Page 8, 18th August 1978

18th August 1978
Page 8
Page 8, 18th August 1978 — Army for peace
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Army for peace

The Peaceful Uses of Military Forces; ,Peacekeeping, Disaster Relief and Military Aid to the Civil Community (Church of England Board for Social Responsibility £2.50)

This short book is the account of a conference held on these themes in April of this year.

Opened by Mr Frank Judd, Minister of State at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, the conference material consisted of three papers presented by General !rifts Rikhyc of the International Peace Academy: -Mr Hugh Hanning of the Church of England Board for Social responsibility. and Dr Alec Dickson, Director of Community Service Volunteers.

Starting points often determine endings. If NATO is a wholly desirable, necessary and defensive institution as Mr Judd and others clearly think. then by all means it makes every sense to use the skills of the military in the areas of peacekeeping, disaster relief and military aid to the civil corn munity.

If. however, one sees the military of NATO, as of every country. rather as active influences for accelerating and giving respectability to the arms race, the disaster of our times, then the ending is rather different.

Perhaps these necessary functions could be given instead to independent bodies Since the chairman of the Church of England International Affairs Committee made reference at the conference to a possible joint submission by Anglicans and Roman Catholics to the Foreign Office on these issues we must hope that such a submission will be openly discussed and its implications clearly understood. The conferenee was clearly called together by those who see urgent human needs and have gone to the trouble of thinking of solutions. It is therefore an important initiative and its report deserves to be read.

Bruce Kent




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