DECEMBER 1, 1951
PARIS, Friday —There is something pathetic about the fellowship among peoples today. Take the United States and the Soviet Union.
Russia insists that it is for peace and that her country is endangered by the fact that the United States is ringing the world with air bases to threaten her security and is arming the world against her.
The U.S. insists it has no desire for war, that all it is doing is being done in self-defense, for it is quite evident that the Soviet Union continues to arm. In fact, she never has disarmed. And it was only after the U.S. found she was not only arming but taking over her neighbors' governments by internal action that America felt she had to rearm and help the free world to rearm against this spread of Communistic nations, dominated by the Soviet Union.
So, here we are, neither one believing anything the other one says. And so far as I can see we have found no point at which we might begin to cooperate with each other and by gradual agreement and opening up of our countries do away with a little of the fear and suspicion. There is no alternative for the U.S., at least, except to do something that it has no desire to do.
Now, take Israel and the Arab states. The Arabs say that under no circumstances can they have any kind of peaceful commerce with Israel until the refugees driven out of Israel are allowed to return to their homes. The Israelis say that Arabs were induced to flee not by them but by outside influence, that those who stayed behind in Nazareth are still safely participating in the community life but those who fled could not return because their houses are rubble, having been destroyed after they fled.
The land is being cultivated by people who have been flooding into Israel from all over the world, but who are imbued with a love of Israel and a belief in the experiment being tried out there.
Why should the new state of Israel take people, who would be dangerous citizens, antagonistic to them and their ideas, back into the country. These Arab refugees would find it much more difficult to make a living there than if they could be resettled in some of the Arab countries where there is land lying idle and where they would not be up against so much competition.
This sounds reasonable, but the Arabs don't believe the Jews, and the Jews don't believe the Arabs, and no peaceful solution has been found.
Take, also, the question of Kashmir. India does not believe Pakistan, and Pakistan does not believe India, and a quiet, peaceful plebiscite cannot be arranged.
Take the question of Korea. The Russians din it into the ears of the U.S. on every possible occasion that we were the aggressor. In this case we are sure we believe in the truth of our statements—but, on the other hand, I suppose the Soviets are equally sure of their stand.
It all boils down to the fact that there is no machinery established for verification and inspection by which, where necessary, on the spot, international groups could examine into the causes of conflict and decide as would a court to accept the decision.
Will that day ever come? It seems the one ray of hope for our troubled world.
(WORLD COPYRIGHT, 1951, BY UNITED FEATURE SYNDICATE, INC. REPRODUCTION IN WHOLE OR IN PART PROHIBITED.)
Names and Terms Mentioned or Referenced
- [ index ] Paris (France)
About this document
My Day by Eleanor Roosevelt, December 1, 1951
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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