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Mr. BUCKLEY. Yes, I share those views very, very strenuously because it seems to me that under the existing arrangements we, in the first place do not succeed in maximizing human rights but we do succeed in corrupting the vocabulary by which human rights are defended to such an extent as to strategically to do great, great damage to any of the idealistic potentials of the U.N.
Under the circumstances I should think that the United States faces one of two choices. The first choice is to withdraw from the idealistic committees of the United Nations, specifically the Third Committee, on the grounds that we are subordinating intentionally all of our policies to the practical exogensis of diplomacy and we do not wish to participate in a debate in which we are constrained, for instance, to talk only about the loss of human rights in South Africa ; and this I should think would be a wise strategic form. The United States ought to back a revision, the purpose of which would be to detach from the formal organization agencies that are idealistic in motivation, those that deal with, for instance, world hunger, with torture, with immigration, with all of the rights enumerated in the declaration.
I think that the Amnesty International for all its faults has accomplished a thousand times as much as universal declarations of human rights in actually succoring people whose rights are being violated.
If we could have an agency that was not subject to the discipline of the State Department, in which distinguished Americans with long records of the libertarian inclinations were representing the interests of the United States, I think we could accomplish a great deal more. These could be accredited to the U.N. without being a part of the U.S. delegation. Essentially, Mr. Percy, I think we tend to suffer from the Western inability to follow two lines of thought simultaneously. The Soviet Union has no difficulty at all pursuing détente in a practical level and pursuing with great philosophical aggressiveness its assault on the free world through its broadcasting facilities. We find it very difficult to do that which is at the root of the difficulties that you are up against with USIA. Given this Western inadaptability to two lines, you have to, I think, separate the personnel that are in charge of each of the two lines.
ARTIFICIALITY OF U.S.-U.S.S.R. RELATIONSHIP AT U.N.
Senator PERCY. With respect to the Soviet Union, I noticed the artificiality of our relationship at the U.N. We have obvious differences of opinion in many areas, human rights and others, and yet in the spirit of détente our speeches are almost devoid of criticism of any of the policies of the Soviet Union, and yet on Radio Free Europe and Radio Liberty—activities financed by the U.S. Government--we seem quite forthright.
Is it wise for us to have this sort of a policy at the U.N.? Would it be healthier if we were a little more forthright, and how much more forthright could we be without being destructive of détente ? It would be more realistic if the U.N. mirrored the real differences that do exist between various systems in the world.
Mr. BUCKLEY. I think you put your finger right on the problem, Senator.
It is perfectly comprehensible to anyone to say we must subordinate all other matters to that of maintaining the peace. This makes sense even to morally evangelistic people. It does not make sense to say, although we are subordinating all other policies to the achievement of peace, we are also willing to endorse a corruption of the vocabulary by which freedom is pursued.
Under the circumstances, either the U.N., our delegates, ought to be free to reply vigorously to the Soviet Union when the matter of human rights is raised, or we ought to decline to participate in those discussions at all, which at least would symbolize our refusal to cooperate in travesty in which we are now engaged, where we are allowed to talk only about the violation of human rights in South Africa, Israel, and while I was there, Portugal.
Senator PERCY. Thank you very much, Mr. Chairman.
DANGERS OF NOT PARTICIPATING IN THE U.N.
The first question to Professor Dallin. Do you believe that the Soviet boycott of the Security Council in the early 1950's proved to be in the national interest of the Soviet Union?
Mr. DALLIN. No, sir, I don't believe it did. In fact the Soviet Union abandoned it ultimately. The price it paid when its representative was absent when the decision was taken on intervention in Korea, in June 1950, and as a result the Soviet Union was not able to exercise its veto. Hence, to boycott is to abandon the U.N. to the other side, and I think the Soviet Union has learned that.
Senator CLARK. Ambassador Goldberg has suggested that we should advise the members of the United Nations that if Israel is suspended from the General Assembly the United States would voluntarily suspend itself from the Assembly.
Do you see any comparisons between those two actions is there any thing to be learned from the Soviet mistake, or are the two unrelated?
Mr. DALLIN. I think the situation would be different in the sense that we are dealing with the General Assembly rather than the Security Council in this instance. I think that a threat of American withdrawal or temporary absence could be effective under certain circumstances. I would think if used frequently it would obviously lose an awful lot of its potential impact. I think it should be reserved for very extreme instances. By and large, it seems to me, the experience is that it's far better to stay right in there and if necessary to argue it out and, if necessary, learn to lose on some occasions. I think there are probably extreme issues: if it came to the expulsion of Israel, I think this is something that would need to be considered seriously. I think it's ultimately a question of tactics and not principle, but it is something I believe should be considered.
Senator CLARK. Another question for you first and then Mr. Buckley.
SHOULD THE UNITED STATES OPERATE MORE THROUGH THE U.N.?
Many of the witnesses that have been here in the last several days have recommended that the United Nations become more of a central forum for the conduct of American foreign policy, that we go through the United Nations more often. Chairman Fulbright testified that he thought we should have been going through the U.N. much more with regard to the Middle East situation, and he mentioned some other examples. Senator Symington, who with Senator Percy was at the U.N. last year, recommended that we operate more through the U.N. A good many of the witnesses have said the same thing.
Do you agree? Do you think we use the U.N. too much or too little as a forum for our foreign policy?
Mr. Dallin. Well, in terms of the relationship with the Soviet Union, which is my primary area of acquaintance, I would say that there is not an awful lot more that can be done through the U.N. I believe the U.N. is fairly secondary as an arena. As far as other areas are concerned, I believe it is quite possible to step up American involvement if it is presented on the basis of reciprocity. If the Soviet Union were to channel more of its economic and technical assistance to other areas through the U.N., the United States should be seriously prepared to consider doing the same.
Senator Clark. Why couldn't we do it in any case, through the World Bank and other multilateral programs, even if the U.S.S.R. doesn't?
Mr. DALLIN. Certainly it is desirable in itself. The unfortunate fact, as you know, is that both sides, all sides, use assistance of all forms for political purposes, an objective that would be lost by channelling it through the U.N.
Senator CLARK. Mr. Buckley.
NOT VOTING IN THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY
Mr. BUCKLEY. Well, sir, I think that our participation in the General Assembly ought to be limited to participation in the debate. We should never vote in the General Assembly because by voting we implicitly grant a certain authority to majority. Which we ought not to do for reasons practical and ethical. Under the circumstances, that I think is the crucial and easiest reform that might be made. Always debate, always exchange information, entering into the spirit of the thing but never vote.
Senator CLARK. Do you agree with Harlan Cleveland's article in the New York Times a couple of weeks ago when he talked about this problem?
Mr. BUCKLEY. I didn't see it, no.
Senator CLARK. He talked a good deal about the same question saying we ought to work for consensus in the General Assembly rather than having votes.
Mr. BUCKLEY. That seems to me to make sense. As regards to using the mechanical facilities of the U.N. I am very much in favor of it.
We have to recognize that they usually don't work if they run up against political questions.
For instance, the antihijacking covenant failed in the U.N. because we couldn't get the Third World on account of the Israeli question to cooperate. So we went to Japan and did one covering these nations and went to Canada and one covering this hemisphere and we got about 85 percent of the countries in the world involved on the basis of bilateral exertion. But I think to the extent that the U.N. adapts itself for the purpose of common good we should go ahead and use it, but we should be very, very cautious, I think, about implicitly endorsing the General Assembly as a moral legislative authority.
SOUTH AFRICA AND RHODESIA
Senator CLARK. Do you feel, Mr. Buckley, that the action taken by the General Assembly, in suspending South Africa was a violation of the Charter?
Mr. BUCKLEY. Oh, clearly it was a violation of the Charter because only the Security Council can expel a member, and this was a de facto expulsion. Of what use is your General Assembly if you are not allowed to speak? Granted every time they spoke everybody left the room and granted nobody listens to anything in the General Assembly, but still there is that formalistic right.
Senator CLARK. Sounds a little like the Senate.
Tell me, do you believe the implementation of the Byrd amendment was a violation of the Charter?
Mr. BUCKLEY. I certainly do not, and I think that Dean Acheson's brief on the subject remains definitive.
Senator CLARK. You feel that was perfectly consistent with our staying in the U.N.?
Mr. BUCKLEY. Yes, I do.
Senator CLARK. And you would recommend, would you, to the Congress that that position be maintained ?
Mr. BUCKLEY. I would with this qualification. It seems to be plain whatever is going on in Rhodesia is not a threat to the world peace, and, therefore, did not legitimately call up the sanctions that were imposed by the Security Council. At the same time I recognize that we in our dealings with Great Britain attempt to make common cause, and if I were myself a senator I would take the qualification in mind in deciding for or against the Byrd amendment, but I would not be governed exclusively and appeal to the fidelity to the Security Council resolution which in my judgment was based on an entirely illusory threat to the peace of the world.
Senator CLARK. Let me ask you one more question, then ask Professor Dallin to comment on it as well. I think my time will be up then.
FUTURE UNITED STATES PROPOSALS AND POLICIES
As you look, Mr. Buckley, toward the next session of the General Assembly, do you think that our Government should be prepared with any positive proposals with regard to the world economic situation or Southern Africa, for example? What could we do of a positive nature, in your judgment, that would be beneficial to our interests and perhaps those of the world in the General Assembly?
Mr. BUCKLEY. I should think what Senator Percy and I probably would agree to call the Moynihan approach is very definitely in order. It is an approach that is best described as saying that the United States has not only the right but duty to argue its own ideals and its own self-interest. The notion that we entered the U.N. in order to facilitate the redirection of wealth is something of which too many of our authors have encouraged without by any means a clear plebiscite. In this incidentally we would find ourselves making common cause with Soviet Union, which is always thought it hilarious that anybody should
go to the U.N. for the purpose of sharing Soviet wealth. Senator CLARK. You would not make my specific economic proposals or proposals regarding South Africa in the next session; you don't have any particular proposals to make?
Mr. BUCKLEY. I think, Senator, there are really ultra vires because the U.N. has no économic authority.
Senator CLARK. Except to pass resolutions.
Mr. BUCKLEY. They can pass resolutions, but those resolutions ought to be labeled as being as empty as in fact they are. A grand resolution to the effect that United States ought to give away a third of its grain harvest, at no cost, to countries that are short of grain is meaningless and ought not to be encouraged. To the extent that our delegates have even doubled it by suggesting that these resolutions have force, then I think you are correct, if I understand you, that they should instantly bring the U.N. back to reality on the question.
Senator CLARK. Professor Dallin.
Mr. DALLIN. I believe the United States should be selective about the issues about which its delegation chooses to speak out, as Mr. Buckley referred to a moment ago. I think there are cases certainly where principles, even on details, need to be affirmed, say, if the U.N. book store does not keep a Solzhenitsyn book as a matter of censorship, obviously this is the kind of detail that need not be tolerated.
On the other hand, we know from the reaction to Soviet and Chinese speeches how easy it is to antagonize other countries and often quite unnecessarily, by loud language that serves no purpose other than to satisfy one's own ego and one's audience back home. That is not effective in persuading others, which after all is the primary purpose of operating at the U.N.
I think we should have no illusions that on human rights the U.N. has not done much and will not do much. I think the Universal Declaration of Human Rights is a good and worthy document to have. In fact, even dissidents within the Soviet Union do appeal to it, refer to it in some of their own statements. But just as I think, most people in this country would not want the U.N. to intervene to repair real or imaginary abuses of human rights, so other countries, too, can be expected to take such a position, and I believe that it is futile to expect great success.
It seems to me also that, either we accept the U.N. as an institution or we don't, and we don't play games like participating but not voting, not voting when we expect to lose. When somebody else does that kind of thing we react to it most negatively. Unfortunately when it comes to positive proposals, I think most of those that I could think of as desirable would clearly not be acceptable by the majority of the U.N. at the present time. Therefore, I am not the best person to suggest any concrete measures.
Senator CLARK. Thank you very much.