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No. 82. Summer, 1963


Editors:G. C. Casey, A. J. MOORE, B. HAYHOW. and H. MORGAN.
Assistant Editors.: J. D. BEANSE and B. R. TENNISON.

SPEAKING EDITORIALLY

THE people of Europe and the Americas are becoming increasingly alarmed at the prospect of unemployment. Many are beginning to recall the black days of the depression which occurred in the 1920's with trembling. Even today, in the British Isles, unemployment figures have reached a new peak, and many people, especially in the North Country, are beginning to feel the effect of unemployment. What will unemployment mean? Hardship will undoubtedly result. There may be lack of food. Those items which were considered by our predecessors to be luxuries and are now considered to be necessities - the car, the television set, the washing machine (the list is unending) will no longer be within the means of many. Hire-purchase payments will not be paid. These will be hard times indeed. Let us think for a while of the millions of people in the world who have not had, and probably never will have, the chance of experiencing any of these "necessities ". I refer, of course, to refugees. A refugee may be one of millions who are homeless; one of the third of the world's population who are under-fed, under-clothed and under-privileged. There is no need for me to amplify their plight. The heart-rending and pathetic photographs published to illustrate the appeals of the " Freedom from Hunger" Campaign and others do that adequately. It is important to realise why the refugees are in the deplorable state that they find themselves. A careful analysis of the situation will reveal that man's greed, pride, selfishness and ignorance are the main contributory factors. Who then are these refugees? The Europeans who fled before Hitler in his demoniac lust for power; others who were victims of the armed conflict between Jews and Arabs in the Middle East; the Chinese fleeing from Mao-Tse-Tung's regime in China, who are making absolutely chaotic the already strained conditions in Hong Kong. These are but a few. The results of the appalling conditions and circumstances in which the refugee finds himself are legion. The refugee has no national heritage; he has no real purpose in being; he is unwanted and uncared for. A large percentage are illiterate and, as is often the case with the poor and uneducated, the birth-rate among them is high. Children are being brought into the world with no hope other than that of obtaining the most frugal existence, destined to remain nonentities - physical frames without personalities. It is universally agreed in theory, even if it is not carried out in practice, that the more fortunate members of the community, whether that fortune has come by chance or by honest endeavour, have a certain responsibility to those less fortunate. What then is our responsibility to the refugee, as a nation, as a school, or as rational, conscientious individuals? Are we to proclaim, as many do, that we are not the direct cause of their plight and can therefore accept no responsibility? Are we to dismiss the situation as a myth, a grossly exaggerated position, or a political gambit, and of no consequence? If we do, we are denying millions of people the fundamental human right of the opportunity to develop their personalities to the full. Can we allow this dreadful scourge of our civiisation to be perpetuated any longer?

G.Casey

 

 

No.83 December, 1963


Editors: G. C. CASEY, A. J. MOORE, B. HAYHOW, and H. MORGAN
Assistant Editors: I. D. BEANSE and B. R. TENNISON

SPEAKING EDITORIALLY

On the 25th July, 1963, the peoples of this world gained a great victory. For on that day the representatives of the two major Powers, the United States of America and the United Soviet Socialist Republic,  together with the representative of Great Britain, met in Moscow, and agreed to a treaty banning all nuclear tests, except those held underground. Now this is a victory, for according to the Institute of Strategic Studies those three powers had been testing nuclear bombs at the rate of over five Hiroshima bombs a day, since the first atomic explosion; while reserves had been building up to such great proportions that Mr. Kruschev said that: "if all types of nuclear weapons were used, those who survived would envy the dead." To prevent these killer tests is surely a victory, for up to a few years ago such an agreement would never have been considered possible. Only relatively recently has the public become conscious of the great danger of these tests, and particularly of the fall-out which they produce. The attention of the world has been brought to this danger by the Cuba Crisis, when many considered an atomic war to be a distinct possibility. Here in Britain, the often criticised Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament has, if nothing else, focused attention on the danger of the continuance of nuclear testing. Public feeling has thus been aroused; and in the Spiridonovka Palace in Moscow it triumphed over the political cold war, with the signing of the first major international agreement between the Western Powers and the Soviet Union since the Austrian Peace Treaty of 1955. But if we are to celebrate this victory, let us remember that it is only the first step along a very difficult road, but nevertheless it is a step worth celebrating. As Mr. Kennedy said: "All four nuclear Powers have a great obligation . . . to prevent the spread of nuclear weapons, to persuade other countries not to test, transfer, acquire, possess, or produce such weapons. This treaty can be the opening wedge to that campaign."

H. Morgan.