Charter of the United Nations: Commentary and Documents

Charter of the United Nations: Commentary and Documents

Charter of the United Nations: Commentary and Documents

Charter of the United Nations: Commentary and Documents

Excerpt

The idea of preparing a commentary on the United Nations Charter, and of publishing it along with a compilation of relevant documents, originated in San Francisco where Dr. Hambro and I were engaged in the work of the Conference, he as a member of the technical staff of the Norwegian Delegation and member of the Committee on Pacific Settlement of Disputes, and I as a member of the Conference Secretariat, more particularly, as Secretary of the aforementioned Committee. The original plan has somewhat changed in character in the course of its realization. Its consummation has been delayed far beyond our original intention by various circumstances. For one thing, collaboration across the far reaches of the Atlantic under prevailing conditions has not been as easy as we were perhaps tempted to believe when we were together in San Francisco.

It was not and is not our intention that this is to be regarded as a thorough work of scholarship. Our purpose is much more modest. We hope that this Commentary and the assembled documents will be of some assistance to the student and layman desiring a better understanding of the Charter as drafted at San Francisco. We have made use of the League of Nations experience and of the discussions at San Francisco to throw further light on the intent and meaning of the Charter.

By the very force of circumstances, I have had to assume special responsibility for deciding questions of form and substance which collaboration under more ideal conditions would not have required. Consequently, there are probably things said and unsaid for which Dr. Hambro would prefer not to assume full responsibility. Because of the physical difficulties under which we have labored, he has been generous in accepting my judgment in many matters and it is only right that I should shoulder more than an equal part of the blame for errors of omission and commission. It is of course understood that he has collaborated wholly as a private individual, and I have done likewise.

We have had valuable assistance in our work. Professor Clyde Eagleton of New York University, who was at San Francisco as a member of the United States technical staff and who participated in the preparatory work in the Department of State, read our first draft and made . . .

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