Dulles announces policy of “massive retaliation” - HISTORY
John Foster Dulles () was a powerful U.S. secretary of state under President Dwight D. Eisenhower. Born into a family of statesmen. hower-Dulles relationship. The Whitman File in the Eisenhower Library contain thousands of pages of transcripts of the president's daily phone conversations. Because of his close ties to the President and his even closer relationship with his brother, CIA Director Allen Dulles, John Foster Dulles was second in.
Nasser found the status quo obnoxious, tilted, as he thought it was, to the advantage of the West and the disadvantage of Egypt; and he did all he could to right the balance. Compounding the problem of the different interests of Eisenhower and Dulles, on the one hand, and Nasser, on the other, was a serious clash of personalities. The American president and secretary of state never quite knew what to make of Nasser. At certain times he seemed to them a reasonable, responsible statesman like many others they had encountered in their long careers.
At other times, he appeared violent, irresponsible and an unwitting stooge for the Russians. Largely because of their inability to fathom Nasser, Eisenhower and Dulles were unable to shape a consistent policy toward Egypt. As a consequence, U. I It took Eisenhower and Dulles some time, as it did many other observers, to recognize that Nasser was the source of real power behind General Muhammad Naguib.
Between the anti-royalist coup of July and the beginning ofAmerican officials were unable to tell just who was setting Egypt's new course. Effective control was always in the hands of Nasir and his friends. Naguib had intimated that Egypt might be interested,4 but after speaking with Nasser, Dulles became convinced that MEDO would never materialize. Nasser told Dulles that Egypt's principal problem was not with the Russians, against whom MEDO was directed, but with the British, who had occupied his country for seventy years.
He was also worried about the stability of the new regime in Cairo, fearing that pressure on Nasser to join MEDO might push the Egyptian revolution further to the left. In the first years of Eisenhower's administration, the most consistently troubling matter relating to Egypt was the smoldering state of that country's relations with Britain.
As long as the British retained their base at Suez, Anglo-Egyptian problems irritated, indeed poisoned, relations between the Arab world and the West generally. Though Dulles would never have stated the matter so bluntly, he might have thought in terms of a paraphrase of Stalin to the effect: How many divisions do the Arabs have?
What mattered to Dulles and Eisenhower was the impact alienation of the Arabs might have on relations between the superpowers; specifically, that it might allow the Russians a foot in the Middle Eastern door. Already, Dulles noted with concern, certain groups in the Arab world were turning to Moscow for assistance. Arab nationalists, like nationalists throughout the Third World, could be expected to seek help where they might find it.
If aid were unavailable from the West, they would undoubtedly look to the Soviet bloc. In much of the Third World, American leaders sought to keep countries on the side of the West through economic and military aid.
It would have been natural for Eisenhower and Dulles to apply a similar policy to Egypt. To a certain degree, they did. Unfortunately, though, competing considerations complicated matters. In the first place, for the United States to bolster the Nasser regime conspicuously, especially with arms, would certainly alienate the British, who, far more than the Americans ever did, considered Nasser the embodiment of evil in the Middle East. In Eisenhower's opinion, the importance of the Middle East lay primarily in its role as supplier of oil to Western Europe — to countries like Britain.
The whole point of worrying about Soviet penetration of the Middle East was to ensure that Middle Eastern oil continue to flow to Britain and the other European allies.
For Eisenhower, who had risen to world fame and launched a political career on his wartime exploits in the European theater, Europe was always primary. The Middle East, Egypt included, was important, but only — or at least chiefly — insofar as events there affected the security of Europe. Consequently, for the Eisenhower administration to chart a Middle East policy that undermined American relations with Europe, and especially Anglo-American relations, would be self-defeating.
This consideration was not absolute, as the British discovered to their surprise and humiliation inbut it was consistently significant. A National Security Council paper of mid, describing the importance of maintaining good relations with Egypt and other Arab states, added the caveat: Eisenhower was not so personally concerned with the fate of the Zionist experiment as his predecessor, Harry Truman, had been, but neither was he oblivious to the political salience in the United States of the Israel issue.
Eisenhower liked to make much of his independence of the Israel lobby. As a general matter, he chose not to antagonize them. Not surprisingly, neither Israel nor its supporters in the United States looked kindly on the prospect of American aid, especially military aid, to Egypt. Beyond the political ruckus that arms to Egypt would raise, Eisenhower and other administration officials worried that military aid to Cairo might force the Israelis into preemptive action against Egypt.
Should such an attack occur, Nasser would surely appeal to the Russians for help, thus increasing the Soviet presence in the region. Further ill consequences could be expected in the event that an Israeli attack succeeded. A paper written for the National Security Council in late described the probable outcome: A likely result would be to solidify the Arab world under Soviet political guidance.
It underlay, for example, the tactics the Eisenhower administration used to promote its northern-tier concept of regional defense. Aware that Nasser objected to the idea as splitting the Arab world and dragging the Middle East into the Cold War, the administration tried to keep its role in what became the Baghdad Pact as discreet as possible. In the summer ofa National Security Council paper delineated how the United States ought to proceed: By playing West against East, he hoped to increase his own influence and that of his fellow Arabs.
At a time when American officials were trying to line up support for a regional alliance, Nasser's attachment to a neutralist position was annoying. Not that American leaders had anything against neutralism per se. Though John Foster Dulles was notorious for declaring neutralism immoral, such pronouncements were intended primarily for domestic consumption.
Yugoslavia, for example, was neutral, but Tito had received American support for half a decade. Neutralism in the Middle East, though, represented a net loss to the United States, since the status quo in the region favored the West. Eisenhower administration officials wanted to keep things that way. At the same time, American leaders found Nasser's neutralist designs entirely understandable. For a small country like Egypt, they said, a neutralist policy made perfect sense, and the United States ought to expect Nasser to pursue such a policy for the foreseeable future.
Nor did the fact of Nasser's striking an arms deal with the Soviet bloc in change his mind. Dulles believed that Nasser understood the risks of close ties with the Russians; he thought Nasser was using the Soviets for his own purposes. In a memorandum to his brother, the secretary of state, Allen Dulles offered his assessment of Nasser and Egyptian policy: Nasser has won prestige and a position of leadership in the Arab world by the soviet arm deal.
He is determined to do everything possible to maintain this position. He is today no more anxious to come under Soviet domination than to join a Western alliance and is still convinced that he can hold to a middle path. If he can maintain his independence and prestige through an arrangement with the West, he would prefer that to a close tie-up with the Soviets.
If he feels that the west has definitely turned its back on him, he will accept further Soviet aid, if proffered, and endeavor, probably with a good chance of success, to bring Syria and Saudi Arabia along with him. For the next several months, the Eisenhower administration sought unsuccessfully to bring the Egyptians and Israelis to terms.
At the beginning ofEisenhower appointed Robert Anderson to try one more time to reduce the tension between the two countries. Though the president did not entirely absolve the Israelis of blame for the collapse of the Anderson initiative, he placed most of the onus on the Egyptians.
Angered by the futility of his administration's attempts to achieve a Middle East settlement, Eisenhower began to see Nasser in a more sinister light than before. After this, for a period of more than two years, the administration essentially stopped trying. On the contrary, American officials began to try to isolate Nasser within the Arab world. In Marchthe joint chiefs of staff recommended that the United States come out in the open with its support of the Baghdad Pact.
Dulles strongly opposed the United States atomic attacks on Japan. In the immediate aftermath of the bombings he drafted a public statement that called for international control of nuclear energy under United Nations auspices. Atomic weapons will be looked upon as a normal part of the arsenal of war and the stage will be set for the sudden and final destruction of mankind. Dulles never lost his anxiety about the destructive power of nuclear weapons, but his views on international control and on employing the threat of atomic attack changed in the face of the Berlin blockade, the Soviet detonation of an A-bomb, and the advent of the Korean war.
John Foster Dulles - Wikipedia
These convinced him that the communist bloc was pursuing expansionist policies. Wagnerwho had resigned due to ill health. Dulles served from July 7 to November 8, He lost the special election to finish the term to Democratic nominee Herbert H.
In the late s, as a general conceptual framework for contending with world communism, Dulles developed the policy known as rollback to serve as the Republican Party's alternative to the Democrats' containment model. It proposed taking the offensive to push Communism back rather than defensively containing it within its areas of control and influence. Trumanwhose foreign policy Dulles criticized.
Dulles instead advocated a policy of "liberation". Secretary of State[ edit ] Dulles with U.
John Foster Dulles
President Eisenhower in When Dwight D. President in JanuaryDulles was appointed and confirmed as his Secretary of State. As Secretary of State, Dulles still carried out the "containment" policy of neutralizing the Taiwan Strait during the Korean Warwhich had been established by President Truman in the Treaty of Peace with Japan of Dulles also supervised the completion of the Japanese Peace Treaty, in which full independence was restored to Japan under United States terms.
In the s, he worked alongside people in Vietnam, and others, to reduce French influence in Vietnam as well as asking the United States to attempt to cooperate with the French in the aid of strengthening Diem's Army.
Over time Dulles concluded that it was time to "ease France out of Vietnam". Dulles strongly opposed communism, believing it was "Godless terrorism". The treaty, signed by representatives of Australia, Britain, France, New Zealand, Pakistan, the PhilippinesThailand and the United States, provided for collective action against aggression.
What Eisenhower and Dulles Saw in Nasser: Personalities and Interests in U.S.-Egyptian Relations
In an article written for Life magazine, Dulles defined his policy of brinkmanship: During the most crucial days he was hospitalized after surgery and did not participate in Washington's decision-making. However, by Dulles had become an outspoken opponent of President Gamal Abdel Nasser of Egypt and prevented him from receiving arms from the United States.The Brothers: John Foster Dulles, Allen Dulles and Their Secret World War
This policy allowed the Soviet Union to gain influence in Egypt, as it forced Nasser to turn to the Soviets for weapons. Death and legacy[ edit ] Dulles developed colon cancerfor which he was first operated on in November when it had caused a bowel perforation. In JanuaryDulles returned to work, but with more pain and declining health underwent abdominal surgery in February at Walter Reed Army Medical Center when the cancer's recurrence became evident.
After recuperating in Florida, Dulles returned to Washington for work and radiation therapy. With further declining health and evidence of bone metastasishe resigned from office on April 15,