Without warning, President Truman—who has a way of acting abruptly in foreign affairs—issued a new statement last week on U.S. policy in China. On the surface, there was nothing new in the statement, and it occasioned little reaction or comment. Actually, in a negative way, it would have far-reaching results.

In some 3,500 words, the President merely restated the line he laid down just a year ago when he sent General George Catlett Marshall to China as his special representative. The line: to end the civil war and bring the Chiang government and the Communists together within a democratic framework.

To some...

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