Date: July 16, 1930
Location: Northampton, MA
Summary: Coolidge laments that the world appears to be on track for more war and did not pursue a more peaceful path after World War I
(Original document available here)
The world does not make real progress as fast as some expected. Like backward people with free constitutions reverting to revolution, the nations have made numerous agreements with each other for peace and then turned their attention to preparation for war. In spite of all the high resolutions, all the solemn treaties, all the carefully prepared organizations set up for the peaceable adjustment of international disputes, the world is arming more heavily than before the war, and we hear too many distinct utterances of hostility. This is a disconcerting change from the spirit of the Paris Peace Conference. Then there was disagreement about reparations and allocation of territory, but absolute accord by friend and foe alike on the principle of reduction and limitation of armaments and the maintenance of peace.
It was so nominated in the Treaty of Versailles. Germany consented to disarm on the agreement of the other parties to the treaty to disarm. Yet only the United States has proposed and secured any practical agreements for limitation of armaments. It has not been possible to secure much real reduction. The war curbed for a time but has not greatly changed the spirit of the nations.
Citation: Calvin Coolidge Says: Dispatches Written by Former-President Coolidge and Syndicated to Newspapers in 1930-1931 (Calvin Coolidge Memorial Foundation)
The Coolidge Foundation gratefully acknowledges the volunteer efforts of Fr. Stephen Lawson who prepared this document for digital publication.