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Full text of "The Struggle For Peace"

324 -------_-----------------------------------------------.------
for civilisation or for any of the things that make life worth
living. Does the experience of the Great War and of the years
that followed it give us reasonable hope that if some new war
started that would end war any more than the last one did ?
No. I do not believe that war is inevitable. Someone put
into my hand a remark made by the great Pitt about 1787,
when he said:
" ' To suppose that any nation can be unalterably the
enemy of another is weak and childish and has its foundations
neither in the experience of nations nor in the history of man/
It seems to me that the strongest argument against the in-
evitability of war is to be found in something that everyone
has recognised or that has been recognised in every part of the
House. That is the universal aversion from war of die people,
their hatred of the notion of starting to kill one another again.
This morning I received a letter not written to me, but
written to a friend by a German professor. I cannot give his
name, because I have not asked whether I might do so.
I think it is typical of feeling in Germany, because I have
heard the same from many other sources. I would like to
repeat to the House one or two phrases from it. He writes:
" * " Never again." That is the main idea, not only among
the professors, but also among the students who did not share
the experience of 1914, but heard enough about it. That is
the idea of the rich and of the poor and even of the army
themselves. As an officer of the Reserve I know what I am
speaking about.'
" Later in the letter he says :
"' Now peace has been secured, and not only for the
moment. Now the end of the period of changes and treaties
of 1918 can be foreseen and we all hope that a new era will
begin in Anglo-German relations.'
What is the alternative to this bleak and barren policy of the
inevitability of war ? In my view it is that we should seek by
all means in our power to avoid war, by analysing possible
causes, by trying to remove them, by discussion in a spirit of