Thursday, January 04, 2007

INTER-AMERICAN SECURITY

Section 7 of the government pamphlet, "OUR FOREIGN POLICY 1952"

INTER-AMERICAN SECURITY


WHEN we talk of security in the Americas we are discussing the citadel of our defense. We dare not neglect to defend the actual territory of the hemisphere we live in and the cast resources it holds. We are also determined to preserve all that the idea and the achievements of the New World have meant to us and to men everywhere who are dedicated to freedom.

This is a period of progress in Latin America. The governments of the 20 Latin American Republics have been increasingly occupied in recent decades with de-veloping their countries. They ahve been exploring resources, building transportation systems, setting up industries, and mechanizing agriculture. At the same time there has been a drive throughout Latin America to create a new social structure, to pull the large mass of people up from the depths of poverty, hunger, disease, and depression.

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It has taken a long time for the American Republics to achieve the mutual trust and confidence that make wholehearted cooperation workable. That trust and confidence did not always exist. On the contrary, quite the opposite continued over a long period. The United States, for example, was for years called the "Colossus of the North" by its neighbors to the south, and the title was not bestowed in a complimentary sense.

There are many and great differences among the American Republics. Our people speak a variety of languages ––English, Spanish, Portuguese, French, and innumerable dialects. We differ tremendously in cli-mate, resources, manpower, and social and economic conditions. We have centuries-old rivalries and jeal-ousies –– many factors that tend to keep men and nations apart.

And yet our nations and our people are finding in their common aspirations and problems a unity that outweighs the differences. We are learning to resolve these differences in peace and friendship around a common conference table.

The United States has a natural sympathy with Latin American aspirations for economic and social better-ment. Our well-established policies of cooperation with Latin America reflect our sympathy. We offer technical assistance and loans for economic develop-ment. We encourage responsible private U.S. investors to set up enterprises in Latin America where they are welcomed. Our association with Latin America is

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mutually self-respecting. We do not interfere in one another's internal affairs. We respect the sovereign equality of all nations.

This policy is based on our sense of responsibilty to the future and on our experience in the past. History has demonstrated time and again that the security and prosperity of the Americas can best be assured by friendship and cooperation.

While Soviet communism does not pose the military threat in Latin America that it does in other areas, its agents are hard at work trying to disrupt economoic development and subvert democratic institutions. Soviet communism wants to drive a wedge between the people of Latin American Republics and any of their governments which Moscow cannot control. Because of our interdependence, this is as much a menace to the people of the United States as it is to the Latin Americans themselves.

It is the communist design to make the moral and material energies of Latin America useless to the fre world. If the communists have their way, Latin Amer-ica's resources will never be developed except under communist control.

The major Soviet weapon in Latin America is propaganda trading on the natural desire of all men to raise their standard of living. This cynical propaganda promises exactly what Moscow does not want in Latin America –– expanding prosperity and political stability.

In the spring of 1951, the Foreign Ministers of all the

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American Republics met at Washington and made definite agreements about the methods and direction to be adopted in resisting the communist drive in this hemi-spere.

There are two great inter-American treaties that pro-vide the framework for this common effort. One is the Inter-American Treaty of Reciprocal Assistance (the Rio treaty), signed in 1947. The other is the Charter of the Organization of American States, signed at Bogotá, Colombia, in 1948.

Since the Foreign Ministers' meeting, measures to strengthen internal security and to guard against sabo-tage have been developed further in the Latin American countries, as in our own. Defense planning has gone forward in the Inter-American Defense Board, and U.S. military cooperation with other countries on a bilateral basis has been intensified. Their governments and ours are mustering the resources aof the hemisphere to build military defense and social and economic strength.

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