On this day in 1962, Vice-President Lyndon Johnson helped dedicate the Eisenhower Library in Abilene, Kansas.
On this day in 1965, President Johnson gave a radio and television report to the American people on the situation in the Dominican Republic.
“Earlier today I ordered two additional battalions—2,000 extra men—to proceed immediately to the Dominican Republic. In the meeting that I just concluded with the congressional leaders— following that meeting I directed the Secretary of Defense and the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff to issue instructions to land an additional 4,500 men at the earliest possible moment. The distribution of food to people who have not eaten for days, the need of medical supplies and attention for the sick and wounded, the health requirements to avoid an epidemic because there are hundreds that have been dead for days that are now in the streets, and that further protection of the security of each individual that is caught on that island require the attention of the additional forces which I have ordered to proceed to the Dominican Republic.
“In addition, our servicemen have already, since they landed on Wednesday night, evacuated 3,000 persons from 30 countries in the world from this little island. But more than 5,000 people, 1,500 of whom are Americans—the others are foreign nationals—are tonight awaiting evacuation as I speak. We just must get on with that job immediately.
“The American nations cannot, must not, and will not permit the establishment of another Communist government in the Western Hemisphere. This was the unanimous view of all the American nations when, in January 1962, they declared, and I quote: ‘The principles of communism are incompatible with the principles of the inter-American system.’
“This is what our beloved President John F. Kennedy meant when, less than a week before his death, he told us: ‘We in this hemisphere must also use every resource at our command to prevent the establishment of another Cuba in this hemisphere.’
“This is and this will be the common action and the common purpose of the democratic forces of the hemisphere. For the danger is also a common danger, and the principles are common principles.
“So we have acted to summon the resources of this entire hemisphere to this task. We have sent, on my instructions night before last, special emissaries such as Ambassador Moscoso of Puerto Rico, our very able Ambassador Averell Harriman, and others to Latin America to explain the situation, to tell them the truth, and to warn them that joint action is necessary. We are in contact with such distinguished Latin American statesmen as Romulo Betancourt and Jose Figueres. We are seeking their wisdom and their counsel and their advice. We have also maintained communication with President Bosch, who has chosen to remain in Puerto Rico.
“We have been consulting with the Organization of American States, and our distinguished Ambassador, than whom there is no better, Ambassador Bunker, has been reporting to them at great length all the actions of this Government and we have been acting in conformity with their decisions.”
On this day in 1965, President Johnson had a telephone conversation with W. Tapley Bennett, the American Ambassador to the Dominican Republic.
The two men discussed the continued violence in the Dominican Republic; the OAS delegation; Jose Mora’s meetings; and problems with communications. President Johnson stressed the importance of press coverage. They also discussed the status of evacuation; casualties; OAS approval of a military link-up; and a possible meeting with Juan Bosch.
On this day in 1941, a rally was held opening Lyndon B. Johnson’s 1941 U.S. Senate Campaign in San Marcos, Texas.
On this day in 1965, President Johnson had a telephone conversation with Clarence Mitchell, representative of the NAACP.
The two men talked about the poll tax amendment to the Voting Rights Bill and the President’s support for a ban on the poll tax; and his voting record on the poll tax; lowering the voting age to 18; Attorney General Nicholas Katzenbach’s concerns about the constitutionality of the voting rights bill; and the appointments of Samuel Jackson, Marjorie Lawson, and Patricia Harris.
On this day in 1965, President Johnson had a conversation with Texas Congressman George Mahon that was recorded in the Oval Office.
President Johnson lobbied Mahon for passage of a supplemental military appropriations bill saying it would show congressional support for Vietnam policy. Mahon expressed concerns about terrorism. President Johnson defended U.S. action in the Dominican Republic and the OAS role there. The two men discussed enemy casualties in Vietnam.
On this day in 1965, President Johnson signed a resolution appropriating funds for military requirements in Viet-Nam.
“It is not the money but it is the message that matters, and that message is simple. I think that message is honest and clear: we will do whatever must be done to insure the safety of South Viet-Nam from aggression. We will use our power with restraint, and we will use it with all the wisdom that we can command. But we will use it.”
On this day in 1964, from Atlanta, Georgia, President Johnson addressed the public on live television and radio. That afternoon, he went to the Rose Garden to participate and speak during the ceremony honoring J. Edgar Hoover’s 40th anniversary as Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation. He signed Executive Order 11154 “Exemption of J. Edgar Hoover From Compulsory Retirement For Age.” That night, LBJ attended a private birthday party for former President Harry S. Truman.
On this day in 1967, President Johnson made Remarks at the Democratic Congressional Dinner.
“I am glad to see so many unarmed Democrats in one meeting tonight.
“There may even be a couple of Republicans here. I notice you are charging Republican prices.
“But there couldn't be many more than a couple, because I see so many familiar Democratic faces—all of them members of our quiet, orderly, completely unified Democratic Party.
“As the Duke of Wellington once said, ‘If you can believe that, you can believe anything.’
“But if the description seems incredible—there’s that word again—the pleasure of this evening is self-evident. We Democrats like to be together, and we like to fight. We always start by fighting each other. That gets us ready—it says here—to take on the other party.
“Judging by the results over the past 35 years, I think that you will have to conclude that that is a pretty good system—though it can be a little strenuous at times.
“I don’t intend to get too serious in an after-dinner atmosphere. ‘Larry O’Brien’s Law’ states that the more expensive the meal, the less expansive the speakers.
“But I think it is vital—at a time when many are harping on the alleged disunity of our party—to reemphasize some of the things we have in common as Democrats.
“There is creative work to be done by the 90th Congress, as well as laws to be written, laws that will:
“—give us stronger tools to control air pollution,
“—make our streets safer, and our criminal justice system fairer and more effective,
“—provide greater economic security for millions of older Americans,
“—and strengthen our efforts to secure the rights of all Americans.
“These proposals represent my notion of what is needed now—if we are to meet the needs of the people of America now. I welcome your ideas; I welcome your innovations and your responses to those needs. Many of the greatest achievements of the 89th Congress were not written at the western end of Pennsylvania Avenue. The same can and should be true of the 90th Congress."
On this day in 1967, President Johnson met with Vice President C. K. Yen, Republic of China.
On this day in 1964, President Johnson addressed the audience at the Dedication of the John F. Kennedy Cultural Center. He unveiled the plaque for the JFK Cultural Center in Nassau County, New York.
On this day in 1966, President Johnson made Remarks Upon Presenting the Big Brother of the Year Award to the Reverend Billy Graham.
“Dr. Graham, when they told me you were going to receive the Big Brother of the Year Award, I recalled some lines from a hymn that I used to sing as a boy. I believe they are appropriate for the occasion today:
“‘Throw out the life-line across the dark wave; there is a brother whom someone should save…’
“I’m not going to ask you to sing it, but I’m sure you remember the rest of the words.
“Few men have thrown out as many lifelines as Billy Graham. They are lifelines of hope, of faith, of guidance, and of spiritual strength. Today, one of those lifelines is coming back—with a word of thanks from a group of very dedicated Americans.
“The Good Book tells us that, ‘Whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.’ In your case, Dr. Graham, it is a rich harvest of satisfaction—and gratitude.
“Big Brothers of America are honoring you today for your leadership and influence among the youth of our Nation. I know something about that leadership—and I have seen some of the results of that influence. It is no small thing.
“A man’s character is molded in his youth, or, as Wordsworth once wrote, ‘The child is father of the man.’
“I do not despair of our youth. I think our young men and women in the Peace Corps, in Vietnam, and in our community action poverty programs, have established themselves as the finest generation in the history of this Nation, but it’s reassuring to know there are great men like you who have helped so many of them along the early part of their journey.”
On this day in 1937, LBJ met President Franklin D. Roosevelt in Galveston, Texas, and rode on the presidential train with FDR and his entourage.
On this day in 1966, President Johnson made Remarks at the Woodrow Wilson School for Public and International Affairs, Princeton University. The President was awarded an honorary degree of Doctor of Laws.
“As I look upon America this morning from the platform of one of her greatest universities, I see, instead, a nation whose might is not her master but her servant.
“I see a nation conscious of lessons so recently learned:
“That security and aggression, as well as peace and war, must be the concerns of her foreign policy.
“That a great power influences the world just as surely when it withdraws its strength, as when it exercises its strength.
“That aggression must be deterred where possible and met early when undertaken.
“That the application of military force, when it becomes necessary, must be for limited purposes and must be tightly controlled.
“Surely it is not a paranoid vision of America’s place in the world to recognize that freedom is still indivisible—still has adversaries whose challenge must be answered.
THE STERNEST CHALLENGE
“Today, of course, as we meet here, that challenge is sternest—at the moment—in Southeast Asia. Yet there, as elsewhere, our great power is also tempered by great restraint. What nation has announced such limited objectives or such willingness to remove its military presence once those objectives are secured and achieved? What nation has spent the lives of its sons and vast sums of its fortune to provide the people of a small, striving country the chance to elect a course that we might not ourselves choose?
The aims for which we struggle are aims which, in the ordinary course of affairs, men of the intellectual world applaud and serve: the principle of choice over coercion, the defense of the weak against the strong and the aggressive, the right of a young and frail nation to develop free from the interference of her neighbors, the ability of a people—however inexperienced, however different, however diverse—to fashion a society consistent with their own traditions and values and aspirations.
THE SCHOLAR'S OBLIGATION
“These are all at stake in that conflict. It is the consequences of the cost of their abandonment that men of learning must examine dispassionately. For, I would remind you, to wear the scholar’s gown is to assume an obligation to seek truth without prejudice and without cliché, even when the results of the search sometimes are at variance with one’s own predilections and own opinions.
“That is all we expect of those who are troubled—even as we are—by the obligations of power the United States did not seek but from which the United States cannot escape.
“It was twenty-six years ago that Archibald MacLeish asked of all scholars and writers and students of his generation what history would say of those who failed to oppose the forces of disorder then at loose in Europe.
“We must ask of this generation the same question concerning Asia.
“MacLeish reminded that generation of the answer that was given by Leonardo when Michelangelo indicted him for indifference to the misfortunes of the Florentines. ‘Indeed,’ said Leonardo, ‘indeed, the study of beauty has occupied my whole heart.’
“Other studies, no matter how important, must not now detract the man of learning from the misfortunes of freedom in Southeast Asia.
“While men may talk of the ‘search for peace’ and the ‘pursuit of peace,’ we really know that peace is not something to be discovered suddenly—it is not a thing to be caught and contained. Because peace must be built—step by painful, patient step, and the building will take the best work of the world’s best men and women.
“It will take men whose cause is not the cause of one nation but whose cause is the cause of all nations—men whose enemies are not other men but the historic foes of mankind. I hope that many of you will serve in this public service for the world.
“Woodrow Wilson knew that learning is essential to the leadership that our world so desperately yearns for and needs today. Before he came to Princeton, he attended a small college in North Carolina and went to classes every day beneath a portal which bore the Latin inscription, ‘Let learning be cherished where liberty has arisen.’
“Today, this motto which served a President must also serve all mankind. Where liberty has arisen, learning must be cherished—or liberty itself becomes a very fragile thing.
“So we dedicate this building today—not only to the man; not only to the Nation’s service—but to learning in the service of all mankind.
“There can be no higher mission.”
On this day in 1964, President Johnson made remarks to the Ambassadors of Nations participating in the Alliance for Progress.
“I said last November, ‘Let us make the Alliance for Progress President Kennedy’s living memorial.’
“Today’s agreements are part of our pledge. The United States will provide almost $40 million—the countries of Latin America will provide $60 million—for projects that we are beginning in 14 countries. These projects will help eliminate malaria in Brazil. They will help train farmers in Bolivia. They will establish for the first time three rural electric cooperatives serving 10,000 homes and farms in the countryside of Colombia. They will bring credit and assistance to 21,000 small farms in the land reform and colonization areas of Peru. They will touch the lives and ease the struggles of 23 million people across our hemisphere.
“These are only the latest steps in six months of very extraordinary effort since I became President. Since last December, the United States has extended more than $430 million in assistance.”
At the close of his formal remarks, the President signed 12 new Alliance for Progress loan agreements extending $40 million in credits including $10 million for the Central American Bank for Economic Integration.
On this day in 1965, President Johnson had a telephone conversation with Adlai Stevenson, U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations.
President Johnson asked Stevenson to talk in confidence to U Thant, Secretary-General of the UN, about a Vietnam bombing pause contingent upon the cessation of infiltration; LBJ had doubts about the effectiveness of a pause. The men discussed possible domestic and congressional reaction to the pause and a call for a ceasefire by U Thant or Pope Paul.
On this day in 1937, LBJ was sworn in as U.S. Representative for the 10th Congressional District of Texas.
On this day in 1965, President Johnson addressed members of the Association of American Editorial Cartoonists: The Challenge of Human Need in Viet-Nam.
On this day in 1964, President Johnson had a telephone conversation with Sargent Shriver on aid to parochial schools.
On this day in 1965, President Johnson issued Proclamation 3657: Prayer for Peace, Memorial Day, 1965. LBJ stated,
“Now, therefore, I, Lyndon B. Johnson, President of the United States of America, do hereby designate Memorial Day, Sunday, May 30, 1965, as a day of prayer for permanent peace, and I call upon the people of the Nation to pray for a lasting peace in which all mankind may reap the fruits of His blessing.
“I designate the hour beginning in each locality at eleven o’clock in the morning of that day as the time for all Americans to join in prayer. I also urge the press, radio, television, and all other media of information to cooperate in this observance.”
On this day in 1965, Operation Head Start was announced as a preschool program to help disadvantaged children before they entered elementary school. LBJ said,
“Today we are able to announce that we will have open, and we believe operating this summer, coast-to-coast, some 2,000 child development centers serving as many as possibly a half million children.
“This means that nearly half the preschool children of poverty will get a head start on their future. These children will receive preschool training to prepare them for regular school in September. They will get medical and dental attention that they badly need, and parents will receive counseling on improving the home environment.
“This program, like so many others, will succeed in proportion as it is supported by voluntary assistance and understanding from all of our people. So we are going to need a million good neighbors—volunteers—who will give their time for a few hours each week caring for these children, helping in a hundred ways to draw out their potentials. We need housewives and coeds.
“We need teachers and doctors. We need men and women of all walks and all interests to lend their talents, their warmth, their hands, and their hearts.”
On this day in 1965, President Johnson presented the National Civil Service League’s Career Service Awards. LBJ stated,
“On behalf of the Government and the American people, I want to express my sincere appreciation and gratitude for the skill and for the devotion that each of you 10 men have given your Government.”
The recipients of the awards of the National Civil Service League, a nongovernmental citizens organization, were:
- Alan L. Dean, Associate Administrator for Programs, Federal Aviation Agency
- Richard M. Helms, Deputy Director, Central Intelligence Agency
- George Jaszi, Director, Office of Business Economics, Department of Commerce
- Homer E. Newell, Associate Administrator for Space Science and Applications, National Aeronautics and Space Administration
- Leonard Niederlehner, Deputy General Counsel, Department of Defense
- Carl H. Schwartz, Jr., Chief, Resources and Civil Works Division, Bureau of the Budget
- Robert C. Strong, United States Ambassador to Iraq
- Walter E. Washington, Executive Director, National Capital Housing Authority
- Artemus E. Weatherbee, Assistant Secretary for Administration, Department of the Treasury
- C. Tyler Wood, Mission Director, Agency for International Development
On this day in 1965, President Johnson called a conference on natural beauty to meet with panels of conservationists, industrialists, government officials and private citizens.
The topics the President proposed for discussion were:
- a solution to the problems of automobile junkyards
- the possibility of underground installation of utility transmission lines
- policies of taxation which would not penalize or discourage conservation and the preservation of beauty
- areas in which the Federal Government could help communities develop their own programs of natural beauty
- the possibility of a tree-planting program.
On this day in 1966, President Johnson delivered a speech commemorating the 3rd anniversary of the Organization of African Unity, outlining the administration’s African policy and establishing a task force to review U.S. development policies and programs in Africa.
On this day in 1964, President Johnson signed the International Development Association Bill. LBJ remarked,
“This action is one more milestone in our efforts to enlist the cooperation of free world countries in the common task of helping less fortunate nations to help themselves. It is also another milestone in our historic commitment to help other people lift from their weary shoulders the burdens of poverty and disease, illiteracy and hunger. We can no more accept a world in which we are surrounded by poverty than we can accept poverty within our own borders. This is international sharing at its best, and a victory for the American people, for an effective foreign policy, and for common sense in our international relationships.”
On this day in 1967, President Johnson made remarks at the christening of the aircraft carrier U.S.S. John F. Kennedy. LBJ stated,
“Next year, 5,000 Americans will put to sea in this giant ship named John F. Kennedy, for whom the voyage of destiny began in the Solomons and ended tragically at the pinnacle of national affection and respect: the Presidency of the United States. This is the third carrier since the end of the Second World War to bear the name of a man. Carriers are normally named for famous battles or great ships of the past.
“No President understood this Nation’s historic role and purpose better than John F. Kennedy. No man knew more deeply the burdens of that role. And no man ever gave more. Let this ship we christen in his name be a testament that his countrymen have not forgotten.”
On this day in 1964, President Johnson LBJ attended a memorial for President Kennedy.
On this day in 1964, President Johnson and Canadian Prime Minister Lester B. Pearson met in New York City.