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United States Department of State / Foreign relations of the United States, 1955-1957. China
(1955-1957)

United States policy with regard to the People's Republic of China and the Republic of China, January-July 1955,   pp. 1-689 ff. PDF (242.1 MB)


Page 634


634  Foreign Relations, 1955-1957, Volume II
be helpful if trade with China could be placed on the same level as
trade with Russia. The Secretary replied that this was already true, in
effect, since the trade which the United States voluntarily renounced
did not hurt the Chinese Communists, who could buy the commod-
ities from any one else they wished. We were merely losing business
to Hong Kong. The only embargo which really hurt the Chinese was
the international one.
     Mr. Menon reverted to the question of Chinese in the United
States, and asked whether the United States position was that they
were free to go back to China. The Secretary said that his statement
was correct. There might be one or two cases in which some question
was still pending, but he did not believe we would insist on holding
the individuals involved even in these cases. Mr. Menon mentioned
that the Peking authorities thought that many Chinese in the United
States wanted to return to China but were not able to do so. The
Secretary said the Red Cross or somebody else could find out wheth-
er this was correct. Referring again to the Red Chinese complaint
that we are forcing Chinese to leave, he said he would be very happy
if the Chinese would reciprocate by putting "pressure" on Americans
to get out of China. He thought that if Chou En-lai really wanted
better relations with the United States, he would release all the
Americans in China within twenty-four hours.
     Mr. Menon said that Chou En-lai was a reasonable man and
 wanted good relations with us. The problem was to convince Chou
 that Americans reciprocated this desire. He asked whether Americans
 who wanted to visit China would be permitted to do so. (He prob-
 ably had in mind American journalists but he may also have been
 thinking of relatives of the flyers.) The Secretary said that he did not
 think it made much sense for additional Americans to go to China as
 long as those already there were being held as prisoners. With refer-
 ence to the Indian offer to assure that Americans visiting China
 would be treated properly, he said that the United States could not
 rely on third countries to protect American citizens.
      Mr. Menon then asked directly, "Then, there is no likelihood of
 a relaxation to enable Americans to visit China?" The Secretary said
 he saw none at the moment.
      Mr. Menon then said that the only concrete result of his several
  talks with the Secretary seemed to be the Secretary's suggestion for a
  step-up in the level and scope of direct conversations. Was any
  progress possible on the question of a cease-fire? The Secretary said
  that the United States had stated many times that it desired a cessa-
  tion of hostilities and declared that he was not impressed by people
  who were ready to agree to a cease-fire only if they got what they
  wanted without firing. Mr. Menon said that the shooting and threats
  of shooting were not only from one side. The Secretary reminded


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