For all effective purposes, Kennedy combined the promise of change with a
record of achievement in Guam and the Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands.
It was one of his few accomplishments in realizing the New Frontier, and his
endeavors were welcomed in the islands.
This chapter is based on recently declassified documents ( 1979-1984) at the John F.
Kennedy Library as well as a recently declassified National Security Council report at
the National Archives, and heretofore unresearched records at the Micronesian Area
Research Center at the University of Guam (MARC). I would like to thank the American
Historical Association for its generous assistance in this project.
Several historical works exist on individual western Pacific Islands and their development and security problems. However, there is no specific study concerning the
evolution of Washington's policy toward modern Micronesia, particularly during the
pivotal Kennedy era. The most successful political/strategic studies of selected islands
in the region remain Daniel T. Hughes and
Sherwood G. Lingenfelter, Political Development in Micronesia ( Columbus, Ohio: State University Press, 1974), pp. 3-309; James H. Webb Jr.
, Micronesia and U.S. Pacific Strategy: A Blueprint for the 1980s ( New
York: Praeger, 1974), pp. 61-102; and David Nevin, The American Touch in Micronesia
( New York: W. W. Norton, 1977), pp. 70-96. For Nucker's comments and a brief
account of Micronesia in the 1950s, see: E. J. Kahn Jr., A Reporter in Micronesia ( New
York: W. W. Norton, 1966), p. 119. Following this episode, Nucker resigned and was
replaced by his assistant, M. W. Goding, a Democrat sympathetic to the Kennedy administration.
J. Robert Schaetzel to
George Ball, Memorandum on Proposal for a Pacific Community, November 2, 1961, JFK Library, Box 345/NSF.
Separating the Kennedy promises from the Kennedy record has been a favorite
topic for a number of writers, such as Henry Fairlie, The Kennedy Promise: The Politics
of Expectation ( Garden City, N.Y.: Doubleday, 1973), Louise FitzSimons, The Kennedy
Doctrine (New York, 1972), or William Leuchtenburg, In the Shadow of FDR: From
Harry Truman to Ronald Reagan ( Ithaca, N.Y.: Cornell University Press, 1983). More
specific studies of Kennedy's foreign policy, particularly stressing the Third World, have
drawn distinctions between New Frontier foreign policy promises and have found them
wanting. See Richard D. Mahoney, JFK: Ordeal in Africa ( New York, 1983), and Montague Kern,
Patricia W. Levering, and
Ralph B. Levering, The Kennedy Crises: The
Press, the Presidency, and Foreign Policy ( Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina, 1983).
Aspinall to Kennedy, March 20, 1962, JFK Library, Box 940/White House Central
Files. "Micronesia is a term which is often misused and misunderstood. Generally, the
term is used synonymously with the Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands; this is a political
description. Geographically, Micronesia includes the Marianas, Carolines, Marshalls, Kiribati ( Gilberts), and Nauru." Dirk Ballendorf, Director, Micronesian Area Research
Institute, University of Guam. This chapter uses "Micronesia" in a geographic sense.
The United States and Hawaii and Our Future in Asia," JFK Library, Excerpts
from the Remarks of Senator John F. Kennedy, 1958.
Questia, a part of Gale, Cengage Learning. www.questia.com
Book title: John F. Kennedy:The Promise Revisited.
Contributors: Paul Harper - Editor, Joann P. Krieg - Editor.
Publisher: Greenwood Press.
Place of publication: New York.
Publication year: 1988.
Page number: 116.
This material is protected by copyright and, with the exception of fair use, may
not be further copied, distributed or transmitted in any form or by any means.