Negotiating with the Russians

Negotiating with the Russians

Negotiating with the Russians

Negotiating with the Russians

Excerpt

The idea for this book came out of a meeting of the Trustees of the World Peace Foundation in March, 1950. During a general review of the Foundation's program -- which over the years has concentrated rather heavily upon the presentation of factual and documentary material in convenient form for the use of educators, government officials and specialists -- one Trustee urged that we pay more attention to the behavior of the Soviet Union, which today presents perhaps the most critical of the problems of peace; material is needed to assist the general public in understanding the nature of the task with which this behavior confronts the free world. One member then pointed out that the very first question that had to be answered about the Soviet Union was whether it was in fact possible to negotiate with the USSR at all. Thereupon the two editors of this symposium, one the Director of the Foundation and the other a member of its Board of Trustees, were requested by the Board to work out the plans for a volume on this question.

The Korean crisis of 1950, transferring the "cold war" into a hot war, has so much changed the international climate that it is worth recalling some aspects of the international political scene in March of 1950. Tension between the Soviet Union and the West was steadily mounting. There had been no meeting of the Council of Foreign Ministers for ten months. There was much talk in the United States of negotiation to ease the tension. Senator Brien McMahon of Connecticut had proposed on the floor of the Senate that the United States adopt a fifty billion dollar development program for the whole world, conditioned upon acceptance by the Kremlin of the United Nations proposals for the control of atomic energy. Others were urging that there be another meeting between President Truman and Generalissimo Stalin, similar to the Potsdam Conference.

At the time we were asked to edit this volume, we believed, and we still believe, that before any evaluation can be made of . . .

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