JULY 8, 1958
HYDE PARK, N.Y—In reading with interest the views of the Secretary General of the United Nations and the U.N. report on Lebanon, I felt it somewhat confusing that in both cases the men concerned seemed to feel that the Lebanese government is unduly worried about the infiltration of men and arms from Syria.
The observers also reported they "had encountered many difficulties in attempting to enter rebel-held territory in sensitive spots which are in areas claimed by government sources to be supply and infiltration routes."
If you are not able to see the places in which men and arms are supposed to be coming through, how can you report that they have not been doing so successfully?
It is true, as the report said, that the troubles between the rebels and the government is an internal affair. But if the rebels are being armed and incited by Syrian infiltrators, then it cannot be looked upon as entirely an internal affair, for keeping the borders of a country safe is of interest to the U.N. and also to the United States.
It is evident that the army in Lebanon now is supporting the government more energetically than previously. Perhaps this will enable the government to put down the rebels, and already there are encouraging reports of Lebanese army successes.
Let us hope that the U.N.'s hopes of lighter infiltration will bring about the desired results and that Lebanon's fears of outside interference soon will be removed by actual, tangible signs of control.
A New York Times editorial mentions the almost insuperable difficulties in creating a permanent U.N. security force but concedes that it might be desirable and adds that we have been known to accomplish the impossible when a real crisis demanded it.
Perhaps not too many people realize that crises exist in a number of places in the world where the use of such force might be required, but slowly we may realize that we are constantly meeting crises which might be forestalled if we had a U.N. force to use at the first sign of such a crisis.
It is encouraging to note that some progress seems to be made at the international meeting in Geneva of scientific experts on the detection of nuclear explosions. It certainly sounds as if there is an atmosphere of desire for results that has not been apparent in the past.
Although reports said that traffic on the roads was light on the Fourth of July, there were still many fatal accidents, sad to say. My guests for the Fourth said they had no difficulty driving up to Hyde Park, and that was my own experience. I tried hard to leave early (about 2:30 p.m.) on July 3 to avoid heavy traffic and was successful.
We had a quiet holiday in the country, but the village of Hyde Park decided to have a real celebration, beginning with a parade in the morning.
I entered the parade right behind the color guard, riding in my little Fiat car, and we wound our way through the streets, many of which I had never traveled before because I rarely spend much time in the village.