Bulletin of the Marx Memorial Library

A WORD ON THE QUESTION OF PEACE

Bulletin of the Marx Memorial Library (1975), 75, (1), 3–6.

Abstract

range-s-giving, on the one hand, essential facts, and on the other, the fundamental theoretical considerations which make it possible to interpret them well. Some of those debarred by distance from coming to Marx House tell us that even our modest Bulletin has been of help, with such articles as John Purton's "Notes on Inflation" and those of our distinguished Hungarian contributor, Dr. T. Sattler, on "How a Socialist Country fights Inflation", and "Profits under Socialism". As the Vice-Chairman emphasised at the annual meeting of members (reported elsewhere in this issue), it is not the mission of our Library to give answers to the specific problems that are vexing and shaking the life of the oountry. But the study and thinking and exchange of ideas which the Library makes possible are powerful ways to come aJt good answers. This will be even more important in the coming months and years. Support your Library; make it known wherever you go; above all, use it. A WORD ON THE QUESTION OF PEACE Even amidst the pressing problems of the economic crisis, another great question is haunting the minds of thinking people-the prospects of peace or war. The hopes centred on the European Security Conference are a poignant evidence of it. In our day this question inevitably takes the form of peace or war between the capitalist and the socialist worlds. Even if in the first instance tension is, or seems to be, local in character, it is quickly seen that the capitalist powers view it in one way and the socialist powers in another. This global significance of almost every inter-state conflict is something new and peculiar to our age. In an earlier epoch wars might be waged by one power group or group of powers, usually for the conquest of undeveloped territories, without necessarily involving otherswho were often doing the same elsewhere. Things became more complicated later, when all the undeveloped parts of the earth had fallen to one or another empire, and the struggle began for their re.division, But alliances were made and un-made as the interest of the hour dictated, so that Britain, for example, could be fighting with Prussia against France at Waterloo, and with France against Germany in the First World War. In 1917, however, with the establishment of the first socialist country (and that not a small one though economically backward and enfeebled, but potentially rich 'and mighty) a new element came into the world situation. Here was a great tract of the earth-no less than a sixth of it,-,no longer usable by any of the capitalist powers, and which by the mere fact of its existence could not but influence minds

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P.B.