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Lynch learned that another member of the expedition was about to publish his own account of the journey.10 In the preface to the book Lynch discussed the purpose of the expedition and justified its expense to the American people who, he hoped, "would not long condemn an attempt to explore a distant river, and its wondrous reservoir,-the first, teeming with sacred associations, and the last, enveloped in a mystery, which had defied all previous attempts to penetrate it." In the first part of the book he listed the names and functions of each member of the party, the preparations for the voyage and the Atlantic crossing, and a detailed account of the exploration in the Holy Land including thirty woodcuts depicting the people and events of the trip. The second book, the Official Report,11 was very different from the Narrative, which contained material he believed unsuitable for a public document. The Official Report consisted of governmental documents concerning the expedition, minutes taken during the descent of the Jordan and the Dead Sea, reports by members of the expedition on the bird and plant life and the geology of the region. In addition, the book contained astronomical, thermometric, and barometric tables, an analysis of Dead Sea water, a table of meteorological observations, a map of the route and camps of the expedition, and sketch maps of the Jordan and the Dead Sea. Unlike the Narrative, it did not include drawings of the landscape. In his day Lynch's expedition was hailed as one of the greatest scientific explorations of the Holy Land. Schol
ars eagerly awaited the publication of his books, and the Narrative with its maps and drawings was rapidly published in many different editions.12 Lynch was regarded as a hero, an explorer who had braved much, persevered, and accomplished work of great significance to science. In the Official Report he himself had written with optimism and pride:
The exploration of this [the Dead Sea) was now complete; we had carefully sounded its depths, determined its geographical position, taken topographical sketches of its shores, ascertained the temperature, width, depth, velocity of its tributaries, collected specimens of its own and of its tributary waters and of every kind of mineral, plant, and flower, and noted the winds, currents, changes of weather and all atmospheric phenomena. These with a succinct account of events exactly as they transpired will give a correct idea of this sea as it has appeared to us. The same remark holds with respect to the Jordan and the country through which it flows. 13
Although Lynch certainly overestimated his accomplishments in the Dead Sea, which even today has not been fully investigated, his achievements on the whole were enormous. He was, and is still acknowledged to be, the greatest explorer of the region. He was the first to draw an accurate and detailed map of the Jordan and the Dead
10 For information on Lynch's books, see also Max Meisel, Bibliography of American Natural History
(New York, 1929), 3:42. Edward P. Montague, a seaman in Lynch's party, published an account of the expedition, Narrative of the late Expedition to the Dead Sea . (Philadelphia, 1849), but the book is unreliable.
11 The report was issued previously in February 1849 as Report of the Secretary of the Navy with a Report made by Lieutenant W. F. Lynch of an examination of the Dead Sea, Senate Ex. Doc. 34, pp. 1-88, 30 Cong., 2 sess., Serial 532.
12 When Ritter wrote his Comparative Geography he stressed his eagerness to obtain Lynch's report on the Jordan, which was still not available (2:287), and in a later volume in dealing with the Dead Sea he devoted more than forty pages to a summary of the report (3:130-173). See also Jesse A. Spencer, The East: Sketches of Travel in Egypt and the Holy Land (New York, 1850), p. 385, for a sketch map of the Dead Sea reduced from Lynch's 1848 map. Five additional editions of the Narrative were published in Philadelphia in 1849, followed in 1850 by a seventh edition. The same year a London edition was published as well as a new, condensed version containing one small map.
13 Lynch, Official Report, p. 42; and Bliss, Development of Palestine Exploration, p. 238.
Sea. He confirmed the level of the Dead Sea and drew an accurate bathymetric map. Until the time of the British mandate, when scientific exploration was again undertaken, his expedition provided the most definitive knowledge of the area.
For the geographer and historian, Lynch's books, especially the Narrative, are sources for evaluating and understanding the cultural and physical changes in the Holy Land since 1847. Details in contemporary maps of the Dead Sea, for example, bathymetric points on the Jordanian side, are based on Lynch's measurements. Recent studies on the fluctuations in the level of the Dead Sea in the nineteenth century, the meanders of the Jordan, and the shift of the outlet of the Jordan from the Galilee have relied on Lynch's maps. The Official Report and the Narrative also provide information about historical relics no longer extant. A devout Christian, Lynch regarded the Jordan and surrounding country as sacred and paid strict attention to remnants of bridges, khans, milestones, caves, buildings, ancient agricultural cultivations, wells, and cisterns. Lynch's works, especially the Narrative, give a vivid picture of the cultural landscape of the region in the midnineteenth century, which was the beginning of the modern age in Palestine. Events in Palestine since the expedition, especially
those of the twentieth century, have destroyed many of these sites, and Lynch's studies as well as those of other nineteenthcentury explorers will provide the necessary detail in reconstructing many of these monuments.14
Today Lynch is praised not only because he was the first pioneer to successfully descend the Jordan to the Dead Sea but also because after more than a century he is still acknowledged to be the greatest explorer of the Jordan Valley. While his writings may be considered perhaps typical of the journals of many explorers who came there in the nineteenth century, only Lynch's books contain such rich detail and careful observation.15 The Narrative and the Official Report stand as classic studies of the Middle East.
14 Atlas of Israel, s.v. "hydrology,” for the Dead Sea map and text; Zippora Klein, On the Fluctuations of the Level of the Dead Sea since the Beginning of the 19th Century (Jerusalem, 1961); Isaac Schattner, The Lower Jordan Valley: A Study of the Fluvimorphology of an Arid Region (Jerusalem, 1962); Ben-Arieh, “The Shift of the Outlet of the Jordan at the Southern Shore of Lake Tiberias," Palestine Exploration Quarterly 97 (1965) : 54-65. On Lynch, the man and the personality, see Boggis, Down the Jordan, pp. 22-25.
15 Ben-Arieh, Rediscovery of the Holy Land, p. 112. The most detailed bibliography on travelers who visited the Holy Land and published their impressions is Reinhold Rohricht, Bibliotheca Geographica Paletinae (Berlin, 1890).
At the 1933 Pan American Conference in Montevideo, the Roosevelt administration announced its intention to use bilateral trade agreements as a keystone of its Latin American policy. Preliminary exchanges with several nations were initiated during the summer of that year, although the Reciprocal Trade Agreements Act was not passed until 1934.1 American diplomats confronted in these talks unanticipated difficulties arising from the nature of the economies involved. Negotiations with Guatemala, conducted between 1933 and 1936, provide a case study of the problems of concluding such agreements with underdeveloped countries.
In theory, reciprocal agreements to reduce tariffs would benefit all nations by increasing trade and stimulating the economies of the participants. Some theorists even envisaged extension of these agreements virtually to the point of free trade, since each contained a most-favored-nation clause that automatically granted the benefits of other protocols to signatories. Mutual concessions would enable the respective nations to specialize, expanding principal
industries to take advantage of local production efficiency. Abolition of tariff hindrances would allow the most efficient foreign producers to undersell domestic competitors, thus extending the benefit of reduced prices to consumers while furnishing them with superior products. Secretary of State Cordell Hull was particularly enthusiastic about the potential of the program for promoting a new era of international free trade. At the least, he felt, it would resurrect the American economy from the doldrums of the depression.2
The Reciprocal Trade Agreements Act of 1934 enabled advocates of free trade to test their theories. The law empowered the president to reduce existing tariffs up to 50 percent or to freeze existing rates by means of bilateral agreements, the terms of which would not require Senate approval. To supervise negotiations, the State Department organized a special section, which in 1935 became the Division of Trade Agreements. An interdepartmental Committee on Trade Agreements was also established because the cooperation of numerous execu
1 Department of State press release, July 13, 1933, O.K. Copies, Division of Current Information, vol. 15, General Records of the Department of State, Record Group 59, National Archives Building.
2 Cordell Hull, The Memoirs of Cordell Hull, 2 vols. (New York, 1948), 1:357; Julius W. Pratt, Cordell Hull: 1934-44, in The American Secretaries of State and Their Diplomacy, ed. Robert H. Ferrell (New York, 1964), 12:112-113.
NEGOTIATING A RECIPROCAL TRADE AGREEMENT
WITH AN UNDERDEVELOPED COUNTRY:
GUATEMALA AS A CASE STUDY
KENNETH J. GRIEB
tive departments was essential. Assistant Secretary of State Francis B. Sayre headed both groups. Initial planning was conducted in the interdepartmental committee to assure representatives of domestic producers ample opportunity to scrutinize projected concessions. After the preliminary survey, an interdepartmental "country committee” was established to prepare a detailed analysis of trade between the two nations. Regularly accredited diplomats, acting under Sayre's direction, conducted the negotiations.
The diplomats -soon discovered a considerable gap between theory and practice. Concluding an agreement between an industrial nation and an agricultural country proved far more difficult than the theorists had anticipated. Negotiations with nations having one-crop economies or few marketable products presented formidable obstacles. The situation was complicated by the harsh realities of existing trade patterns, tariff policies, and internal needs of the respective states. Nations which exchanged
substantial trade had invariably adjusted duties to the demands of their domestic markets. Frequently, industry's need for raw materials rather than protectionism governed tariff policy, particularly in cases of commerce between industrial and agricultural states. In these circumstances, existing trade patterns rendered reciprocal concessions difficult.
Dealing in generalities and stressing the ultimate benefits of increased trade, theorists often failed to take cognizance of local peculiarities. They frequently overlooked the dependence of most Latin American governments on revenues derived from import and export duties. This dependence precluded significant tariff concessions, for the politically powerful classes could hardly be expected to reform their entire tax structure and abandon historic policies merely to stimulate trade. The importance of tariff revenues meant that a Latin government which significantly reduced duties would assure its own eventual bankruptcy and downfall. Such regimes were understandably reluctant to commit suicide in search of an economic millennium. Government leaders confronting this revenue pattern could not understand how a larger market for their products could stimulate economic growth if the government lacked funds to construct the transport facilities and utilities essential to opening new areas and expanding production. In the eyes of such officials, these immediate disadvantages outweighed potential long-range benefits.
3 Pratt, Cordell Hull, pp. 113-115; Francis B. Sayre, Glad Adventure (New York, 1957), pp. 172-173; Sayre, The Way Forward: The American Trade Agreements Program (New York, 1939), pp. 89-92; John D. Larkin, Trade Agreements: A Study in Democratic Methods (New York, 1940), pp. 48-49, 53-54.
Consequently, American diplomats found the governments of underdeveloped countries, particularly in Latin America, reluctant to grant significant tariff concessions. Increased trade would yield greater benefits to the United States than to the underdeveloped nations, for an industrial economy can respond more readily to the stimulus of increased markets. Leaders of underdeveloped nations were skeptical of the theoretical benefits extolled by the Americans, and tariff talks proved lengthy and frustrating for both parties. Negotiations with Guatemala exemplified the difficulties.
General Jorge Ubico, coming to power in Guatemala in 1931 and confronting the world depression, had proclaimed economic development as one of his principal objectives. By adopting firm measures, Ubico maintained the value of the currency. He eliminated unsound financial institutions through bank holidays and inspections, steps similar to Roosevelt's in the United States. Ubico launched an extensive program of public works which emphasized construction of roads and bridges, clearly indicating the government's determination to develop isolated areas of the country and thereby expand trade. Ubico also increased the effectiveness of his economic program by bringing honesty and efficiency to the government of Guatemala. Such measures earned the confidence of the business and wealthy classes, assuring support from the politically powerful elements of the population. Harsh restrictions kept the peons subservient. In early 1933 the American military attaché commented: “The economic depression which would seriously affect the stability of almost any administration in Guatemala has, if anything, strengthened the Ubico government. Even his most pronounced enemies openly admit
that Ubico is absolutely honest and that no other man could pull Guatemala through as Ubico can." 4 Thus Ubico's policies saved Guatemala from the depression-bred political and economic chaos that characterized many Latin American republics. With this record of stability and economic development, Guatemala seemed a fertile field for a commercial pact.
Ubico's well-known friendship for the United States further enhanced prospects of negotiating a reciprocal trade agreement. The Guatemalan president was extremely pro-American, and his foreign policy was closely attuned to American desires.5 This friendship for the United States did not indicate subservience, however, for Ubico sought American commercial concessions and aid in return. He endeavored to influence American policy within the Central American isthmus by seeking support for his local objectives as compensation for cooperation elsewhere.
Extensive United States economic interests in Guatemala and the volume of trade between the two nations also seemed to augur well for the talks. Many American firms, such as International Railways of Central America, United Fruit Company, W. R. Grace and Company, and Pan American Airways, had considerable investments in Guatemala. Ubico exhibited a marked preference for Americans in awarding economic concessions, as indicated by his agree
4 William McCafferty, chargé in Guatemala, to Henry L. Stimson, Aug. 4, 1931, Decimal File 814.00/1075, General Records of the Department of State, Record Group 59, National Archives Building (hereafter cited only by Decimal File number); McCafferty to Stimson, Sept. 30, 1931, 814.11 General Conditions/46; George K. Donald, consul in Guatemala, to Stimson, July 8, 1932, 814.00/1095; Edward Lawton, chargé in Guatemala, to Hull, Mar. 6, 1933, 814.516/303; Sheldon Whitehouse to Stimson, Oct. 8, 1932, 814.00/1099; Major Arthur Harris, military attaché in Guatemala, to War Department, Aug. 11, 1932, 814.00/1097, and Jan. 25, 1933, 814.00/1104.
5 Whitehouse to Stimson, June 30, 1931, 710.G/34; Lawton to Hull, Sept. 30, 1933, 710.G/242; Harris to War Department, Jan. 25, 1933, 814.00/1105.