The Strategic Arms Limitations Treaty and President Jimmy Carter spoke to a joint session of the United States Congress on Monday (18 June).
GV Congress platform and CU Carter being applauded by Senators before speech (3 shots)
CU President Carter speaking broken by applause (7 shots)
GV PAN Senators applauding Carter
CUs Senator Power reacting to Carter's speech
CU Senator Frank Church (Chairman Foreign Relations Committee) speaking
CARTER: "In the age of the hydrogen bomb, there is no longer any meaningful distinction between global war and global suicide. To prevent the war, we must have strong military forces. We must have strong alliances. We must have a strong national resolve, so strong that no potential adversary would be tempted to attack our country. We have that strength and the strength of the United States is not diminishing. The strength of our great country is growing. And I thank God for it. The Soviet Union will have to destroy or dismantle some two hundred and fifty strategic missile systems. Systems such as...nuclear submarines armed with relatively new missiles, built in the early nineteen-seventies. And aircraft will have to be destroyed by the Soviet Union, carrying their largest multi-megaton bombs. Once dismantled under the provisions of SALT II, these systems cannot be replaced. By contrast, no operational United States forces will have to be reduced. All of our European and other allies, including especially those who are most directly and courageously facing Soviet power, strongly support SALT II. If the Senate were to reject the treaty, America's leadership of this alliance would be compromised. And the alliance itself would be severely shaken."
POWER: "If anything a negative impact, because I believe the speech is intellectually dishonest. The President made assertions that are not supportable. He tried to create an illusion of stability and equatability where none exists in this treaty."
CHURCH: "Well I think that the President should have made it clear to all thinking people that the survival of our civilisation may well depend upon bringing this nuclear arms race under control."
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Background: The Strategic Arms Limitations Treaty and President Jimmy Carter spoke to a joint session of the United States Congress on Monday (18 June). He appealed to the Senate to give the treaty signed in Vienna on Monday the two-thirds majority it needs for ratification. The lines are drawn for a lengthy and almost certainly stormy debate when Congress returns from the annual Independence Day holiday, the Fourth of July. Soviet President Brezhnev's warning to U.S. Senators not to change the SALT treaty sparked an angry response from some Senators. It was only two hours after his return from the Vienna summit with Soviet leader Congressmen and Senators.
SYNOPSIS: An excerpt of President Carter's address is followed by comments by Senator Power and Senator Frank Church, Chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee.