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forward discussions and friendships already formed. Besides we have the opportunity of making new friends, thus forming an everenlarged circle of men and women in the family of American nations. This is the basis for the confidence and cooperation which facilitates a frank and full exchange of views and the growth of common policy.
Yesterday we began work in committees. From now on duties of the Conference will have first call upon our time, day and night, seven days a week. I believe that we will strengthen and perfect the arrangements worked out between us in former conferences, and move onward toward our purposes of international peace, order, economic security, and friendly cooperation.
Let me express first the clear impression that I have already gained from my conversations with my colleagues from other countries—that there exists between us a measure of moral and spiritual unity far greater than ever before.
This is the foundation of all forms of solidarity. In our measurement and attitude toward contemporary affairs and future prospects there are exhibited broader visions and broader views than sometimes prevailed in the past; that excessive and short-sighted nationalism which always exists to greater or lesser extent seems definitely to have subsided in the face of a grave world situation. I sense much less rivalry, whether between countries or individuals, than in previous conferences, and a much greater sense of common interest and desire. A general spirit of harmony reveals itself in all our preliminary work. A keener and more informed interest than heretofore in the fundamental conditions and problems, both in this hemisphere and in the outside world, gives greater vitality to our meetings than ever before.
This is a good augury of our capability to deal with our problems on the basis of principles developed in our previous meetings, of which there have been two in the past five years. The Seventh Conference met in Monte
video in 1933 at a time when a world economic crisis was causing great social and political instability. The countries of the Western Hemisphere had not escaped these disturbances. Further, the actual situation prevailing on the American Continent when the Montevideo Conference met was not encouraging. A bitter war was in progress between two of the American republics. There were serious breaches in the unanimity and mutual confidence among us.
Taking the situation as it existed the Montevideo Conference contributed much to the solution of these difficulties. The agreements signed there condemned the use of force as an instrument of national policy and placed the American republics solemnly on record in support of a world-order based upon law and justice. They also recorded the intention of these republics to work toward the elimination of excessive barriers to commerce and to seek to develop trade on a basis of equal opportunity, which is the best basis of mutual economic benefit and freedom from the arbitrary dicta
tions and discriminations connected with other types of trade arrangements.
The situation on the American Continent became immeasurably brighter when hostilities in the Chaco ceased in June 1935, and the Republics of Bolivia and Paraguay initiated peace negotiations at Buenos Aires with the friendly assistance of representatives of six of the other American republics. This work was successfully completed with the signature in July 1938 of a Treaty of Peace, Friendship, and Boundaries between Paraguay and Bolivia. The peaceful settlement of this century-old quarrel is a challenge to all who doubt that the most difficult international disputes are subject to settlement without the use of armed force or other means of violence. It left friendliness and constructive opportunity where there was before a terrible and cruel struggle.
Encouraging developments of the Chaco peace conference made opportune the convocation of a special conference for the maintenance of peace at Buenos Aires in December
1936. Events in other parts of the world brought forcibly to the attention of the American republics the urgent necessity of making even more effective their action to assure the maintenance of peace in this hemisphere. Thus at this conference all of our governments found themselves in unanimous agreement regarding this undertaking. The arrangements for dealing with questions of disputes between the American republics were further improved. Of no less importance was the common recognition shown of the fact that any menace from without to the peace of our continent concerns all of us and therefore is properly a subject of consultation and cooperation. This is reflected in the instruments adopted by the conference.
Now at this meeting in Lima we have undertaken to discuss the implementation of agreements already reached and to provide further effective measures for consultation and cooperation in all matters of common concern.
The advancement in our relations which I have sketched rests upon the common accept