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


HYDE PARK, Sunday—All of us have been worked up to fever point by the announcements Senator McCarthy keeps making of his coming publication of the names of 29 State Department employees whose loyalty, he says, has been questioned. In one speech a while ago the number was larger, so I suppose this modification means he holds real proof. Over the radio, as I traveled home on Thursday afternoon, I heard that the Senator has again named Phillip Jessup as a top Communist. All I can say is that if the other names are as unlikely to prove actually to be Communists, this list will not be of very great importance.

As far as I understand the basis for the Senator's accusations, it lies in the fact that he does not approve of what certain people have said and done. Just the mere fact that one may have held different ideas does not prove that those ideas were Communistic.

I sometimes wonder if the Senator can remember as far back as, let us say, the year 1944. In the years 1943 and 1944, it seems to me, it was felt by a good many people that the important thing was to have a strong China and therefore to bring her Communist group into the government under Chiang Kai-shek. Only in that way, it was felt, could civil war be averted and the full strength of China be united against Japan. The objective was to make China the leading nation of Asia. The real reason for doing this was not because anyone particularly liked the Chinese Communists—though they proved to be good fighting men against the Japanese—but to prevent what has since happened; namely, the dominance of the Communists and their complete tie-up with the USSR.

In the end they may prove somewhat independent of Moscow, but they certainly have been closer to Moscow than would have been the case if it had been possible to tie them in as a part of Chiang Kai-shek's government. That was one of the generalissimo's failures, just exactly as another failure was his inability to give the people reforms for which they had waited all too long. The Senator from Wisconsin would have us believe that anyone who advocated a policy of this kind was doing so purely to strengthen the Communists, but that is simply lack of knowledge and understanding of the situation as it existed at that time.

I am interested to read in the papers that Chester Bowles has accepted an appointment by the President as ambassador to India. I am not quite sure that I feel happy about sending out of our country one of our most energetic and able citizens, but he may be able to do a great service for the world situation in India. A war between India and Pakistan would be a calamity, and perhaps Dr. Frank Graham and Mr. Bowles, working together, may be able to bring a realization of this fact to the leaders of both those countries. I understand well the attitude of India. But I begin to think there are some questions that can not be considered from the point of view of what are the abstract rights of the people involved. Those involved must accept the situation as it is and just try for a peaceful solution, regardless of whether they feel it is entirely fair or not.

E. R.


Names and Terms Mentioned or Referenced

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

About this document

My Day by Eleanor Roosevelt, August 13, 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.