United States policy towards China has both a "direction and a philosophy," a State Department spokesman affirmed last night. The policy, he implied, is the removal or alteration of the Chinese Communist government by making the Mainland population realize the follies of its leaders.
Speaking at the opening session of the China Conference of the Collegiate Council for the United Nations, Robert Barnett, deputy assistant secretary of state for Far-Eastern affairs, said the "dogmatic" policies of the Peking Regime were leading the country to economic "disaster," a situation which brings hope for eventual changes.
Barnett said that the Chinese people are learning that "many of Mao's stern and strident dogmas are now inapplicable," and that even Mao himself "must be uncertain today" about who his friends and enemies are.
In contrast to the reportedly increasing difficulties of life on the Mainland, Barnett said "I saw in Taiwan proof of what the Chinese people could do in the right atmosphere." He said the "success story of Taiwan could have a tantalizing effect on the Mainland and in Southeast Asia.
At the beginning of his remarks Barnett said that, contrary to popular belief, the State Department is willing to discuss China policy with more than the tired and "meaningless cliches" of the past years. He failed to present any indications of new attitudes or policies, however.
The regime of Chiang Kai-shek, Barnett declared, is more democratic than that of Mao because it held elections at one time. The United States should not recognize Peking because that government is in trouble and may even be ready to change or collapse. The Chinese Communists are bad because they have a 'religious conviction," that the world must eventually go Communist and unworthy of diplomatic recognition because they do not abide by Western rules of diplomacy, he said.
Since the Communists continue to insist that Peking and not Taipel is the legitimate ruling capital of China, Mao to be "impossible." The recent the U.S. finds official dealings with revision of French policy on this subject is relatively unimportant, Barnett said, because unlike the U.S., the French are "not involved" in Far Eastern affairs as a power.