American Reactions to Indonesia's Role in the Belgrade Conference

American Reactions to Indonesia's Role in the Belgrade Conference

American Reactions to Indonesia's Role in the Belgrade Conference

American Reactions to Indonesia's Role in the Belgrade Conference

Excerpt

In late April of 1961 President Tito of Yugoslavia and President Nasser of the United Arab Republic jointly announced their intention to organize a summit conference of non-aligned nations. Three weeks later Indonesia officially indicated that she too would be a co-sponsor of the projected meeting. After securing the reluctant support of Prime Minister Nehru of India, the three sponsors convened a Preparatory Con ference of twentyone non-aligned nations in Cairo on June 5. This meeting was marked by considerable disagreement on several issues. The most important of these concerned the scope of the agenda and the length of the invitation list. In both of these matters the three sponsors again found themselves at odds with India. Still refusing to commit herself to participation in the planned summit gathering, India insisted on the exclusion from the agenda of major colonial disputes — disputes such as Angola, Algeria, the Congo, and West Irian. All of these touched on the special interests of one or more of the sponsors and their African supporters. Moreover, a militant anti-colonialism had become for many of these nations the central focus of their foreign policies. For India, on the other hand, a militant anticolonialism seemed unwarranted. Nehru’s position was that not only had Western colonialism virtually disappeared from Asia and Africa, but in the early summer of 1961 the issue of world peace demanded priority. With the Berlin Crisis deepening, the responsibility of the non-aligned nations was to concentrate on ways to decrease tension between the two world powers.

It was this dispute over the relative priority of the issues of peace and colonialism that lay also behind the Cairo Conference controversy over . . .

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