American Foreign Policy and the Cold War

American Foreign Policy and the Cold War

American Foreign Policy and the Cold War

American Foreign Policy and the Cold War

Excerpt

The greatest question confronting Mankind is: War or Peace? For a citizen of the United States--of that mighty country whose policies and acts decisively influence that question--there is no more urgent duty than to inform himself as best he can on its every aspect, and to act, on the basis of that information, in such a way as to contribute to a peaceful future.

The volume now in the hands of the reader reflects the writings of its author for the past fourteen years. In it will be found data and opinions concerning the origins of World War II, its conduct, its conclusion and, especially, the diplomatic history of the United States from 1946 to the present. The matter is not only most urgent; it is a continuing one, as indicated in the recent appalling proposal by Defense Secretary Robert S. McNamara--in his Ann Arbor, Michigan, speech of June 16, 1962--that the United States adopt the strategy of counter-force and limited nuclear warfare, to be waged, if necessary, for an unlimited future.

The urgency and continuing character of the problems analyzed in this volume are shown, too, in the article published in the New York Times, July 25, 1962, by Mr. Homer Bigart, upon his return from an extended stay in South Vietnam. There, Mr. Bigart reported that the regime of Diem is tyrannical; that it is marked by "senseless brutality" and is detested by the vast majority of its subjects. He stated that though Diem had 300,000 troops and about 9,000 U.S. "advisers" and the most modern equipment-- planes, artillery, trucks, etc.--and was opposed by about 25,000 guerrilla fighters--who had "only basic infantry weapons"--still, Diem was as far from victory as ever, and most of the country was not in his control. Homer Bigart concluded by remarking that-- even with full American assistance and with Diem's overwhelming superiority in firepower--the military outcome was extremely doubtful; he added that Americans may not only lack the endurance, but also the motivation for continuing this "dirty war" since abandoned by a defeated French imperialism.

Withal, the grounds for confidence are great. Just as the good sense of the American people has forced an abandonment--so far--

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