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I. General Assembly
Importance of the General Assembly
HE FIRST SESSION of the General Assembly of the United Nations was divided into two parts. The first portion of the session was held in London from January 10 to February 14, 1946 and was devoted primarily to the establishment of the functioning organization of the United Nations, although certain substantive problems were also considered. The work of the London meeting is described in the Report of the Secretary of State on the First Part of the First Session of the General Assembly.1
On October 23, 1946, the General Assembly of the United Nations was convened for the Second Part of its First Session-the first meeting of the Assembly to be held on American soil.
Before the session drew to a close on December 16, 1946, the First General Assembly had written an impressive record of achievement. The United States Delegation played a prominent role in the Assembly's work.
In the light of experience it is possible now to assess with greater certainty the position and value of the General Assembly in the operations of the United Nations.
The General Assembly is primarily a deliberative body in which the views of all Members are tested in public debate and are reconciled, where possible, in recommendations embodying a consensus of the majority of Member states. The wide importance of the Assembly's deliberations and recommendations has been demonstrated by the vigor with which opinions have been presented in its sessions and the attention with which its decisions are received.
No other organ gives direct voice to the views of all the Members of the United Nations. No other organ has within its competence the discussion of all matters within the scope of the Charter. Because of its prestige and its all-inclusive membership the General Assembly establishes the climate of opinion within which the inter
1 Submitted to the President of the United States Mar. 1, 1946, and transmitted to Congress Mar. 19, 1946, Department of State publication 2484; H. R. 509, 79th Cong., 2d sess.
national community functions. Because of the force of public opinion generated by its debates it exerts a marked influence on the policies of the Member states. It sets the goals or objectives toward which the Organization is to progress, and through its general powers of surveillance it serves to some extent as a balance wheel, tending to regulate the limits and the pace of all United Nations activities.
The United States Delegation
Like the United States Delegation at the First Part of the First Session of the General Assembly, on which some of its personnel had served, the United States representation at the Second Part of the Session was bipartisan and broadly representative of the nation as a whole. Members of both Houses of Congress and important figures in public life were included in the Delegation. The Honorable Warren R. Austin of Vermont, now United States Representative at the Seat of the United Nations, acted as chairman. The other Representatives were Senator Tom Connally of Texas, Senator Arthur H. Vandenberg of Michigan, Mrs. Franklin D. Roosevelt, and Representative Sol Bloom of New York. The four alternate Representatives included two members of Congress, Representatives Charles A. Eaton of New Jersey and Helen Gahagan Douglas of California, and the Honorable John Foster Dulles of New York and the Honorable Adlai E. Stevenson of Illinois.
The Delegation was assisted in New York by Mr. Benjamin V. Cohen, Mr. Charles Fahy, and Mr. John C. Ross, serving as senior advisers; by a principal adviser, Mr. Durward V. Sandifer; and by advisers and assistants drawn from the Department of State and other agencies of the Government.
Role of the United States in Major Substantive Questions Considered by the General Assembly
The scope of the deliberations of the Second Part of the First General Assembly, together with a summary of United States policy on each important problem, is indicated below. The texts of the principal resolutions passed by the Assembly are reproduced in the Documents Supplement which forms Part II of this Report.
1. POLITICAL ISSUES
PRINCIPLES GOVERNING THE REGULATION AND REDUCTION OF
The unanimous adoption by the General Assembly of a comprehensive resolution on the principles governing the regulation and