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scribes certain aid to Britain and there is nothing, no implication in it beyond that.
Mr. TINKHAM. It does not apply to Britain alone, it provides for any country in the world. That is No. 1. And now there is No. 2: How is it possible, and of course we have to consider what steps must of necessity follow, how is it possible for the Congress to pass such a bill as this and not follow up in the final analysis with manpower?
Secretary HULL. Just as it has been. An illustration I remember is that that argument was made when we had up the Neutrality Act. The Neutrality Act made it possible for law-abiding nations attacked by lawless nations to come over here and buy military supplies. And that enabled some of those countries resisting the movement of world conquest to hold out with much more certainty. And yet we have kept further and further away from that so far as that phase was concerned.
Mr. TINKHAM. Mr. Chairman, I desire to make a very short statement.
The CHAIRMAN. There are no statements to be made. I will say to Mr. Tinkham that other members asked to be permitted to make statements.
Mr. TINKHAM. Oh, this is merely a remark.
, all of the other members have asked questions and the Secretary has tried to answer them.
Now, Mr. Tinkham, will you kindly confine yourself to asking questions upon this bill that is before the committee and that will then be in order. Any other questions or any statements that do not particularly refer to this bill will be objected to.
Mr. TINKHAM. In other words, we cannot refer in discussing this bill to those implications of manpower if we pursued the policies under it. Do I understand that?
The CHAIRMAN. No. If it refers directly to the bill you may ask the question.
Mr. TINKHAM. Well, I think it does. I think manpower is implicit in the bill.
The CHAIRMAN. I do not see where it is here. I wish you would kindly point it out to me.
Secretary Hull. Mr. Chairman, I have plenty of time. It is entirely agreeable to me for the gentleman to think that this is the quickest way to get along. I have already stated that I thought we would suffer by pursuing the course of aid to Britain less than we would if we sat down like a piece of statuary here until an invader reached our shores. So, with that in the record, I am willing for him to take 20 or 40 minutes.
Mr. Johnson. I object, Mr. Chairman, if the rule is started whereby a member of the committee can make his own statement, it will delay the consideration of this matter.
Mr. TINKHAM. I will make no statement if the gentlemen do not want me to.
The CHAIRMAN. Well, the Chair will state he has already refused other members of the committee permission to make a statement here. I do not see how I can comply with your request under the circumstances.
Please confine yourself to the bill. Mr. TINKHAM. Mr. Secretary, do you consider we have abandoned all neutrality status?
Secretary HULL. Well, we, as I said, have been the outstanding leader among the nations of the world in upholding and keeping alive the laws pertaining to neutrality. And we have hammered all the doctrines, policies, and practices into each of those invading nations during the past few years. When we see that that fails in every sense, it is a question of whether and when we will undertake to adopt the law of self-preservation.
Mr. TINKHAM. In other words, we have-excuse me, please continue.
Secretary Hull. And when we adopt the law of national defense, in the present extreme situation, there is no applicability of a combined doctrine of self-defense and neutrality in the general sense, where the two conflict.
Mr. Tinkham. In other words, we have abandoned neutrality according to your theory?
Secretary Hull. We are keeping it alive but the warring nations have abandoned it, if that will make it a little clearer to you.
Mr. Tinkham. Then, you do not consider that the President's neutrality proclamation of September 5, 1939, has been repealed by facts?
Secretary Hull. The law of self-defense has begun to assert itself and it should have commenced to do so at an earlier stage than it has.
Mr. TINKHAM. Well, there is a great question, Mr. Secretary, as to whether what is being done is defense or offense.
Secretary HULL. Well, I am concerned about defense. Mr. TINKHAM. Well, the implications of this bill are that is is offense and not defense, it seems to me.
Do you consider that the bill runs counter to the so-called Hull Reciprocity Agreement or not?
Secretary Hull. I want to bring you back to this question of national defense, if I can. That is a construction that I think we do not have to worry about at this time.
Mr. TINKHAM. Does in any way this bill and its effect and its natural consequences repeal, in your opinion, the Pan-American safetyzone principle?
Secretary Hull. There may be some conflict in some of its provisions, but that is wholly a minor and inconsequential matter.
Mr. TINKHAM. What objection is there to naming the countries which we are to assist so far as the provisions of the bill are concerned?
Secretary HULL. If you could look into the future and see what other countries may be attacked by these same three nations in connection with this same world movement, then you would have, I think, a most satisfactory answer to your question.
Mr. TINKHAM. When they are attacked can you not come to Congress rather than getting an inclusive world power?
Secretary HULL. Oh, I would hope we would all be working as one person as we go along. My door has been open for 8 years and you never have darkened it in quest of information from me.
Mr. TINKHAM. Let me say, as long as the Secretary has said that, that the information I have received there from time to time was most disturbing because I saw that there was a trend to war, inevitable war, to any one who is trained either in history or who has had experience during the last 50 years with the movement of events.
Secretary Hull. Frankly, I thought you wanted to be disturbed and I sent you the information.
Mr. TINKHAM. May I ask you what you think of the propriety in the bill of giving miscellaneous countries with whom we may be allied by this bill defense information including military secrets? Whether you think that is a sound provision?
Secretary Hull. That is a matter which the War and Navy Secretaries will be glad to discuss with you.
Mr. TINKHAM. Let me ask you, I suppose you will answer the same way to any question I will ask of you on these lines.
May I not ask you, with your training, legislative and otherwise, whether it does not seem to you that we are under this bill becoming a totalitarian country to fight totalitarian countries elsewhere?
Secretary Hull. Well, that is a metaphysical question. I do not know whether I can give you an answer that would satisfy you. I do not think there is much I care to go into on that kind of question, because I do not know how it would be of any particular help to any of the other members of the committee.
Mr. TINKHAM. Well, it seems to me it is of importance to the committee to know if your opinion is that we would set up a totalitarian government here if this legislation was passed. Certainly the committee does not want to do that consciously. In my opinion it will, if it passes this legislation, and your opinion might help.
Secretary Hull. I do not think it would aid some of the Congressmen unless I expressed an opposite opinion from that which I entertain.
Mr. TINKHAM. Will you repeat that? I did not hear it.
Secretary Hull. I say I am not sure my opinion would be helpful to some of the Congressmen unless I stated the opposite of the opinion I really entertain.
Mr. TINKHAM. I think you may be wrong in that particular. May I ask you as an expert in these matters whether under the terms of the bill an act of war could be committed by the President with the powers given?
Secretary HULL. I did not catch the first two or three words.
Mr. TINKHAM. My question was whether under the provisions of the bill the President could commit an act of war?
Secretary Hull. Oh, the President or even any naval officer in command of a ship could commit an act of war any hour or any day in the year in normal times outside of that bill, so far as that is concerned.
Mr. TINKHAM. That would be a breach of law when he did it but, when this bill is passed, it would not be a breach of law provided an act of war could be committed. And my question is, in your opinion as an expert under the terms of this bill, Can the President commit an act of war?
Secretary Hull. I do not have any more to say than that under all the general authority that he has there is every kind of way to commit an act of getting into trouble with other nations if the Executive desires to do it.
Mr. TINKHAM. If he can get into war under the terms of this bill it simply gives him additional authority rather than general authority to do so.
Secretary Hull. Well, he has got all the authority he needs so far as that point is concerned. If we can get back to the matter of national defense a part of the time I think would be very important.
Mr. TINKHAM. You decline to answer whether the President
The CHAIRMAN. Now, Mr. Tinkham, the Secretary did answer that question and he has answered it several times.
Mr. TINKHAM. Well, it does not seem to me so. But if it seems so to the chairman
The CHAIRMAN. It seems so to every one here.
The CHAIRMAN. The Secretary has answered that fully and has
Mr. TINKHAM. I hope it is a compliment. And it is not a compliment.
Secretary Hull. It is a compliment in any conversation between you and me.
Mr. TINKHAM. I have this statement to read and I would like you to comment on it if you will.
Speaking of the bill in effect
Mr. JOHNSON (interposing). Mr. Chairman, in the interest of time and orderly procedure, I think it would be better if the distinguished gentleman from Massachusetts would ask questions rather than read what somebody else has said about something. It is so long in the first place. In the second place, the gentleman's own scintillating mind is sufficient to enable him to frame whatever questions he desires to ask.
Mr. TINKHAM. This does it so much better than I could ask the question. I would like to read a short statement and then ask a question on it.
Mr. JOHNSON. The gentleman is a very intelligent man.
The CHAIRMAN. Mr. Tinkham, the Chair will request that before reading any further statement or newspaper article, kindly give the name of the paper and the date of any statement and who wrote it.
Mr. TINKHAM. I would be very glad to. Of course, I do not know who writes editorials.
The CHAIRMAN. If it is an editorial you can say it is an editorial.
Mr. TINKHAM. This comes from the Washington Post dated January 11. The name of the author is here, a Mark Sullivan. He states, and I desire to ask the Secretary of State to make any comment he wishes upon this—he states, in relation to the bill and its provisions:
In effect, the direction of the war will be divided between the military and naval high command in Britain and the economic high command who will be the President of the United States. As the military and naval general headquarters will be London, the economic general headquarters will be the United States. To suppose that the economic high command and the general headquarters is not in the war is a supposition which the Axis Powers will hardly share.
Do you have any comment, Mr. Secretary, upon that statement?
Secretary HULL. I do not know the context of it. You are taking something out of an entire article by Mr. Mark Sullivan.
Mr. TINKHAM. Let me state that it is a complete part in itself. Secretary Hull. Will you be kind enough to read the entire article? You have the editorial, and I cannot undertake to comment upon such an excerpt of it.
Mr. JOHNSON. I want to renew the objection I made a moment ago about reading the short statement.
Secretary Hull. Will you be kind enough to read the entire article?
Mr. Johnson. The objection I made a moment ago about reading short statements by the gentleman demonstrates, I think, the wisdom of my grounds upon which I made the objection. You can take innumerable articles; there has been a great deal of matter written about this and it is not a matter of interest here. It is a matter of determining the views of the witness. And the gentleman can ask any specific questions that he wishes. But all these articles contain a number of questions that some may believe in and some may not. I want to make a point of order and I want a ruling on it that members of the committee be not permitted to read long articles.
Mr. Tinkham. They are not long articles. They are very short articles.
The CHAIRMAN. The Chair will state that unless the gentleman has the complete article or editorial and will read the complete article it will be ruled out of order.
Mr. TINKHAM. Oh, it would take so much time to read the whole editorial.
The CHAIRMAN. It is not a question of time. You gentlemen were complaining when I said we could finish these hearings in 3 days. You wanted to conserve time. What we are anxious to do is to have it right. The Secretary wants to hear the full article before he comments upon it or answers questions upon it.
Mr. TINKHAM. Let me say in reply that the whole article would perhaps cover many points and that the whole article would be long to read.
Secretary HULL. That is why I want to hear it.
Mr. TINKHAM. And what I want is an answer to specific paragraphs that raise specific questions and which are clear and isolated so far as their intellectual content is concerned.
Secretary Hull. I want to be the judge of that myself.
The CHAIRMAN. The Chair has already ruled, Mr. Tinkham. Kindly proceed in order.
Mr. TINKHAM. May I ask you this question, whether the bill would make the United States, in your opinion, a nonbelligerent ally of Britain in all but name?
Secretary HULL. As I said many times here this morning, the attitude of this Government is one of defending itself primarily by aiding another country already attacked to defend itself.
Mr. Tinkham. You are not willing to discuss
Secretary Hull (interposing). That is the whole question that is presented.
Mr. TINKHAM (continuing). Whether it is a nonbelligerent ally in all but name?
Secretary Hull. I do not know how I could. I have not heard the term “nonbelligerent ally” mentioned except by some persons during recent months and I think they gave different interpretations to that term. I do not know what it is. It is something new. I mean by that, I do not know how everyone interprets it and I do not care to go into that phase any further than I have said, which I think is complete as an answer.