RICE ROOTS by Arthur Goodfriend


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Having spent a good part of the last twenty years in one or another capacity as member of liaison groups between this country and the Far East, Arthur Goodfriend looks back on the United States-Asian policy and finds it a sad history of mistaken concepts and false promises. Witness to the inevitable failure of American tactics which are based on the premise that the East is motivated by similar material aims to ours, that it jealously desires the dollar and American mechanical know-how, that the people of Asia stand with outstretched palms begging American charity, Goodfriend implores us to relinquish these misconceptions and to understand the people whom we would convince. This understanding, he insists, must begin, not with the despotic leaders, many of whom are discredited in the eyes of their people, but at the economic and emotional basis of Asian civilization -- at the rice roots. Only in remembering our own aspirations and needs as colonies, our reluctance to accept charity, our determination to do things our own way, can we hope to overcome the threat of communist domination of the Far East. Only by comprehending the importance of Asian values and techniques shall we progress diplomatically. Author of many books on international politics, Goodfriend chooses Indonesia for this study in that it seems to him most representative of the Far Eastern countries. He writes of people and ideas with unflagging compassion and insight.

Pub Date: Sept. 18th, 1958
Publisher: Simon & Schuster