Created: 8/3/1960

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Mansfield D. Sprague

Chairman, The President's Committee on

Information Activities Abroad Executive Office Building. C.


You have asked us to identify eight or ten issues which seem to us to warrant particular attention and emphasis in the Committee's report. Before addressing myself to thishould like to offer one or two general comments.

It is possible, of course, to single out certain activities or programs (such for exampleubstantial program of aid to ViL^ foreign educational development) which appear to offer particularly rewarding opportunities for influencing public opinion abroad. Such programs serve directly to promote the development, over the long run,limate of foreign opinion which is responsive to American principles and ideals and the establishment of institutions and political frameworks which are compatible with American policies and objectives. To the extent that the United States is identified with these programs, its imageesponsible benefactor of mankindeader in the development of free democracy will also be very considerably enhanced.

Other programs (such as VOA, certain of the otheractivities of USIA and RFE) which are designed to articulate and explain American policies and accomplishments or to expose or refute Communist allegations or misrepresentations alsoital purpose. Increased support to and expansion of these truly

informational" activities, at least in some areas, would seem desirable and calculated to improve foreign understanding and respect for the United States and its positions and policies.


I do not believe, however, that our purposes will be served solely by the initiation of one or more new programs or the re vital ization or expansion of old ones, no matter how beneficial or effective particular individual programs may be. Basically our problem and objective is the establishment of stable world order based on free and responsible institutions. Our energies and resources must be devoted to this purpose across the board, particularly in the less developed areas, as well as to the purpose of containing, frustrating and, ultimately elimioating Communist threats and dominion. What Is called for is integrated effort involving the improvement and, where appropriate, the expansion of all activities, simultaneously, on all fronts, economic, politic military! and propaganda.

Since the Jackson Committee Reporthe Soviet imag has grown in certain areas of the world, particularly those less developed, less educated and hence less sophisticated. This has been due in part to the rapid Soviot advances in military, andnuclear power, and ballistic missiles, in its scientific pioneering, particularly in space, and most of all in appearing to associate itself with the aspirations of the states and areas which are newly emerging from colonialism, such as Indonesia and Black Africa, and with states, such as Egypt, Cuba, and Iraq which are attempting toew order through the revolutionary process.

Thus substantial segments of world opinion see the Soviets as leaders tn the field of science and technology,ope for economic and social progress and, despite the lessons of Hungary, evenefender of political independence and freedom. They haveood job in recent years of selling Communism as the wave of the future, particularly to the underdeveloped areas where nationalism and neutralism are strong sentiments. They have shown flexibility and adroitness in the use of economic assistance which they have successfully usedolitical instrument, as in Guinea for example, to isolate the emerging governments of some underdeveloped areas from Western associations and to identify themselves with the aspirations of these governments.

They have distorted the image of the United States and associated us with militarism and colonialism and what they describedecadent capitalism" interested only in preserving its own wealth. While many see through this false picture painted by Soviet propaganda,


much, of it haa stuck in tho minda of emerging groups throughout the world. Moreover, they have, at times, endeavored and occasionally succeeded in creating dissension and distrust between us and our Allies by imputing to the United States ulterior and materialistic motives and by perverting the role of the United States on such issue as atomic to sting and the maintenance of military bases in Allied territory for purposes of collective defense.

Individual programs, no matter how well conceived or executed, will not serve to meet this challenge to our prestige or meet tho requirements ot our responsibility for effective leadership. If we are to prevail we must carry forwardoncerted effort in which all instrumentalities available to the United States for the purpose of influencing foreign opinion and affecting political attitudes and judgments are mobilized or orchestrated in support of policy objective which are as clearly defined and expressed as is possible, given the complexity of the world political situation. ight say parenthetically

that our efforts should be guidedetermination to maintain the

world's respect, not to win its affection.

One further general pointould like to make concerns the necessity for adequate coordination of our various activities in the interests of achieving integrated programs calculated to produce the maximum possible impact in selected areas. Although improvement, of course, is possible in the machinery for exchange of views and information as between interested Agencies and Departments of the Government and for ensuring effective coordination of programs at the Washington level, it is ray impression that existing procedures are reasonably adequate for this purpose. In connection with any roview of the mechanics governing coordination of activity and the formulation of policy in tbe information field, it might be desirable to consider ways for improving and developing more effective relations between the Government generally and private organisations engaged in charitable, academic or commercial activity abroad. It is also my opinion that more can bo done to improve coordination in the initiation and execution of programs at the country level.

As regards specific issues or programs which appear to warrant particular emphasis in tho Committee's report, my views are as follows:

a. Priority of Effort. The opportunities andfor activity calculated to influence opinion in the


underdeveloped areas, particularly Africa, Latin America and Southeast Asia, clearly call for increased support and attention. In all probability effective action in certain of these areas will involve additional allocation of funds and, most important, of trained manpower. hould think it well for thc Committee to indicate the priority which should be attached to programs directed at these areas. hould also think it important for the Committee to recommend, however, that resources should not be allocated to the support of these programs at the expense of the effort desirable to maintain the vigor and cohesion of the Western Alliance or to exploit opportunities for influencing opinion to our advantage in the Communist Bloc.

b. Aid to Education. Perhaps the most rewarding activity which the United States can undertake isery substantial basis to foreign educational development* Thia will involve the resources and energies of several agencies of the Government as well as many privateorganizations and educational inatitutions, and should be undertakenhoroughly coordinated basts. Consideration should be given to the most effective method, preferably through existing mechanisms and within the existing structure of the Government, of providing adequate leadership, initiative and coordination forrogram or programs and ensuring full participation by all agencies, official or private, capable of contributing effectively to educational development in significant areas abroad.

lso believe in bringing selected foreign students to this country, this can quickly reach the saturation point and sustaining programs should emphasize the graduate student level.

c- English Language and Technical Aids in Relationship to Educational Programs. Corollary to the importance of programs to support foreign education are:

(1)igorous effort to encourage the spread of the use of the English language in foreign countries both by encouraging and supporting programs and educational facilities which teach or aid in the teaching


of English and by promoting the use or adoption of Englishechnical lingua franca as is presently the usage in international air control. Here both the Soviet and particularly the Chinese Communists areerious disadvantage and quite generally resort to English as tbe means of spreading their own propaganda.

(2) The development and distribution of mechanical and technical aids to education with particular emphasis on the potentialities of televisionethod of education.

Staff papers of the Committee have dealt with these subjects and the recommendations of these papers appeal to me as particularly important.

Propaganda. elieve thatreport would do well to stress theunattributed or "gray" propagandaersuasiveconveying ideas and interpreting policies and eventsand readers, particularly in neutralistexisting procedures designed to ensurepropagation and dissemination of gray propaganda andsignificant clandestine operations are continuedI believe that the unattributed propagandabe intensified and expanded. Often otherbe allowed to take the lead in exposing For example, it was rightfully India which wasforefront of the attack against Communist aggression

in Tibet.

Roots Propaganda.

t would be useful if the report were to recommend greater emphasis on mass activities and appeal. We have tended overly to concentrate on persons associated with governments in power. We need to train activists and support "grass roots" type activitiesounter to the major Communist efforts in this field through the Communist Party and its many front organizations.

We should expand our encouragement to free labor organizations in their attack on the many Communist-dominated Trade Unions in countries such as Italy, France, Indonesia and Japan.

We should also increase our effort inthe younger potential leadership elements, particularly in the newly emerging states, and encourage their progress and secure their loyalty to Western ideals.


f. The United Nationsublic Opinionave been impressed with the arguments advanced in the Committee's staff paper on the United Nations in favorore flexible and positive use of the United Nationsorum for influencing public opinion abroad. ertainly do not believe that propaganda considerations should govern the formulation of our position on questions at issue in the United Nations, nor should we sponsor or support proposals which are at variance with our legitimate strategic interests. elieve, however, that it would be both possible and desirable for the United States to develop positionsiew to their popular appeal particularly where there is little or no practical possibility that they would be adopted by the Soviet Bloc to our disadvantage. Similar considerations appear to me to apply to negotiations in the field ofubject which has also been coveredommittee staff paper.

Technology, and Medicine. It seems toparticular importance that foreign populations shouldan accurate understanding of United Statesand capabilities in science, technology, andagree with the conclusions of the Committee's staffthis subject with respect to the need for broader anddissemination of information concerning Unitedin these fields. lso believe, as thesuggests, that programs relating to research andcan be formulated with greater consideration toimpact on foreign opinion. Both of these pointsdeserve emphasis in the Committee's report,

Activities. elieve that considerationgiven to recommending an expansion of activities designeda broader understanding and appreciation ofand culture, particularly in the less developed areas ofand also in the Communist Bloc itself. Much has already

been accomplished along these lines through organizations such as the Congress for Cultural Freedom, through private Foundations and through officially supported exhibitions of art by Western Artists and tours by Western scholars and musicians in appropriate areas. These activities deserve increased support and attention.

In this connection more can be done to refute the impression, which we ourselves have helped to create (see special0 number of the Atlantichat Soviet Russiaand of art and culture. The facts are that the Soviet Union and China, since the Communist take-over, have starved most of the creative arts, suppressed literature and produced no painting or sculpture worthy of serious consideration. The poverty of the Communist contribution to art and culture could well be brought home by the dissemination of comparative studies and through exhibits, appropriately designed for this purpose and generally be made the subject of more effective propaganda exploitation.

there are many other activities and issues which deserve consideration and probably considerable attention in the Committee's report. The onesave mentioned, however, strike me as of particular current interest and clearly within the Committee's terms of reference.

I have purposely not mentioned certain programs, such as those involving support to international organizations in various fields or involving methods of influencing popular opinion in tbe Communist Bloc through personal contacts, exchange programs or the dissemination of literature. While of very great importance, the significance of these and similar activities is generally understood and they are being conducted effectively under existing programs. eneralto the effect that activity of this nature should be continued and, where appropriate, expanded might very usefully be included in the report. The report might also contain some general comment confirming the usefulness and recommending the continuation of radio broadcasting by VOA and the unofficial radios to the peoples of the Soviet Bloc and recommending increased broadcasting to the populations ofareas. Also, continuing study should be made of methods of getting information to the people of Communist China who today are more cut off from Western influence than any other great area of population.

I have alao excluded from this letter mention of issues which, although of unquestioned importance, appear to me to involve primarily questions of basic Government or legislative policy. One of the problems,entioned at one of tbe Committee's meetings, was that of the great impact which could be achieved by the further sharing of our atomic know-how with our NATO friends so that they would not have to expend great sums to achievehare of the knowledge which both we and the Soviet have acquired at vast expense.

To conclude;

If we are ever toeasonably peaceful andand avoid the tragedy of war, it will have to be achieved The Communists agree that this evolution must takewith their help, they predict that we will complete theWestern feudalism which turned to Capitalism willCommunism, This was Khrushchev's parting shot to us ascompleted his tour of the U. j

It is our task to see to it that an evolution takes place but in the Communist world whereby they will abandon their ideas oforld in the Communist image and create governments in the Communist Bloc devoted to free institutions.

To this end we should carry forward all programs which will open the eyes of the people behind the Iron Curtain touller life; higher living standards, and the tools to enjoy and exploit, through peaceful development, their own great assets and resources.

With the disappearance of Khrushchev and his generation, the last of the fraternity of old Bolsheviks will have passed on, ew generation will emerge. Possibly it will be influenced byleaders and technicians with leas of the element of the doctrinaire "Communist". It is not too much to hope that this new generation may help toifferent orientation to Soviet life. These new leaders will have the difficult problem of meeting tbe growing demand of the Soviet people for more consumer goods and for more of the tools with which to use their increasing leisure, as working hours are reduced.

Much has changed in the years since Stalin died. Many more changes may occur over the next decade. It may well be that.


without seeming to intervene in the domestic affairs of the Soviet Union, we can find ways to help channel and develop these trends. Certainly somo of the fire and some of Ihe dynamism has gone oui of the original Marxist-Leninist thrust. Great revolutions of this kind have generally gone through such evolutionary cycles. We should seek with all the skill at our disposal, through our prograx our contacts, and our example, to make this evolution possible.

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