In the 30 years that I have spent as a U. S. Congressman, I have considered myself mainly a hawk on national defense issues. It is my view that the communist world is deadly serious in its intent to conquer the globe. Toward that end, the communists can be counted on to probe for weaknesses on the part of Western nations. Where weaknesses can be found, the communists will move swiftly to take full advantage. I feel that our defense and foreign policy makers must always be aware of this very basic fact.
Yet, I also have a profound belief in the validity of that great fourth dimension-time. Too often we assume that what is "good" today will always be "good," and that the fixed concepts of today will always be valid. Thus, I feel strongly that we must look-not to the next five years-but to the next 50 years. We must decide the kind of world we want ours to be; then, and only then, make plans and establish agendas to accomplish our goals. In the process, we must correct errors of action and attitudes which block our path.
Simplistic? Yes-but read on.
Never have I been as concerned about our nation's defense posture and its foreign policy as I am today, on the eve of my retirement from Congress. Now is a period in our history when, it seems to me, a thorough reexamination of our posture is badly needed and long overdue. Looking at the near term, we have fallen behind the Soviet Union in some very important categories of armaments. Our economic and fiscal situation at home is becoming increasingly worrisome. We are faced with three challenges: (1) to rearm effectively enough to deter attacks; and (2) to rearm at a price our economy can support. These are not easy challenges to meet simultaneously.
The third challenge facing us is even more basic than the first two. It is to determine the purpose, or goal, of our foreign policy. What
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