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

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NEW YORK —I have just read with care the report submitted by the representative for India and Pakistan to the president of the United Nations Security Council which was prepared in pursuance of the Council's resolution of December 2, 1957.

As I read this report, I got a feeling that the recommendations made by the U.N. representative are very reasonable. Pakistan must have recognized this, for the Pakistan government has agreed to accept the recommendations, even one to permit the stationing of a U.N. police force on Pakistan's soil to guard the borders.

The government of India, however, has declared itself unable to agree to any of these recommendations. It felt that they did not take into account the failure by Pakistan to implement the Security Council resolution of the January 17, 1948 and clauses B and E of Part 1 of the UNCIP resolution of August 3, 1948 for which it holds Pakistan responsible.

In India's view, the sole onus of performance was on Pakistan and the U.N., both of which had the responsibility and the capacity for taking steps toward a peaceful approach to the situation and for making a contribution toward resolving the differences.

As I read the contentions of the Indian government, I could not help wondering if this government is not overlooking, in a case where its own interests are concerned, the very type of recommendations it would make to other countries placed in similar situations.

In other words, India is taking the position that the U.N. and Pakistan must take the Indian attitude and the Indian version without any question before it will consider any further meetings with Pakistan.

I agree that it is a complicated question, given the emotional feelings involved, but it would seem to make little difference to the economy of either nation whether Kashmir chose to be a separate state or to join with India or Pakistan if they all acted peacefully and cooperatively.

In recommendation No. 33 of the report, Dr. Frank Graham says:

"Finally, the government of India declared themselves unable to accept my last recommendation since it would, in their view, place the aggressor and the aggressed on the same footing. They, therefore, considered it contrary to the Charter and all considerations of international ethics and equity".

This sounds very fine, but many times before in history the conqueror and conquered have had to sit down together when they undoubtedly felt the war that had been fought was contrary to all considerations of ethics and equity.

It looks as though the Indian government, since it proceeds to say that it wishes to find a peaceful solution, wishes to find this solution alone without interference from the U.N.

When two nations have a difficulty of this kind and want to settle it peacefully, public opinion expressed by the peoples of the world is important to them. And this is a case in which the peoples of the world are very much interested. None of them want a small war that may lead to a big war, and they look with great desire at these two great peoples of Asia to settle this question peacefully.

I only hope this world opinion will be expressed to both governments and that it will spur them to meet together and find ways of solving their difficulties.


(Copyright, 1958, by United Feature Syndicate, Inc.)

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About this document

My Day by Eleanor Roosevelt, April 10, 1958

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.