Ronning Condemns US China policy

Category:  Historical reprints
SourceMcGill Daily, Vol. 58, No. 81, Friday, February 28, 1969, page 3, three cents

Ronning Condemns US China policy

By Nick Deichmann


Chester Ronning 28 February 1969, McGill Daily

                          Daily Photo by Leo Lax
Chester Ronning yesterday condemned American policy towards China.  He recommended an attempt to understand China as the first step.

Chester Ronning yesterday condemned Western and in particular, American policy towards China, saying, “something should be done about changing this policy, because it is a very dangerous one which we have accepted”.

Ronning, former Canadian Chargé d’Affaires in Nanking, China, High Commissioner to India and Special Canadian Representative to Saigon and Hanoi, was speaking on Ideology and Western Foreign Policy in the Far East.

He traced American and Canadian relations with China over the last century, saying they had changed radically after the founding of the Chinese Peoples’ Republic.

He said, “the tradtional American China policy was a good one, as it was the first to start a new trend in opposition to the expansion of the European powers.  He praised the “Open Door Policy” and stated the United States was never to “get its troops bogged down on the Asian mainland”.

Ronning blamed

Ronning blamed Chiang Kai-Shek for losing the civil war to the Communists, saying, “it was Chiang Kai-Shek who put the Communists into power, not the United States.  There was no power on earth which could have stopped them, because it was a revolution and China had changed”.

He pointed out that America’s change in policy was the result of a series of wrong analyses that had disastrous consequences:  first China was thought to be a dupe of the Soviet Union, then that it was the headquarters of a Communist expansion which had to be contained and finally that it was unfit to associate with because of the Cultural Revolution.

He said through the Cultural Revolution, Mao Tse Tung is attempting to check China’s tendency to fall back to the ancient, decadent and corrupt society it was before, by maintaining revolutionary fervor.

Suggesting steps towards bettering our relations with the Far East, Ronning maintained “the first thing is to understand China, then only will we be able to arrive at a realistic and safe analysis”.

– 30 –


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