Cairo conference

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The Cairo conference of 1943 codenamed SEXTANT consisted of three of the "Four Policeman" as U.S. President Franklin Roosevelt referred to them in his "Great Design" of the Allied Powers of World War II. CPSU General Secretary Josef Stalin refused to meet with Chinese Kuomintang leader Chiang-kia shek, preferring to divert U.S. lend-lease aid to Soviet Comintern ally Mao-tse tung who was actively subverting the recognized Chinese government under Chiang-kia shek.

In Cairo Roosevelt and British Prime Minister Winston Churchill met with Generalissimo and Mme. Chiang Kai-shek. Stalin, ally of Shinto Japan after the Matsuoka pact [1][2] of April 1941, would not meet with the legitimate leaders of the Chinese government.

Roosevelt secretly demanded of Chiang Kaishek that he take the Communists into his government, quit opposition to the Communist army which might then take Manchuria for the benefit of Stalin. In return, and behind Churchill's back, he pledged to Chiang that he would keep the British out of Hong Kong and other ports where they were formerly entrenched.[3]

At Cairo, Roosevelt announced that it was the intention of the allies to force Japan to unconditional surrender and to strip her of all her island possessions taken during all her wars. Thus another of Stalin's aims - completely to destroy Japan as a strong power — was insured. When U.S. Secretary of State Cordell Hull heard, he expressed misgivings, saying, "Japan was about to disappear as a power in the Orient" and that "there would be nothing left in the Orient to resist an aggressor."[4]

Roosevelt promised to Chiang the return of Manchuria, Formosa, and the Pescadores; a few days later, at the Teheran conference, Roosevelt agreed with Stalin that the Soviet Union should obtain warm-water ports on the Pacific Ocean. That meant Port Arthur and Dairen—Chinese ports—and, the pledge made to the legitimate government of China, the Kuomintang, was broken.[5][6] Admiral William Leahy also says sharply that Roosevelt broke his word to Chiang.[7]


  1. Soviet-Japanese Neutrality Pact April 13, 1941, The Department of State Bulletin Vol. XII, No. 305, April 29, 1945. Retrieved from the Avalon Project 11 August 2007.
  2. Matsuoka, Molotov Sign, Time magazine, April 21, 1941.
  3. As He Saw It, Elliot Roosevelt, New York : Duell, Sloan, and Pearce, 1946, pgs. 157 - 166.
  4. Memoirs of Cordell Hull, Cordell Hull (N. Y., 1948), pg 1587, quoted in While You Slept : Our Tragedy in Asia and Who Made It, John T. Flynn, New York : The Devin - Adair Company, 1951, pg. 48 pdf.
  5. The Yalta Betrayal, Felix Wittmer, Claxton Printers, 1953, pg. 43, 83.
  6. The Roosevelt Myth, John T. Flynn, Fox and Wilkes, 1948, Book 3, Betrayal, Ch. 9, The Great Conferences.
  7. I Was There, Admiral William D. Leahy, New York, 1950, pgs. 200 – 218, quoted in While You Slept, John T. Flynn, pg. 48.