Author(s): John J McLaughlin
General Albert C. Wedemeyer wrote the most important military document of World War II, the Victory Program (sometimes called Victory Plan) in the spring of 1941, shortly before America entered the war. The Victory Program recommended the build up of American Armed Forces, increased civilian production to wartime levels, and a strategic plan to organize our forces in England in preparation for a cross-channel invasion into France in the spring of 1943. Wedemeyer's recommendation for a cross-channel invasion was resisted by Churchill, who never favored an invasion into France at any time. To silence him, he was "eased out" to Asia with approval of President Roosevelt. General Wedemeyer replaced General Stilwell as the Commander of American forces in China in October 1944 and was responsible for the improvement of Chinese troops. He was one of the few Americans to understand the menace of Communism, and strongly urged full United States support of Chiang Kai-shek's Nationalist forces against the Chinese Communists under Mao Tse-tung.
After the war, Wedemeyer returned to China in 1947 for the purpose of making recommendations with regard to the ongoing civil war/revolution between the Nationalists and the Communists. His report and recommendations were suppressed by President Truman until after the Communists had come to power in 1949. This dissertation argues that the United States made two grave errors by not heeding General Wedemeyer's advice and strategic recommendations. First, if his recommendation for an invasion into France in 1943 had been followed, Allied forces could have prevented the Russians from seizing all the territory they occupied at the end of World War II. Secondly, if America had followed Wedemeyer's advice contained in his 1947 report and supported Chiang Kai-shek's Nationalist government in China, the Communists would have been defeated. The "Cold War," Korean War, and Vietnam War are the direct result of America's failed strategic and political policies in Asia, which allowed the Communists to take over China. Wedemeyer understood the coming events in Europe and Asia, and has been overlooked in favor of many others whose vision was not as clear as his.