. but you have to stay there to be there. wedemeyer asked macarthur for a fourth to occupy china because all the chinese military is out towards burma and chongqing. when the japanese surrender unexpectedly in august of 1945 after the two atomic bombs, the army is all over china and somehow we have to fix it. he asked for six divisions and macarthur said i will give you some left over marines. certainly an insidious --and amphibious corps went into china in 1945 and 50 job of six army divisions -- and did the job of six army divisions. this is a wonderful book.
what does the united states army do? the united states army has 60,000 soldiers in china. all the advisors, we try to keep as many of them as we could in india because every american wants eighth and bacon for breakfast every morning. the chinese might get one a month for the family. it was eating china live to try to defeat of the americans so keeping them in india -- it was eating china alive to try to feed the americans.
feeding -- at the same time we have to feed 60,000, we have 4 million japanese to be taken home. and the same ships that are going to take johnny back to san francisco are going to take kido back to tokyo. moms and dads want their son home now and they don't care what happens to the 4 million japanese. wedemeyer will write a nice article on this repatriation and the marines to a awful lot of the work. we will move 400 million japanese that. 1.5 million are civilians who had been working in the interior. -- working in manchuria. they have to be fed and taking care of and we have to move 600,000 soldiers back to the east.
the navy will be some of that by ship. but we flew a lot of them as well. then, something that not many people know about, brigadier general philip e gallagher will accompany with 40 plus american advisers two chinese corps to take the japanese surrendered in vietnam. the rumors, the americans may have avoided the the knot more -- the vietnam war if they had gone with catchment -- with him. chang got rid of the general. this is another problem in the war. there were a lot of good generals who were not allowed to
continue and were replaced by shiite generals. these are political and military affairs. in the political a military affairs, chiang kai shek chose people who were loyal to him politically and not people who were good on the ground. dorne kept a book on the chinese generals and some of them said only fit to play. mah-jong with. this is hurley with mao and he is attempting to bring the communists and the nationalists together. this is the plane that went to get them.
if the mission fails, and basically hurley said i have had enough of this stuff. truman goes, what am i going to do now, it's with marshall. general marshall is known as the finest diplomat who ever served in uniform. why did he go to china and try to do this impossible task of bringing the nationalists and the communists together to form the 1st united front. someone should have asked him. when truman said, marshall, i need you to go, he went. he did the best he could. you stay there from november of 1945 to january of 1947.
he is attempting to find a way to get the congress -- the communists and nationalists together. he will send back and there are 9 u.s. officers sent to nine king -- nanking to build the division. that mission falls apart. it never happens. the other thing that marshall was trying to do was to get a cease-fire between the communists and the nationalists. we are 4 million japanese home,
we are trying to give the nationalists from fighting the communist. a little organization called the executive headquarters, they had one nationalists officer, when communist officer and one american officer. they would drive around and check on violations of the cease-fire's that had been agreed to by the communists and the nationalists. one of those people was john birch. he was the son of a missionary in china and when do little -- dolittle's plane goes down, they get to meet john birch. birch will accompany the american pilots back and they will ask him will be joining the army.
you speak any, you know chinese. he said yes. in this mission which is very dangerous he will be killed by the communists. welcome to the john birch story. wedemeyer and marshall and wedemeyer reports. for my students, i take out all of the references into china and i take out the pictures and i say, where is this? they say, iraq and afghanistan.
this is the last u.s. officer that will serve as part of the advisory mission. the united states forces will pull out of there in 1979. barr will command the division in korea. general sun liren commanded the divisions that came up from burma into ramgarh. he went to purdue and bmi. he was a division major in the chinese army and he will be a
four star general and the chinese army. he is eventually put under house arrest. he is macarthur's guy with macarthur meet up with him. chiang kai shek promises of forces to fight in korea. he says no, you will probably need them. warned by zhou eniai, remember him, they send a message through him not to go through the 38th parallel. thchinese come anyway across the 38th parallel. would they have? we knew zhou eniai and he knew us. we will restart the advisory mission to chiang kai shek's army in may of 1951 in the middle of the korean war and it
will continue through 1979. >> three or four questions and then the mind meeting with people one on one? >> [inaudible] >> it was in 1818 when the marines sorted out a dispute between the chinese merchants. 1900 is the best to date -- is the best date. there was an american from massachusetts who built the ever victoria's army and they will
fight the tai pings in 1859 and he will be killed and replaced by a british engineer captain by the name of gordon. the first time and chinese soldier and an americans older were fighting each other, korea. --the first time a chinese soldier and an americans soldier were fighting each other, korea. it goes off the rails in 1949 and with the war in korea, he goes off the rails in 79 and will get back on the rails with
nixon visits in 1972. >> can you talk a little bit about who lost china thing, some of the people are the culprits about china. >> chiang kai shek lost china. that is it. >> mccarthy and his followers blame certain people. >> absolutely. the blame game will begin. marshall is tainted by his mission to try to build a united china. we wanted a united china in 1945. what was supposed to happen in japan was it was supposed to be moved back 1000 years and be an agricultural society and china was going to be the new japan and offset stalin in russia.
you had to have a china that was getting well. marshall goes over and tries and it falls apart and mao's demands could not be met by chaig. he did some military things on the ground, operationally and strategically from 1946 to 1949 that were this -- just stupid. they did not make military sense. they lost. >> didn't the split personality of this front start during the opium wars back in the british sponsored opium wars that undermined the social structure.
a lot of missionaries went in to do good for the little people which might not have been so good. >> i'm going to have a hard time answering that in less than five minutes. if you look at the restoration and how japan began as a modern nation. you look at what happened in china, you go wait a minute, what happened in china. the argument used to the china did not make it -- used to be china did not make it because of all the foreign intrusion. it was undermined by the han chinese within that society. there's plenty of blame to go around.
the external forces and the internal forces both collided to make china nearly impossible to put back together. this is on the other side for china. i do not in new -- i do not know anybody like chiang kai shek who did the most to keep it together. he lost it but i don't think there was anyone could have ever won it. >> after ve day in europe, the united states was involved in refugee resettlement. did we have any similar programs in china? >> there is relief effort, official relief effort and the truman library has archives on that.
they were not part of my study but we were try to help them rebuild their industry. >> we have to stop fighting each other, that is called the second united front. the first united front is there. the second united front is in 1936 and marshall is trying to build the third united front. in some ways it is reasonable to believe that if the economy is, nationalists -- if the communists and nationalists who work together, they could again.
don't really happen but there are sources of that would inform you a lot more about what we try to do to get them going. >> one more question. >> i was astounded to discover that mao wrote letters of friendship to fdr in the early 40's dating for wall street financing and to join with chinese labor, -- begging for wall street financing and to join with chinese labor to create an economic powerhouse. what a lost opportunity. >> lost opportunity or wonderful propaganda.
when i was doing my dissertation research, i went out to chongqing with a friend and one of them was doing a study. one of the first things he asked me was, you know how much money the united states said they would pay time to build the air filled in china. he said, no. the chinese think we owe them money for the labor for the airfield built to save their country. propaganda is propaganda. missed opportunities are four other historians to write about and make a lot of money on their books. i enjoyed it. i will stay after and answer any questions. [applause]
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