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people, almost without exception, and the tragedy is that they do not know how to push their cases vigorously.
Just one illustration. The Chinese first announced at the end of 1954 on Radio Peking that Richard Fecteau had been arrested in 1952 and had been sentenced to 20 years for spying. That is the first that his parents knew about his whereabouts. He had been declared legally dead—he was an Army civilian but he had been declared legally dead. He has been in prison ever since. It wasn't until last September, almost 2 years later, that his parents, who are living on the father's pension from GE in Lynn, Mass., got the State Department to agree to carry the food parcels and packages of books and reading matter on a military plane from Iravis Airbase in California across the Pacific to Hong Kong to be sent in via the International Red Cross for their son. And they had to get angry about it, they had to get friends who knew better how to write letters, to write strong letters to Members of Congress before any action came through. And when the action finally came through—this is a letter from Robert C. Hill, the Assistant Secretary, to Senator Kennedy of Massachusetts—the letter ended by saying:
Mr. Levine, the friend of the family, may be assured that our inability immediately to offer this service to Mrs. Fecteau when she first asked for it was not owing to any lack of sympathy for the problem she was facing. A number of details had to be worked out in order to devise a satisfactory method of transmitting the packages.
Well, a "satisfactory method” is simply to put them on the plane that leaves Travis Airbase every week and send them to Hong Kong. The family could not afford the high air parcel post charges. And I think by virtue of having been in China, particularly by virtue of having seen one of the prisoners in a Shanghai jail, I have become a little emotional about it, and I do feel more strongly about it than I did at any time previously. It is the old story of being acquainted with a situation in a face-to-face personal manner. And you cannot help but become a little angry at the many crocodile tears that have been shed in Washington over the fate of these prisoners, when a simple request like this takes 2 years to get through.
Senator O'MAHONEY. Any other questions, Mr. Slayman?
NATIONAL RED CROSS SOCIETY OF CHINA
Address: 22 Kanmein Hutung Telephone: 5.5604
May 7th, 1956.
Dear Mrs. FECTEAU,
Your son has been sentenced to imprisonment owing to his violation of Chinese Law. We deeply sympathize with you for the difficult situation you and your family are facing.
According to Chinese Law, the court may order an early release for him in case he behaves well during his imprisonment.
In order to alleviate the suffering caused by the separation of American convicts and their families, last year the Chinese authorities granted a special permission for families of convicts to come to China and visit them. This decision is still in force.
If you would like to come to China to visit your son, we would gladly make arrangements for you. Yours sincerely,
LI TEH-CHUAN, President.
UNITED STATES SENATE,
Washington, D. C., Sepember 19, 1956. Mr. MARTIN A. LEVINE,
37-51 86th Street, Jackson Heights, N.Y. DEAR MR. LEVINE: Enclosed is a copy of the letter which has been received in Senator Kennedy's office from the Department of State concerning the cost of sending reading material to prisoners in Communist China.
I am happy to note that arrangements have been made to relieve the relatives of these prisoners of the expenses of international airmail postage for this mate rial. Furthermore, as the attached letter states, Mrs. Fecteau has been informed of these arrangements by Representative Thomas J. Lane.
I sincerely hope that this matter has been settled to your satisfaction, and if you feel that Senator Kennedy can be of assistance in any other way, please do not hesitate to contact him again. With kindest regards, I remain Sincerely,
T. J. REARDON, Jr., Administrative Assistant to Senator Kennedy.
DEPARTMENT OF STATE,
Washington, September 12, 1956. Hon. JOHN F. KENNEDY,
United States Senate. DEAR SENATOR KENNEDY: I refer to your communication of August 31 forwarding a letter you received from Mr. Martin A. Levine concerning the heavy expense Mrs. Philip D. Fecteau has been under in sending reading material by airmail to her son, a prisoner of the Chinese Communists. Mr. Levine also sent a similar letter to the President, which was referred to the Department of State.
I am glad to tell you that arrangements have been made to relieve Mrs. Fecteau of the expense of international airmail postage for this material. These packages will be airlifted, at no cost to Mrs. Fecteau, from the United States to the Chinese mainland. She has been informed of the details of these arrangements by Rep resentative Thomas J. Lane, through whom she made the request for assistance on this problem.
The airlift facility for parcels of reading material will also be made available to the relatives of the other nine American prisoners of the Chinese Communists.
Mr. Levine may be assured that our inability immediately to offer this service to Mrs. Fecteau when she first asked for it was not owing to any lack of sympathy for the problem she was facing. A number of details had to be worked out in order to devise a satisfactory method of transmitting the packages. As you requested, Mr. Levine's letter is returned herewith. Sincerely yours,
ROBERT C. HILL, Assistant Secretary. (Mr. Worthy's prepared statement follows:)
STATEMENT OF WILLIAM WORTHY, NIEMAN FELLOW, HARVARD UNIVERSITY, FOREIGN
CORRESPONDENT FOR THE BALTIMORE AFRO-AMERICAN
My name is William Worthy, Jr. I am foreign correspondent for the Baltimore Afro-American, and in that capacity have been three times around the world. I have covered such events as the Korean truce talks, the Asian-African Conference, and the Asian Socialist Conference. In 1955 I spent 5 months in the Soviet Union. I have also been in Communist Poland, Czechoslovakia, and Hungary.
During the current academic year I am one of 11 Nieman fellows at Harvard University. It was during our Christmas holidays that I left Cambridge and went to Communist China.
Behind my arrival on the China mainland lay long and discouraging efforts to obtain a visa from the Communist government. Simultaneously with these endeavors was an equally arduous but unsuccessful attempt to secure the permission of the American Government for the trip.
I first raised the question of a Chinese visa with several of the Communist correspondents whom I met in the neutral zone of Panwunjom, Korea. I followed up with letters and cables to Peking. During the Asian-African Conference at Bandung, Indonesia, I put the matter up to Chinese Premier Chou En-lai in a brief conversation. While in Moscow in 1955 I visited the Chinese Embassy 2 or 3 times.
On none of these occasions did I ever receive a definite, responsive answer. Then, without warning, on August 5, 1956, a cable arrived in New York for me from Peking, authorizing a 1-month visa. Approximately two dozen American newsmen received identical cables at that time.
I was traveling in Africa last summer. Communications there are slow and unreliable. News of the cable did not reach me until August 20. I had to be at Harvard by September 22. A trip to China in that short interval was therefore not feasible.
I so notified the Chinese Government I reaffirmed my strong desire to visit China and asked for a visa which I could use at Christmas.
I heard nothing further until Sunday morning, December 16, 1956, when this cable which I have with me today reached me at Harvard. On Friday morning, December 21, I was on bcard a plane bound for Hong Kong. On Monday afternoon, December 24, I crossed the border into China.
While in Peking officials of the Foreign Ministry made it plain to me that any American correspondent will be admitted. Last August the original list of two dozeu included respected veteran correspondents from the Associated Press, United Press, New York Times, New York Herald Tribune, and practically every important news agency in the United States. Not one Communist or Communist sympathizer was on that list.
For a long time prior to my arrival in China, the American Civil Liberties Union and I had been in touch with the United States Department of State in an effort to have the restriction on travel to China removed from my passport. That restriction dates back 5 years. In a press release No. 341, dated May 1, 1952, the Department first announced its policy of discouraging travel to all of the Iron Curtain countries, including China. The release states in part:
“The Department of State announced today that it was taking additional steps to warn American citizens of the risks of travel in Iron Curtain countries by stamping all passports not valid for travel in those countries unless specifically endorsed by the Department of State for such travel.
"In making this announcement, the Department emphasized that this procedure in no way forbids American travel to those areas
Many newsmen have repeatedly asked the Department to cite the statute on which this policy is based. The Department has consistently declined to do so. It is the lelief of attorneys whom I have consulted that there is in fact no basis for the policy in law, in Executive order, or in the regulations of the Department itself.
On February 21, 1956, here in Washington I called upon Mr. Herman Phleger, Legal Adviser to the Department of State. Again I was told that the Department did not contemplate lifting the ban on travel to China. I then informed Mr. Phleger that I was prepared to challenge this policy and that if ever the Chinese Government granted me a visa, I would make the trip into China.
On December 24, 1956—the day I entered China-a State Department spokesman "deplored" my action. On December 26 my editor, Mr. C. W. Mackay, was asked to call at the State Department. Mr. Walter Robertson, Assistant Secretary of State for Far Eastern Affairs, and Mr. Lincoln White, press officer, tried to prevail upon him to recall me from China. During and after the conference, Mr. Mackay made it plain that he regarded the pressure upon him as intolerable governmental interference in the affairs of the press. The answer to Mr. Robertson's request was "No."
On December 28, 1956, at a press conference, the Department of State announced that the passports of the three newsmen who earlier that week had entered Red China were being revoked.
On February 5, 1956, in Moscow, en route home, I called at the American Embassy at the request of Ambassador Charles E. Bohlen, who had received instructions from the Department of State. I was asked to produce my passport so that the embassy could ascertain if the Chinese Government had placed any visa stamps in it. I allowed the Embassy counselor to inspect it, but only after a firm and unambiguous pledge that he would not retain or invalidate it.
By the time I reached Budapest, Hungary, 2 days later, fresh instructions had gone out from the Department to the American Legation. The instructions were to stamp my passport with the following restriction: “Valid only for return to the United States."
I refused to surrender the passport. At that point the consular officer, Richard R. Selby, informed me that the American Government could notify the authorities in neighboring Austria, Yugoslavia, and West Germany that I was traveling without a valid passport and that my passport would then be picked up as soon as I left Hungary. I still refused to surrender it, and nothing happened at the border of Hungary and Austria. The Department was well aware that in 3 days I would be back in the United States, and I received no explanation as to why Hungary was chosen as the place to invalidate the passport.
At the American Legation in Budapest, when I asked for my mail at the visitors' mail desk, I was handed a registered letter which I have with me today. It has been sent to me by Mr. James Wechsler, editor of the New York Post. Written on the envelope are the following seven words : "Opened in error by E. T. Wailes."
Mr. Wailes was until several weeks ago American Minister to Hungary. At one time he was Assistant Secretary of State. I had previously been under the impression that clerks were hired to work in the mailroom and that high Foreign Service officers and diplomatic staff devoted their time to matters of policy.
On February 10, 1957, at Logan Airport, Boston, where my plane from Vienna and London touched down, the immigration officer looked through my passport, waved me through, but did not put in the passport the customary stamp which says "Admitted."
On February 25, 1957, in New York, I applied for renewal of my passport. It was due to expire on March 4 after the usual 2-year period of validity. I received several days later an acknowledgment of my application from Miss Frances Knight, Chief of the Passport Office, but aside from that there has been no official indication to me about the disposition of my case.
For over 20 years the Afro-American has been sending correspondents abroad, particularly to areas of the world where the news concerns peoples of the darker races. In going to China I had the full and undeviating support of the editor and publisher. Reporting from abroad is my job and my livelihood. Delays in issuing or renewing a passport can be tantamount to a denial.
I have seen the ways and means used by totalitarian governments to control and restrict their newsmen and to rule their people. We all know about the barbed wire and land mines on the border of Hungary where freedom of movement is hardly an established principle. We are familiar with the dreary, turgid, and dishonest newspapers in the Communist countries where reporters are told by the Gorernment what to write, which stories to cover and where to travel.
Neither as a newsman nor as a citizen do I want to see even the seeds of such controls planted in this country.
In that light, and in reaffirmation of our healthy antiauthoritarian traditions, I want my passport-and I want it now.
Our next witness will be Mr. Patterson.
STATEMENT OF WILLIAM D. PATTERSON, ASSOCIATE PUBLISHER,
THE SATURDAY REVIEW Senator O’MAHONEY. Mr. Patterson, will you identify yourself and proceed with your statement?
Mr. PATTERSON. Mr. Chairman, my name is William D. Patterson. I am associate publisher of Saturday Review, a national weekly magazine published at 25 West 45th Street, New York City, and circulated throughout the country. Our current circulation is averaging well over 165,000 a week.
As a magazine concerned with ideas, opinions, comment, critical analysis, and timely reporting on basic trends and events at home and abroad, we are obviously concerned with freedom of access to world
In the interest of brevity, Mr. Chairman, with your permission, I might file the statement.
Senator O’MAHONEY. The statement will be accepted and put in the record as though delivered. And we would be very happy to have you summarize your point of view.
Mr. PATTERSON. Well, the presentation to this point has been, it seems to me, so constructive that I can only say on behalf of myself and my colleagues that we agree with the general point that this ban on the admission of correspondents to Red China is intolerable and not in the interest of the free flow of news to the American people. We feel that what is transpiring in China is terribly important for the American people to be adequately and accurately informed about, and that, therefore, it is in the public interest that this ban should be lifted.
I had an opportunity to discuss this with Dean Barrett of the graduate school of journalism at Columbia University. Mr. Barrett wa an Assistant Secretary of State in Charge of Public Information. He was also editorial director of Newsweek. I was interested in talking with Mr. Barrett, and prevailed upon him to write an editorial discussing this matter for the Saturday Review which summed up and commented on many of the points discussed here. And I simply want to call this editorial to the attention of the committee and have it made part of the record, if I may, because I do think it is an authoritative discussion of this issue.
Senator O’MAHONEY. Do you want this printed in the record or do you want it for the committee's files?
Mr. PATTERSON. I want it brought to the committee's attention and made part of the files, not necessarily printed in the record.
Senator O’MAHONEY. It is not too long, it may be made part of the record.
(The article in the Saturday Review referred to is as follows:)
[Reprinted with the kind permission of the copyright owners, Saturday Review, Inc.)
DIPLOMACY, PRESS, AND CHINA
EDITOR'S NOTE.—This week's guest editorial is by Edward W. Barrett, dean of the Graduate School of Journalism at Columbia University. Mr. Barrett was formerly Assistant Secretary of State and editorial writer of Newsweek magazine.
Back in December 1949 the dictators of Red China expelled non-Communist newspaper correspondents. The United States protested lustily, then and thereafter, against the suppression of free news reporting.
Today Red China has reversed itself, offering visas to American correspondents. The State Department, in turn, has obdurately opposed their going into China.
After a procession of strange events and stranger argumentation, we appear to the world as opposing a free flow of information, which the Red Chinese profess to favor. To some, we and they seem to have battled our way into each other's shoes.
The State Department is not utterly without a case. Any American correspondent in Red China, however much he professes to be on his own, automatically becomes a cause célèbre, engaging the prestige of his country as soon as he is jailed or shot up. "Freedom of the press,” that sometimes abused term, should not automatically be accepted as an argument without examination. And anyone who has ever been a State Department official groping for ways to free Americans held hostage by Communists can understand the Department's tendency to clutch desperately at any bargaining device it can find.