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Salient. An Organ of Student Opinion at Victoria College, Wellington, N.Z. Vol. 14, No. 6. June 7, 1951



Here are some examples of the general techniques used:

"In what way is President Truman, that sanctimonious hypocrite, perpetrator of so many bloody deeds in all corners of the earth in post war years, instigator of murderers, traitors and marauders, to-day murderer of Korean women and children . . . "—"Pravda."

The language used in the Cominform speeches (1949), which have been published in pamphlet form, is similar.


Emotional Irrelevances:

A letter from Korean women in the February issue of "Ueace," which describes the horror of the Korean war, as an answer to the Truman statement that the war is just.

The Campaigns

(i) The Ban the Bomb Appeal. The resolution on which this is based runs: "We demand the unconditional prohibition of the atomic weapon prohibition of the atomic bomb as a weapon of aggression and mass annihilation of people and that strict international control for the implementation of this decision be established. We shall consider a war criminal any Government which first employs the atomic weapon against any country. We call upon all people of goodwill throughout the world to sign this appeal."

[The word "first" has at last been deleted. Could it be that the U.S.S.R. is in a position to be first?]

This can be criticised in the first place because it begs the question—the first question is not who used the bomb—but who was the aggressor? In the second place, the atom bomb is only quantitatively different from other horrifying weapons. Recent propaganda has made good this omission. In the third place note the stress placed on numbers. Can you rely on a Petition said to have been signed by over half the population of North Korea just before South Korea is attacked? It is also interesting to note that the key weapons of the Finnish war, the war of 1939-45, and the Korea, the tank and the aeroplane are not mentioned. The USSR is strong in both.

(ii) The Definition of Aggression. "Aggression is a criminal act of that state which first employs armed force against another state under any pretext whatever."—Address to the United Nations Organisation by the 2nd World Congress of the Defenders of Peace.

This definition avoids altogether the method of aggression by internal subversion at which communism, directed by the Cominform, is well practised. There is evidence that the Communists or the Peace Movement are aware of this weakness, for they pose the question in the February issue of "Peace" whether it is aggression and answer it by saying that President Truman stole the idea from the Holy Alliance of 1815, and having branded this coalition as one of the most reactionary which ever existed, dismiss the question.

(iii) The Support of Colonial and National Independence: Stalin himself has stressed the importance of such movements—not, be it noted, in the cause of peace, but in the cause of Communism.

"Objective to consolidate the dictatorship of the proletariat in one country, using it as a base for the overthrow of imperialism in all countries. The revolution is spreading beyond the confines of one country; the period of world revolution has commenced.

"The main forces of revolution are the dictatorship of the proletariat in one country, the revolutionary movement of the proletariat in all countries.

"Main reserves, the semi-proletarian and small peasant masses in the developed countries, the liberation movement in the colonies and developed countries."—J. V. Stalin, Foundations of Leninism, 1939, p9.

Before this cause is just one must ask are the people concerned fit to govern. The United Nations trusteeship Council exists for this very purpose, the safeguarding of the rights of backward peoples. Peace Movement support of the active insurrectionists must be looked at in this light.

When this matter is discussed, as it was at the Youth Peace Conference in Wellington last year, no mention was made of the independence of the peoples in those countries with which the USSR had nonaggression pacts: Poland, Latvia, Estonia, Finland and Lithuania—and which she now occupies.

All the other campaigns are open to similar and more searching criticism than it is possible to give them here.