University of Wisconsin Digital Collections
Link to University of Wisconsin Digital Collections
Link to University of Wisconsin Digital Collections
The University of Wisconsin Collection

Page View

Richard, George (ed.) / Wisconsin alumnus
Volume 56, Number 10 (Feb. 15, 1955)

Quirino, Carlos
Can U.S. efforts help the Reds?,   p. 24


Page 24


T WOULD be impossible to select a "typical" journalism graduate
of
   Wisconsin. They're in a wide variety of fields, in many areas of
responsibility. But the Alumnus, looking for a representative working
journalist, came up with one Carlos Quirino, who not only symbolizes the
world-wide influence of the UW School of Journalism, but who illustrates
the diversity of endeavor fostered by its training. He also brings a provo-
cative article to our pages.
  Quirino is president of the Pan-Asia Newspaper Alliance in the Philip-
pines-an Asia-wide newsgathering and reporting service. In the morn-
ings he's private secretary to the Minister of Commerce. In his sparse
spare time he's a tennis player. He has written two biographies, is work-
ing on a third, for schools, on Filipino presidents from Aguinaldo to his
namesake Elpidio Quirino. Last year he visited the U. S., and Madison,
as a guest of the American Press Institute.
Can U.S. Efforts
                Help the Reds?
By Carlos Quirino, '31
Foreign aid of "too little, too late"
       does more harm than good, says a top
               Philippine journalist, a UW graduate
W ESTERN EFFORTS to "help"
       the people of the Far East often
       give the Communists their best
ammunition in the cold war now going
on throughout the world.
   This may seem a paradoxical statement
to make, for how can assistance given to
foreign countries by Western nations-
principally the United States-ultimately
redound to the benefit of the Com-
munists?
   The answer lies in those famous
 words: "Too little and too late."
   In other words, if the help given to
 these nations is insufficient or arrives too
 late-then it might as well have never
 been given at all.
   Take the classic case of nationalist
 China. During World War l1 the United
 States actively helped   Generalissimo
 Chiang Kaji-shek in freeing China from
 the Japanese. But when the Communist
 24
threat became persistent, America pre-
ferred to  "write off"  the nationalist
regime and permitted the Chinese Com-
munists to gain control of the country.
Granted that the Chiang regime was
weakened by graft and corruption, that
it tended to be dictatorial, was it not to
be preferred to the present government
of Mao Tse-tsung? What happened to
the tanks, artillery, trucks and other
equipment given by the U. S. to Chiang?
Many of them were used by the red
armies to fight the Americans in Korea
and elsewhere.
   Take another example-the case of
Vietnam. As early as 1948 a trickle of
American arms began entering Indo-
China in view of the threat posed by the
red forces of Ho Chi-minh. During the
past two years this military assistance to
the French forces in the Far East in-
creased-but it proved insufficient, and
the debacle at Geneva was the result.
America realized, too late, that by bolb
stering the French forces in Indo-China
it would be open to the charge of the
Communists that the United States was
perpetuating western colonialism in the
Far East; hence, the indecisive policy
regarding Vietnam.
  If Western help of "too little and too
late" has been caused by a hesistant
foreign policy, then it is high time that
Americans adopt a single and purpose-
ful doctrine of what to do in countries
threatened by Communism. The U. S.
State Department and the Department of
National Defense, together with other
instrumentalities of  the  government,
should coordinate and plot their activi-
ties to get a maximum result from their
concentrated efforts.
  During the last world war, America
boasted that it would become the "arsenal
of democracy." There is no doubt that
it is the richest and most powerful coun-
try in the world today; but no matter
how rich or powerful it is, it cannot help
the entire world-it cannot afford to
disperse its assistance to every foteign
country that asks for it. The burden on
the American taxpayer would be terrific.
Americans should therefore reassess for-
eign countries as to whether they are
for or against their way of lire, or
whether such countries are merely fence-
sitting. Then they should give all-our
assistance to such countries that are reso-
lutely  opposed  to  Communism, and
where the threat of Communism is real
and close.
   The United States has done this in
 Greece and with results thoroughly satis-
 factory to the Greeks and the Americans.
   Latest trouble spot in Southeast Asia
 is Thailand. All indications point that
 this region will be next in the red time-
 table of extending its sphere of influence.
 American leaders realize it and have
 been sending help to that country. While
 in the United States this last summer, I
 heard the criticism that Thailand was a
 'police state" and that therefore Amer-
 ica should be wary in extending help
 to her.
   Perhaps this criticism has some basis
 in fact, but will America forget so soon
 what happened in China to Chiang Kai-
 shek? Will help to Thailand "come too
 little and to late?" I sincerely hope not.
 In that sad eventuality American citizens
 might as well demand from their leaders
 in Washington, D.C. to "write off" Thai-
 land immediately, and save their country
 a lot of money, time and effort.
    It should be either all or nothing.
 Any policy of help short of that is
 bound to fail.
                WISCONSIN ALUMNUS


Go up to Top of Page