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Presence of Chinese communist troops in the Korean fighting constitutes "an extremely explosive situation," John K. Fairbank '29, professor of History, said last night.
"Apparently the Chinese Communists have completely swallowed the Russian lie that the United States is the aggressor in the Korean War," Fairbank explained, "and they fear our presence near their frontier."
They are particularly concerned about our approach to the Manchurian border, Fairbank went on, because Manchuria contains China's greatest concentration of raw materials and industrial potential.
Fairbank, who was convinced that the order to commit Chinese troops to the Korean conflict came from the central government, disagreed with the suggestion of his colleague, Edwin O. Reischauer, professor of Far Eastern Languages, that the instructions to the Chinese in Korea are not coming from the top.
"It's possible that the Chinese participation in Korea is a very restricted operation," Reischauer said, "and that the instructions for it might not be coming from way up the line. Of course, we can't be sure."
Fairbank thought the Chinese are probably anxious to protect the dams on the Yalu River in Korea which provide Manchuria with hydro-electric power. Reischauer, on the other haud, felt that "the dams aren't so terribly valuable to them so that they would risk a major war over them.
"Can Keep it Going"
"This is probably a limited adventure. We have no proof that it is anything to the contrary. However, if they want to throw in a division at a time they car keep that nasty war going a long time, because they have the manpower," Reischauer said.
Fairbank thought that the Chinese invasion of Tibet was also a calculated act of the Chinese central government. He admitted that he was puzzled by the Tibetan campaign because it is clearly jeopardizing their relations with India.
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