Jimmy Carter aspired to make Government "competent and compassionate," responsive to the American people and their expectations. His achievements were notable, but in an era of rising energy costs, mounting inflation, and continuing international tensions, it was impossible for his administration to meet these high expectations.
Carter believed in the rule of law in international affairs and in the principle of self-determination for all people. Moreover, he wanted the United States to take the lead in promoting universal human rights. Carter believed that American power should be exercised sparingly and that the United States should avoid military interventions as much as possible. Finally, he hoped that American relations with the Soviet Union would continue to improve and that the two nations could come to economic and arms control agreements that would relax Cold War tensions.
This collection provides unique, and never published, documents on the major international issues during the Carter administration, including: Camp David Accords; NATO and the Rapid Deployment Force; Human Rights; relations with the People's Republic of China; Panama Canal Treaty; Strategic Arms Limitation Talks (SALT II); covert intervention in Afghanistan following the Soviet invasion; and the Iran Hostage Crisis.
Documents include: presidential correspondence and memoranda with his cabinet, Executive branch departments and agencies, prominent public figures, and foreign heads of state; cables and telegrams, between American foreign missions and the State Department; briefing books for international conferences; and texts of treaties and international law.