Statement by the President Announcing the Appointment of Harold Stassen as Special Assistant to the President for Disarmament Studies.
THE MASSIVE resources required for modern armaments, the huge diversion of materials and of energy, the heavy burdens of taxation, the demands for years of service of vast numbers of men, the unprecedented destructive power of new weapons, and the international tensions which powerful armaments aggravate, have been of deep concern to me for many years.
At the same time the tragic consequences of unilateral disarmament, the reckless moves of Hitler when the United States was weak, the Korean aggression when our armed strength had been rapidly diminished, and the vast extent of the armament now centered around the opposing ideology of communism, have been equally apparent to me.
The recent session of the Disarmament Commission of the United Nations has again resulted in no progress and no clear crystallization of thinking on this subject. It has an inseparable relationship to our constant objective of peace.
I have, therefore, established a position as Special Assistant to the President with responsibility for developing, on behalf of the President and the State Department, the broad studies, investigations and conclusions which, when concurred in by the National Security Council and approved by the President, will become basic policy toward the question of disarmament. The position will be of Cabinet rank. When indicated as desirable or appropriate under our Constitutional processes, concurrences will be secured from the Congress prior to specific action or pronouncement of policy.
I have appointed Harold Stassen as a Special Assistant for discharge of this responsibility. He will be expected to take into account the full implications of new weapons in the possession of other nations as well as the United States, to consider future probabilities of armaments, and to weigh the views of the military, the civilians, and the officials of our government and of other governments.
For the time being, and for the presentation of the Mutual Security Program to the Congress, he will also continue to discharge his responsibility as Director of the Foreign Operations Administration, but he will begin this new task promptly upon this appointment.
Dwight D. Eisenhower, Statement by the President Announcing the Appointment of Harold Stassen as Special Assistant to the President for Disarmament Studies. Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/234057