APPLIED DISARMAMENT: NORMAL ARMAMENT
The Problem of Private Manufacture and Trade: Private Armament Industry and the League: The Non-Producing Country: Possible Solutions: The Weapons to be Limited: Production: The Magnitude of Producing Capacity: Peace Equipment: The Treaty of Versailles
The problems of applied disarmament in normal armament emerge in the answers to two questions. We have before us a range of items of armament, some true weapons, such as the machine- gun, and others, essential accessories or complementary units, such as the gun-carriage or sound-ranging devices. Further, for each such item we are faced with a development process, sometimes rooted in the peace activities of a nation and passing through various stages to reach maturity in bulk supplies of complete units for war. The two broad questions which relate to applied disarmament are as follows.
What actual articles, items, or weapons are to be subjected to conditions of limitation? It might be necessary to consider all weapons, but in practice it might be found that a chosen few were capable of exercising a critical or key function in disarmament. Secondly, having arrived at a proper choice of such items, then each one involves a process of development. What stages of this process must be subjected to control? Again, it may prove that the whole life of a weapon need not come under consideration, and that a check on certain critical stages, perhaps the last step of supply, might be effective. In attempting to answer these two questions, the main practical problems of normal disarmament will clarify.
Before proceeding to study these questions systematically, however, it is necessary to examine a special matter which cuts right across the rational consideration of disarmament, and which, if ignored, would confuse the whole issue. This is the private armament industry. The whole question of rational disarmament is based on an assumption which is so obvious and axiomatic that it is rarely stated. Nations cannot honour covenants which