Dr. Compton and members of the Cabinet of the United States, distinguished guests and friends of peace all around the world:
I am speaking to you today from a ship. It is a special kind of ship, and it will perform a very special mission.
This vessel will not be armed with guns, or with any instruments of destruction. But it will be a valiant fighter in the cause of freedom. It will carry a precious cargo--and that cargo is truth.
This ship is named the Courier. It is well named, for it will be carrying a message. It will be carrying a message of hope and friendship to all those who are oppressed by tyranny; it will be carrying a message of truth and light to those who are confused by the storm of falsehood that the Communists have loosed upon the world.
This vessel is a floating radio transmitter which is to broadcast the programs for the Voice of America. It will be able to move from place to place, beaming our campaign of truth to people behind the Iron Curtain whom we have thus far been unable to reach.
The Courier is a small ship--it is not as big as a destroyer but it is of tremendous significance. Its significance lies in the fact that it will carry on the fight for freedom in the field where the ultimate victory has to be won--that is in the minds of men.
As the world stands today, free peoples must have strong military forces to protect themselves against aggression. But the final solution for the ills that plague the world can never lie in armies and navies and air forces. The final solution cannot be reached until all nations are willing to live together in peace. The final victory cannot be won until the truth has made all people free.
There is a terrific struggle going on today to win the minds of people throughout the world.
The rulers of the Kremlin are trying to make the whole world knuckle under to the godless, totalitarian creed of communism. They are busy everywhere spreading propaganda to stir up fear and hate and to set nation against nation.
The free nations of the world have not yielded to the onslaught of Soviet propaganda. We have undertaken to answer propaganda with the truth--for we know that the truth is the best answer. To bring the truth to peoples everywhere, we are using magazines, newspapers, motion pictures, libraries, and information centers in all parts of the world. We must use every means to combat the propaganda of slavery.
This ship is an important part of that campaign. Our arguments, no matter how good, are not going to influence people who never hear them. I will repeat that: Our' arguments, no matter how good, are not going to influence people who never hear them. The purpose of this ship is to help get our message through.
There is one thing I want this ship to say-over and over again--to our friends throughout the world, and especially to the people of the Soviet Union and those behind the Iron Curtain: The United States of America is working night and day to bring peace to the world. As President of the United States, I say with all my heart that we yearn for peace, and we want to work with all nations to secure peace.
We have no quarrel with the people of the_ Soviet Union or with the people of any other country.
for almost two centuries the people of the United States have lived at peace with the peoples of Russia and China and other countries whose rulers are now assailing us. Only a decade ago, when the peoples of Russia and China were suffering under two of the most savage invasions in history, we came to their aid. We helped them to save their countries.
I want to say to these people today, as we said then: We are your friends. There are no differences between us that cannot be settled if your rulers will turn from their senseless policy of hate and terror, and follow the principles of peace.
Today the aggressive policies of your rulers are forcing us to arm to defend ourselves. But we cannot find it in our hearts to hate anyone. We cannot find it in our hearts to bear any hate against you. We know that you are suffering under oppression and persecution. We know that if you were free to say what you really believe, you would join with us to banish the fear of war, and bring peace on earth and good will towards all men.
Your government, with its newspapers and radios, may try to make you believe that the United States is a hostile country, bent on war. But that is not true. I want you to know that our highest aim is peace and friendship--and an end to the horrors of war.
Wherever you may be listening to this broadcast, remember this: The people of the United States extend the hand of friendship to you across the seas. The future may look dark, but let us have faith, together, that all peoples will one day walk in the sunlight of peace and justice.