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a bulletin came in, and the place was in pandemonium. It appears that the military attached to the U.N. to give technical advice on world disarmament have staged a successful coup and have taken over the General Assembly, the Security Council, and the Secretariat. In due course the U.N. colonels will issue their instructions, but already it is disclosed that the Soviet Union will not be permitted to talk about disarming, without disarming; the Chinese may not speak about human rights without granting human rights; the Arabs will not be permitted to speak about the plight of the Less Developed Countries without forswearing the cartelization of their oil; the Africans may not talk about racism until after subduing the leaders of Uganda, the Central African Republic, ảnd Burundi, for a starter; and just to prove that the colonels are not above a bill of attainer, Jamil Baroody may not speak at all, on any subject, for ninety days after which he will be put on probation and permitted to increase the length of his speeches by one minute per month, until he reaches the maximum of ten minutes, except that at the first mention of Zionist responsibility for World War I, he has to start all over again. The countries of East Europe must wear red uniforms when they appear on the floor and before rising to speak, must seek explicit and public permission from the delegate of the Soviet Union. A scientific tabulation will be made, under the colonels' supervision, of the compliance of individual countries with the provisions of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, and each country's delegate will be required to wear on his lapel his national's ranking on that scale, which will range from 100 to 0. Any country with a ranking of less than 75 will not be permitted to speak on the subject of human rights.
Mr. Chairman, please forgive the unorthodox testimony. I hope you will see the purpose in my electing to address you in this form. Thank you.
The CHAIRMAN. Thank you very much.
BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH OF ALEXANDER DALLIN
Professor of History and Political Science, Stanford University, and Senior Research Fellow, Hoover Institution on War, Revolution and Peace.
Born May 21, 1924; married, three children; Ph. D., Columbia University, 1953.
Research Associate, Russian Research Center, Harvard University, 1950–51; Associate Director, Research Program on the USSR, 1951-54; Director of Research, War Documentation Project, Alexandria, Va., 1954–55; Faculty member, Columbia University : Assistant Professor, 1956–58; Associate Professor, 1958-61; Professor, 1961–65; Adlai E. Stevenson Professor of International Relations, 1965 71 ; Director, Russian Institute, 1962–67 ; Acting Director, Research Institute on Communist Affairs, 1966–68; Visiting Professor of Political Science, University of California, Berkeley, 1970; Professor of History and Political Science, Stanford University, and Senior Research Fellow, Hoover Institution, 1971-.
Publications include: German Rule in Russia, 1941-45 (1957); ed., Soviet Conduct in World Affairs (1960); The Soviet Union at the United Nations (1962); ed., Diversity in International Communism (1963); The Soviet Union and Disarmament (1965); ed. (with Alan F. Westin), Politics in the Soviet Union (1966); co-ed. (with Thomas B. Larson), Soviet Politics Since Khrushchev (1968); (with George Breslauer) Political Terror in Communist Systems (1970); and approximately 50 articles, chapters, and monographs.
Home address : 607 Cabrillo Avenue, Stanford, California 94305. Telephone: (415) 328–4885 ; office: (415) 497-4514.
STATEMENT OF ALEXANDER DALLIN, PROFESSOR OF GOVERN
MENT AND HISTORY, STANFORD UNIVERSITY
Mr. Dallin. Mr. Chairman, thank you for the invitation to appear before your committee. Mr. Buckley's is a hard act to follow.
I have submitted a more comprehensive statement and will as instructed limit myself to 10 minutes orally.
The CHAIRMAN. Your entire statement will be printed in the record.
THE UNITED NATIONS AND THE SOVIET-AMERICAN RELATIONSHIP The change in Soviet-American relations which is suggested by the term, détente, did not come about thanks to the United Nations. Nor has it fundamentally affected the functioning of the UN. It is, however, one among several trends which have produced a new situation and new attitudes at the United Nations.
The following statement attempts to sketch the evolution of, first, United States, and second, Soviet attitudes and policies toward the UN; and then to identify some elements of symmetry and some major divergencies in the two powers' approach to the United Nations.
THE U.S. AND THE UN
American attitudes toward the UN have drifted from elation to frustration. The initial expectation that the United Nations would be an essential instrument for the maintenance of peace, seemed to be reinforced by the comfortable sense, during the early years, that the United States had the support of the majority of member states. Though even then the U.S. chose not to go through the UN with significant political initiatives (such as the Truman Doctrine and the Marshall Plan), in its first decade the UN was a welcome instrument-first and foremost, in the pursuit of the “cold war.” UN action in the Korean War was but the most dramatic example of this function. It also marked the end of an era in which the U.S. had a clearcut preponderance among the members of the General Assembly, the sympathy of the Secretary-General, and a majority of Security Council members—stymied only from time to time by the use, or the prospect of the use, of the veto by the Soviet Union.
From the mid-fifties on, American attitudes were affected by important changes on the world scene. Many of these such as decolonization, development, and disarmament-were issues that found reflection at the UN. The balance of votes gradually became more uncertain, as new states were admitted to membership in considerable numbers, and some of the erstwhile followers of the American lead began to assert a more independent foreign policy.
American disillusionment was due perhaps, most of all, to the failure of the UN to play a part it had never been intended to perform. Its effectiveness as a collective security and peacekeeping organ was always predicated on agreement among the Permanent Members of the Security Council. It was not intended as an instrument that either superpower could wield against the other. It had no effective force of its own, and only modest authority.
As crisis after crisis arose, the UN proved unable to articulate--let alone enforce-its collective will; it was not centrally involved in the resolution of these crises; it served at times as a convenient forum, an intermediary, or a scape goat for the protagonists. Thus, no meaningful action ensued from the UN debates on Soviet intervention in Hungary (1956) and Czechoslovakia (1968). Similarly, American intervention in Cuba (the Bay of Pigs incident) and the Dominican Republic led to no UN action. In the Cuban Missile Crisis of 1962, the United Nations had only a marginal role. In the Middle East, it was unable to secure implementation of its Resolution of November 22, 1967. In the Indochina fighting, the role of the United Nations was nil.
On the other hand, the major accomplishments of recent years in reducing international tensions, resolving great-power conflicts, and reaching agreements to limit the arms race and reduce the risks of war, have been achieved almost entirely outside the framework of the UN. The easing of the troublesome German problem (including the Soviet and Polish treaties with the FRG, and the Berlin accords) was the result of bilateral contacts. Similarly, the shift in United States policy toward the People's Republic of China came about without reference to the UN; the U.S. effort to seat the Republic of China, Taiwan) as a second Chinese delegation failed (1971).
The setback sustained by the United States in this connection illustrates the general weakening of American'influence at the United Nations. Since 1970 the U.S. has occasionally chosen to use its veto power. The still unfamiliar role of the U.S. as a loser-and at times, a poor loser, at that may be expected to continue and may in turn reinforce domestic resentment of the UN. This is particularly likely to happen if the U.S. mission chooses to isolate itself, erroneously lumping together all "others” as if they constituted a homogeneous bloc, rather than seeking consensus and compromise on disputed issues, or even taking advantage of tensions among nations outside the U.S. alliance system.
It is a form of political color blindness to perceive an identity of interests and policies among all “Third World” nations or between Soviet Bloc and neutralist states. The temptation to pursue a policy of benign neglect toward the United Nations is likely to weaken, rather than to strengthen, the American position, and to play into the bands of its adversaries. But the recent drift does add poignancy to the warning once voiced by the late Adlai Stevenson, that “the crisis of our loyalty to the United Nations is still ahead of us."
It remains true, nonetheless, that the United Nations has been insignificant in the improvement of Soviet-American relations. This has been dramatized by the various “summit” meetings of the last three years. The “General Principles" and declarations adopted on these occasions make virtually no reference to the UN. Even where the accords have direct consequences for other powers or require their later concurrence, negotiations are conducted bilaterally between the Soviet Union and the United States. And where of necessity other powers must be involved in the negotiation of new accords (such as European Security and MBFR) conferences are scheduled outside the UN system. There is no reason to think that disputes between the United States and the USSR which cannot be resolved bilaterally could be more successfully negotiated at or through the UN.
THE SOVIET UNION AND THE UN
The Soviet attitude toward the United Nations was, from the outset, rooted in a more hardheaded assessment of its potential role in the postwar world. Experience and ideology reinforced each other in inducing considerable suspicion, to begin with. There was the backlog of bitter hostility to the League of Nations, which had always been perceived as an inimical agency. Soviet membership in the League (1934–39) scarcely increased Moscow's enthusiasm for a repeat performance: the fundamental aim of “collective security” was not served; and in 1939 the USSR found itself expelled from the League for its attack on Finland:
Still, as a principal partner of the victorious coalition in World War II, Stalin evidently concluded that (a) the price of refusing to join the new world organization would exceed the costs and risks of membership; (b) maximally, the UN could serve as a useful vehicle to gain friends and influence people; (c) minimally, the Soviet Union could make sure that there were structural guarantees (notably, the veto power in the Security Council, and the weakness of other UN organs) against possible UN action detrimental to the USSR. Since he expected the majority to be hostile to the Soviet Union, Stalin was intent on having an impotent UN.
Soviet expectations were validated by the experience of the first postwar deeade, within the United Nations as well as outside it." Soviet policy toward the UN has always tended to be a function of general Soviet foreign-policy perspectives. Thus, at the height of the "cold war,” general Soviet self-isolation also meant a virtual withdrawal from UN activities. In turn, when Moscow adopted a strategy of “peaceful coexistence," the UN too appeared as one more promising arena for Soviet initiatives. Now it was Moscow's turn, for a time, to abandon realism for euphoria.
In broad strokes, Khrushchev's vision was a Soviet camp gaining in power and cohesion ; a capitalist world rent by internal conflicts and crises; and the “Third World,” as a matter of self-interest, aligning itself with the Soviet Union in an "anti-imperialist” coalition and gradually transforming itself in the Soviet image. While in many respects this forecast proved to be woefully erroneous, the emergence of the new nation-states did seem to confirm the vision. In terms of membership, issues, style, and structure, the new nations brought about the most basic changes the United Nations has experienced. But by 1960–64 the Soviet Union, though stronger than ever, found itself in considerable difficulties, in and out of the UN.
1 For an authoritative summary, dealing with the general topic of this statement, see Robert G. Wesson, "The United Nations in the World Outlook of the Soviet Union and the United States.” in Alvin Z. Rubinstein and George Ginsburgs, eds., Soviet and American Policies in the United Nations (New York, 1971), ch. I. For an earlier and more detailed discussion, see Alexander Dallin, The Soviet Union at the United Nations (New York, 1962).
Khrushchev's improvized but insistent demand that the UN be reorganized so as to reflect the new realities-giving equal representation to the three blocs of states, Western, communist, and neutral-yielded nothing but frustration. and failure. Moreover, experience showed that his underlying hope (the “neutrals” lining up with the USSR) was, at worst, a gross miscalculation and, at best, premature and only partly true. By the time Khrushchev was ousted from power, he had precipitated a major constitutional and financial crisis within the UN. He had brought about no organizational changes—other than an increasing instinct on the part of other powers not to raise issues at the UN that were apt to provoke a recurrence of such Soviet behavior.3
Since the mid-1960's, then, Soviet foreign policy (including the UN) has reverted to a less hectic mode of lesser risk-taking. The “troika" proposals were quietly shelved ; indeed, current Soviet writings on the UN totally ignore them. There has been a significant Soviet retreat from the extravagant expectations regarding the “Third World.” While Moscow need no longer fear the United Nations as an “imperialist” tool directed against the Soviet Union, the Organization offers the Soviet leaders scant prospect of assuming a commanding or controlling position. The result is a generally supportive but fairly modest and rigid Soviet estimate of the UN's potential. Moscow has been winning it more but enjoying it less.
The explicit Soviet approach to the UN is thoroughly conservative. Moscow seems more conscious than ever of its own status—as a major power, a part of the world “establishment,” possessor of the veto, achiever of strategic parity with the U.S., model and mentor for one and all.3 The Soviet Union makes clear that the UN is a voluntary association of sovereign states; it cannot "act as a kind of super-state.” Hence Moscow rejects all arguments that point precisely to the lack of such authority as the source of the UN's ineffectiveness. By the same token, it rejects all calls for revision of the United Nations Charter. It seeks to refute all criticism of the veto; it insists on the prerogatives of the Security Council as the sole body empowered to find threats to peace, to determine the appropriate action, and if needed to direct and control UN peacekeeping operations. This leaves the door open for any of the Permanent Members to: veto such a decision, but this is presumably a necessary price to pay for the Soviet Union's assurance that it can estop any action if and when this is deemed important.*
Moscow sees the UN as variable in its effects—at times welcome, at times embarrassing, and at times frustrating to the USSR. A new factor which has complicated the Soviet posture is the Chinese presence. If in recent years there has been a general “new civility” and frequently a measure of restraint at United Nations gatherings, the Sino-Soviet exchanges at the UN have been marked by striking vituperation, unmitigated accusations and countercharges. Moscow does not mind acknowledging that it finds the Chinese obstructive. It cannot respond to the challenge to demonstrate its revolutionary commitment before an assembly whose professed values are those of parliamentary give-and-take. It has also learned that it cannot afford to absent itself (as it did from the Stockholm Conference on the Human Environment) lest it abandon the field to the Chinese. On occasion Soviet proposals seem calculated in large measure to show up the Chinese, and their Albanian friends), to force them to take a public stand and thereby to isolate them from other member-states.
2 On the Khruschchev period as well as the policy of his successors, see particularly George A. Brinkley, “The Soviet Union and the United Nations : The Role of the Developing Countries," Review of Politics, January 1970, pp. 91–123. The Soviet treatment of the same problem is in A. Ia. Nekrasov, SSSR i razvivaiushchiesia strany v OON (Moscow, 1971).
3 In most unrevolutionary fashion Soviet 'statements stress not only the prerogatives of national sovereignty but also the fact that the UN “does not replace traditional forms of interstate contacts.” See, e.g., Anatoly Gromyko, “The United Nations : Ways to Increase its Effectiveness," in Edwin H. Fedder, ed., The United Nations: Problems and Prospects (St. Louis, 1971), pp. 1-3; and V. F. Petrovski, “Sovetskie uchenye o meste i roli OON V sovremennom mire," Voprosy istorii, 1972, no. 5, pp. 79–80.
* See, in addition, the authoritative collection, OON: Itogi, tendentsii, perspektivy (Moscow, 1970); Boris Prokof'ev, OON—25 let (Moscow, 1970) ; G. K. Efimov, General'naia assambleia OON (Moscow, 1969); V. Viktorov, "Worldwide Forum of Nations,” International Affairs (Moscow), 1972, no. 10; N. Kapchenko, "World Developments and the United Nations," ibid., 1973, no. 12; V. Fedorov, “The UN Charter and International Security,' ibid., 1974, no. 9. The official Soviet position is contained in the letter from Foreign Minister Gromyko to the UN Secretary-General, July 4, 1972; reprinted in ibid., 1972, no. 10, pp. 119-20.
Contrast, e.g., with Francis Wilcox and Carl Marcy, Proposals for Changes in the United Nations (Washington, D.C., 1955); President's Commission for the Observance of the 25th Anniversary of the United Nations [Lodge Commission), Report (Washington, D.C., 1971); United Nations Association USA, Controlling Conflicts in the 1970s and T'he United Nations in the 19708 (New York, 1969, 1972) ; Richard N. Gardner, ed., The United States and the United Nations: Can We Do Better? (New York, 1972); Charles W. Yost, The Insecurity of Nations (New York, 1968).
It is another unspoken Soviet axiom that the UN must be kept out of all Soviet Bloc affairs, internal as well as interstate. Hence a firm stand in defense of “domestic jurisdiction" (which, it is true, does not keep the USSR from voting for the condemnation of apartheid); its uncompromising opposition to all efforts to give greater stress to “human rights" within the UN framework; and insistence on controls, e.g., over foreign satellite television transmissions to the USSR.
There are evidently some areas of disagreement among Soviet observers and practitioners concerned with the UN. A close reading of Soviet comments, e.g., shows differences regarding the nonpolitical aspects of UN work. While some observers stress the socio-economic and scientific-technological programs and agencies, the traditional and still predominant Soviet view has been to insist that the principal aim of the UN is to strengthen peace and security; in this perspective, any effort to put more emphasis on or resources into other activities amounts to an attempt to sidetrack the political functions of the UN and must be resisted. It is likely that this disagreement relates to varying estimates of the “Third World." The dominant Soviet view apparently no longer puts great stock in the UN as a bridge to the underdeveloped nations, whereas some observers do see benefits from such a linkage.
In its public pronouncements the Soviet Union has in recent years made itself a champion of the UN. There is reason to think that, given the multiple reservations it harbors, this is at least partly intended to dramatize the contrast between Soviet faith, optimism, and commitment, and the increasingly grudging and negative American stance. Soviet commentary has also stressed the adoption by the UN of various Soviet-sponsored declarations that amount to pious generalities, such as the condemnation of colonialism, the use of force, or the forcible seizure of territory-behavior already outlawed by the UN Charter or other sources of international law. Given the impossibility of enforcing such resolutions, such Soviet initiatives of purely declaratory pronouncements smack of “grandstanding.”
Leaving aside tactical and ideological differences, however, the Soviet Union, not unlike the United States, sees the UN as a desirable but distinctly limited, “supplementary” or “subordinate” instrumentality in the pursuit of its national policies.
THE U.S. AND THE U.S.S.R.: THE PLACE OF THE UN
There has been a qualitative improvement in Soviet-American relations over the last several years. If one searches for reasons to explain this development, a variety of factors suggest themselves: the substantial growth in Soviet economic and strategic power; the change in outlook and priorities of the Soviet leadership; the Sino-Soviet conflict, with all its implications for Soviet security, ideology, and perception of friend and foe, and the opportunities for Sino-American rapprochement; a keener Soviet recognition of economic, technological, and managerial shortcomings, some of which may be remediable by increased intercourse with the West; a shared awareness of the common interest in reducing the risks of war and stabilizing the international environment; the increasing self-isolation of the United States from its estwhile friends and allies, and the effects of the Vietnam War. This list could be elaborated and extended; the point is merely to suggest that none of the relevant variables includes the United Nations. It is difficult to envisage scenarios in which the UN would play a major part in influencing the superpowers' relationship.
Soviet insistence on “strict construction" of the Charter, too, makes virtually certain that the UN will not significantly aid in the resolution of conflicts involving either or both superpowers. What is likely to be recognized as functional and desirable by both sides is the role of the UN as a forum for the airing of positions; as a locus of formal and informal meetings, explorations, and contacts (including those made through third parties); and as an impartial outsider whenever both parties to a conflict seek such a face-saving "out.” In all these
5 A Soviet discussion of foreign aid argues that "the socialist countries are in no posltion” fully to finance the development of certain African states, who consider such support essential. Forgetting about the traditional dogma that imperialist aid is ipso facto exploitative, Soviet writers now recommend that Western assistance be in fact stepped up, as it were supplementing communist aid programs. David Morison, “USSR and Third World, III,” Mizan, XII, 135; cited in Morton Schwartz, "The USSR 'and Leftist Regimes in Less-Developed Countries,” Survey (London), No. 87 (Spring 1973). The same point is made in Y. Tomilin, "The United Nations and International Détente,” International Affairs (Moscow), 1974, no. 3, p. 36.