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Department of State bulletin (Volume v. 46, Jan- Mar 1962) online

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although the center of this system is showing signs
of strain, we have no reason to predict its

Second, we have seen the breaking up of the
great colonial structures, worldwide in scope, that
were brought to full flower during the 19th cen-
tury. We have watched the transformation of
former colonial possessions into a whole geography
book of new states — proud, stimulated by their
new-found independence, and eager to share in a
more abundant life.

Third, we have seen the principal former colo-
nial powers yielding their empires willingly or
unwillingly, then finding a new outlet for their
energies in the construction of a new European
system — the Common Market.

It is of the second and third of these develop-
ments — the creation of the newly independent
countries, on the one hand, and the promise and
reality of a new Europe, on the other — that I
shall speak to you tonight, although the first, the
brooding Commimist menace, will necessarily play
an unspoken role in most of what I have to say.

There is good reason why I should talk tonight
both about the former colonial powers that have
joined together to build a imited Europe and the
former colonial possessions that have emerged
upon the world as new states. Each of these
developments has a special relevance to the central
theme of your conference — the underdeveloped
coxmtries and the cold war.

The relations of the United States with the for-
mer colonial powers of Europe have played a
major role in our foreign policy thi-oughout our
history. Today we are bound together — we and
they — not only by a military alliance but by the
inexorable logic of economics and politics. The
six powers that have formed the European Eco-
nomic Community — together with the United
Kingdom, which has applied for membership —
command massive resources. The United States
and the expanded European Community account
for close to 90 percent of free-world industrial
production and 90 percent of free- world industrial

With the strength of the free world now clus-
tered in two great centers, we and our Atlantic
partners must of necessity work together to ful-
fill the common responsibilities that history has
imposed upon us: to guard the security of the
free world and the values of fre« men, and to
help provide the capital, technical help, and finally
even the market opportunities for the less de-
veloped nations of the world.

This proposition seems clear enough. Yet one
encounters from time to time the view that there
is some kind of contradiction between the con-
cept of an Atlantic partnership on the one hand
and our need to develop bonds of friendship and
confidence with the less developed nations of the
world on the other. The impression is sometimes
given that the United States must choose between
lines of policy that are mutually exclusive: We
must elect either to develop a strong transatlantic
base of power on which to build the strength of
the free world or, alternatively, we must identify
ourselves with the ideals and interests of those
newly emergent nations that may represent the
balance of power of the future — and turn our
backs on Europe.

End of Colonial Era

Such a formulation, it seems to me, poses a false
dilemma, a dilemma based upon an obsolete as-
stunption and an imperfect comprehension of the
direction of events. The problem for us today is
to pursue both courses with equal vigor. After
all, for the powers that now constitute the Eu-
ropean Conmiunity and for the United Kingdom,
which has applied for membership in that Com-
munity, the colonial era is fast becoming a part
of history.

March J 2, 1962


The past decade and a half has seen a remark-
able process of the dismantling of empires. Great
Britain, by remarkable acts of free will, has
yielded hegemony over huge portions of the globe.
Not only that ; she has actively assisted her former
colonial possessions to achieve the perilous transi-
tion from dependency to statehood.

The sovereign nation of Indonesia has replaced
the Dutch East Indies. The Republic of the
Congo, sorely beset by growing pains, now oc-
cupies the principal Belgian territories in the
heart of Africa. France has transformed most
of her empire into a commonwealth of free nations.
And the end of the long struggle in Algeria is
hopefully in sight.

One can say, therefore, that colonialism in the
free world is largely a completed chapter of his-
tory. This fact, however, is not so remarkable as
the manner in which this change has occurred.
The great transformation from dependence to sov-
ereignty has been achieved in a fantastically
brief period of time and under conditions that
have, in a majority of cases, made possible the
retention of strong and continuing bonds of
friendship between the former colonial power and
the newly emerging state.

Undoubtedly anticolonialism will evoke deeply
felt emotions for many years after the colonial age
has finally ended. To the extent that those emo-
tions express themselves in a fierce determination
on the part of the new nations to maintain their
integrity and independence, they can continue to
be a strong, positive force in the world. But today
colonialism as an institution is growing and
spreading only behind tlie Iron Curtain — and
there in a singularly despotic form; in the free
world it has no future.

Considering the transformation that has been
wrought in the structure of relations between
the countries engaged in building a united
Europe and their former colonial territories, we
can safely conclude that the dilemma to which
I referred earlier is without validity. We need
not turn our backs on the nations that are build-
ing a new Europe in order to demonstrate that we
support the aspirations of the less fortunate peo-
ples everywhere who are demanding not only polit-
ical independence but a better economic life. For
the aims of our European friends are essentially
the same as ours, and it is to everyone's interest
that we combine our energies for the same ob-

jectives. It is, I am convinced, by building an
effective Atlantic partnership that we can best
assist in the achievement of this goal.

Obligations to Less Developed Nations

Let us make an agenda of what must be done
if the industrialized states on both sides of the
Atlantic are to fulfill their obligations to the
poorer nations of the world.

First, tliey must provide assistance in the form
of capital, experience, and technical help, as they
are now doing. If that assistance is to be effective,
it must be recognized as a common task for the
industrialized nations, most of which are active
members of the Atlantic partnership. The task
is clearly too big for any one nation, even the
United States.

Second, they must serve as customers for an in-
creasing amoiuit of production of the less de-
veloped countries. If those coimtries are to
achieve a decent level of life, if they are ever to
attain the goal of self-sustaining economic growth,
then they must be able to earn foreign exchange
in the markets of the world. And those markets
can be found primarily in the great consuming na-
tions — whicli means again those nations that have
attained a high level of economic advancement.

Third, if the Atlantic nations are to supply not
only aid but market opportunities, they must
themselves achieve and maintain a decent and
stable rate of economic growth. Experience has
all too often shown that violent fluctuations in
world demand can do grave economic damage, par-
ticularly to countries that depend for their liveli-
hood on the sale of raw materials.

Further Development of Atlantic Partnership

To accomplish these three items of our agenda — ■
all ^'ital if the less developed comitries are to at-
tain their aspirations — will require further de-
velopment of the Atlantic partnership.

Already we have made substantial progress m
this direction.

Consider, for example, the last point first — the
achievement of an adequate and stable rate of eco-
nomic gi-owth. We learned in the dark days of the
depression that disaster was quite as indivisible
as prosperity. Nations, at least the large indus-
trial nations, are no longer economic islands.
What liappens to one must, of necessity, have a
major inii)a('t on the others.


Department of State Bulletin

We see this today in dramatic fiushion in our
own balance-of-paynients deficit. That deficit is,
as we all know, the reflection of an imbalance in
free- world accounts; it is the mirror image of sur-
pluses in a handful of otlier major nations.

We have recognized this interdependence among
the world's key currencies. Within the past few
weeks the industrializetl Atlantic nations liave
taken a nimiber of unprecedented steps. They
have, for example, agreed upon the creation of a
new $6-billion pool of currencies, to act as another
major line of defense against any pressures which
may be exerted on key currency .-

The recognition of interdependence is useful, of
course, only as we reflect that recognition in action.
Within the past year particularly we have moved
effectively on this front. We have begun to
develop an efficient mechanism for concerting
our domestic economic policies. Through the
OECD — the Organization for Economic Coopera-
tion and Development — we are perfecting tech-
niques of consultation, not only in monetary mat-
ters but in a whole range of fiscal and other do-
mestic policies. The OECD is the first truly
Atlantic organization in the economic field, just
as NATO is the Atlantic organization in the field
of defense. Included in its membership are not
only the United States and Canada but the prin-
cipal nations of Western Europe. Through the
OECD we have achieved already an unparalleled
range of mutually helpful actions, and we are only
at the beginning.

The maintenance of economic health in an inter-
dependent world implies necessarily that there
must be a large measure of agreement on the part
of the principal indu.strial powers to pursue do-
mestic policies that will result in an adequate and
steady rate of economic growth. Such an agree-
ment was reached last December, when ministers
representing the members of the OECD adopted as
their common target a 50-percent increase in their
combined gross national products over the present

I need hardly argue with you in Cincinnati the
indivisible nature of w^orld prosperity. Your city
is indeetl in the mainstream of world trade. You
send your products to the comers of the earth.
You buy products from everywhere. You have
learned by your own observation, thei'efore, that

' Bulletin of .Ian. 29, 1962, p. 187.

' For background, see ibid., Dec. 18, 1061, i

Online LibraryUnited States. Dept. of State. Office of Public CoDepartment of State bulletin (Volume v. 46, Jan- Mar 1962) → online text (page 80 of 101)