The Eleanor Roosevelt Papers, Digital Edition > My Day
My Day by Eleanor Roosevelt


HYDE PARK, Friday—Some people here in the United States do not feel that we should have gone against India's advice and branded Communist China an aggressor. To me it seemed to be the right and inevitable thing to do. Now, however, what happens from here on seems much more important.

I read that the president of the General Assembly would like the representatives of Canada and India to form a new conciliation commission. But, having branded Communist China an aggressor it is evident that we cannot accept her as a member of the United Nations. And she has said from the beginning she would not treat with any of us until she was seated in the U.N.

There are some members in our Congress who, from the beginning, have felt that Generalissimo Chiang Kai-shek should have been given more military help, and that even now he should be given arms and supplies. They argue that we should encourage him to go to war with the present Communist Chinese government. This would mean, of course, a continuation of civil war in China. This hardly would be the solution even though undoubtedly there are some people in China who are already dissatisfied with the Communist regime or who never did sympathize with it. But they may or may not be back of Generalissimo Chiang as the future leader of the nation.

If we, in the United States, take the responsibility of encouraging any faction we will be headed toward participation in war in China. It is true that we all know that Red China is dominated by the Soviet Union and that Russia is giving the orders there as it gives them in all of the satellite countries, but China will be a big pill for the Reds to digest.

Many people tell us that when all is said and done, our main objective is to fight communism and, therefore, we should accept any allies. I think, however, that one can only embrace that philosophy if one believes that communism can be conquered by military strength alone.

Military strength is only part of the effort that must be put forth if we are really to win in the struggle against communism. In that case it is vastly important what allies we have.

I believe we should leave it to the peoples of Asia, who are quite as aware as we are of the stirrings for freedom in the hearts of the people there. They also are aware of the advantage taken of them by the Communists. They recognize Communist infiltration and the manipulation of some of their leaders. The leaders of other Asiatic nations who have not allowed themselves to be dominated by the Kremlin will know better than we will how to meet this particular difficulty. They will know better than we will how to help China to become one nation and how to help Korea to become a free nation.

We should give help wherever it is desired and when they tell us that China is one nation and is ready to assume its responsibilities under the U.N. charter, then that question will have to be faced by us and the other free democracies of the world.

If China comes to the U.N. as a Communist nation and the other nations of Asia want to accept it, we should all give that careful consideration. I happen to believe that Communist domination carries within itself the seeds of its own destruction. No government that shows such evident fear of its people and rules so largely by terror can long endure in a world where the majority of men desire to be free.



Names and Terms Mentioned or Referenced

  • Hyde Park (Dutchess County, N.Y., United States) [ index ]

About this document

My Day by Eleanor Roosevelt, February 3, 1951

Roosevelt, Eleanor, 1884-1962
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Digital edition created by The Eleanor Roosevelt Papers Project The George Washington University 312 Academic Building 2100 Foxhall Road, NW Washington, DC 20007

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Transcription created from a photocopy of a UFS wire copy of a My Day column instance archived at the Franklin D. Roosevelt Library.