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I believe that the United States realizes that sacrifices are necessary in order to forward the cause of world peace, and that our citizens generally are ready now, both mentally and politically, to make the concessions that they must make if the cause of peace in the world is to be carried forward.
The question before the committee is very largely, first of all, to decide whether or not the Charter of the United Nations should be amended or whether it should not. If it is the decision of the committee that the Charter needs amendment, then furthering that, the question must be, how should it be amended.
I think first of all I should bring to your attention something that has been said to me by opponents of the idea of world cooperationfor even opponents' ideas can clarify the thinking.
One, a man talking to me sometime ago said that he did not believe that with or without the Marshall plan the United States could actually help or make possible the economic rehabilitation of western Europe.
He said there were four things that caused the prosperity of Europe during the last century and that in his opinion all four had vanished into the limbo of the forgotten. One was the exploitation of colonies: and that obviously the day of exploitation of colonies has gone by.
Another, he said, was the overworking or underpayment of workmen in Europe. Obviously, that has gone by.
The third one was the building up of the economy of Europe by the wheat and harvests in the Ukraine. He said that obviously that was not possible. The fourth, and probably the most important, was exportation of coal from western Europe or investment of funds in foreign holdings.
He said that therefore he believed that building up the economy of Europe was not possible under present conditions.
That leads me to think very seriously that what we must do is not try to restore the conditions that existed before the Second World War, but to come to a new feeling of cooperation, a new feeling of understanding, and a new economy in Europe: and that, Mr. Chairman, is the reason why I believe it is wise for this Nation to consider the possibility of an international charter that is possible under present world conditions:
A charter under which our part in the world can actually be a useful part of forwarding the cause of world peace.
Let me allude very briefly to the three schemes that have come to my attention for amending the Charter, if the Charter can and is to be amended:
The first one is that United Nations can exist and only should exist as a debating society.
I do not like the idea, nor do I believe the American people subscribe to that idea. If that is all it is going to be, then it can merely be a mirror of fact and opinion that can be just as effectively accomplished in other and cheaper ways.
The second suggested scheme is to invite all members of the United Nations to join the United States in a declaration of policy of review of a violation of article 2, section 4, which is the pledge neither to use force nor threats of force against any United Nations member, as a threat to the security of all.
This plan was advocated in the Middle West a few days ago. This seems to me to be even feebler than the first suggestion because although entirely possible under the existing framework it would be simply a gesture and could only be regarded as weak and forceless.
There is another suggestion that has been advanced, that of a world federation or at least a trans-Atlantic federation.
I believe that, whether this idea is actually the ultimate end of what we are going to accomplish, or whether it is not, and that I shall not debate, nevertheless this proposed amendment of the Charter of the United Nations is a step in the right direction, a step forward, so that 1 believe even this suggestion is entirely consistent with that maybe somewhat larger idea of a world cooperative commonwealth.
Finally, may I say, Mr. Chairman, I am of the opinion that if the United States is to continue as a worth-while coordinator of the effort of United Nations and facing its present position in the world today it must take the lead. The UN movement must be strengthened through curtailing the present power of the veto. I believe further that we should adopt this position now, even though the United States was originally one of the powers that encouraged the idea of the veto.
The history of the immediate past within the organization indicates that the veto in use has been obstructive and has too often prevented the almost unanimous desire of participants from becoming effective.
I am not willing to see the United States bound forever by a policy which has been proven impractical of accomplishment. I strongly urge your favorable consideration of the resolution.
With your permission, Mr. Chairman, may I conclude by reading something that I have already put into the record in a speech made on March 16, a statement by Benjamin Franklin on the day when our own United States came into being, March 4, 1789, which seems to me to express the idea of thinking people in the United States and all over the world.
He said then: God grant that not only the love of liberty but a thorough knowledge of the rights of man may pervade all the nations of the earth so that a philosopher may set his foot anywhere on its surface and say “This is my country.'
Thank you very much, Mr. Chairman, with your permission I will file a short written brief which covers what I have said in somewhat more detail. Chairman Eaton. Thank you very much, Mr. Muhlenberg. (The statement referred to is as follows:)
STATEMENT OF HON. FREDERICK A. MUHLENBERG, A MEMBER OF CONGRESS FROM THE
STATE OF PENNSYLVANIA Mr. Chairman, I appear before you to testify for House Concurrent Resolution 169 of which I am the author, one of 16 identical resolutions simultaneously presented in the House March 16 designed to recommend the strengthening of United Nations Organization brought forward to relieve the present tragic impotence of this world-wide organization.
In reasoning out the intent of this resolution presented some 6 weeks ago it has been necessary to read, and I have read carefully, various arguments pro and con on this subject brought out since the introduction of the resolution and I remain of the opinion that the scheme suggested therein is the most practical if changes are to be made and that if changes are not made the United Nations Organization cannot become a constructive force for peace nor for cooperative development of world resources. I wish to comment briefly on other plans that have been brought to my attention.
It was stated by one brief that United Nations as set up was designed to be and can be only a debating society and that this is the ultimate we should hope for in such an organization. I am not satisfied to relegate the United Nations Organization to such an impotent existence, nor do I think is the American public, which has registered, in my opinion, a strong stand for furtherance of amity through international cooperation for which I believe it thought United Nations was designed.
Rather than dismissing United Nations potentialities as minor, I believe it is necessary to implement the Organization so that it can do effective work, even in face of obstructive tactics.
I am not satisfied either with another scheme which has been proposed—that is, to invite all members of the United Nations to join the United States in a declaration of policy that would view any violation of article 2, section 48 pledge neither to use force nor threats of force against any United Nations member--as a threat to the security of all. This seems to me to be feebler than the first suggestion because though entirely possible under the existing framework, it would be simply a gesture and could only be regarded as weak and forceless
I have considered carefully the basic idea of world federation, or a federa, tion of trans-Atlantic nations and believe the plan for United Nations suggested by the resolutions consistent with possible development of this still larger idea and a necessary first step thereto, one that stands more chance of world acceptance in view of world-wide national attachments and a step that might be a trial period toward greater cooperation and more general sacrifice of individual national aspirations.
I am of the opinion that if the United Nations is to continue as a worth while coordinator of effort, it must be strengthened through curtailing the present power of the veto and that we should adopt this position now, even though the United States was originally one of the powers that encouraged it. The history of the immediate past within the Organization indicates that the veto in use has been obstructive, has too often prevented the almost unanimous desire of participants from becoming effective, and leads to impotence, a sure way of negating the fine desire that created the Organization.
I am not willing to see the United States bound forever by a policy which has proven impracticable of accomplishment. I realize the danger that the present Organization faces in Russia's possible refusal ; but with today's knowledge the set-up would have been differently conceived originally and I believe the immediate risk should be taken, both for the ultimate good of the nations and with the hope that Russia may see a better national future within rather than without the group.
I realize also that the United States would share in the risk and in a sense would be giving up a degree of autonomy under which it might be outvoted and restricted on the degree to which it might arm for what is considered defense purposes; yet judging from the assent which was given on international control of the atom bomb development, I am convinced that the American people would accept this rather than see the whole plan go down to failure, toward which it is certainly heading unless constructive action can be taken. I strongly urge your favorable consideration.
I conclude with a statement I made in the House of Representatives March 16 1948. (The statement referred to is as follows:)
THE UNITED NATIONS AND PEACE Mr. Speaker, we are all deeply concerned in efforts to establish peace in the world. There are only three ways today when one nation, and one alone, threatens peace: The first is that advocated by Henry Wallace and his supporters-the
idea that we shall give in to the Russian bear for what it wants, depending on the Red Government of Russia to work for the good of mankind; or another - plan is now being followed in part by certain western European countries defensive alliance of material and men-a strengthening of all national resources
in a determination for survival at all costs; or a third plan-that of strengthed sing a world alliance of like-minded powers determined that by their might and their combined good will peace and opportunity for the common man may be engendered all over the world. I am for the third plan-which is the one proposed here today.
I believe the American people want the United Nations to succeed. I believe they are bitterly disappointed that their dreams of peace have not yet been realized ; also, that they are prepared to sacrifice heavily to forward the realization. Long ago we came to understand that a minority voice, or even a single voice, in the UN councils has become the vote that has stopped action, and we want obstructive tactics checkmated. It will not be done except with a new arming of public opinion within the Council. So we suggest a new strengthening of the soice and the judgment and the power of UN—the voice by creation of a new agreement that prevents negation by a single vote; the judgment by a new majority opinion that will overrule; the power by a new UN police force that contains world-wide and volunteer elements of strength.
How mạch better it is to do this within existing framework than to abandon what has gone before and start anew. It can be done. The scheme already sug-, gested by my most distinguished colleagues, revises and supplements work that starated in 1920 under President Wilson, for which at that time the world was not ready, but which now is being earnestly prayed for all over the worldeven I believe in the minds of the downtrodden little Russians. It says to aggressors and to those who believe in ruthless domination over the will of the people "Thou shalt not."
I earnestly commend the plan to the administration. It is a prerequisite to any plan for the rehabilitation of western Europe for fear of consequences of failure must be changed to hope of success; it takes advantage of the knowledge of the workings of international agreements that we have painfully acquired over the past years; it is practical and offers cooperation all over the world.
And if it does not work fully, if nevertheless we are committed to heavy material expense, we can know that the free hand of fellowship has been offered and rejected, and it will put the heavy finger of moral responsibility for peace on the one nation that refuses—and it can say without shadow of doubt: "Thou art the man."
But it will work; it does give hope to a despairing world; it costs us less; it gives us more; it echoes in firm and practical thought these significant words of Benjamin Franklin on the day that our own United States came into being, March 4, 1789: "God grant that not only the love of liberty but a thorough knowledge of the rights of man may pervade all the nations of the earth so that a philosopher may set his foot anywhere on its surface and say "This is my country,''
Chairman Eaton. The next witness is Mr. Burke, of Ohio.
STATEMENT OF HON. RAYMOND H. BURKE, A REPRESENTATIVE
IN CONGRESS FROM THE STATE OF OHIO
Mr. BURKE. On March 16 I was privileged to join with a number of my colleagues in introducing House Concurrent Resolution 168. Its purpose, that of revising the United Nations Charter so that certain defects now existing might be corrected, is well known. Its objective is the elimination of suspicion and fear and the insertion of confidence that can make the organization a more effective instrument of peace.
Specifically, the resolution calls for the elimination of the veto power in matters of aggression, armament for aggression, and admission for membership. Also, as you are aware, it recommends active prevention of armament for aggression. In addition, it urges the establishment of an effective world police force to consist of one international contingent as an active force, and five national contingents operating as reserves when needed. The international contingent would come under the direct control of the Security Council and would consist of volunteers recruited exclusively from citizens of the small member nations. The armed forces of the five major powers, acting as reserves, would be available to the international contingent only on special matters of aggression and the active preparedness for aggression.
I have maintained from the start that the United Nations must be encouraged and strengthened if it is to become an international solvent for world problems. It must not, in other words, become ineffective and weak as did its predecessor, the League of Nations. For this reason, it gives me a great deal of pleasure to recommend for your serious consideration the passage of House Concurrent Resolution 168.
I have been interested in this whole matter of the United Nations or the League of Nations almost from its inception back in 1919 or 1920 when it was not fashionable to be interested in it.
I should like to state that I think it is imperative that the United Nations be made to work.
I would like to call your attention, as a matter of basic faith in that statement, to something that is not usually brought out. That is the matter of the advance of military invention in the world today.
The great progress of freedom in the last 400 years has been made largely because the masses of people could throw off tyranny.
We are back today in the same position that the people were in the days of the feudal lords; with the invention of gunpowder and the development of firearms, people could throw off tyranny. Today, revolutions have to occur within the armies. It is impossible for a nation, once having lost its freedom, to regain it, in all probability, unless it is by force from the outside.
It therefore seems to me that that is one of the fundamental, basic reasons why we should advance this cause of the United Nations. It is imperative, it seems to me.
A dictator is one who is not easily done away with these days. It is next to impossible, as we have seen, in some countries.
I have nothing further to add to the discussion of the mechanics or the modus operandi, that you have been talking about here. It has been very finely covered.
Chairman EATON. We appreciate your being here, Mr. Burke, Mr. Hale, and the others.
The Chair would like to express to Mr. Judd his personal thanks for the very fine work Dr. Judd did in getting the witnesses together for this important meeting this morning. I think this has been one of the most illuminating and educating sessions our committee has had for a long time.
Thank you, Dr. Judd.
The meeting will stand adjourned now until tomorrow morning at 10 o'clock, when the Secretary of State will be the first witness: and in the afternoon Ambassador Austin will be the witness on behalf of the United Nations.
(The following communications have been submitted for inclusion in the record :)
WORLD PEACE AND BROTHERHOOD MISSION,
Modesto, Calif., May 6, 1948. The COMMITTEE ON FOREIGN AFFAIRS, The House of Representatives.
senta HONORABLE MEMBERS OF THE COMMITTEE: Apropos of House Concurrent Resolutions 59, 72, 163, and 176, the World Peace and Brotherhood Mission, composed of 90 ministers and laymen, representing over 100,000 people of 12 denominations and 14 States, submits the following testimony. We have journeyed from the west coast and the Middle West to Washington in order to work for a Christian approach to our foreign policy.