JFK: Accept Our Diverse World as It Is | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED

JFK: Accept Our Diverse World as It Is

Seven months after the Cuban missile crisis, President John F. Kennedy, at American University, laid out his view on how the East-West struggle should be conducted to avoid a catastrophic war that could destroy us both.

Kennedy’s message to Moscow and his fellow Americans:

"If (the United States and the Soviet Union) cannot end now our differences, at least we can make the world safe for diversity."

As George Beebe writes in his essay, "It’s a Big World: The Importance of Diversity in American Foreign Policy," in the July National Interest, Kennedy later elaborated:

"We must recognize that we cannot remake the world simply by our own command. … Every nation has its own traditions, its own values, its own aspirations. … We cannot remake them in our own image."

To Kennedy, a student of history, acceptance of the reality of a world of diverse political systems, many of them unfree, was a precondition of peace on earth and avoidance of a new world war.

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