The Atlantic Union Committee
In early 1949, Federal Union, Inc. spawned the Atlantic Union Committee -- with former Supreme Court Justice Owen J. Roberts as Chairman, former Under-Secretary of State Will Clayton and former Secretary of War Robert Patterson as Vice Presidents -- to lead an intensive nationwide campaign for Atlantic integration. This was the climate in which NATO was adopted, the stage already having been set by the Marshall Plan, of which Clayton was the principal author. In the period 1949-53, the Atlantic Union Committee (AUC) became the primary organization in America supporting NATO. In the early 1950's, the AUC formed the Atlantic Assembly as an annual consultative assembly of parliamentarians from the NATO countries, which formally became the North Atlantic Assembly in 1966, and was later transformed into the NATO Parliamentary Assembly (under which name it operates today).
Atlantic Union Committee Formed!
From Freedom & Union, April 1949
The Ides of March -- a dangerous day for dictators, as Julius Caesar, the first of the Kaisers, Czars and Commissars learned 1992 years ago -- were marked this year by a notable advance in the unending struggle for human freedom. But it differed promisingly from the futile blow that Brutus struck. It was creative, not destructive only.
It was the announcement of the formation of a powerful "Atlantic Union Committee for a Federal Convention of Democracies." It was
the launching of organized citizen political action to transform the ideal of a Federal Union of the Free into living constitutional law and government, and thus deliver freedom and peace from the absolute national sovereignty and dictatorship that threaten both today.
With it, the basic ideas that Union Now and FREEDOM & UNION have been championing, entered the field of practical politics.
From Freedom & Union, May 1953
On the eve of the April 23 meeting of the North Atlantic Council in Paris, 140 citizens of four Atlantic Pact nations, representing the fields of industry, education, religion, labor, publishing, finance, science, law, civic organizations and public affairs, addressed an open letter to their countrymen and NATO representatives. The letter was initiated by Governor Christian Herter or Massachusetts; Joseph C. Grew of Washington, former Ambassador to Japan; former Under-Secretary of State, Will L. Clayton, of Houston, Texas; and former Ambassador to Norway, Lithgow Osborne, of New York. The text of the letter follows:
AS CITIZENS of the United States, Great Britain, France and Canada, we are addressing this open letter to our fellow citizens on the eve of the meeting of the North Atlantic Council in Paris, and to our representatives at that meeting.
We are convinced that the burdens of taxes and high prices which rest so heavily on all our peoples can be eased only by a better integration of the economic, defense and foreign policies of all our countries through the North Atlantic Treaty Organization.
John Foster Dulles on an Atlantic Union of Democracies in his introduction to The New Federalist, January 1950
"Great peril often calls for the bold application of great principles of universal scope.
Today there is great peril. Seven hundred million people, or about one-third of the entire human race, have already come under the rule of a group whose practices derive from an atheistic and materialistic philosophy, who believe that their dominance must be extended to the entire world and who believe that violence is not only a permissible but a necessary means of achieving their "one world."
The peril from that expanding and hostile unity cannot be easily overcome. We are trying to bolster up, by military and economic aid, some nations which we hope will be a barrier to Soviet Communism. The European Recovery Program, the North Atlantic Treaty and the Military Assistance Program are important steps in a good direction. But even these measures do not provide the reality of dependable common defense. Unity remains a contingency, not a fact.
"Communique between Escott Reid (Canadian Deputy Undersecretary of State for External Affairs) and Lester B. Pearson (Canadian Secretary of State for External Affairs) concerning Euro-Atlantic integration and the possibility of an Atlantic Union" Ottawa, August 5, 1949.