Time Runs out in Cbi

By Charles F. Romanus; Riley Sunderland | Go to book overview

CHAPTER XII
The End of Wedemeyer's Experiment

The Chinese Army, Summer 1945

The time was approaching for Chinese troops to open a Chinese seaport. The Americans had made substantial progress in preparing Chinese divisions, in training key Chinese personnel, and in supplying food, ammunition, and medical care to the U.S.-supported Chinese divisions. The heart of Wedemeyer's program had been the 36-division plan, now 39 (36 plus 3 from Burma). Beyond that, for specific missions in the CARBONADO operation, a few additional Chinese divisions, such as Chang Fa-kwei's, had been reorganized and given some added weapons from the Chinese supply.

As of the first week in August, the training program for the 39 divisions, which contemplated two thirteen-week cycles, had been carried to the following point: 3 divisions had been trained to U.S. standards in India; 2 divisions had been trained and had received combat experience in Burma; 11 divisions had completed thirteen weeks' training in China; 22 divisions were one-half to three-quarters through their thirteen weeks' training; and 1 division had not begun training.

As for the rearming of the 39 divisions, if one may take a slight liberty with chronology, by 23 August 1945 all of the 39 had enough ordnance to make them completely operable in combat with the principal exception of two items, one of which was 60-mm. mortars.1

The replacement problem was still unsolved. No machinery yet existed to give the Chinese divisions a steady flow of well-trained, physically fit replacements. Gravely concerned by this weakness, which if uncorrected would cause the new reorganized Chinese divisions to waste away in combat and would deter the commanders of the rest of the Chinese Army from committing it wholeheartedly to battle, Wedemeyer on 5 August sent to the Generalissimo a report that had been received in his headquarters:

ewith memorandum which I feel contains information that should reach you. It

____________________
1
Ltr, Col Edward C. Reber to Public Relations Officer, Hq CCC, USFCT, 23 Aug 45. AG ( CCC) 314.7, KCRC.

-368-

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