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50 Years Ago:War and Socialism

The Sunday Express on May 20th. 1951, reported that a “United Nations curtain of guns, armour and planes today battered massed Chinese assaults and thwarted attempts to make major breaches in the Allied line.”

Did you read that? If you did, we expect you have forgotten it already. But we do not forget. Later the report says that, “the United Nations forces were still killing scores of Chinese for every Allied casualty.” How glibly do our newspapers speak of the loss of working-class life. They are glad that large numbers of Chinese should be slaughtered. We are not. We are sorrowful. These Chinese are our class brothers. True, they speak a different language, wear different clothes, eat different food, but underneath it all they are members of our class, the working-class. The struggle being fought out in Korea is not their struggle. Whoever wins, their conditions will remain the same — poverty and struggle.

In Korea the scene is being set for the next major world conflict. Who controls Korea will control a large part of Asia. Korea belongs neither to us nor to the Chinese who are dying there. Brothers of the working-class, isn't it time we stopped this insane slaughter? Korea is but a picture in miniature of what is to come. Then millions and millions will die. The last war cost probably 40,000,000 lives. The next one may cost more.

There is only one way to stop wars and that is to establish socialism. Don't tell us that that will take a longtime. How long it takes depends on you. You can hasten it or delay it. There can be no doubt that it will come. We need it, the working-class of the world needs it. Join with us and help bring it about.

(An article by Groves from the Socialist Standard, July 1951)