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Rusk FF, Interview with Dean Rusk, circa 1985

Richard B. Russell Library for Political Research and Studies, University of Georgia
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00:00:03 - Law Day speech

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Partial Transcript: Some interesting events occurred just at the end of Dean's term of Secretary of State--second term--that impact on Georgia and immediately after.

Segment Synopsis: Rusk talks about when he was giving a speech at the annual meeting of the Atlanta Bar Association. He mentions how the State Department had a policy to not cater to segregated situations, which encouraged the integration of the Atlanta Bar Association

Keywords: 1968; Atlanta Bar Association; Biltmore Hotel; Law Day; Milner Ball; Vietnam War; integration; picketers; segregation

00:02:52 - Becoming a professor at the University of Georgia

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Partial Transcript: Then when we were coming up on the end of service in Washington, Lindsey Cowen, Dean of the Law School here, talked to me about coming here as a professor of international law.

Segment Synopsis: Rusk talks about the process of becoming a law professor at the University of Georgia.

Keywords: Berkeley; Harry Truman; Harvard Law School; Lindsey Cowen; Robert 'Bob' McWhorter; University of Georgia; international law; professor; regents

00:10:08 - Supreme Court nomination / Arthur Goldberg / Role of Supreme Court Justices in politics

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Partial Transcript: Pop, do you care to read your comment into this record that LBJ at one time considered offering you the Supreme Court position and you, yourself, raised the point that you didn't have a law degree?

Segment Synopsis: Rusk talks about how President Johnson offered him a Supreme Court nomination. Rusk also talks about Arthur Goldberg and his as a Supreme Court Justice and a UN Ambassador. He later talks about how many of the Supreme Court justices try to distance themselves on politics, but there is always an exception to this rule.

Keywords: Abe Fortas; Adlai Stevenson; Arthur Goldberg; Earl Warren; Homer Thornberry; Hugo Black; Labor Department; Lyndon B Johnson; Supreme Court; William Douglas

00:19:31 - Supreme Court cases and the application of the law

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Partial Transcript: I lost a number of cases before the Supreme Court on some of these civil rights issues.

Segment Synopsis: Rusk later talks about some of the Supreme Court cases he lost. He also talks about the application of the law and how it can vary in different cases.

Keywords: Beys Afroyim; Civil Rights; Constitution; Israel; Justice Department; Lady Cathcart; Punch; Supreme Court; administration; foreign election; moral turpitude

00:28:19 - Immigration legislation / Senate Foreign Relations Committee

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Partial Transcript: You've testified about immigration.

Segment Synopsis: Rusk talks about the reformation of the immigration laws in the United States. Rusk then talks about when he had to appear in front of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee to discuss foreign aid, but instead, he was hammered with questions about Vietnam.

Keywords: Capitol Hill; Justice Department; Lyndon B Johnson; President Johnson; State Department; Ted Kennedy; immigration; race relations; visas

00:35:39 - Race relations at Davidson, Oxford, and Mills

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Partial Transcript: Pop, my question is: What influence did race relations or civil rights have while you were at Davidson College, or perhaps Oxford?

Segment Synopsis: Rusk talks about how Davidson College was a all-male white school, and he talks about the segregation in the city of Mills. Rusk later talks about the diversity at Oxford University, and he mentions how he became a racial minority when he went to war in the China-Burma-India theatre. Rusk has been racially tolerant ever since his childhood, and he took the diversity at Oxford University for granted.

Keywords: Chain Kai-shek; Davidson College; Mills College; Oxford University; bank; diversity; race relations; segregation; student body; tenant farmers

00:44:32 - Work with Robert Patterson / Integration of the Armed Forces

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Partial Transcript: Talk a little bit about your experience or involvement with writing the order that integrated the armed forces.

Segment Synopsis: Rusk talks about how the Chinese forces did not want black soldiers because they believed that the US was sending their second-class soldiers. Once the US army began to integrate soldiers, then the problem with the Chinese disappeared. Rusk also talks about his work with Robert Patterson in integrating the Armed Forces.

Keywords: China; China-Burma-India; G-2; OSS; Ralph Bunche; Robert Patterson; War Department; lunchroom

00:53:55 - Brown v Board of Education / African American Friends

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Partial Transcript: Did the Supreme Court decision Brown v. Board of Education have any effect on you, or were you involved with that?

Segment Synopsis: Rusk talks about how the Rockefeller Foundation supported the decision of the Brown v Board of Education case. Rusk later talks about some of his friends who happen to be black such as Carl Rowan and Dr. Benjamin Mays. Then Rusk talks briefly about the advancement of blacks in the State Department.

Keywords: Brown v Board of Education; Carl Rowan; Dr Benjamin Mays; General Education Board; Rockefeller Foundation; State Department; foreign service; race relations