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Preface

This publication represents a complete revision, rewriting, and enlargement of an earlier work of the same title originally published in July 1952. That study was hastily compiled to meet a current need at the Air University for text material to support instruction in the background of present-day American foreign policy. It was recognized at the time that a later version could more satisfactorily cover the ground so lightly gone over in the first attempt. Hence, the effort put into bringing the earlier study up to date also called for a careful review of the contents of the original text.

Because of the rapidly changing atmosphere of international politics in the world of today it has been necessary to choose an arbitrary date for cutting off discussion of contemporary developments. January 1, 1955 was the date so selected. Therefore, a number of events affecting the continuity and widening responsibilities of American foreign policy after that date could not practically be mentioned. The emphasis in this revised edition is heavily upon happenings since 1945. Several pertinent reasons account for this distribution of weight. The literature of the history and significance of American foreign policy up to and including World War II is extensive, definitive, and readily obtainable in libraries and bookstores. But for the period of the past decade, such treatments of the subject are more difficult to come by. Moreover, it is with this period, and its consequent involvements of the United States in so many widely separated and unfamiliar sections of the globe, that the Air Force student is most intimately concerned. The materials covering the years since 1945 are considerable, but they are scattered and, often, too topical to be satisfactory. Herein they may still be topical, but the attempt has been made to gather them together in one interrelated study for examination by the reader intent on learning not only how the United States is committed by its position in today's community of nations, but also how these commitments came about as a result of our country's growth to the stature of a world power.

As now completed, the first three parts of this revision remain substantially the same as in the 1952 edition. The remainder of the study is almost entirely new, with many sections added to the brief examination of the period after 1941 contained in the original. In addition, the NOTES FOR THE READER at the end of the volume have been reworked and enlarged to include explanatory material in brief form where it will not impede the narrative of the text.

In order to reach an understanding of the place of the United States in the world today it is necessary to review the steps whereby this nation has progressed to its position of world leadership. One of the avenues along which such an examination can best proceed is by gaining an understanding of the basic documents, statements, and events that illustrate the application of American foreign policy. For this purpose the excerpts from many of these documents, together with the narrative and the illustrative comments, which follow are presented as an introduction to such a study. In each case the excerpts are from official or other authoritative sources representing some of the most significant pronouncements, treaties, statements, and correspondence to be found in the vast literature dealing with the foreign affairs of the United States. The illustrative comments and chronological narrative are an attempt to explain the significance of these documents and to inform you, the reader, of the events which surround the documents, either as cause or effect. To help you further there are numbered notes on many of the pages in the text. These numbers when enclosed in parentheses refer to explanatory materials contained in the section NOTES FOR THE READER at the conclusion of the text. Ordinary footnotes are indicated by the usual superimposed numbers.

It must be evident immediately to you, as you read, that these textual bridges are hardly the complete story. They are compressed generalizations to which a full treatment is denied by considerations of time and space. But there is the hope that they will serve to arouse the wish to explore further into the areas they cover, as well as to afford enough familiarity with the setting in which the events occurred to enable you to follow the development of American foreign policy in a connected and documented fashion.

Preliminary discussions on the need for such a study as this took place under the direction of Captain William E. Charlson, then Senior Instructor, Squadron Officer Course, Air Command and Staff School, Air University. At every stage in the preparation of the original publication the advice and suggestions of Major Edward C. Smith, at that time of the Curriculum Branch, Squadron Officer Course, were of invaluable aid.* The selection of documents contained in Part One and the early sections of Part Two was accomplished by the joint efforts of Dr. Charles M. Thomas and Dr. Littleton B. Atkinson, both of the Documentary Research Division, Research Studies Institute, Air University. Their assistance and criticism in preparing the original edition and in suggesting points for revision are hereby gratefully acknowledged and appreciated. Numerous individuals have cooperated in making the revised edition possible. To cite each one individually and to indicate the specific contribution would unduly lengthen this Preface. However, particular reference should be made to the courtesies shown the author by Mr. Robert M. Lightfoot, Jr., Librarian, Air War College, and by the staff of the Air University Library. Likewise, many members of the faculties, staffs, and student bodies of the Air War College and of the Air Command and Staff College, past and present, have been helpful with suggestions and with comments on their experience in using the original in their courses. Dr. R. Earl McClendon, of the Documentary Research Division, read portions of the revised text and contributed valuable suggestions for its improvement. And, while several persons have worked at the tasks of typing the manuscript, the major credit for the form in which it went to the printer belongs to Mrs. Mary C. McRee, Documentary Research Division, and Mrs. Lady Ruth Johnson, Air War College.

It is proper to remind every reader and student who uses this publication that the opinions expressed herein and the inclusion of certain documents or the exclusion of others are not to be construed as presenting the official views of the Air Force or of the Air University. Furthermore, the author takes full responsibility for the interpretations of facts, as well as for the selection of factual materials. The quoted statements and the official documents are, of course, a matter of public record as their sources indicate. To the reader is left the pleasure and profit of deciding how accurately these statements reflect the true spirit of American foreign policy throughout the relatively brief, but certainly eventful, history of our country as one of the most significant contributors to the cause of human advancement over the many centuries since the dawn of civilization.

H. P. G. April 1955

*Since the publication of the original edition, the Squadron Officer Course has become the Squadron Officer School, and the Air Command and Staff School, the Air Command and Staff College.

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