ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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From 50 Years Ago: Pity This Young Man, The President.

Letters From America, from Volume XIII, no. 41, October 14, 1961.

From the nightmare of Cuba to the death of Dag Hammarskjoeld is a million frightening miles. The long summer is finally over: children are back at school and the Congress is ad-journed till January. But, alas, for the new administration, there can still be no respite. The wheels of history keep turning on, re-morselessly, almost to Marxist dictates. Franklin Delano Roosevelt had dragged a protesting United States into the world arena. Having arrived, this nation discovered that a big part of the world needed it, liked its muni-ficence, leaned back on it for sustenance and assurance. While segments of the population here and there kept on hating on the encum-brances of external involvement, by and large national pride – may be even a sense of mission – prevailed. It is particularly unfortunate that, in the post-war period, this pride got hopelessly tangled in the philosophy of cow-boy folklore. Since the United States is the mightiest and most just nation, it is its ordained duty to save the world from Communism, and, God being on its side, it is going to win. Educating the American Public The rest of the world started growing aware from about the middle fifties that the United States, after all, might not be the mightiest nation. Besides, self-righteousness is of doubtful relevance as a preamble in political dealings.

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