Saturday, May 12, 2007

May 12, 1850:

Henry Cabot Lodge’s Birthday

Today’s entry isn’t about a president, but a president’s nemesis. Sen. Henry Cabot Lodge, a denizen of that chamber from 1893 to his death in 1924, is best remembered for his efforts to torpedo US membership in the League of Nations, which President Wilson ardently wanted. Wilson’s incapacity due to a stroke in the latter part of 1919 may have been a more important factor in the League’s defeat in the Senate, but Lodge, as chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee, certainly played his part.

“I have never had but one allegiance--I cannot divide it now,” he said in a famed speech about the League on August 12, 1919. “I have loved but one flag and I cannot share that devotion and give affection to the mongrel banner invented for a league. Internationalism, illustrated by the Bolshevik and by the men to whom all countries are alike provided they can make money out of them, is to me repulsive. National I must remain, and in that way I like all other Americans can render the amplest service to the world.”

Lodge’s grandson, Henry Cabot Lodge Jr., didn’t share his famed ancestor’s distaste for international organizations, serving as US ambassador to the United Nations under President Eisenhower. The younger Lodge also ran for vice president on the Republic ticket in 1960 with Richard Nixon, narrowly losing to John Kennedy and Lyndon Johnson.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I was eight years old in 1960. I can remember seeing bumper stickers advertising "Nixon Lodge," which seemed to me at the time to be the name of a motel. ANK