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

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SARASOTA, Fla.—The Administration resolution introduced by Senator Walter F. George (D., Ga.), chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee, and in the House by Rep. James T. Richards (D., S.C.), chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee, states that this is a move to secure the defense of the island chain of which Formosa and the Pescadores are a part and to ensure the peace for the nations bordering on the Pacific.

Every American citizen knows that there is no desire in this country to attack the Communist Chinese who control the mainland of China. We may disagree with the principles of communism and we would certainly prefer it if the whole of China were non-Communist, but I am quite sure that no one in the United States would want to go to war on the Chinese mainland.

It is, therefore, the hope of all of us that the declaration that we consider it essential to the peace of the Pacific that Formosa and the Pescadores remain non-Communist and secure will prevent the start of a new war.

President Eisenhower, of course, had a right to set this line of defense without consulting Congress. It was set originally by the President and accepted tacitly as the line that must be defended when a change of administration occurs.

So, one can only assume that the President asked for authorization from Congress in order to strengthen his own statements and make it clear that the representatives of the people are behind him in his determination to keep communism from spreading and to prevent wherever possible the spread of war.

It is undoubtedly wise to have a clear position and to state it clearly, and the resolution does state our position clearly. And it emphasizes the fact that our policy is not one of standing aloof from the affairs of the world. We are involved in every corner of the globe, and this is the price we pay for being the richest and strongest nation in the world today.

Personally, I wish there could be a little more emphasis on urging the United Nations to call for a cease-fire. I think there would be greater hope for peace in such a move than in the moves which must be considered purely military and unilateral.

A long while ago it was suggested that Formosa and the Pescadores be placed under U.N. protection and neutralized.

It seems to me that our efforts in the U.N. should be to eliminate points of danger and to use the good offices of the world organization as quickly as possible to stop fighting and bring about the reasonable consideration of the basis of difficulties rather than to use military threats.

This may be hard for big nations to do, but it seems to me that in the long run it is the only thing that promises advancement in the ways of peace.

E. R.


Names and Terms Mentioned or Referenced

  • Sarasota (Fla., United States) [ index ]

About this document

My Day by Eleanor Roosevelt, January 28, 1955

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.