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                                 PAPER I

"The essential qualities of a true Pan Americanism must be the same as 
those which constitute a good neighbor, . . ." 

Address before the special session of the Governing Board of the Pan 
   American Union in celebration of Pan American Day. Washington, D. C., 
   April 12, 1933 

I rejoice in this opportunity to participate in the celebration of "Pan 
American Day" and to extend on behalf of the people of the United States 
a fraternal greeting to our sister American Republics. The celebration 
of "Pan American Day" in this building, dedicated to international good-
will and cooperation, exemplifies a unity of thought and purpose among 
the peoples of this hemisphere. It is a manifestation of the common 
ideal of mutual helpfulness, sympathetic understanding and spiritual 

There is inspiration in the thought that on this day the attention of 
the citizens of the twenty-one Republics of America is focused on the 
common ties-historical, cultural, economic, and social-which bind them 
to one another. Common ideals and a community of interest, together with 
a spirit of cooperation, have led to the realization that the well-being 
of one Nation depends in large measure upon the well-being of its 
neighbors. It is upon these foundations that Pan Americanism has been 

This celebration commemorates a movement based upon the policy of 
fraternal cooperation. In my Inaugural Address I stated that I would 
"dedicate this Nation to the policy of the good neighbor-the neighbor 
who resolutely respects himself and, because he does so, respects the 
rights of others-the neighbor who respects his obligations and respects 
the sanctity of his agreements in and with a world of neighbors." Never 
before has the significance of the words "good neighbor" been so 
manifest in international relations. Never have the need and benefit of 
neighborly cooperation in every form of human activity been so evident 
as they are today. 

Friendship among Nations, as among individuals, calls for constructive 
efforts to muster the forces of humanity in order that an atmosphere of 
close understanding and cooperation may be cultivated. It involves 
mutual obligations and responsibilities, for it is only by sympathetic 
respect for the rights of others and a scrupulous fulfillment of the 
corresponding obligations by each member of the community that a true 
fraternity can be maintained. 

The essential qualities of a true Pan Americanism must be the same as 
those which constitute a good neighbor, namely, mutual understanding, 
and, through such understanding, a sympathetic appreciation of the 
other's point of view. It is only in this manner that we 

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can hope to build up a system of which confidence, friendship and good-
will are the cornerstones. 

In this spirit the people of every Republic on our continent are coming 
to a deep understanding of the fact that the Monroe Doctrine, of which 
so much has been written and spoken for more than a century was and is 
directed at the maintenance of independence by the peoples of the 
continent. It was aimed and is aimed against the acquisition in any 
manner of the control of additional territory in this hemisphere by any 
non-American power. 

Hand in hand with this Pan American doctrine of continental self-
defense, the peoples of the American Republics understand more clearly, 
with the passing years, that the independence of each Republic must 
recognize the independence of every other Republic. Each one of us must 
grow by an advancement of civilization and social well-being and not by 
the acquisition of territory at the expense of any neighbor. 

In this spirit of mutual understanding and of cooperation on this 
continent you and I cannot fail to be disturbed by any armed strife 
between neighbors. I do not hesitate to say to you, the distinguished 
members of the Governing Board of the Pan American Union, that I regard 
existing conflicts between four of our sister Republics as a backward 

Your Americanism and mine must be a structure built of confidence 
cemented by a sympathy which recognizes only equality and fraternity. It 
finds its source and being in the hearts of men and dwells in the temple 
of the intellect. 

We all of us have peculiar problems, and, to speak frankly, the interest 
of our own citizens must, in each instance, come first. But it is 
equally true that it is of vital importance to every Nation of this 
Continent that the American Governments, individually, take, without 
further delay, such action as may be possible to abolish all unnecessary 
and artificial barriers and restrictions which now hamper the healthy 
flow of trade between the peoples of the American Republics. 

I am glad to deliver this message to you, Gentlemen of the Governing 
Board of the Pan American Union, for I look upon the Union as the 
outward expression of the spiritual unity of the Americas. It is to this 
unity which must be courageous and vital in its element that humanity 
must look for one of the great stabilizing influences in world affairs. 

In closing, may I refer to the ceremony which is to take place a little 
later in the morning at which the Government of Venezuela will present 
to the Pan American Union the bust of a great American leader and 
patriot, Francisco de Miranda. I join with you in this tribute. 


In the First Inaugural Address, March 4, 1933, the President said, "In 
the field of world policy, I would dedicate this Nation to the policy of 
the good neighbor.... ". The address of April 12, 1933 was the first 
occasion upon which the peoples of Latin America were addressed directly 
and this policy further developed.