NOVEMBER 23, 1949
NEW YORK, Tuesday—The speeches seemed to go interminably in praise of the International Children's Emergency Fund most of yesterday afternoon before the U.N. Social Committee. Fortunately, however, out of the speeches and a conciliatory proposal agreed to between the delegation of Australia and the delegation of the United States, there emerged the text of a resolution which we were able to vote on. The resolution does not prejudge the results of the work to be accomplished by the committee studying the question of the continuing needs of children and how they shall be met. The resolution of the delegate from Uruguay, which seemed to have some new suggestions, was referred to that committee for study.
There were several speeches made in which it was stated that it was absolutely essential that the fund continue. I think, however, this feeling is largely due to the fact that there is a great sense of responsibility about the care of underprivileged children the world over.
Everyone recognizes the fact that the fund has done a good piece of work. But we will not know until we see the full study in the group now working on it, whether it is through the fund or through the permanent agencies where the best work can be done in the future for children on a worldwide basis.
It was shocking to me to read in the morning papers yesterday that the cartels and the people who once ran them are active again in Europe and doing business across the borders of various countries.
It seems incredible that the United States, which knows so well what these cartels meant, should not have pursued its original intention of destroying the whole system of cartels once and for all after the war.
In the past, the European cartels, which controlled the making of armaments and the basic materials such as steel and coal, have often been accused of inciting wars. There have been families in different countries that have been identified with the whole cartel system for years. It isn't a question of not knowing about the cartels. We know how harmful they have been in international affairs. But it is very disagreeable to break up something that offers probably a good deal of help in the difficult situation of seeing that people get work.
Then too, these are people who have know-how. They understand international finance, understand the running of great industrial plants. It is easier to let those who know how to do things do them than to bother to find people with a different philosophy.
Still, there must be people in the world who are quite as able in a business way. We are not, of necessity, committed to seeing the old cartel system with all the old personalities that ran it before the war come back into power.
Today I have a day off. Committee Three has finished its present agenda and awaits the action of Committee Six on the convention on the traffic in persons before it can take final action on that item.
There is, of course, a chance that some other item may be referred to us by some other committee. Otherwise, the delegation meeting which I attended this morning is my only U.N. activity for the day, outside of catching up on a small mountain of official papers that has accumulated in the last few days.