Ten years ago, the United States had steadfast allies all over the world. In Europe, our solid lineup of friends extended from Norway to Greece and Turkey. It was especially strong in the center with Britain and West Germany, and secure in the South with Spain and Portugal.
When we came to the aid of South Vietnam, our Pacific allies stood loyally with us. Japan and Taiwan furnished bases in support of our effort. Australia, Thailand, South Korea, and the Philippines furnished bases and troops.
Today, all that is changed. We have no firm, dependable major allies anywhere in the world. In 1973 when we asked our European friends to permit our planes to land and refuel on their long journey to-transport essential military aid to Israel, Portugal was the only country that granted this favor. Now Portugal is considering a Soviet request for a naval base in the Madeira Islands. This will enable Soviet nuclear-armed submarines to double their patrol time off American coasts because they will not have to make the long trip back to their Black Sea and Murmansk bases.
Britain, West Germany and France say they cannot afford the cost of a strong NATO to defend Western Europe. Instead these countries have all been tendering their own bribes to the Kremlin in terms of billion-dollar gifts disguised as long-term, low-interest loans and access to Western technology. (Britain is not even considering the repayment of her multi-billion dollar postwar loan from the United States.)
In the Pacific, Japan is negotiating with the Soviets to pay the same kind of economic tribute, and has asked us to reduce our military presence there. Thailand asked us to do likewise, and Australia has withdrawn from SEATO. In clear violation of the Paris Peace Agreement, the Soviets are supplying tanks, rockets, artillery, anti-aircraft, trucks, gasoline and ammunition for the Communist conquest of South Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia.
What has caused this dramatic change? In international politics, just as in domestic politics, there is an irresistible momentum i.;u join the side of the winner, a psychological phenomenom known as the get-on-the-bandwagon appeal.
When Nixon signed the Kissinger-negotiated SALT Agreements in 1972 giving the Soviets a 3-to-2 advantage in nuclear missiles and submarines, a 1O-to-l advantage in missile negatonnage, and surren dering the right to defend the United States or our allies with the great American-developed ABM, the world was notified that we would not defend our allies, or even our own cities. The center of world power dramatically shifted from Washington to Moscow.
Our allies made an agonizing reappraisal and came to the conclusion that, in the ongoing conflict between the Communist world and the Free World, the Reds will ultimately prevail. Our former friends concluded that the United States is no longer a dependable ally, and that we lack both the will and the military power to protect them. The only practical course of action for them to pursue is to race to make their accommodation with the new winner.
The Nixon-Kissinger policy of detente with Soviet Russia and Red China is an even greater failure than British Prime Minister NevileChamberlain’s 1938 policy of appeasement of Adolf Hitler.