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(b) The term "maintenance" in current treaties has been officially recognized by the Panama Government as including “expansion and new construction" for the existing canal.
A detailed discussion of the meaning of "maintenance” will be found in the Senate debate when approving the 1936 Hull-Alfaro Treaty. (Cong. Record 76th Cong., 1st Sess.) vol. 84, pt. 9 (July 24, 1939) P. 9834.)
As examples of the exercise of this power there are two important ones: (1) the 1939 Third Locks Projects, which was suspended in May 1942 after expending some $76 million chiefly on huge lock site excavations at Gatun and Miraflores for larger locks; and (2) the enlargement of Gaillard Cut, which was completed on August 15, 1970, at a cost of some $95 million. These two projects together represent a total expenditure of some $171 million toward the major modernization of the existing canal.
In paragraph 4 of the August 1971 State Department circular, "Background on Panama Canal Treaty Negotiations," it will be noted that our present unrestricted right for expansion and new construction is being jeopardized by present treaty negotiations. The statement in this circular that the “right to expand the existing canal" is "essential to U.S. agreement to a new treaty," with the "exact conditions” to accompany it “to be determined by negotiations" clearly portends a substantial surrender of existing rights that will subject the United States to future extortion. Our full sovereignty over the Canal Zone, which includes the rights for expansion and new construction for the maintenance, operation, sanitation, and protection of the existing canal, certainly should not be subject to negotiation.
The United States would never have undertaken the heavy responsibility for the construction and operation of the Panama Canal except for the grant of complete sovereignty over the enterprise, which includes the Canal Zone. It is manifestly unjust and unrealistic for Panama now to claim any sovereignty over it, especially since more than $5 billion have been expended in acquiring the Canal Zone from Panama, the construction of the canal and its defense, not a cent of which Panama offers to pay. Hence, any claim for the surrender of the Canal Zone and canal without repayment of our taxpayers is without any legal or moral basis.
Though pending sovereignty resolutions are broad enough to cover the rights for expansion and new construction may I suggest that the committee report emphasize that these rights along with full sovereignty over the canal enterprise, which includes the Canal Zone, are not subject to negotiation without the specific authorization of the Congress. Sincerely yours,
DANIEL J. FLOOD, M.C.
Mr. FASCELL. Our next witness is the Honorable John R. Rarick, Representative from the State of Louisiana.
John, if you have a prepared statement, we will be glad to accept it for the record, and you may proceed extemporaneously or any other
way you like.
STATEMENT OF HON. JOHN R. RARICK, A REPRESENTATIVE IN
CONGRESS FROM THE STATE OF LOUISIANA
Mr. RARICK. Thank you very much.
Mr. Chairman and members of the subcommittee, I heard some of Congressman Flood's testimony. Of course, I do support the Congressman. I think he has quite eloquently and eminently stated the position and the thinking of probably the majority of the American people.
I am here today as a cosponsor of House Resolution 540, House Resolution 185, and other related resolutions, to urge the committee to maintain U.S. sovereignty over the Panama Canal Zone.
More than a half century ago, the Russian revolutionist, Nikolai Lenin, recognizing the Caribbean Sea as the Mediterranean Sea of the Americas, selected that strategic region to be transformed into a Red Lake. Theorizing that if Cuba, Guatemala, and Panama could be taken, he felt the area would fall, separating the two Americas. In fact, one of the important matters discussed by the Reds in 1917— this is nothing new as noted by the writings of John Reed, notorious Harvard Communist, who covered the November Revolution—was internationalization of the Panama Canal. This from his book entitled “Ten Days That Shook the World,” Modern Library, 1935,
The major tragedies resulting from World War II were the enslavement by Red power of the peoples of eastern Europe and mainland China, which made the continued control of the Suez and Panama Canals by Western powers more necessary than ever.
As has been repeatedly emphasized by our most able and scholarly colleague from Pennsylvania, Mr. Flood, whose contributions on Isthmian canal policy questions over many years, what happens at one of these interoceanic canals has its influence on the other. (H. Doc. 474, 89th Congress.)
In July 1954, Great Britain arrived at an agreement with Egypt for a phased-out evacuation of British forces from the Suez Canal Zone over a period of 20 months. This withdrawal had quick consequences. On July 26, 1956, the Egyptian Government promptly nationalized the Suez Canal, creating a world crisis. Panamanian demagogs thereupon started thinking along similar lines, and sent emissaries to Egypt to find out how to do likewise at Panama. Egypt thus sent agents to the Isthmus.
Though the attempted Communist takeover of Guatemala in 1954 failed, the pattern of infiltration and subversion by the international Communist conspiracy by early 1957 had reached alarming proportions. In 1959, Castro revolutionaries, encouraged by the New York Times and like opinion distorters, and aided by suspect elements in the U.S. Department of State, succeeded in overthrowing the Cuban Government and in establishing a Red dictatorship over that strategically located island, which covers the Atlantic approaches to the Panama Canal and now serves as a base of operations against constitutional governments in other Latin American countries.
Two such State Department personnel, who have been identified as aiding Castro in the Communist seizure of Cuba by dereliction of duty through suppression of facts, are William Arthur Wieland and Roy Richard Rubottom. Jr. Both are now retired on full pension.
Wieland in 1959 was in charge of the Caribbean American desk at the State Department. He blocked incoming reports revealing Castro's Communist involvements.
Rubottom in 1959 served as Assistant Secretary of State for InterAmerican Affairs. He had previously been assigned to the U.S. Embassy in Bogotá, Colombia, when Castro was arrested during Communist riots in that country and denounced as a Communist agentfacts which he failed to report. He is now vice president of Southern Methodist University.
Having weakened the juridical structure of the Panama Canal by compromises to Panama in the 1935 and 1955 treaties, our Government faced a series of incursions into the Canal Zone by Panamanian radicals, but did not take prompt measures to apprehend the perpetrators. Encouraged by the ill-advised display of the Panamanian flag in the Canal Zone in 1960, against the overwhelming opposition of the House and the intent of the law, the Isthmian situation culminated in January 1964 in highly organized mob assaults on the Canal Zone that had to be repulsed by our Army in the Isthmus. This operation was not a commitment of U.S. Armed Forces against Panamanian invaders, as recently stated in a U.S. Department of State memorandum, but rather an aşsault of Red-led mobs on our soldiers in the Canal Zone who had no other recourse than to defend themselves.
The January 1964 attack on the Canal Zone was not an ordinary riot, but a carefully planned invasion facilitated by the Panamanian Government which ordered its own national guard to remain in its barracks. The disorders were aimed at forcing the United States to agree to renegotiate the 1903 treaty that had granted full sovereign rights, power, and authority over the Canal Zone and Panama Canal to the United States.
In this sanguinary operation Panama was successful, for the President of the United States, on the advice of appeasement minded officials from the State Department, supinely agreed to renegotiate. When the texts of the resulting treaties were published in 1967, after completion of prolonged negotiations, an aroused American people protested so strongly that they were never signed.
Now Panamanian and U.S. negotiators are trying to arrive at a new set of treaties that, among other benefits, would cede sovereignty over the Canal Zone to Panama and provide for the operation of the canal by a binational authority. The same man, Robert B. Anderson, a New York banker and former Secretary of the Treasury, who headed our negotiating team for the discredited 1967 treaties, is again our chief negotiator for the present negotiations. In fact, the present negotiations are the same bankrupt policies of the Johnson administration now being carried forward by the new Nixon administration.
To say the least, the naivete reflected by such actions by our Government is beyond comprehension and raises the question, "Who are the people conducting our Canal Zone policy, and whom are they representing?" If we should surrender or relax our exclusive control over the Panama Canal and the Canal Zone, we should expect Soviet power to step into the resulting vacuum, giving that tyrannical system control over the world canal routes, both the Suez and Panama.
At this point, Mr. Chairman, I would emphasize the striking parallels between what occurred at the Suez Canal and what is being attempted at Panama. These common factors include such things as the establishment of governments friendly to the Soviet, the giving of economic or military aid, the use of worldwide hostile propaganda against Western powers, the use of terror, and the creation of crises when these powers are heavily involved in distant areas, such as Vietnam or Korea.
Recent changes in the Panamanian Government have placed radicals in key positions, Soviet technicians have reportedly arrived in Panama, and its Government maintains itself in power by terror and control of the press.
One aim of the Panama Canal revolutionary government is to end the existence of the Canal Zone because it has given asylum to political refugees from its terror.
In the event of a countercoup in Panama, which could occur at any time, I would even predict that General Torrijos, the Castro of Panama, would be among the first to seek sanctuary in our Canal Zone, notwithstanding his present effort to do away with that haven of refuge against assassination.
Under Secretary of State for Inter-Americans Affairs, Charles Meyer, is credited with saying that the time of U.S. military intervention in other countries is past. Even the most serious circumstances, not even Communist takeover of a country, would change the U.S. attitude, Meyer is reported to have said in the El Panama America newspaper for July 23, of this year. He added that if the Communists should cut off Venezuelan oil shipments or if the Santo Domingo incident should be repeated or if the Communists take over Panama, the United States would not intervene.
Eight-column headlines at the top of the front page read: "There Will Be No U.S. Military Intervention in Panama, States Under Secretary Meyer."
The Panama Canal is one of the key strategic points in the world, and a focal point for power politics. Because of its importance to the entire free world, under no circumstances should it fall under Soviet domination directly or control by a Sovietized satellite. The only way to prevent that is for the United States to continue its undiluted control. Surrendering U.S. sovereignty over the Panama Canal Zone makes about as much sense as surrendering sovereignty over Puerto Rico, Virgin Islands, Alaska, Hawaii, or even my native State of Louisiana.
For the above and many other reasons that need not be repeated, I recommend prompt and favorable action by the subcommittee on the pending sovereignty resolutions.
Mr. Chairman, in partial substantiation of what I have briefly reviewed, I wish to include as a part of my testimony three recent statements, two by distinguished officers of the Armed Forces, and the third prepared by the interoceanic canal negotiations of the State Department on the background of the present canal treaty negotiations. This last document is a glaring example of self-contradictory and superficial double talk and evasion that is typical these days of our Government posture against the ever-increasing and continuing Communist threat.
I thank you.
Mr. FASCELL. Without objection, the statements referred to will be included in the record.
(The statements follow :)
PANAMA CANAL IN GREAT DANGER
(By Ira C. Eaker, Lieutenant General, USAF, Ret.) There are alarming and unmistakeable signs that the Panama Canal is in imminent danger from attack or sabotage.
There is a striking resemblance between the Red game plan for seizure of the Suez Canal to events now unfolding in Panama. This no doubt flows from the fact that both plans were produced in the same place the Kremlin.
Prominent elements of the Suez seizure plan included establishment of a puppet or friendly government in the area; giving economic and military aid ; training military and guerrilla forces; waging a supporting world-wide propaganda campaign against colonialism and imperialism; brutally suppressing all opposition; and waiting until protective Free World, western powers were heavily preoccupied elsewhere.
In Panama, many of the elements of this same plan are now in evidence. Brig. General Omar Torrijos of the Panama National Guard executed a military coup in 1968, and has since exiled a popular and freely elected President, installed a puppet President, cancelled the constitution, discharged the congress and appointed to the cabinet and judiciary close friends and fellow-revolutionaries, all members of the Communist party or dedicated Marxists.
The six daily newspapers, long since intimidated, now obediently print diatribes against "the capitalist running dogs of the imperialist U.S.," demanding immediate return of the Canal to the sovereignty and control of Panama.
Torrijos was a friend and admirer of the Cuban revolutionary Che Guevarra. He has been collaborating and conspiring with Castro and Cuban guerrilla teams have been training native sabotage teams in the Panama jungles adjacent to the Canal.
Russian technicians lately have been arriving in Panama no doubt to train Panamanians in the operation of the Canal, as they trained Egyptians in the management of the Suez Canal.
Torrijos' plan appears to involve several successive stages. First, an effort will be made diplomatically to induce the U.S. to release soverignty over the Canal Zone to Panama by negotiating a new treaty to replace that of 1903 which charged the U.S. with custody and defense of the Zone. These negotiations began last month and are now in progress, and a world-wide propaganda campaign supporting this effort is now reaching crescendo.
Appeals will also be made to the Organization of American States and ultimately to the United Nations.
If diplomacy and propaganda do not produce the desired results, an attempt will be made to seize the Canal Zone by military force or to sabotage the Canal by a guerrilla effort.
The Reds also are well aware that the U.S. has been heavily engaged in Vietnam, and that severe cuts are being made in U.S. defense budgets. They may estimate that the President, not wanting to jeopardize SALT or his pending negotiations with China, would be reluctant or hesitant to act decisively against a military or guerrilla attack on the Canal Zone. They may reckon the time ripe to accomplish the seizure or disruption of the Panama Canal, the most damaging single act, against the U.S. and the Free World, economically and militarily, short of a direct nuclear attack.
Our defense forces in the Canal Zone are at the lowest levels ever. Panama's National Guard greatly outnumbers our combat strength there.
Several concerned Congressmen, notably Daniel J. Flood (D. Pa.), have made a determined effort to warn our leadership and our people of the hazard to the Panama Canal.
The first evidence of concern from the Executive Branch was the recent and wise decision of the President to disapprove a recommendation to deactivate the Southern Command, with headquarters in the Canal Zone, as an economy measure.
Panama Canal defenses should be heavily reinforced and completely modernized without delay.
[From Alert, July 15, 1971)
PROVIDING AID AND COMFORT TO THE ENEMY IS TREASON
(By P. A. Del Valle)
1. The Canal Zone and Panama Canal, owned, governed and operated by the United States with full sovereign rights, power and authority, is the most strategic crossroads of the Western Hemisphere, indispensible for interoceanic commerce and the security of the United States. They were acquired by the United States under treaty with Panama following its secession from Colombia of its own free