Lyndon B. Johnson photo

Toasts of the President and King Hassan II of Morocco

February 09, 1967

Your Majesty, Your Royal Highness, distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen:

Morocco is among America's oldest friends, one of the very first to recognize us as a free nation.

His Majesty and I are continuing a very old tradition.

The messages of our first President and His Majesty's illustrious ancestor, handwritten messages, carried between our two countries by a sailing ship, are very treasured in our National Archives.

Thus, we are ancient friends.

We are also modern partners--ready to stand together before the challenges that face us in modern times.

There is the widening gap between population and food supply.

The United States has proposed that all nations unite in a worldwide war on hunger.

From our talks today, I am more confident than ever that our friends in Morocco are committed to that struggle.

As I said this morning in receiving His Majesty, our ultimate task is to create among the nations of the world a community of peace.

I often read and reread Article I of the United Nations Charter. I believe all of us-and especially those of you who are too young to know how the world felt in 1945--should come to know it line by line.

Its principles govern the actions of American foreign policy from day to day:

--collective measures for the prevention and removal of threats to the peace;

--collective measures for the suppression of acts of aggression;

--adjustment or settlement of international disputes by peaceful means;

--the development of friendly relations among nations based upon respect for the principle of equal rights and the self-determination of peoples;

--international cooperation in solving international problems of an economic, social, cultural, or humanitarian character; and in promoting and encouraging respect for human rights without distinction as to race, sex, language, or religion.

These words were written 22 years ago. In those years Americans have taken more than 200,000 casualties in collective measures to suppress acts of aggression.

All of us, working together, at different times and in different places, have made sure that aggression did not succeed.

The chances for world security are larger, and the hope for world peace is nearer, because tonight aggression has not succeeded.

Meanwhile, in lands and nations throughout the world much has been done to lift the standards of living.

In Western Europe, Latin America, Africa, and Asia, cooperation in economic and social progress is no longer just a matter of words. It is a fact.

So I tell you tonight that despite the terrible burden of war in Southeast Asia, I am confident that we will pass along to the next generation the gifts of hope and opportunity that illuminate Article I of the United Nations Charter.

I think I speak for all my countrymen, Your Majesty, in expressing this hope and making this prediction, and also in expressing to you our best wishes for your long life and for your good health.

It is our fervent prayer that our two countries will continue to do what is right, and continue to do what is needed to guide us to the peace and the 'progress which our talks reaffirmed today.

Ladies and gentlemen, His Majesty the King.

Note: The President proposed the toast at 10:05 p.m. at a dinner in the State Dining Room at the White House. King Hassan responded as follows:

Mr. President, ladies and gentlemen:

We are extremely pleased to have visited the United States once again to meet this country's President, its leading citizens, and to become acquainted with its great people.

We are happy to meet on this occasion, in particular this select group of important men whose responsibilities cover all the various fields of politics, government, and economics.

At the present time, the time characterized by an increase in problems which are so great and serious that they seem sometimes very difficult to solve, we deem it most beneficial that chiefs of state should get together from time to time. This we deem essential because we believe that as a result of their meetings and direct discussions, bonds of cooperation among nations grow stronger on the one hand, and, on the other, the chances for peace in the world become greater.

It is this belief which has prompted us ever since our accession to the throne to visit on a number of continents the chiefs of state whose systems and customs differ from ours. We have seen that differences in systems and differences between races and cultures do not necessarily make it impossible to bring about a rapprochement of points of view, nor do they necessarily prevent the achievement of desired objectives.

It is our pleasure to be visiting again today this friendly country and to meet His Excellency, the President, Mr. Johnson, knowing that our meeting each other will definitely open up before us wider and greater horizons for a free collaboration and cooperation in the interest of our two peoples.

We aspire to benefit from the experience of the people of the United States, which has become an example and an ideal in progress in the economic, agricultural, and industrial development fields.

We also wish to emulate the American techniques and methods which have resulted in prosperity and abundance, particularly as we have been for some years waging a relentless war on underdevelopment. We have been striving with all the power at our command to assure each of our people a life of dignity and value.

Mr. President, you are undoubtedly aware of the fact that along with the efforts we are putting forth for development in our country, we are doing our utmost to strengthen the bases of democracy in our country and to assure our people their freedoms.

In so doing, we believe that any system that does not protect the dignity of the individual, and any system that does not guarantee the freedom of the individual and the freedom of the community is a system that does not serve the interest of peace and stability in the world.

Mr. President, the deliberations we have had, and continue to have, in connection with problems affecting our two countries, and also in connection with international problems, are only an extension of the series of deliberations and consultations, both written and verbal, which our two countries have had for almost two centuries.

These deliberations are characterized by truthfulness and frankness as far as both the word and the tone are concerned. That is the case because it has always been our custom to talk in such manner.

Just as the encounters of the past have been successful, we are sure that our encounter today will be successful. That is because all of us are determined that our relations shall always move from good to better.

Mr. President, permit me, in concluding these remarks, to express my warmest and most sincere best wishes for your personal health and well-being, and for further happiness, prosperity, and progress for the people of the United States.

Ladies and gentlemen, will you join me in standing and rendering respect to His Excellency, the President of the United States, Mr. Johnson.

Lyndon B. Johnson, Toasts of the President and King Hassan II of Morocco Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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