TITLE

THOUGHTS FOR TOMORROW

AUTHOR(S)
Wriston, Henry M.
PUB. DATE
April 1962
SOURCE
Foreign Affairs;Apr62, Vol. 40 Issue 3, p374
SOURCE TYPE
Academic Journal
DOC. TYPE
Article
ABSTRACT
This article focuses on international relations. Alliances should not be sentimentalized. Washington's warnings against "permanent, inveterate antipathies" and "passionate attachment of one nation for another" are still valid. United States' postwar relationships with Germany and Japan illustrate its ability to resist a temptation to permanent antipathies. The U.S. must not expect permanent attachments either; even its "special relationship" with Great Britain must never be taken for granted. United States' war and postwar contacts with Russia never did involve a passionate attachment, but the U.S. must now beware of the permanent antipathy described by Washington lest it some day prevent the U.S. from taking advantage of possible, however unforeseen, changes in the Soviet character or position. Alliances are sometimes called "marriages of convenience," but that is too sweeping a metaphor. They are better considered as limited partnerships for specific purposes for a relatively short time--as short as the attainment of the specific objective permits. The reason for this can be simply stated, though to operate within the limitations set may well be infinitely complicated. All significant international intercourse involves some surrender of freedom of action, and it is inevitably greater in the case of an alliance; for the outcome is shaped not only by what the U.S. do but also by what the other participant does.
ACCESSION #
14718689

 

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