In early November 1948, a leading official of the U.S. Embassy in China felt that the Nationalist Government was on the verge of collapse.

Memorandum: Minister-Counselor of Embassy in China (Clark) to the Director of the Office of Far Eastern Affairs (Butterworth)
Date: Nov. 8, 1948, Nanking
Subject: Chinese Nationalist Government

    Within the past few weeks, the Government's military power and economic position have so deteriorated that we seriously question its ability to survive for long. There is just no will to fight in Nationalist Government armies and in high official circles there is only befuddlement.   . . .

    Precisely when and exactly how the present Government will go is impossible to fortell. There are so many imponderables involved that no firm prediction can be made.

[ source: United States Department of State / Foreign relations of the United States, 1948. The Far East: China   Volume VII (1948), page 552 ]

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