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United States Department of State / Foreign relations of the United States, 1950. National security affairs; foreign economic policy

United States policy at the United Nations with respect to the regulation of armaments and collective security: the international control of atomic energy; regulation of conventional armaments; efforts to implement article 43 of the United Nations charter by placing armed forces at the disposal of the Security Council,   pp. 1-125 PDF (51.4 MB)

Page 2

 Memorandum by Mr. R. Gordon Arneson, Special Assistant to the
                 Under Secretary of State (Webb) 5
 TOP SECRET                      [WASHINGTON,] December 29, 1949.
   The following comments are directed to the basic approach and the
 recommended course of action in the Policy Planning Staff paper.
   In my opinion, the S/P paper is based primarily on a fundamentally
 incorrect assumption; namely, that it is possible to achieve prohibi-
 tion of atomic weapons and international control of atomic energy
 that has any meaning, without a basic change in Soviet attitudes and
 intentions, and, in fact, in the Soviet system itself.
   The history of the debates and discussions on international control
 in and outside the U.N. have revealed that the Soviet Union not only
 refuses to accept those elements which are necessary for effective con-
 trol, but, far more importantg it refuses to accept any system which
 would require it to cooperate with the rest of the world in the main-
 tenance of peace. The very idea of a cooperative non-Communist world
 community is foreign to Marxism, especially as interpreted by the
 Soviets. It is almost axiomatic that effective international control of
 atomic energy is inconsistent with the Soviet system and Soviet in-
 tentions. So long as this remains true, there can be no solution to the
 problem of international control until we find a solution to the problem
 posed to the world by the Soviet Union. Any control system in the field
 of atomic energy, be it the United Nations plan or some other scheme,
 must bring about or await a fundamental change in the Soviet system.
 Otherwise, it would fail to accomplish its purpose, however limited.
 The U.N. plan, by putting its emphasis upon effectiveness and
 security, meets this criterion. This, in itself, is significant. It should
 be noted here that the U.N. plan was never intended to provide ab-
solute security. What it does offer is a system which would give un-
mistakable and adequate warning in cases of violations. This is the
minimum that we can afford to accept. The suggested solution in the
S/P paper does not meet the criterion of opening up the Soviet Union
unless the inspection system proposed becomes so thorough that the
iron curtain is effectively shattered. In this case, the control establisied
would be more onerous than that of the U.N. plan and equally un-
acceptable to the Soviet Union.
  5 Transmitted to Kennan and to Deputy Under Secretary of State Dean Rusk
on December 29, 1949, as well as to the Secretary of State.

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