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Documents on Germany, 1944-1959 : background documents on Germany, 1944-1959, and a chronology of political developments affecting Berlin, 1945-1956

Letter from President Eisenhower to Premier Bulganin, on Germany, European security, and disarmament, January 12, 1958,   pp. 228-236 PDF (3.9 MB)

Page 231

already taken precisely those obligations as regards all countries,
including those of the Near and Middle East. Our profound hope is
that the Soviets feel themselves as bound by the provisions of the
Charter as, I assure you, we feel bound.
You also suggest submitting to the member states of NATO and
the Warsaw Pact some form of non-aggression agreement. But all
of the members of NATO are already bound to the United Nations
Charter provision against aggression.
You suggest that the United States, the United Kingdom and the
Soviet Union should undertake not to use nuclear weapons. But our
three nations and others have already undertaken, by the Charter,
not to use any weapons against the territorial integrity or political
independence of any state. Our profound hope is that no weapons
will be used in any country for such an indefensible purpose and that
the Soviet Union will feel a similar aversion to any kind of
You suggest that we should proclaim our intention to develop
between us relations of friendship and peaceful cooperation. Such
an intention is indeed already proclaimed by us between ourselves
and others by the Charter of the United Nations to which we have
subscribed. The need is, not to repeat what we already proclaim,
but, Mr. Chairm-an, to take concrete steps under the present terms of
the Charter, that will bring about these relations of friendship and
peaceftl cooperation. As recently as last November, the Communist
Party of the Soviet Union signed and proclaimed to the world a
declaration which was designed to promote the triumph of Commu-
nism throughout the world by every means not excluding violence,
and which contained many slanderous references to the United States.
I am bound to point out that such a declaration is difficult to reconcile
with professions of a desire for friendship or indeed of peaceful
coexistence. This declaration makes clear where responsibility for
the "Cold War" lies.
You propose that we broaden the ties between us of a "scientific,
cultural and athletic" character. But already our two countries are
negotiating for peaceful contacts even broader than "scientific, cul-
tural and athletic". We hope for a positive result, even though in
1955, after the, Summit Conference when negotiations for such con-
tacts were pressed by our Foreign Ministers at Geneva, the accomplish-
ments were zero. It is above all important that our peoples should
learn the true facts about each other. An informed public opinion
in both our countries is essential to the proper understanding of our
You propose that we develop "normal" trade relations as part of
"peaceful cooperation" of which you speak. We welcome trade that
carries no political or warlike implications. We do have restrictions
on dealings in goods which are of war significance, but we impose no
obstacles to peaceful trade.
Your remaining proposals relate to armament. In this connection, I
note with deep satisfaction that you oppose "competition in the pro-
duction of ever newer types of weapons". When I read that statement
I expected to go on to read proposals to stop such production. But I
was disappointed.

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