To Create a New World? American Presidents and the United Nations

By John Allphin Moore Jr.; Jerry Pubantz | Go to book overview

regular ministerial or cabinet-level meetings on a "whole agenda of issues" and agreeing to reduce weapons stockpiles. He promised to increase grain available for purchase by the USSR. "As I stand here and look out from this podium," the president said, "I can see the representative for the Soviet Union—not far from the representative of the United States....There's not a great distance between us." Satisfied, even exultant, he concluded his address with the idealistic words of Thomas Paine: "We have it in our power to begin the world over again." 162

Reagan had used the United Nations to set the tone for his meeting with Gromyko, scheduled for four days later, September 28. He evinced an uncommon interest and spent time preparing for this encounter, the first on such a high level since the Soviets had invaded Afghanistan in 1979. The meeting was cordial and was followed up with Gromyko's visit to the State Department the next day. Then, on November 22, 1984, both countries announced that Shultz would meet with Gromyko in Geneva in early January for wide-ranging discussions. The ice, frozen for some four years, was breaking. Within half a year it would proceed to melt with the coming of Mikhail Gorbachev. But, in the meantime, dark clouds were circling the Reagan administration, and the subsequent downpour would seriously divert attention from international matters.


Iran-Contra

Secretary of State Shultz, as we have seen, began his career in the State Department faced with a problem in the Middle East that he did not relish. Similarly, he found that "Central American policy was a swamp." 163 Little could he realize in 1982 how the two regions would be star-crossed and would involve the Reagan administration, and the country, in a damaging scandal.

On November 3, 1986, Al Siraa, an Arab-language magazine in Beirut, broke a story that the United States had negotiated an arms-for‐ hostages deal with Iran. Reagan, of course, had denounced Iran during the election campaign of 1980. Moreover, by federal law (the Arms Export Control Act), the United States was precluded from providing any weaponry to Iran. Finally, as Shultz noted in his memoirs, this

____________________
162
" Address to the 39th Session of the UN General Assembly," PPP, 1984, II, 1355-1361. For the cited quotes, see pages 1359-1361.
163
Shultz, Turmoil and Triumph, 322.

-274-

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To Create a New World? American Presidents and the United Nations
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • To Create a New World? *
  • Table of Contents *
  • Preface *
  • Frequently Used Citations *
  • Introduction *
  • 1: To Create a New World? American "Exceptionalism" and the Origins of the United Nations *
  • Dismissing the United Nations 7
  • The United Nations at Half Century 10
  • Woodrow Wilson and American Idealism 12
  • Traditional Arrangements of International Politics 17
  • The Twentieth-Century Crisis 21
  • 2: The Founders *
  • Fdr and the Un *
  • Yalta 44
  • Truman and the Un 47
  • Onset of the Cold War 53
  • Korea 69
  • 3: The Cold Warriors *
  • The President, His Foreign Policy Team, and the Un 84
  • The "Eisenhower Model" 91
  • Superpower Confrontation and the United Nations, 1953-1969 95
  • Cold War Tensions and UN Institutions 112
  • Jfk and the Un 118
  • Lyndon Johnson and the Un 131
  • Disarmament and Development 143
  • 4: The Realists' Ascent *
  • Nixon and the Un 176
  • 1968 184
  • Nixon and Watergate 186
  • "Nixinger" Diplomacy 188
  • Vietnam and Nixon 193
  • India and Pakistan, 1971 196
  • China 199
  • Yom Kippur 203
  • President Ford's Interregnum 208
  • 5: Two Sides of Idealism *
  • Carter and Foreign Policy 214
  • Carter, Human Rights, and the Un 219
  • Carter, China, and the Ussr 229
  • Breakthrough at Camp David 234
  • Carter and Africa 241
  • The Iranian Hostage Nightmare 248
  • Reagan and the Un: Phase One 254
  • The Middle East, Reagan, and the Un 262
  • Reagan and the World 268
  • Iran-Contra 274
  • Gorbachev 276
  • Reagan and the Un: Phase Two 280
  • 6: The New Moralists *
  • President Bush's UN Odyssey 290
  • President Bush's Use of the Un 298
  • President Clinton: the New Moralism and the Demands of Politics 315
  • Conclusion *
  • Appendix a Secretaries-General of the Un *
  • Appendix B U.S. Ambassadors to the Un *
  • Bibliography *
  • Index *
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