The principles of negotiating and the
analysis of the type of individuals who should be entrusted with important
negotiations as contained herein, have been proven effective by actual
usage at many negotiating tables on behalf of government and private
industry, both at home and abroad. They cannot be faulted on grounds
they will not work—they have worked—with considerable success.
No claim is made that they represent
optimums, but they should be considered as irreducible minimums for the
selection and training of first-class negotiators and the conduct of
It is my sincere hope that those proven
tests and principles of negotiating, will assist both government and
industry to select, test and train potential negotiators which is not
being done today. Having been a government negotiator as a Naval
Officer and as a civilian, I know from first hand experience that many
people are carrying on negotiating functions in both private industry and
government who need assistance and guidance in the fundamentals of
negotiating. My particular desire is to improve the caliber and
ability of persons performing negotiating duties on behalf of the
government of the United States.
More specifically, I feel we should
have, within the Department of State, a hard core of trained, full time
career negotiators who can properly put together the basis of a successful
negotiation, go out from Washington and do a first team job and come home
with no thought or desire of staying in a country and becoming well liked
or popular. Then, and only then, in my opinion, will the American
people know that they are being capably represented at negotiating tables
Additionally, I would like to see an end to the practice of this country
being represented at negotiating tables by part-time non-paid draftees
from outside of government, no matter how able these men may be in their
own company or law firm.
As stated at the outset, the Department of State exists for the primary
purpose of engaging in diplomacy or the conduct of diplomatic relations
with foreign countries. Diplomacy is the art, science or practice of
conducting negotiations between nations, as any dictionary will confirm. This being so, the American people have a right to expect that in the
Department of State would be full time, properly trained, career
individuals who are highly skilled at conducting important international
Yet when the United States needed a man to negotiate a Korean truce, a
man to conduct disarmament negotiations and a man to conduct nuclear
test ban negotiations with foreign countries, our Department of State
had to call upon Wall Street lawyers, instead of being able to send
their own experts at negotiating to those negotiating tables.
This situation makes about as much sense as the Department of Justice
having to call in non-paid lawyers to present the government's cases to
the Supreme Court of the United States instead of having the Office of
the Solicitor General to do so.
Moreover, without such recognized, full time, expert negotiators, the
Department of State not only fails to put a first team at the
negotiating table, but is unable to maintain the necessary continuity of
personnel to negotiate. Their best effort in this connection is in the
field of foreign trade negotiations.
This point was raised by several witnesses during the hearings held on
the Arms Control and Disarmament Act which was passed by the Congress in
September 1961. Senator Humphrey stated as follows:
"But, again, it is my view, and you have stated it very succinctly,
that an agency, whatever may be its form, that has continuity not only
of purpose and of objective under a statute, but also of personnel,
would do very well.
"I have been impressed with the fact that when the Soviets come to
these conferences one generally sees the same people, year after year.
These are people that are fully immersed in
complexities of these problems. At the Surprise Attack Conference, the
Nuclear Test Ban Conference, the General Disarmament Conferences—when
one sees the Soviets there as technicians, as well as the Soviet
representatives, it is pretty much the same crew year in and year out.
"As indicated here this morning, while it is true that we have many
competent technical people—and I am aware of their ability and of their
presence—in the Department of Defense, the AEC, the Department of
Commerce, the Coast and Geodetic Survey and the Department of State, the
top two and three layers of personnel have fluctuated. They come and
they go, and this is too complex a matter for that kind of treatment."
Additionally, Senator Clark stated:
"Of course, one of the most important things about giving statutory
status to this Agency is that it will have continuity.
"That has been said, and I infer it may be true, that really able men
are becoming increasingly unwilling to come down here and involve
themselves on an ad hoc basis in this search for peace through
disarmament, and one only has to look at the unhappy record of the many,
many individuals who have been brought down here on an ad hoc basis to
take a temporary run for their money in this disarmament field to note
how important the continuity is."
Interestingly enough, there was much discussion in the Congress when
this Act was passed on the subject of negotiating disarmament
agreements. The legislative history of this Act shows that the Congress
was unhappy with the way this subject had been handled and they agreed
with the President that a new agency was needed to properly perform the
research, back-stopping, coordination and to be responsible for the
negotiating of the agreement themselves.
Unfortunately, it is clear from the hearings, debates and committee
reports that everyone assumed there were qualified negotiators in the
Department of State to actually conduct the negotiations. No one asked
if there were, who they were, or what training in negotiations is
Had these questions been asked, a whole new field of need would have
opened up. In an effort to contribute to a betterment of that
particular situation, the original of this work was given to the
Director of the U. S. Arms Control and Disarmament Agency.
In addition to our lack of trained career negotiators, I feel that in
most of the problem areas which confront us in the cold war today, we
suffer from a failure to incorporate in our positions enough of that
essential element to any negotiation, namely, flexibility.
When this defect is understood and corrected, we will show greater
signs of maturity in foreign affairs and stop tabling black or white,
rigid minimum positions which leave us with no fall-back position and no
flexibility of movement.
Inflexible, non-negotiable, minimum positions can understandably be
embraced and publicized by crusaders, pressure groups, former enemies,
etc., but mature nations and statesmen have learned that there should
always be fall-back positions which rigid minimum positions make
If we will provide the necessary flexibility and take steps to train a
hard corps of full-time government negotiators, we will indeed move
forward. Needed, however, is a realization that negotiation is truly
an art, and more importantly, that it is a vocation, not an avocation, as
it has been considered in the past.
Gordon Wade Rule 1962
Library of Congress Catalog Card Number 62-21296