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One point of departure should be stressed right here. Whatever the decision. our country cannot revert to the position it occupied in 1939. Whatever the decision, we shall occupy an entirely different position in a radically different world.
Part I. IMMEDIATE CONSEQUENCES
1. RELATIONS WITH OUR ALLIES
If the Senate votes “Yes"
The United Nations Organization will fulfill two major functions for the principal Allies :
(a) It will be an over-all mechanism through which questions affecting the security of any of them can be handled.
(6) It will act as a solvent for differences which exist and which will arise among them.
The principal Allies are setting up the Organization primarily to safeguard their long-range security. It will not do this unless it works successfully. So, to achieve this overriding aim, they must sacrifice lesser interests and ambitions which would prevent the successful functioning of the Organization.
Partnership of the principal powers in the Security Council will increase their mutual understanding, teamwork, and cooperation. In the last analysis, the Great Powers must either work together for their common safety or each must work against the others in efforts to assure its safety alone.
American participation in the Organization will remove still-lingering fears that we are again going to walk out on our allies. We shall thereby gain new influence in the shaping of the settlement in both Europe and Asia. Today, when our country is paramount among the Allies in naval and air strength, wealth, and industrial capacity, it has also another great potential asset, the support of most of the smaller nations of the world. If we get into the postwar machinery with both feet, we will be able to capitalize upon this asset. - For these reasons acceptance of a full part in the world Organization will bring America a maxi. mum of influence in the postwar settlements and in the postwar world. If the Senate votes "No"
If the Senate should refuse to accept the Charter of the United Nations Organization the relations between the Allies would promptly deteriorate. Here are some of the consequences that must be expected :
1. There would be no world organization this time. So the United States could not again step aside and hope that a league of the other nations would maintain European and Atlantic peace. Instead, the major Allies would turn to power politics, with each one endeavoring to create balances against the others.
2. The present relations of the United States with all the other Allies would fall apart. For the Senate's refusal to enter the world organization, after it had been favored by the President and the leaders of both parties, and after it had been promoted by our Government in two conferences held in the United States, would seem to all other nations an enduring proof that the United States could not be relied upon in international cooperation.
It is because Germany set out on world conquest a second time that the world is now determined to keep Germany shorn of aggressive power. The first time most people put the blame on the German Imperial Government and thought that a different Germany, even if strong, could be a peaceful state. But now that the same thing has happened twice, we are all convinced that a powerful Germany is an inherent menace to peace.
When we turned down international cooperation the first time our withdrawal was not regarded as a permanent characteristic of the United States. But if we do the same a second time, the other nations will regard it in just that light. They will be convinced that no American Government can be trusted in this respect, since, through our unusual constitutional procedure, its most fundamental policies can always be rejected by the Senate.
This attitude would have shattering results. Most of the smaller nations would turn to Russia or Britain instead of the United States. Our prestige, influence, and voice in the European settlement and in world affairs would decline abruptly. Anti-American feeling would spread throughout the world, undoing all that our men overseas have done to win gratitude and respect for America. Recrimination against the United States abroad would set off anti-British, antiRussian, and anti-French recriminations here. The world stage would then be set for progressively mounting ill feeling between our people and the people of our allies.
2. POWER POLITICS
Power politics are likely to exist in some degree as long as the world is divided into sovereign states of different sizes. Take, for instance, the United States and the Central American republics. Because these republics depend on us for their security and for most of their trade and investments, their governments are most unlikely to promote the interests of an overseas power against important interests of the United States. Furthermore, should they do so, they would soon run in to serious trouble at home, due to the extent to which the interests of their people are bound up with the United States. If the Senate votes "Yes"
Within the framework of the United Nations Organization, power politics will be limited. There are two reasons for this:
1. The Great Powers would sacrifice their overriding interest in international security if they were to push power politics so far as to make the United Nations Organization fail. This places a limit on the pursuit of power politics. For example, Russia's security in Europe and Asia will remain more important to her than her local political or economic interests in Bulgaria or Iran.
2. If power politics are pressed too far by any Great Power, the victim will be able to appeal to the Security Council. Inquiry by the Security Council, which cannot be prevented by a member engaged in a dispute, might prove in a flagrant case exceedingly damaging to the prestige and position of that Great Power.
Moreover, such a question can be considered by the General Assembly before or after consideration by the Security Council. Because the General Assembly will comprise most of the nations, it will be the conscience of the world.
In the immediate future, acceptance of the Charter by our Senate will mean that the Organization is coming to life. This very fact will curtail the pursuit of power politics; we have had a glimpse recently, while the fate of the projected Organization has not been certain, of what their unlimited pursuit could mean. With world security machinery taking shape, there would be less need for Great Powers to seek security by grabbing territory or establishing satellite states.
The limitation of power politics is important to the American people for two reasons:
1. We don't approve of power politics because we don't like to see the big man push the little man about. Even when we ourselves are doing the pushing, as in Nicaragua during the twenties, our people do not like it.
2. We are not good at power politics, because our people don't like them, and their wishes are decisive in our democracy. That means that other nations can play power politics better than we can and also gain more from them. If the Senate votes “No”
If there is to be no world security organization, each large nation must seek its own security itself. Each would turn wholeheartedly to expanding its power to the utmost in order to prepare the best possible position for the next war. The result would be power politics unlimited.
This situation could not be avoided by treaties between the Great Powers relating to Germany and Japan. Such treaties might, at least for some time, enable the powers to work together to keep Germany and Japan demilitarized. But, as history has frequently shown, such treaties could not prevent the pursuit of power politics in relation to other nations. The only visible means to that end is an international organization which contains the smaller nations as well as the great, establishes common obligations, and provides common machinery for their fulfillment.
Without such an organization, each of the major Allies would eve its present partners as potential enemies. Common sense would say to each, “Grab while the grabbing is good in order to be as strong as possible 10, 20, and 30 years from now."
The United States could grab a lot of bases in the Atlantic and Pacific, but it does not seem likely, because of our traditional attitude. that we should establish control of populous areas overseas. Thus we could strengthen our hemisnhere defenses, but we could not add much outside our horders to the central elements of war capacity, such as manpower and industrial strength.
Here it is necessary to ask a frank question. "What would you do, under such conditions, if you were sitting in Moscow ?" Remember, in answering it, that though the capitalist powers have been loval Allies to Russia during the war, they were antagonistic for two decades before 1941. In a free-for-all competition for power supremacy, Russia must expect that they might become an
tagonistic again. Remember also, that there is no other powerful state between the Elbe and the Pacific.
The logical answer would be to capitalize on Russia's immediate strength and the fluid conditions caused by the war to play power politics to the limit No American could then blame Russia for pursuing this course, because it would be our own Senate which had destroyed the framework for Russian-American cooperation she is now ready to accept-our own Senate which had forced this course upon her.
An objective for Russia, in accordance with the customary practice of power politics, would then be to establish so dominant a position in Eurasia that no future political alinements could create a balance against her. To achieve this objective she would have the prestige and the threat of the Red Army, the support of Communist groups abroad, and political chaos in Europe and Asia which would facilitate expansion of her influence and control. The other overseas Great Powers would be driven by the same situation to seek similar expansion to the limits of their capacities.
The full consequences for America of such a trend would be felt only later on. They will be examined below. But the immediate consequences would be a peace very different from the kind of peace our men overseas have been fighting to win. Thei would be no hor of real independence for little nations in most of the world. A cold wind of despair would chill the hearts of men as all the Great Powers turned for security to power politics unlimited, knowing that only the strongest and most successful could ultimately survive.
3. THE GERMAN DANGER Ever since 1870 Germany has been the most powerful state in Europe. Stronger than any in industry, larger than all but Russia in population, she has occupied a strategic position in the heart of the Continent. Her people have shown themselves more warlike, ruthless, efficient, and hardworking than any of their neighbors. They have shown also a love of militarism, a lack of moral courage, a slavish obedience to their leaders, and a willingness to be led twice into attempts to conquer Europe.
After the experience of the last 25 years, no one has the right to risk his countrymen's lives on a belief that a strong Germany will be peaceful. So we are faced with the problem of keeping Germany from becoming strong, as the Allies have now agreed to do. This is a long-range problem, because it will take more than 50 years before all the Nazi-educated Germans are too old to play a political role in German life. If the Senate votes "Yes"
This problem can be solved within the framework of the United Nations Organization and the continuing partnership of the Great Powers. What is vital is that no one of them shall seek to re-create a strong Germany as an ally against the others. If that happens, Germany will stage a come-back and then be in a position to strike again.
On the Security Council, which will be continuously in session, the Great Powers will be working together daily. Its Military Staff Committee will keep their General Staffs in intimate contact. Their representatives on both these bodies will be constantly collaborating on many problems. From this cooperation will come mutual understanding and teamwork, essential foundations for confronting the present-present problem of Germany. This problem, moreover, is one for the Great Powers alone. The smaller victims of Germany's lust for conquest have a vital interest in preventing another German war. In both the Security Council and the General Assembly they will have every opportunity of initiating international action they see any dangerous developments on the German front.
Since Germany is responsible for two world wars, it is only common sense that her future course should be critically observed and guarded against by a world organization. This system provides defense in depth against the German danger. In the front line will be the powers actively engaged in policing Germany. Behind them will be arrayed the other nations of the world, determined that what happened in 1939–40 shall not happen again. If the Senate votes “NO”
Even the early policing of Germany would work out entirely differently if the Senate voted for power politics unlimited. The United States would still have a
voice in what was done, but our allies would be pursuing different aims. Turning to power politics for security, they would handle the problem of Germany as one of the factors in that highly competitive game.
At once the voice of the United States on this problem would count for less. The voice of Russia, in consequence, would count for more. The British, feeling cut off from American support by the destruction of the anticipated international security system, would be impelled to give more heed to Russian views and less to American
In these circumstances, power politics and geography would be exceedingly likely to create a sort of a European balance of power. On one side of Germany would be Britain and France. On the other side would be Russia. Germany, although powerless, would occupy the middle position. She might then hope to stage a "come-back” if either side should seek to use her to weight the balance against the other. Such a situation could eventually result in the European Great Powers courting Germany for the purpose of power politics instead of cooperating together to keep her harmless.
One aspect of such a situation must be kept in mind. After a few years, when Russia has built up her industries, she will be much too strong for even a rearmed Germany to attack. Consequently, if Germany does rise again to power, her threat will be directed toward the west.
If the Senate votes “no," the surviving Nazi leaders and officers of the general staff will see a course to follow as they turn to making plans for the next world war.
Here it may be worth while to glance at one possible consequence of a German come-back. Eminent experts have suggested that Germany, if she were ever again able to make war on the west, would remember that the United States had twice before turned the tide against her and the next time attack the United States first. Many writers on military subjects believe that in 20 years giant rockets will be able to cross the Atlantic, One more possibility is at least. equally likely—that in 20 years an atomic type of explosive will be developed which will raise the destructiveness of aerial warfare into a new dimension, One rocket then might wreck as much havoc as hundreds would now.
Add together these possibilities and you get an ominous picture of what a future attack by a rearmed Germany upon an isolated United States could
For Germany would find us a nice, wide target for that kind of warfare. If we shot similar rockets back, ours would have to pass over neutral countries where some of them would fall. That might bring some of the injured countries into the conflict on Germany's side. In this war we have learned how difficult it is to attack Germany effectively from the west without allies and bases in Europe. Let the isolationists figure out just how an isolated America could compel a rearmed Germany to stop shooting the V weapons of the future at our cities.
1. THE PACIFIC WAR If the Senate votes "Yes"
Acceptance of the United Nations Organization will ensure a maximum of cooperation by our Far Eastern Allies in the Pacific War. It will thus save the lives of thousands of American soldiers and sailors.
At this time it is not known whether Russia will formally enter the war against Japan. But even if Russia should not, there are many ways in which she could give us help, such as granting air-base facilities and tieing down a maximum of Japanese troops on the northern borders of Manchuria.
Two factors will determine the value for us of such assistance as she may provide : first, when it starts; second, how far it goes.
It is only reasonable to conclude that Russia will give us more and earlier assistance if we have accepted partnership with her in the world security organization. For that will mean that we shall continue to collaborate together in the postwar years. It will then be to Russia's interest to create the best foundation for that collaboration, because it will promote her security in both west and east and provide assistance in rebuilding her industries.
With China the situation is more intangible, but it seems evident that American acceptance of the world organization will contribute directly to Chinese morale and to her hope of peace and prosperity after victory. Thus it will stimulate her war effort and spur her people to do more than they could if they did not have these bright hopes. The prospect of greater Russian assistance and an earlier defeat of Japan will work in the same direction.
If the Senate votes “No”
As regards Russian assistance in the Pacific, we come again to the question. “What would you do in such conditions if you sat in Moscow ?" Remember that the Senate's negative vote would turn all the Great Powers to power polities and torpedo the prospects of effective American-Russian cooperation in world affairs
In these circumstances, it would be logical for the Russians to abstain from making any great sacrifices to pull American chestnuts out of the fire. In power politics it is the custom to work for the weakening of rival Great Powers. This objective is served when they are kept engaged in a costly war. So it would then be logical for the Russians to limit their participation in the Pacific War to what was essential for their own interests, and to make their contribution as late as possible.
To China the negative vote of the Senate would come as a heavy blow. For the Chinese, gravely weakened as a nation by 7 years of war and by divisions among themselves, would have little prospect of internal peace and prosperity in a power-politics world. So it could only be expected that Chinese morale would suffer and that Chinese military assistance to us would be less effective than if the Senate voted "yes."
The effectiveness of Russian and Chinese assistance against Japan will be of great importance to the United States, particularly if victory should require, as many experts think, major operations in China and Manchuria. Russia and China both have armies on the spot; together they could do a great part of the job on the mainland.
So it seems clear that a negative vote of the Senate would probably add many months to the war with Japan and many billions of dollars to our total war costs. More important, particularly in the eyes of those who have served in the war overseas, it would add many thousands to the number of Americans killed in action or seriously injured for life.
5. AMERICA'S POSITION If the Senate votes “Yes”
American entry into the United Nations Organization will give the United States leadership and unparalleled influence among the nations of the world. The British Empire contains more people. Russia has the largest army and may, in the future, with her vast area and rapidly expanding population, become the most powerful country. But the United States, in this year 1945, is supreme in naval strength, air strength, industrial power, and wealth. Our power, moreover, is now mobilized, and our country has not been damaged by war.
The two conferences to build the United Nations Organization were called in the United States, at the initiative of our Government. The Dumbarton Oaks proposals, as Senator Austin and others have made clear, were basically the American plan. Thus a favorable decision by the Senate will place America in the lead in world affairs, free to exert her unequaled influence, through a largely American system, to guide world evolution in accordance with American ideals.
Here is a broad, straight road for international progress into the future via the goals we believe right. It leads to international security and the prevention of a Third World War. It leads to expanding trade and prosperity on a worldwide scale and greater employment in all nations. It leads toward freedom from fear and freedom from want, for other peoples as well as Americans.
We ourselves have built our country upon cooperation, in strong contrast to the Germans and Japanese. This road opens the same way to the entire world. Success in traveling along it offers to Americans and to all men progress into an era of security and well-being unparalleled in the history of the past. If the Senate votes "No"
If the Senate rejects the international security organization, the United States will have the same military power in 1915. But it will not have the same influence and the same position of leadership.
We have considered above the reaction of the other powers if the United States should again refuse to enter the international security system of which it has been chief architect. This anti-American reaction would be likely to grow with the passage of time and the development of power politics. Holding us largely responsible for the crash of their hopes for the future, other peoples, including even some in our hemisphere, would voice bitter criticism. We would reply in kind. The stage would be set for a collapse of our policy of international cooperation and a retreat toward isolation.