Adlai Stevenson's Lasting Legacy

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Adlai Stevenson's Lasting Legacy consists of a dozen interrelated chapters by statesmen, scientists, and compatriots who worked and served with Adlai E. Stevenson II of Illinois. Stevenson was a founder of the United Nations in 1945, the 31st Governor of Illinois, twice the Democratic presidential nominee in 1952 and '56, and from 1961 to '65 (inclusive of the Cuba Missile Crisis), the U.S. Permanent Representative to the UN. Included is an essay by the Governor revealing why he had urged a ban on further hydrogen bomb testing during his presidential campaign of 1956. In 1963, with Stevenson's help at the UN, a treaty banning all above ground nuclear testing was finally signed, then a non-proliferation treaty in 1968, and a comprehensive treaty in 1996 (not yet ratified). He knew that in a nuclear age peace was "a condition of human survival," and if ignored, as others also were concerned, that nuclear proliferation could sooner or later get out of hand. He also recognized that in a position of preeminent strength, we needed to lead by example and assistance and with patience collaboratively pursue negotiation, not unilateral action and preemption. In the Epilogue, former Assistant Secretary of State Harlan Cleveland and Senator Adlai Stevenson III urge a return to the diplomacy and politics of the Stevenson years and following, until those of the recent past.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"Democracy for the Guv was not a means to an end. It was the end in itself and propagated in the world by our example and assistance. His politics may no longer be possible today in the multiyear physical and financial endurance contest of the presidential selection process. I hope the American people might restore to their politics the values the Guv exemplified. It was a different world then when he and his compatriots were waging peace, not war, seeking cooperation, not preemption."
--Adlai E. Stevenson III, former U.S. Senator, Illinois

"Today, American foreign policy still requires the wisdom of Adlai Stevenson's thinking and his patented rhetoric that 'America’s role in its own interests and in the wider interests of humanity lies in the patient, unspectacular, and if need be, lonely search for the interests that unite nations, for the international instruments of law and security,' including the development, as in the Congo and elsewhere, of the U.N.’s ‘capacity to act.’"
--Harlan Cleveland, former Assistant Secretary of State and Ambassador to NATO

"The Cuba missile crisis was the most dangerous moment in the history of man because never before had war threatened between two powers that had between them the technical capacity to blow up the planet and all the people on it. After the U.S.-Soviet confrontation at the U.N., President Kennedy wired Stevenson: ‘The United States is fortunate to have your advocacy,’ adding later that Stevenson’s work at the U.N. was of ‘inestimable national importance.’"
--Arthur Schlesinger, Jr., historian and former presidential assistant

"Adlai Stevenson’s early public support for a ban on thermonuclear testing in the 1956 presidential campaign ‘was attacked ferociously.’ But this is the way it is with those who think of the long-term consequences of our actions. He helped create a constituency for a test ban then and to ratify the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty today."
--Dr. Sidney Drell and Ambassador James Goodby, former arms control advisors

"Adlai Stevenson’s Lasting Legacy is, indeed, full of interesting reminiscences of Governor Stevenson and reflections on his career and life. It elucidates so many policy issues that he thought about and framed responses to: the role of international institutions; nuclear weapons; diplomacy; and force.”

--Dr. Henry S. Bienen, President, Northwestern University and former Dean, Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, Princeton University

“In recent conversations about the edited collection of essays on Adlai Stevenson, I was struck by the important parallels with our own times. We think of problems now in global terms, something Ambassador Stevenson did nearly a half century ago. His foresight into issues such as nuclear disarmament, stopping the testing of nuclear weapons that polluted our atmosphere with radiation, and urging nations to work in concert for reasonable solutions to problems are things we now take for granted.”

--Dr. Thomas S. Schwartz, Illinois State Historian

“As a young politician, I drew inspiration from Adlai Stevenson, as did countless others. His legacy continues to inspire generations of Americans, and we owe a debt of gratitude to the editor and contributors to Adlai Stevenson’s Lasting Legacy for exposing admirers, new and old, to Stevenson’s myriad contributions to our times. History, government, international relations--all these disciplines could utilize the test.”

--Lee H. Hamilton, President, Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars and Co-Chairman of the Baker-Hamilton Iraq Study Group

Adlai Stevenson’s Lasting Legacy covers many aspects of Governor Stevenson’s contributions to American political life and American society. Many of the issues that were important during Stevenson’s career continue to be relevant today, none more so than the ethics of public service and the importance of nuclear arms control.”

--Prof. Jack F. Matlock, Jr., Hamilton College, U.S. Ambassador to USSR, 1987-91

“This book tells the inspiring story of Stevenson’s leadership at the United Nations during critical international events such as the Cuba Missile Crisis and the tragic civil war in the Congo. At a time when President Barack Obama promises new U.S. leadership in the UN, the book provides lessons which his new UN Ambassador can make use of in her work. It will also be an important teaching tool for today’s students about this historic period in American foreign policy.”

--Professor Richard N. Gardner, Columbia University Law School, Deputy Asst. Secretary of State for International Organization Affairs, 1961-65

“Interest in Adlai Stevenson and his thoughts remain high. Our McLean County Museum of History in Stevenson’s home town of Bloomington, Illinois was proud to have recently hosted a well-attended lecture on the book, Adlai Steven son’s Lasting Legacy, by former Senator Stevenson and Judge Liebling.”

--Greg Koos, Executive Director, McLean County Museum of History

“Adlai Stevenson was one of the towering figures of the 20th Century. His contributions range from the state level in Illinois to the United Nations, with stops in between for two highly respected presidential campaigns. The editor has assembled a valuable interrelated collection of writings on Stevenson in the book, Adlai Stevenson’s Lasting Legacy, and its usefulness in higher education and informed public discussions is clear.”

--Dr. Naomi B. Lynn, Chancellor Emerita, University of Illinois, Springfield

“As curator of the Adlai Stevenson Papers at the Seeley G. Mudd Manuscript Library at Princeton University, I can attest to the continued interest in Stevenson’s life and work. In the last ten years, the collection has been reviewed over 1500 times by more than 125 researchers. This makes it one of our more frequently used collections. I expect that there will be continued interest in Stevenson, especially in light of the recent election, and that interested persons and scholars will explore aspects of his record and life and that Adlai Stevenson’s Lasting Legacy will be part of their basic bibliography.”

--Daniel J. Linke, Princeton University Archivist and Curator of Public Policy Papers

“As an admirer of Adlai Stevenson since my school hood years, I found that Adlai Stevenson’s Lasting Legacy made me look back and remember things I had forgotten and brought to mind many things I did not know about him. I remember my father saying how much he admired “Ike” but he had to vote for Mr. Stevenson for president because he was such a good governor. I look back and agree with Senator Gene McCarthy’s statement, that if Stevenson had been elected president in 1960, he believed there would have been a diplomatic settlement in Vietnam. I would hope that both of our recent candidates for president have read the book, and I think it should be required reading for future political candidates.”

--Robert Pickerill, Springfield, Illinois

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781403981950
  • Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan
  • Publication date: 10/1/2007
  • Edition description: First Edition
  • Pages: 256
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.50 (h) x 0.68 (d)

Meet the Author

Alvin Liebling is a retired U.S. Administrative Law Judge, former Justice Department and Environmental Protection Agency Attorney, and Northwestern University lecturer. He is currently engaged in state regulatory matters and he resides with his wife Jacquelyn in Chicago.

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Table of Contents

List of Illustrations

Recollections of Eleanor Roosevelt

Introduction Alvin Liebling Liebling, Alvin

Prologue: The Road to Springfield Donald C. Campbell Campbell, Donald C.

Prologue: Quest for the Presidency Eugene J. McCarthy McCarthy, Eugene J.

Pt. I His Concern for Humanity and Its Survival

1 Another Time, Another Politics Adlai E. Stevenson III Stevenson, Adlai E., III 29

2 Would That the Guv Were Here Adele Simmons Simmons, Adele 37

3 Stevenson: Concerned and Brilliant - His Finest Hour Was in Seeking a Nuclear Test Ban Ken Hechler Hechler, Ken 49

4 About the H-Bomb Adlai E. Stevenson II Stevenson, Adlai E., II 57

5 How Adlai Stevenson Helped to End Nuclear-Weapon Testing George Bunn Bunn, George 65

6 Stevenson and the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty Today Sidney D. Drell Drell, Sidney D. James E. Goodby Goodby, James E. 77

Pt. II His Role in the Creation and Mission of the United Nations

7 Adlai Stevenson and Our Times Brian Urquhart Urquhart, Brian 89

8 On a World-Scale Roller Coaster: Adlai Stevenson at the UN, 1961-65 Harlan Cleveland Cleveland, Harlan 97

9 Thoughts of Stevenson's UN Deputy Charles W. Yost Yost, Charles W. Felicity O. Yost Yost, Felicity O. 143

10 The Presidency and Our Role in and with the United Nations William J. vanden Heuvel Heuvel, William J. vanden 153

Pt. III His Integrity and His Politics

11 Stevenson: His Impact on Education, International Afairs, Nixon, and Politics John Brademas Brademas, John 167

12 Remembering Adlai Stevenson Arthur Schlesinger Jr. Schlesinger, Arthur, Jr. 187

13 Adlai's Integrity and Credibility Were Impressive National Resources Carl McGowan McGowan, Carl197

Epilogue: Adlai Stevenson: The Past and a Look at the Future

His Past Is Prologue Alvin Liebling Liebling, Alvin 211

A More SensitiveForeign Policy Harlan Cleveland Cleveland, Harlan 215

A Better Politics Adlai E. Stevenson III Stevenson, Adlai E., III 223

Index 227

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