Lyndon B. Johnson photo

Message to the Congress Transmitting Annual Report on United States Participation in the United Nations.

October 01, 1968

To the Congress of the United States:

I am pleased to transmit the 22nd annual report on the participation of the United States in the vital work of the United Nations.

1967 was a year in which peace was challenged on three major fronts. On two of these fronts--the Middle East and Cyprus-the United Nations played a significant role in averting a wider conflict. We were not successful in our efforts to have the United Nations contribute to the search for peace in Vietnam but there is still hope that the U.N. can help us find and implement an honorable settlement.

In the Middle East, despite all attempts to achieve a peaceful accommodation, war broke out in June of 1967. The Security Council, with the full support and encouragement of the United States, called for a cease-fire, which was accepted by both sides.

U.N. observers were posted on the cease-fire lines between Israel and the U.A.R. and between Israel and Syria. Though the peace was still tenuous, the Security Council was able to begin the difficult quest for a durable settlement. The principles for settlement adopted by the Council resolution were entirely consistent with those suggested and supported by the United States.

In November, war nearly erupted between Greece and Turkey over the island of Cyprus. The tension was greatly eased by the diplomatic efforts of my personal representative, Cyrus Vance. Appeals by the Secretary-General, with the complementary action of the Security Council, contributed to a peaceful accommodation.

But the broad purpose of the United Nations goes beyond peacemaking: It can lift human beings from the dark despair of hunger and poverty and disease and ignorance. This report shows that in 1967 several major steps were taken to improve social and economic conditions in many parts of the world--through the U.N. Development Program, the Food and Agriculture Organization, and the many other agencies and commissions which bring hope and compassion to the neglected corners of the world.

The U.N. also acted to extend international law to outer space, and a committee was created to study the unknown benefits-and the unforeseen problems--that will arise from the future use of the ocean depths.

In its 23 years of existence, the United Nations has not always succeeded in its humanitarian goals. But where it has failed, no other creation of man has yet succeeded. The U.N. continues to be man's best hope for a world of peace and progress, where conflict is replaced by cooperation, and violence by the rule of reason.

I commend this report to your attention.


The White House

October 1, 1968

Note: The report is entitled "U.S.. Participation in the UN; Report by the President to the Congress for the Year 1967" (Government Printing Office, 284 pp.).

Lyndon B. Johnson, Message to the Congress Transmitting Annual Report on United States Participation in the United Nations. Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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