For Secretary Shultz -- a rugged first-year odyssey
On international relations: "There is a poem by Carl Sandburg in which a traveler asks the Sphinx to speak and reveal the distilled wisdom of all the ages. The Sphinx does speak. Its words are: 'Don't expect too much.'
"That is good counsel for all of us . . . It does not mean that great accomplishments are beyond our reach. We can help shape more constructive international relations and give our children a better chance at life. It does mean, however, that risk, pain, expense, and, above all, endurance are needed to bring those achievements into our grasp.
"We must recognize the complex and vexing character of this world. We should not indulge ourselves in fantasies of perfection or unfulfillable plans, or solutions gained by pressure. It is the responsibility of leaders not to feed the growing appetite for each promises and grand assurances. The plain truth is this: We face the prospect of all-too-few decisive or dramatic breakthroughs; we face the necessity of dedicating our energies and creativity to a protracted struggle toward eventual success."
(From a statement made to the United Nations General Assembly, Sept. 30, 1982 .)
On developing nations:
"In the 1970s, despite the recessions and the oil shocks, the developing countries were the fastest-growing sector of the world economy. Their strong performance reinforced the expansion of world trade in the '70s and provided the leading edge of world growth. This could be the case in the second half of the '80s as well . . .
"Today the effective functioning of the global trade and financial system depends heavily on the participation, and health, of the developing countries, as well as of the industrail countries. The reality of mutual interest between the northern and southern hemispheres is not at all reflected in either the doctrinaire third-world theory of debilitating dependency or the aid-giver's obsolete sense of patronage. There is now a relationship of mutual responsibility . . .
"Austerity alone cannot be a sufficient solution when so many countries are in trouble. If everyone practices austerity and cuts imports, this only chokes world trade and spreads the hardship further. The ultimate objective has to be growth, not austerity."
(From an address to the Foreign Policy Association, New York City, May 26, 1983.)
On US-Soviet relations:
"Strength and realism can deter war, but only direct dialogue and negotiation can open the path toward lasting peace.
"In this dialogue, our agenda is as follows:
"*To seek improvement in Soviet performance on human rights;
"*To reduce the risk of war, reduce armaments through sound agreements, and ultimately ease the burdens of military spending;
"*To manage and resolve regional conflicts; and
"*To improve bilateral relations on the basis of reciprocity and mutual interest . . .
"We have made clear that each of our concerns is serious, and the Soviets know that we do not intend to abandon any of them merely because agreement cannot be reached quickly, or because agreement has been reached on others . . .
"Our policy is notm one of economic warfare against the USSR . . . . Despite the strains of the past few years in our overall relationship, we have maintained the key elements in the structure for bilateral trade. We have recently agreed with the USSR to extend our bilateral fisheries agreement for one year, and have begun to negotiate a new long-term US-Soviet grain agreement . . . .
"It is sometimes said that Soviet-American relations are 'worse then ever' . . . Certainly the issues dividing our two countries are serious. But let us not be misled by 'atmospherics,' whether sunny or, as they now seem to be, stormy.
"In the mid-'50s, for example, despite the rhetoric and tension of the Cold War -- and in the midst of a leadership transition -- the Soviet Union chose to conclude the Austrian State Treaty. It was an important agreement, which contributed to the security of Central Europe, and it carries an important lesson for us today. The Soviet leadership did not negotiate seriously merely because Western rhetoric was firm and principled, nor should we expect rehetoric to suffice now or in the future. But adverse 'atmospherics' did not prevent agreement; Soviet policy was instead affected by the pattern of Western actions, by our resolve and clarity of purpose. And the result was progress.
"There is no certainty that our current negotiations with the Soviets will lead to acceptable agreements. What is certain is that we will not find ourselves in the position in which we found ourselves in the aftermath of detente. We have not staked so much on the prospect of a successful negotiating outcome that we have neglected to secure ourselves against the possibility of failure.
"Unlike the immediate post-war period, when negotiating progress was a remote prospect, we attach the highest importance to articulating the requirements for an improved relationship and to exploring every serious avenue for progress. Our parallel pursuit of strength and negotiation prepares us, both to resist continued Soviet aggrandizement and to recognize and respond to positive Soviet moves . . .
"President [Leonid I.] Brezhnev's successors will have to weigh the increased costs and risks of relentless competition against the benefits of a less tense international environment, in which they could more adequately address the rising expectations of their own citizens. While we can define their alternatives, we cannot decipher their intentions. To a degree unequaled anywhere else, Russia in this repsect remains a secret.
"Her history, of which this secrecy is such an integral part, provides no basis for expecting a dramatic change. Any yet it also teaches that gradual change is possible . . ."
(From a statement before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, June 15, 1983.)