THE United Nations is a living political organism, and the principle of its growth is to be seen in the very conflict which perpetually drives it to further development. The conflict, which occurs and recurs among its supporters no less than between its supporters and its enemies, has two aspects--both of which, indeed, were no less evident in the debates about the old League of Nations.

The first is the basic question of international coöperation itself--whether the nations of the world are to act together as partners in a community or whether they are to "go it alone," each for himself and the devil take the hindmost. The second is generally interpreted as a controversy about the basic function of the United Nations, though in truth it, too, presents the question of survival--in short, whether the organization is to have the strength to enforce the collective security of its members. Supported by its entourage of slave states, Soviet Russia has gone it alone within the organization almost from the day she entered it. But the recurring conflicts of opinion among the other members in regard to the organization's nature and functions have resulted always, in the end, in a movement toward closer coöperation and toward placing greater emphasis on its rôle as an enforcement agency. The reason is easy to find. The theory, much favored in 1945, that the primary function of the U.N. is "long-range," namely, concentration upon removing the underlying causes of wars between nations, dissolved when it came up against the hard fact that since 1947 the danger of another world war has not been remote and submerged but immediate and open. The experience of overt and deliberate aggression by Soviet-supported troops against the U.N. itself in Korea has inexorably and correctly made the mediatory function subordinate to the enforcement function. Though some able dialecticians have attempted the task of convincing the member states that they should somehow develop the faculty of mediating between themselves and the enemy who was attacking them, the actual response has, very properly, run in the other direction.


The two greatest structural weaknesses in the Charter of the United Nations have been: 1, the veto power given to each of the so-called Big Five on everything but procedural matters; and 2, the failure to create an international force in readiness to resist aggression. The inclusion of the veto clause was probably necessary in order to get Soviet Russia to enter the United Nations, and possibly also to get the Charter ratified by the United States Senate. But the effect was most unfortunate. Russia used the veto on more than 40 occasions, and it became obvious that she would prevent the Security Council and hence the United Nations from taking action to stop aggression wherever the Communist program of expansion was involved. Moreover, by preventing the United Nations from acting, Russia was largely able to prevent its law-abiding members from acting. For without a U.N. mandate it was difficult for a nation to move by itself; the argument could always be made that any such action lacked legal authority of an international character and hence was a unilateral act of war rather than an enforcement of law. Moreover, any attempt to amend the Charter to provide for a more effective way of resisting aggression and reducing the veto power seemed doomed to failure. For the veto itself could be used to defeat any attempt to limit the veto, and Russia served notice that she would do so were the issue raised.

It was originally hoped that an international police force or army could be set up under the United Nations. After the First World War, the French, under the leadership of Léon Bourgeois, had urged the necessity for creating just such a force under the League of Nations to ensure that a nation threatened with attack would receive effective aid. British opposition killed this plea. By the end of World War II, however, the harsh logic of events had convinced both the British and our own representatives that such a police force in readiness should be established. They therefore worked in the Military Staff Committee, set up under Article 47 of the Charter, to create such a body. But they were balked by Russia, which was opposed to the creation of an independent army and attached impossible conditions whereby a state could deny to the international army the right to cross its territory in order to get at an aggressor. The Russian power of veto finally prevented any concrete progress toward developing an effective police force.

As a consequence of all this, the United Nations seemed destined to go the way of the League of Nations and to perish in ineffectiveness. The cause of collective security seemed dubious indeed. It seemed as though the Soviet aggressors would be able to take the free nations one by one and break them as the Nazis and Fascists were able to do from 1935 to 1939.


Two sets of efforts were made to remedy this situation. The first was the development of a series of regional pacts to furnish mutual protection against aggression, while the second was an effort to create a more effective system of general security within the United Nations itself.

The series of regional treaties to provide for mutual security against attack began with the pact of Rio de Janeiro signed in September 1947. This provided for mutual assistance among and between the states of North and South America (except for Canada). A start had already been made by the Truman Doctrine, giving aid to Greece and Turkey, announced in May 1947. This arrangement was lacking in the full elements of mutuality, however, since while we agreed to help defend each of the nations in question, neither of them agreed to support the other. The big development in the field of regional pacts came, of course, with the negotiation and approval of the North Atlantic Pact in 1949, under which the signatory Powers, namely the United States, Canada, Great Britain, France, Portugal, Italy, the Netherlands, Belgium, Luxembourg, Denmark, Norway and Iceland, agreed to come to the aid of any signatory nation which was attacked. Recently has come our pact with Australia and New Zealand, and other possible pacts are in the offing at the time of writing.

There have been two primary reasons for the creation of these regional pacts. First has been the desire to escape from the veto power which the Russians exercise inside the Security Council, so that they could not balk mutual help in time of need. The second was the fact that most nations, like individuals, feel danger much more vividly when it is close than when it is far away. They will therefore make more sacrifices to defend a nearby country from attack, lest they themselves should be threatened next, than they will to help peoples who are remote. Many persons felt, therefore, that more effective resistance against Communist aggression would be built up by a series of regional pacts than by an attempt to obtain collective security through and by the United Nations, inhibited as it was by the veto proviso and stripped of any ready force with which it might protect the weak. Moreover, it was pointed out that Article 51 of the Charter expressly permitted the formation of such regional pacts to defend the peace;[i] and it was therefore contended that it was quite possible for peace-loving nations to pursue the goal of collective security inside the United Nations while simultaneously working to build practical structures outside the U.N. to obtain its more immediate and more localized realization.

And yet the fact remains that the regional pacts were outside the United Nations. Necessary as they were in the prevailing circumstances, there was danger that if sole reliance were placed upon them the United Nations would become primarily a forum from which each set of Great Powers could launch propaganda against the other. Since the Russian bloc imposes strict censorship within its own bounds, this meant in practice that they were able to propagandize the Western world while our replies were stopped by the Iron Curtain. If the positive values of the United Nations were to be retained and developed, it was evidently important to devise a new way of investing it with the power to enforce collective security.

The system of regional pacts, moreover, had certain very real disadvantages. One of these was the absence of any impartial way of determining whether or not aggression had actually occurred, in view of the fact that the nations allied in the pacts would themselves decide this question. Outside nations would not feel any necessity of following the decisions since they would not have been a party to them. It was also true that certain states, notably India, though ready to work within a universal system, would not join any system of regional alliances which ranged them in one world camp or the other.


Swayed by these and other considerations, the Editor of this journal proposed in 1948 that the United States negotiate with other U.N. members a supplementary convention whereby each signatory would pledge itself to join in using force against any country declared to be an aggressor by a two-thirds vote of the General Assembly of the U.N.[ii] By making the projected voluntary convention supplementary to the U.N. Charter rather than an amendment to it, and by shifting the power of branding an aggressor from the Security Council to the Assembly, the author of this proposal seemed to have hit on a feasible and altogether legal way of circumventing the certain prospect of a Russian veto. Moreover, by continuing to lodge the finding of aggression in a U.N. body, namely the Assembly, he kept the system within the structure of the United Nations. A somewhat similar proposal was also developed at about this time by the Commission to Study the Organization of Peace.[iii]

Influenced by these suggestions, Senator Elbert Thomas of Utah and I prepared in the early winter of 1949 a Resolution that the United States take the lead in proposing such a supplementary convention, but we refrained from introducing it for some months lest it embarrass our Government in the negotiation of the North Atlantic Treaty, which both of us approved. We finally did introduce the Resolution in July 1949, after that treaty had been signed and while it was before the Senate for ratification.[iv]

The Resolution made two important additions to the original Armstrong proposal. The first was the proviso that in order for a nation to be committed to use force to repel aggression, it was not only necessary that there should be a two-thirds vote of the General Assembly, but also approval by three of the Big Five. This was to prevent the small Powers from committing the big countries such as ours to use our armies in unforeseen circumstances and against our will. The requirement of a two-thirds vote of the General Assembly for any police action, including assent of three of the Big Five, would make impossible, we believed, any domination by Russia. In the first place, Russia would find it virtually impossible to obtain a two-thirds vote in the Assembly, since the maximum Soviet strength there never amounted to more than eight votes. Secondly, the requirement of the concurrence of three of the Big Five would always enable the United States, Great Britain and France, acting together, to vote down any proposal to which they objected. As long as the Franco-British-American alliance held together, we could always negate Russian attempts at control. If France were ever to join the Soviet bloc, this would mean that Western Europe would in the same moment turn Communist. Under such conditions, we would probably have to withdraw to the shores of the New World and in effect abandon the United Nations. We believed, therefore, that we had adequately safeguarded American interests, while opening up a way by which the United Nations could function collectively to restrain Soviet aggression.

A second development which we made to the original proposal was to make more specific provision for necessary military strength. Our Resolution provided that under the supplementary agreement itself each nation should name the military components which it would earmark for an international force and hold in readiness for police action when called upon by the U.N. This was done in recognition of the speed with which modern aggression moves and the need to assemble forces quickly if resistance is to be effective. I personally would have preferred the actual assembling of such an international force in advance of an attack, so that the various contingents might be trained together in manœuvres and be able to take the field more quickly. But we contented ourselves with the more modest proposal that each nation earmark contingents which would be kept within their own national forces until called for. Even this arrangement would have saved a great deal of time and would have represented marked progress toward the creation of a genuine international force in continual readiness.

After some delay, a subcommittee of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee was set up in January 1950 to consider this and other proposals for world peace, such as Atlantic Union, World Federalism, the World Republic, and the so-called Culbertson proposal; and nine days of hearings were held in February.[v]

It was urged in support of the Thomas-Douglas Resolution that by removing the blighting power of the veto, the peace-loving aspirations of the people of the world would be enabled to find effective satisfaction through the United Nations. It was also pointed out that while India, and probably Burma as well, would not join a regional alliance directed against potential Russian or Chinese aggression, there was a much greater chance that they would join a universal compact designed to restrain aggression as such, regardless of source.

Under our proposal, Russia and her satellites were to be invited like other U.N. members to sign the supplementary convention. If they did so, they were to be subject to the same obligations as others, without having the power to balk decisions through the veto. If they refused to join, as was overwhelmingly probable, it was argued that they would lose ground in the propaganda war. Even in this case, however, Russia and her satellites would still be members of the U.N. with all the attendant rights and privileges. There would thus be an inner and an outer ring of U.N. members. The outer ring would still be under the veto provision, but the inner core would have voluntarily subjected themselves to the two-thirds rule. The United Nations would still have all its existing functions, but would be greatly strengthened from within in carrying them out. All this, moreover, could be accomplished without tearing the organization apart by a futile struggle to amend the Charter.[vi]

The State Department, speaking through Assistant Secretary Hickerson, adopted a negative and indeed hostile attitude toward all proposals for change, including the Thomas-Douglas Resolution. Essentially its argument was that other nations might not agree to the proposal, and if that happened we would lose prestige;[vii] that the Resolution would require us to use force anywhere in the world, whereas our military capacities were limited; that neither public opinion nor the Constitution might permit such a pledge; and further that any such effort might widen the rift between the Soviets and the Western world. The conclusion of this argument was that we should make the North Atlantic Pact more effective and develop further regional pacts under Article 51 before embarking on a universal pact. It also was contended that it would be highly improper to remove the veto by by-passing Article 109, which provides a means for amending the Charter, despite the fact that action under this Article would itself be subject to the veto.[viii] After months of consideration, the Committee on Foreign Relations decided on September 1 to make no recommendations.


But in the meantime events had moved swiftly and were creating their own logic. The North Korean Communists, without doubt under Russian stimulation, crossed the 38th Parallel on June 24, 1950 (June 25, Korea time). They probably did not expect either the United Nations or the United States to try to check them; but both acted speedily. By a fortunate coincidence, Russia had temporarily withdrawn her representatives from the Security Council and hence was not in a position to use her veto power. Consequently the Security Council on June 25 determined that the armed attack upon the Republic of Korea constituted a breach of the peace, called upon the authorities of North Korea to withdraw their armed forces, and asked all members of the U.N. both to give "every assistance" to the United Nations in executing this resolution and to refrain themselves from giving assistance to North Korea. On the evening of June 25, the President authorized General MacArthur to provide the Korean Government with supplies and equipment. This was announced on June 26. On June 27 the President announced at noon that in response to a Korean appeal for help, and in keeping with the Security Council request for every assistance to the United Nations in the execution of its resolution, he had ordered United States air and sea forces to support the Korean Government troops. At a meeting at 3 p.m. on June 27, the Security Council (with Russia again absent) called upon the members of the U.N. to provide "such assistance to the Republic of Korea as may be necessary to repel the armed attack and to restore international peace and security in the area." American troops were quickly sent in from Japan and slowly other nations began to furnish additional forces.

I shall not go into the military history of the Korean war. But I think it is fairly obvious that such effectiveness as the U.N. procedures displayed was due to our own determined will, plus two fortunate accidents. These were: 1, that Russia, through pique or otherwise, had withdrawn from the Security Council and hence was not able to interpose a veto; and 2, that we had occupation troops close at hand in Japan who could be quickly sent in to check the aggressors. It was a lucky coincidence that both of these conditions existed. But there was obviously no surety that they would prevail when the next act of aggression occurred. It was indeed fairly obvious that the Russians would learn from experience and would return to the Security Council so as to be able to sabotage from within any further efforts at collective security; and that the next blow would probably be directed at an area where it would be difficult to assemble a U.N. force with any degree of speed.

At the next meeting of the General Assembly, therefore, Secretary Acheson proposed (September 20, 1950) that 1, the General Assembly should be called into session within 24 hours if the Security Council were prevented from acting upon a breach of peace or an act of aggression; 2, that the member nations should designate units of their armed forces which would be ready to serve upon call as United Nations troops; and 3, that the U.N. should provide for a "security patrol" to provide independent observation and reporting in areas where conflict may threaten.[ix]

These proposals, after seven weeks of discussion and consideration, were in substance adopted on November 3 in the following three resolutions of the General Assembly:[x]

1. That if the Security Council, because of lack of unanimity of the permanent members, fails to exercise its primary responsibility for the maintenance of international peace and security in any case where there appears to be a threat to the peace, breach of the peace, or act of aggression, the General Assembly shall consider the matter immediately with a view to making appropriate recommendations to Members for collective measures, including in the case of a breach of the peace or act of aggression the use of armed force when necessary, to maintain or restore international peace and security. If not in session at the time, the General Assembly may meet in emergency special session within 24 hours of the request therefor. Such emergency special session shall be called if requested by the Security Council on the vote of any seven members, or by a majority of the Members of the United Nations.

3. Establishes a Peace Observation Commission which for the calendar years 1951 and 1952, shall be composed of 14 Members, namely: China, Colombia, Czechoslovakia, France, India, Iraq, Israel, New Zealand, Pakistan, Sweden, the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, the United States of America and Uruguay, and which could observe and report on the situation in any area where there exists international tension the continuance of which is likely to endanger the maintenance of international peace and security. Upon the invitation or with the consent of the State into whose territory the Commission would go, the General Assembly, or the Interim Committee when the Assembly is not in session, may utilize the Commission if the Security Council is not exercising the functions assigned to it by the Charter with respect to the matter in question. Decisions to utilize the Commission shall be made on the affirmative vote of two-thirds of the members present and voting. The Security Council may also utilize the Commission in accordance with its authority under the Charter. . . .

8. Recommends to the States Members of the United Nations that each Member maintain within its national armed forces elements so trained, organized and equipped that they could promptly be made available, in accordance with its constitutional processes, for service as a United Nations unit or units, upon recommendation by the Security Council or General Assembly, without prejudice to the use of such elements in exercise of the right of individual or collective self-defense recognized in Article 51 of the Charter.

The final result, therefore, was to provide that the General Assembly be called upon to check aggression if the Security Council failed to act, but to do this by resolution of the Assembly itself rather than by a supplementary convention. By this method a nation is not as closely bound as it would have been under a convention to furnish aid to check aggression, for even the two-thirds vote of the Assembly is purely recommendatory and can be disregarded by any country. Similarly, no contractual obligation was created on the part of any nation to earmark a portion of its armed forces for services under the United Nations; for here again the resolution of the Assembly does not have any binding force.

The reason the State Department preferred to follow this method of building up the General Assembly's power undoubtedly was because it was quicker, and because of a reluctance to bind the United States by a hard and fast rule to support in every instance the decision of even two-thirds of the Assembly. Perhaps it is ungracious to criticize a group of men who had to deal with so many pressing problems as those that faced the officials of the State Department at this juncture. But with the best will in the world, it may perhaps be suggested that if an early start had been made on preparing a draft convention, as our group had proposed, there might have been sufficient time to negotiate it. Secondly, while the course adopted did free the United States of a plainly defined responsibility, it similarly freed the other nations as well. The over-all loss to collective security, and hence the diminution of our own ultimate safety, may therefore have exceeded the immediate gain.


In short, under the battering of the Korean fighting the U.N. has taken certain steps to improve the mechanism for meeting threats of aggression. The General Assembly has been given the power to brand aggressions and to call on member nations for aid in resisting aggression--a duty which formerly belonged to the Security Council alone. This is a distinct constitutional improvement. But the mechanism for collective action is still far from certain. The actual response of U.N. members to the call for armed forces to check and defeat an aggressor has been very uneven. In the Korean affair the United States has been carrying too large a share of the burden. We do not ask that others prepare to increase their shares of the load simply in order to relieve us; we should still do as much, or more. But we would like others to undertake to do more in order that, when a new aggression threatens, the joint effort may be instant and more effective. That will be the test of whether the U.N. is able to fulfill the noble function which it undertook at San Francisco: to keep the peace--by mediation if possible, if necessary by force.

I believe this purpose might be better attained if our Government had favored in time the plan for a supplementary protocol, open to all U.N. members, the signatories of which would have promised that if the peaceful procedure laid down in the Charter failed and a veto in the Security Council prevented action against an aggressor, they would themselves live up to the principles and purposes of the Charter and restrain the aggressor by force. It would seem that this might have had a beneficial result in three directions. It might have impelled all the signatories to greater efforts to attain the armed forces needed in order to fulfill their obligations. It might have encouraged weak and menaced nations to count on the arrival of help from their more powerful partners, and thus to avoid either falling into the grasp of an aggressor nation or attempting to find safety in the shallow pit of "neutrality." Above all, it might have deterred would-be aggressors from their final gamble by arranging an overwhelming show of contrary force. But this is now water over the dam, and swimming in it, though tempting, is a futile exercise.

Useful progress has in fact been made, by the measures adopted November 3, 1950, toward the goals which we all seek; yet we are constantly being reminded that more remains to be accomplished. In our recent experience, for example, we have found that two nations in which we have signified our interest by advancing them large sums of money for defense and by sending them advisory military missions--Greece and Turkey--have nevertheless continued to feel dangerously exposed to possible assault from the East. They are members of the United Nations; yet they have begged to be allowed to give and receive the additional pledges connected with membership in the Atlantic Pact. In other words, the Atlantic Pact has been carried so far in the direction of an over-all reinsurance for U.N. members, regardless of their geographic position, that these two states, one lying in the Eastern Mediterranean and one commanding the entrance to the Black Sea, must still be described as members of a so-called Atlantic community in order to be assured that they will receive the benefits to which they are fully entitled simply by virtue of their membership in the United Nations. Recently the efforts of our Government in this connection seem to have prevailed on various hesitant members of the Atlantic Pact, with the result that Greece and Turkey, distant as they are from the Atlantic Ocean, may soon be recognized as important segments in the defense of Western Europe and admitted to the corresponding rights and duties. The long discussions and delays involved would have been avoided, and the necessary planning for bringing the efficient armies of these two countries into the Western defense system would not have been so dangerously postponed, had they been signatories of the supplementary pact envisaged in the Thomas-Douglas Resolution.

What has happened in the case of Greece and Turkey may happen at any time with other nations on the periphery of Europe, or in the Middle East. Indeed, we have now before us another concrete instance of the difficulty of attempting to deal with general security questions on an ad hoc and regional basis. At the time the Atlantic Pact was negotiated, nobody would have thought of suggesting that a Communist country like Jugoslavia be invited to join; and if she had been invited she would certainly have refused. But since 1948, when Marshal Tito broke with Stalin as a result of Soviet attempts to dominate and exploit his country, Jugoslavia has been threatened with invasion by the armies of neighboring Soviet-satellite countries and by the Soviet armies which are stationed in those countries. We in the United States realize that a Soviet or Soviet-sponsored attack on Jugoslavia would be the beginning of a series of inevitable events which would sooner or later--and more than likely at once--end in a general war. We have demonstrated that we have special interests in Greece, which would of course be directly threatened by a satellite invasion of neighboring Jugoslavia. We maintain forces of occupation in another of Jugoslavia's neighbors, Austria. A Soviet conquest of Jugoslavia would seriously imperil the present constitutional and democratic régime in Italy, one of our chief partners in the Atlantic Pact. For these and many other reasons we are all too sure that a war which Moscow might imagine could be "localized" in Jugoslavia would in fact spread like wildfire. In face of this we hear that the men of the Kremlin are debating the pros and cons of a war against Jugoslavia in the near future. Obviously, Jugoslavia cannot join a restricted instrument like the Atlantic Pact, which almost inevitably seems to have assumed some of the characteristics of an anti-Communist agreement. But had opportunity offered, she would probably have adhered after 1948 to a protocol simply binding U.N. members to resist aggression; for she asks nothing better than to be helped in resisting aggression, and she would have less fear that the Soviets might retaliate against her for joining a group of states promising merely to live up to the Charter--an instrument to which the Soviet Union itself subscribed and which it still pretends to cherish.

How can this general objective best be achieved today? How are we to give a sense of added security to United Nations members which are not members of any special regional arrangement? It can be done only, it would seem, by providing visible backing to the Charter's promises of help. One useful step in this direction would be to emphasize the character of the United Nations as an independent entity. As Mr. Austin recently noted, we may hope that "in time" a U.N. fighting force may emerge from the efforts of the Collective Measures Committee. The history of past efforts, however, does not suggest that such a coordinated force is sure to be ready when the next emergency occurs. If the Secretary General is determined to put the organization as rapidly as possible into a position where it can fulfill its function not merely as a mediator but as an agency of enforcement, he has various opportunities to do so. The resolution of last November authorizing the sending of Peace Observation Commissions to areas of tension where there seem grounds to suppose that aggression might occur provides a case in point.

Suppose the Secretary General, without waiting for an armed conflict to occur, requested the General Assembly now for authority to send armed guards with any Peace Observation Commissions which the General Assembly may dispatch to areas of tension. Since the existing armed guard of the U.N. is small he might at the same time urge that it be enlarged and also request authority to supplement it in an emergency by asking U.N. members conveniently located to supply armed planes to transport the Mission and guards to the point of emergency and to supply additional soldiers to reënforce the guards already available. In these circumstances, a Peace Observation Commission would not (like the first mission sent to Palestine in 1948) go as "five lonely pilgrims," but as a visible symbol of a decision already taken by loyal members of the U.N. to use force if necessary to uphold the Charter and repel aggression. The size of the guard would not be important apart from the fact that it should be able to perform police duties and protect the Commission from ambush or molestation by guerrilla forces. It would not be a striking force. It would, however, demonstrate alike to the threatened nation and to those who were threatening it that the United Nations was officially present on the spot and that its loyal members were united in a coalition to enforce peace.

To take a practical example, what would be the effect of the arrival of such a mission today in Jugoslavia? It may be asked whether Jugoslavia would welcome it. I imagine she would, for its presence would amount to a certification that any attack against the country would be considered by other United Nations members as an attack on each one of them; and since this is just what is in doubt (in Moscow at any rate), any action revealing the actual determination of the United Nations must be eagerly desired in Belgrade. The arrival in Jugoslavia of an armed United Nations mission, representative of a number of the organization's most powerful members, could not properly be resented by Jugoslavia's neighbors. Unless they had bad consciences they would have nothing to fear from its activities; and since Soviet Russia and several of her satellites are themselves members of the United Nations they could not consider a United Nations mission as a hostile agency. And if, finally, it is true that one of the chief risks of war today comes from the existence of "twilight zones," where one side assumes that collective security exists and the other believes that it does not, then Jugoslavia and other nations similarly situated outside the scope of regional pacts would not constitute such risky areas any longer, but would be brought formally and openly within the full scope of United Nations responsibility.

I believe that the United Nations possesses the potentiality of serving as the common denominator among the various secondary agencies--economic and military--which have been brought into being in recent years to serve the cause of peace. Pacts are indeed proliferating at an astounding rate. Each serves a commendable or even, as things stand, essential purpose. But we saw before the last war that it is not enough to try to meet each new dangerous situation by a special new pact. The chief task now (as it was then) is to strengthen the central organization, to provide a firm matrix around the nuggets of good intentions and separate good deeds. Today many members of the United Nations are not willing to commit themselves to act against an aggressor outside their own particular orbit, and in consequence there are members who do not trust that their efforts to defend themselves against aggression will be aided actively by all the other loyal members of the organization regardless of geography. So long as this is true collective security is halting and incomplete. Divorced from enforcement the term itself is meaningless. To give the United Nations added determination and strength is today an all-important objective. This is in part because it might deter a specific Russian aggression, but also because if the United Nations is to survive and develop to meet future challenges it must in truth be determined and strong.

[i] Article 51 reads as follows: "Nothing in the present Charter shall impair the inherent right of individual or collective self-defense if an armed attack occurs against a Member of the United Nations, until the Security Council has taken the measures necessary to maintain international peace and security. Measures taken by Members in the exercise of this right of self-defense shall be immediately reported to the Security Council and shall not in any way affect the authority and responsibility of the Security Council under the present Charter to take at any time such action as it deems necessary in order to maintain or restore international peace and security."

[ii] Hamilton Fish Armstrong, "Coalition for Peace," Foreign Affairs, October 1948.

[iii] See their "Collective Self-Defense Under the United Nations," May 1948, and "The Security of the United States and Western Europe," January 1949.

[iv] In drafting our Resolution, Senator Thomas and I received valuable assistance from Quincy Wright, Arthur Holcombe and Clark Eichelberger. The text of the body of the Resolution, following the preamble, was as follows (S. Con. Res. 52, 81st Congress, 1st Session): 9. Resolved by the Senate (the House of Representatives concurring): 10. (i) That the Congress reaffirm its faith in the United Nations as the cornerstone of the international policy of the United States and as an institution which can progressively be made more adequate to assure the security of its members. 11. (ii) That to this end the Congress pledges its support to a supplementary agreement under Article 51 of the Charter open to all members of the United Nations, by which the signatories agree, if the Security Council is prevented from fulfilling its duties, to come to the aid of the victim of attack if requested to do so by a two-thirds vote of the General Assembly, including three of the permanent members of the Security Council; 12. (iii) That such an agreement should specify the forces that each signatory agrees to maintain, under the spirit of paragraphs 1 and 2 of Article 43, for immediate use of the United Nations (a) upon call of the Security Council, or (b) upon call of the General Assembly by a two-thirds vote, including at least three of the permanent members of the Security Council; and 13. (iv) That such an agreement should specify that if a matter pertaining to a threat to or breach of the peace, or act of aggression, is on the agenda of the Security Council, and the Security Council is prevented from fulfilling its duties, the signatories who are members of the Security Council will take such steps as may be required to remove it from the agenda of the Security Council; and 14. (v) That such an agreement should come into force when ratified by a majority of the United Nations including three of the permanent members of the Security Council. 15. Such an agreement shall not in any way impair the inherent right of the parties to engage in self-defense under Article 51 of the United Nations Charter, individually or through other collective arrangements consistent with their obligations under the United Nations Charter, or the North Atlantic Security Pact, or the Pact of Rio de Janeiro.

[v] See "Revision of the United Nations Charter, Hearings before a subcommittee of the Committee on Foreign Relations," U.S. Senate, 81st Congress, 2nd Session. Washington: Government Printing Office, 1950. 808 p.

[vi] See the testimony of Messrs. Wright, Armstrong, Holcombe, Eichelberger, Schwebe and Douglas, "Hearings," op. cit., p. 3-71.

[vii] In fact, there was considerable support abroad for the course we proposed. Thus the Canadian Foreign Minister, Mr. St. Laurent, had spoken publicly in general favor of the Armstrong plan, and either formally or informally there had been approval from Norway and several Latin American republics as well as from certain high British officials.

[viii] See the statement by John D. Hickerson, "Hearings," op. cit., p. 415-427.

[ix] If the parentage of these proposals was recognized by the State Department, it was not acknowledged by it.

[x] The vote was 52-5. The nations voting against the plan were the U.S.S.R., Byelorussia, the Ukraine, Czechoslovakia and Poland. Argentina and India abstained, and Lebanon was absent.

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  • PAUL H. DOUGLAS, U. S. Senator from Illinois; former Professor of Industrial Relations, University of Chicago; former Lt.-Colonel in the U. S. Marine Corps; author of "Controlling Depressions," "Social Security in the United States" and other works
  • More By Paul H. Douglas