“I will never falter in my belief that enduring peace and the welfare of nations are indissolubly connected with friendliness, fairness, equality, and the maximum practicable degree of freedom in international trade.” Cordell Hull, US secretary of state 1933-44.
This month marks the 60th anniversary of the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade, of which Cordell Hull was a founding father. It also sees the announcement of a “free trade agreement” between his country and South Korea. The core of the Gatt was non-discrimination. The core of the new agreement is its opposite. Thus has the US taken the betrayal of its erstwhile principles even closer to its logical conclusion.