Reagan administration officials said yesterday they would not remove U.S. economic sanctions against Poland until they are convinced that the military government there truly intends to lift martial law.
Cardinal John Krol of Philadelphia reported to President Reagan yesterday on his trip to Poland with Pope John Paul II, and said after the meeting that "there is speculation" that martial law might be lifted on July 22, the anniversary of Polish independence. "I have the personal impression that there is on the part of the regime a desire to get back to normalcy and work for the good of the people," Krol told reporters.
But an administration official said that Krol was less optimistic in his meeting with the president. The official expressed concern that the Soviets would be unwilling to allow Gen. Wojciech Jaruzelski to loosen the reins too much in Poland.
Jaruzelski, now in Moscow for a meeting of Warsaw Pact nations, hinted soon after the completion of the pope's trip that martial law may be lifted. However, U.S. officials say they think it unlikely that other opposition demands, notably the release of political prisoners, will be met.
Officials acknowledged there have been discussions within the administration about whether the United States should make a good-will gesture, such as lifting the sanctions against Polish fishing in American waters. These were part of a package of economic sanctions announced by the Reagan administration in December, 1981, in response to Poland's outlawing the Solidarity trade union and imposing martial law.
"We want to see true movement and not a facade," said a U.S. official yesterday. "We're waiting to see what Poland does."
Meanwhile, White House spokesman Larry Speakes announced that Reagan will visit Indonesia, Japan and South Korea early in November. He said the purpose of the trip will be to strengthen ties with these U.S. allies in Asia. Speakes said that Reagan also wanted to visit the People's Republic of China. A trip by Chinese Premier Zhao Ziyang to the United States "in the near future" also is under discussion, he said.
Another official, speaking on condition that he not be identified, said later in the day that the president would visit China next year. The trip coming up in November is "a big one in itself" and shouldn't have a trip to China added to it, he said. "It would be form over substance to try to crowd the two trips together," the official added, emphasizing that Reagan considers both trips important.
U.S.-Chinese relations have been strained because of American arms shipments to Taiwan, which Reagan for a long time treated as a vital ally.
Speakes said yesterday that the November trip would "reaffirm the importance we attach to the Asian-Pacific region."
"The United States is a Pacific nation and our interests in this part of the world have grown rapidly over the past decade," he said. "In the face of common challenges, our political and security arrangements in the area have taken on increased importance."
The trip may include what Speakes referred to as "a rest stop," probably in Hawaii.
It would be Reagan's first trip to Asia as president. The administration is especially eager to cement closer relations with Japan, where pro-U.S. Prime Minister Yasuhiro Nakasone's Liberal Democratic Party won a major election victory over the weekend.
The visit to Korea, where the United States has 41,173 troops, is of symbolic importance. After his visit to Seoul in 1979, President Carter canceled plans to withdraw U.S ground forces from Korea, and Reagan is considered certain to reaffirm this decision. One of the reasons for Reagan's visit to Indonesia, a country also visited by Presidents Nixon and Ford, is that Indonesian President Suharto will be chairman of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) at the time of the trip.
The Asian trip will come a week or two before Reagan is scheduled to make an announcement about whether he will seek a second term.