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United States Department of State / Foreign relations of the United States, 1950. East Asia and the Pacific

Burma,   pp. 229-255 PDF (11.3 MB)

Page 230

the Burmese territory. "They are now paying attention to Indochina,"
the Prime Minister stated, "but will probably come in later." Am-
bassador Jessup asked whether Nationalist troops had sought refuge
in Burma as they had in Indochina and was told they had not but
there were some still unaccounted -for who might. The Prime Minister
recounted how he had at one time recently been approached to meet
some "Chinese Communist leaders",-and after declining had found
out that they were in fact local Chinese opportunists passing them-
selves as communists in order to ingratiate themselves with Peking
and get on the bandwagon. The populace in the region concerned
became panicky and the Prime Minister was obliged to send a "com-
pany of troops" to give-the people reassurance. The single company
had in fact done just that, he claimed. The Ambassador ,asked whether
there were any communist groups at the frontier, There were not
many, the Prime Minister replied explaining that he did not believe
they would take the form of identifiable soldiersbut would rather
infiltrate gradually in the classic fifth column manner. A well-known
Burmese Communist was known to have been in Peking recently in
..,an official status. It was not known whether he had returned to Burma.
   The Ambassador asked whether the Burmese Government had had
 any recent messages from Peking regarding recognition. They had
 not and the Prime Minister explained that as Peking had replied to
 Burma's offer of recognition in such an arrogant manner the Burmese
 had chosen to ignore their message. There had been no messages since.
 (Note: This conflicts with the Foreign Minister's comment that a
 second "all honey" message had been received.3) He further stated
 there had as yet been no trouble with Chinese minorities in Burma.
 There were stated to be 40,000 Chinese in Rangoon,. They are more
 aggressive than the Chinese in Thailand and maintain their ties with
 China to the full and never become citizens.
   Ambassador Jessup inquired whether a peace settlement with the
 Karens would result in the automatic resolution of other pressingz
 problems. The Prime Minister felt that all other problems were minor!w..
 in comparison, and that if peace were restored they could allb)" solved
 in a short time. Ambassador Jessup asked if the solution was purely a
 military one. The Prime Minister replied that it was,,-but that he was
 nevertheless insisting that legitimate Karen demands be met. His
 task was a difficult one for.he had the Burmese public, strongly anti-
 Karen, to account to as well. He had strong opposition in the people,
 some of whom were convinced that -as long as he was around bloodshed
 would continue. The Prime Minister felt that his primary duty to
 Burma was to convince the people that without national solidarity
   3A memorandum of AmbasSadorJessup's converation with Foreign Minister
 Sao Hkun Hkio ,on February 9 together with other materials reiating to his
 Stay┬░ at Rangoon is in file 6ii.90B/2-550.

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