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Atlantic Assembly Initiative

In early 1949, the Association to Unite the Democracies (AUD) spawned the Atlantic Union Committee, with former Supreme Court Justice Owen J. Roberts as Chairman, former Under-Secretary of State Will Clayton and former Secretary of War Robert Patterson as Vice Chairman, in an intensive nationwide campaign for Atlantic integration.


This was the climate in which NATO was proposed, the stage already being set by the Marshall Plan of which Clayton was the principal author. In the period 1949-53, the Atlantic Union Committee (AUC) became the primary organization in America supporting NATO.


In the early 1950's, the AUC took the initiative to form an Atlantic Assembly, as an annual consultative assembly of parliamentarians from the NATO countries, which formally became the North Atlantic Assembly in 1966, and then was transformed into the NATO Parliamentary Assembly under which name it exists today. Other AUD members and supporters involved in the cause, including George Marshall, Robert Schumann, Theodore Achilles, Will Clayton, Lester Pearson, and Paul Henri-Spaak, played key roles in the birth of the Marshall Plan, NATO and the European Community.

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