- Photographs from a starving Greece and a crushed European Continent to open the unit
- Truman Doctrine Speech: How did he SELL containment to the American People?
- I will use the version in the binder to help keep track of paragraphs and assigning the different parts of the speech to student groups.
- Summary of Telegrams Feb. 25,1947-- http://www.trumanlibrary.org/whistlestop/study_collections/doctrine/large/index.php
- I have copied several articles and commentary from materials in the Library. I will attach my copy to this assignment.
Critics of containment
“We are reckoning with a force which cannot be handled successfully by a ‘get tough with Russia’ policy. “Getting tough’ never bought anything real and lasting—whether for schoolyard bullies or businessmen or world powers. The tougher we get, the tougher the Russians will get… We may not like what Russia does in Eastern Europe…But whether we like it or not the Russians will try to socialize their sphere of influence just as we try to democratize our sphere of influence… Russian ideas of social-economic justice are going to govern nearly a third of the world. Our ideas of free enterprise democracy will govern much of the rest. The two ideas will endeavor to prove which can deliver the most satisfaction of the common man… But by mutual agreement, this competition should be put on a friendly basis… Under friendly peaceful competition the Russian world and the American world will gradually become more alike.”
Henry A. Wallace on “Peaceful Competition” Speech @ Madison Square Garden, September 12, 1946
“If portions of Europe and Asia wish to go communistic or even to have communism thrust upon them, we cannot stop it. Instead we mush make sure of our strength and be certain not to fritter it away in battles that could not be won… We can do well to mind our own business and interfere only when somebody threatens our business and our homes.”
--Joseph P. Kennedy on the Truman Doctrine, 1947
“Can the western world operate a policy of containment? Now the strength of the western world is great, and we many assume that its resourcefulness is considerable. Nevertheless, there are weighty reasons for thinking that the kind of strength we have and the kind of resources we are capable of showing are peculiarly unsuited to operation a policy of containment…The United States cannot by its own military power contain the expansive pressure of the Russians ‘at every point where they show signs of encroaching.’ The United States cannot have ready ‘unalterable counterforce’ consisting of American troops… The policy can be implemented only by recruiting, subsidizing, and supporting a heterogeneous array of satellites, client, dependents, and puppets… It would require… intervention by the United States in the affairs of all the members of the coalition… Congress and the people would have to stand ready to back their judgments as to who should be nominated, who should be subsidized, who should be whitewashed, Who should be made our clients and our allies… [And] we must not forget that Soviet Union, against which this coalition will be directed, will resist and react… The policy of containment cannot be enforced.”
Walter Lippmann, “The Cold War: A Study in US foreign policy (Harper, 1947)
“The seeds that make for communism in Europe are too deep to be reached by a recovery program.”
—Joseph Kennedy, Spring, 1948 on the Marshall Plan
James Kutcher, who lost both legs to a German shell and his livelihood to American hysteria, is a member of the Socialist Workers Party. Kutcher was a $42-a-week clerk in the V.A. in Newark, NJ. His job is far removed from any sensitive information, let alone, secrets. Basic political liberties and basic procedural safeguards are threatened by the standards of judgment and procedure applied in the Case of the Legless Veteran. Harry Truman claims to be a friend of civil rights. More pitiable than a man without legs is a President without firm principals”
I.F. Stone—“The Case of the Legless Veteran” 10-22-48
“Mr. Truman’s inaugural address… was shallow, naïve, childishly arrogant, and self-righteous, a call for war thinly masked as a pledge of peace. Mr. Truman… said the American people wanted a world in which ‘all peoples are free to govern themselves as they see fit.’ But these sentiments were soon canceled out by the statement that the United States and other like-minded nations ‘find themselves directly opposed by a regime with contrary aims and a totally different concept of life’, a regime that ‘adheres to a false philosophy.’ The only conclusion we can draw is that Mr. Truman believes other people should be ‘free to govern themselves as they see fit’—so long as they see fit to see as we see fit. This is a dangerous doctrine. It would mean that we set ourselves up to police the world. The USA is rich and strong but not rich and strong enough for that. Nor are its moral forces great enough for the task… The most disturbing aspect of the Truman inaugural is that if this is what the President believes, he must modify his domestic program. If this is an irreconcilable conflict, then how can he put sharp limits on military spending? And how can he protect traditional liberties against a fierce terror designed to root out and con not only Communists, but anyone who thinks peace possible? Can there be a New Deal in such an atmosphere? I do not think so.”
“With Malice Toward None—Except Half Mankind”—I.F. Stone, Jan. 1949
“The 150,000,000 American people are already economically strained by government expenditures. It must not be forgotten that we are carrying huge burdens from previous wars including obligations to veterans and $260 billions of bond and currency issues from those wars. In the fiscal year 1952, federal and local expenditures are likely to exceed $90 billions. That is more than our total savings. We must finance huge deficits by further government issues. Inflation is already moving. /the dollar has in six months fallen 15 or 20 per cent in purchasing power. But we might with stern measures to avoid the economic disintegration of such a load for a very few years. If we continued long on this road the one center of resistance in the world will collapse in economic disaster.”
Herbert Hoover, radio address, 12-20-50