Stehlin, General Paul
October 1963
Foreign Affairs;Oct63, Vol. 42 Issue 1, p70
Academic Journal
The article comments on the evolution of the Western defense. The French have come to question the effectiveness of the system of Western defense. French President Charles de Gaulle's recent public statements prove that this is a basic component of French policy--that France regards its own defense as part of Western defense, and that its solidarity with the Atlantic nations is an actual fact. What is in question is the nature of France's participation in the common defense and the extent of the responsibility it wishes to assume. The United States, which has made such great sacrifices for the common defense over the past 15 years, and has studied the requirements of the task with such painstaking care, ought not to take umbrage when an allied nation wishes, in its turn, to take an active part in an enterprise of which the United States has borne the burden virtually alone but on which depends the fate of all. France realizes that the smallness of its territory and its budgetary limitations preclude it from rising to the summit of nuclear power. But it is also aware that its enterprise is a guarantee that the emerging Europe, if it does emerge, will not lack weapons for its defense, and that these weapons will be, as they must be, the product of its own effort and its own industry.


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