HONG KONG: With His Majesty's Compliments

In Hong Kong last week a British colonial court decided that 71 U.S.-made planes, formerly the property of Nationalist China, now belong to the Chinese Communists. With the aircraft (including DC-3s, five Convairs and five four-engined Skymasters) went 20,000 tons of maintenance equipment; altogether the property was worth $30 million.

The planes had been operated by Nationalist China's government-owned CNAC and CATC. As Communist armies overran the mainland, the lines retreated to Hong Kong's Kai Tak airfield. There, last November, most of their Chinese personnel declared allegiance to the Communists (TIME, Nov. 21) and shooed off Nationalist officials.

To get the...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!