Who Wants Disarmament?

Who Wants Disarmament?

Who Wants Disarmament?

Who Wants Disarmament?

Excerpt

The world continues to spend over $100 billion a year on arms. What is more, we do so with frighteningly inconclusive results. The leading strategists of the very nations most involved in the arms race are precisely those who are most preoccupied with spending more.

As the arms race deepens, the intellectual and moral appreciation of the urgency of disarmament deepens, too. But it has an inconclusive air about it, and for practical purposes it is readily displaced by the equally demonstrable necessity to regain a more stable and acceptable defense posture.

For a host of understandable reasons, most men of affairs in Washington and Moscow remain preoccupied with the challenge of armament, not disarmament. On occasion they console themselves and the rest of us with the sophisticated half-truth that more armaments will help promote disarmament because, as Churchill said, "We arm to parley."

But the side effects of the arms race are by no means all so positive. It might seem absurd to keep telling ourselves that the best way to promote peace is to speed up the arms race if the alternative--refusing to maintain effective deterrent strength against growing Soviet military capability-- were not even more absurd. Clearly peace is no longer--if it ever was--a simple, one-directional, pastoral proposition. It is an incredible maze of moral, military, economic, and technological problems.

It is not surprising, then, that few public policies have been subjected to more pulling and hauling, more scrutiny and study, more pressures and conflicts of interest, more hard work and dedication in some quarters, or more politics . . .

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