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Rusk TTTT, Dean Rusk interviewed by Richard Rusk and Milner Ball, Part 2, 1985 September

Richard B. Russell Library for Political Research and Studies, University of Georgia
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00:00:00 - Integrity / Lyndon B. Johnson / Senator Russell

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Partial Transcript: When you're in top positions in the public service in Washington, you soon discover the distinction between men of honor and men of the other kind.

Segment Synopsis: Dean Rusk discusses his relationships with Senator Richard Russell and President Lyndon Johnson and describes them as men with integrity.

Keywords: Andrei Gromyko; Chou En-lai; Richard Russell; civil rights

00:08:49 - Teaching International Law

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Partial Transcript: I've got one final question for me, Pop, and that is: Until you took this job as Professor of International Law at Georgia, with the brief period where you were a student of law at Berkeley, you were more or less sort of a practitioner of international law.

Segment Synopsis: Dean Rusk discusses moving to Georgia to teach international law at the University of Georgia, and talks about his teaching methods.

Keywords: Francis Wilcox; John Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies; Socratic Method; grading distributions

00:22:42 - Complying with International Law

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Partial Transcript: Pop, my question is this: Why should the United States, or any government really, comply with treaties in international law? Go ahead.

Segment Synopsis: Dean Rusk explains the benefits of complying with treaties of international law and General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) principles. He also talks about how public opinion affects international law.

Keywords: How Nations Behave; Bay of Pigs; Lewis Henkin; pacta sunt servanda

00:30:50 - Violations of international law for humanitarian intervention

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Partial Transcript: There have been times when we have chosen to violate treaties, international law, at least not adhere fully to the either the language or the intent of those treaties and laws.

Segment Synopsis: Dean Rusk describes times when international law can be violated for the concept of humanitarian intervention. He explains that this concept is easily subject to abuse and has to be used carefully.

Keywords: Dominican Republic; Israel; Organization of American States; Unified Arab Command

00:39:22 - Violations of international law during the 1960s

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Partial Transcript: I'm trying to think of other instances where we may have violated international law during your tenure. What about John Kennedy's decision to increase American advisers beyond the MAAG [Military Assistance Advisory Group] limits back in '60?

Segment Synopsis: Dean Rusk talks about being the Secretary of State during the Kennedy administration and some of things that violated international law during that time. He recalls personally vetoing things that he felt violated international law.

Keywords: CIA; Fidel Castro; Llewellyn Thompson; Military Assistance Advisory Group; U-2; Vatican

00:50:25 - Violations of international law to protect vital interests / Influence of public opinion

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Partial Transcript: Getting back to this question of why it is that nations occasionally violate treaties and international law. What about the protection of "vital interests"?

Segment Synopsis: Dean Rusk describes cases in which international law might be violated to protect vital interests such as oil dependency in western nations. He also talks about how sometimes public opinion supports an action that would violate international law.

Keywords: John F. Kennedy; Richard Nixon; Watergate

00:55:01 - Rusk Family Life

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Partial Transcript: I want to know--This is my last question: Were you a weed? What was it like being a weed?

Segment Synopsis: Richard Rusk describes what it was like growing up with Dean Rusk and talks about what it was like being a "weed" (reference from part one of this interview--see hyperlink below). Dean Rusk explains how he tried to keep his political life separate from his family life.

Keywords: Cherokee County; Virginia Rusk