1950s >> 1958 >> no-649-september-1958

Resolutions Against H Bombs


“The meeting abhors the use of ‘ H ’ bomb and calls upon the Government to stop ‘H’ bomb tests, and participate in a Summit Conference.”

How often have we seen this type of resolution passed at a variety of trade union and other meetings. They all seem to have the same effect, as a knock on the door of an empty house.

The ritual, too, is exactly the same. The mover reads out a few of the possible horrors of “H” bomb warfare, and scares the pants off everyone. He is then followed by speaker after speaker in the same vein. Then the vote is taken, carried unanimously, and everyone is happy (or are they?).

The writer is sorry to make so light of it all, as he knows that some well-meaning folk really believe that this is the way to get rid of “H” bombs, and then go on to general disarmament. But you know its all been tried before, and as history shows its all failed before too.

First, let the Socialist point out that the problem of the “H” bomb is inseparable from war; which in turn is inseparable from the system of society in which we live.

This system produces poverty, insecurity, disease, and all the vicious things that stem from those, and it gives rise to the wars for which governments are constantly preparing.

The Socialist doesn’t raise these points just to be awkward, or to be academically correct. The writer has three little children, and realises that the stakes are very high: in fact the possible extermination of many of us.

But resolutions of disapproval of war, and of certain methods of warfare, have all been passed before. They have all had no effect.

Pacts have been made, international organisations have been set up, in fact every method of getting real peace, and disarmament has been tried except Socialism.

Time and time again the Socialist has demonstrated that war stems from capitalist struggles for markets, trade routes, sources of raw materials, and places of strategic importance. All this springs from the production for sale, with a profit motive for a small section of society, the capitalists. This in itself works against the interest of the overwhelming majority of society, the working class.

This “working class” is in every “nation” and faced with exactly the same problems as the “working class” of England. So it is at this level that international conferences must take place, and it must be international conferences for Socialism.

The leaders of the major “nations” will be conferring in the interest of the particular units of capitalism they represent. Trying to fiddle the spoils of war, without actually going to war, and trusting each other about as much as the proverbial cat and mouse.

If anybody can really delude themselves into believing that out of conferences of this nature the “Peace of the World” will come, their gullibility can know no bounds.

It goes deeper than this, for these resolutions are “red herrings” and “time wasters.” We have a job to do, in this century, the establishment of Socialism, and while workers are pursuing these dreams, they are falling down on their historically appointed task.

Terry Lord