Courtesy Reuters

IT HAS now been seven years since the United States embarked upon a positive and active course of world leadership in time of peace with the object of preserving freedom and preventing another world war. The date that took place was March 12, 1947, when President Truman asked Congress to appropriate $400,000,000 for economic and military and advisory aid to Greece and Turkey and proclaimed what became known as the Truman Doctrine, namely that it is the policy of the United States to support free peoples who resist attempted subjugation by armed minorities or by outside pressures. Those who had long and anxiously awaited such an historical turning will never forget the elation of those days in the spring of 1947. To me the decision brought a sense of great relief. As recorded in the "Forrestal Diaries," I had witnessed with growing disquietude the evolution of Soviet policies and attitudes during the war and the period thereafter, and had become convinced that unless the United States used its great influence and resources to strengthen the war-wrecked countries of Europe and Asia, the increasingly plain Soviet plan to extend Communist control over them might well succeed. My misgivings about the future were now considerably alleviated,

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  • W. AVERELL HARRIMAN, Ambassador to Russia, 1943-46; Secretary of Commerce, 1946-48; Special Assistant to the President, 1950-51
  • More By W. Averell Harriman