CHINA: Surprise Choice To Follow Chou

Since Premier Chou En-lai died a month ago, most China analysts have been expecting Peking to name Teng Hsiao-p'ing, Chou's hand-picked First Vice Premier, as his successor. Most surprisingly, the Chinese leadership last week passed over Teng and appointed a relative unknown as Acting Premier, pending eventual approval by the rubber stamp National People's Congress. He is Hua Kuo-feng, 56, Minister of Public Security and No. 6-ranking Vice Premier (among the twelve in all).

The leadership had difficulty agreeing during several Politburo meetings in Peking. Any Premier has to be acceptable to...