Pacifism and the Cold War, appunti delle lezioni del Prof. Moro, International History of Peace
Pacifism and the Cold War
After Hiroshima and Nagasaki bombing, an agreement about nuclear weapons was
necessary and urgent. Pacifism was still for a long time dealt in traditional terms, it was
spread especially among tiny sects, and an atomic consciousness grow very slowly and
reached the peak only during the 1960’s. The after-war period was called also the “age of
peace movements”, new movements more pragmatic and with limited goals demanding for
“no more war” and “ban the bomb”, they took the place of the Peace organization which
were weakened by their appeasement in the WWII.
After WWII like Howard wrote in his book (The invention of Peace..) a new international
order emerged and was characterized by a new institutions based on the values of the
western parliamentary democracies. The new framework of the UN was made up by a
General Assembly, which embodied legislative power, and by a Security Council, which
represented the executive power. But Stalin had another vision of the world, that was
incompatible with the principles and values imposed by western liberal democracies.
Consequently, the Cold War began and it divided the world into to sphere of influences,
each one linked with a super-power: U.S and USSR. When the Cold War starts the
perspective of a world agreement and control on nuclear weapons were soon put in doubt,
and the nightmare of a possible nuclear war came back.
Both United States and Soviet Union started a program of militarization. Truman
presidency makes the choice of an atomic arsenal, as a fundamental element of American
strategy of defense, and the Soviets started the building of the atomic bomb.
In front of this situation, new anti-nuclear movements emerged, especially in Japan, whit
the hibakusha movement.
In 1948 was held in Poland the World Congress of intellectuals in defense of peace; it
included the participation of the most important Communist personalities.
The post-war peace movement took shape after the World Peace Committee held in Paris
in 1949, as Phillip Deery wrote in his article “The Dove Flies East”, the Committee
recommended the creation in every country of “national peace committee” in order to
promote peace at a national level. The only mass protest for peace during the early years
of the Cold War came from the Communist movement of the “Partisans of Peace”.
In 1947, during the inaugural conference of the Cominform (Communist Information
Bureau) the Soviet representative Zdhanov divided the world in two parts: the world of
peace-loving led by the Soviets, and the capitalist world led by U.S.
In 1949 a Cominform resolution stated that peace should be the first objective of the
Communist parties around the world, especially in Europe.
In 1949 the Soviet Politburo approved the idea of a new movement called “Partisans of
Peace”. At the beginning, they were simply against the war, then also against nuclear
weapons, they were linked with the struggle of anti-Fascist resistance, and they refused
every pacifist approach. They supported the USSR foreign policy and asked for a
unilateral disarmament to the West.
This early period of the Cold war was characterized by a huge communist success, they
were convinced that only capitalism and social justice were the cause of war.
After the developed of the atomic bomb in 1949 by the Soviets, the atomic weapon
became the core of the Communist peace campaign, and the most extraordinary
communist initiative was the “Stockholm appeal”. It was promoted by the Permanent
Committee of the World Congress of the Partisans of Peace, and it was signed by
intellectuals and religious exponents. The document asked for absolute forbidding of the
atomic weapon as a weapon of mass extermination, and they were ready to denounce the
+1 anno fa
I contenuti di questa pagina costituiscono rielaborazioni personali del Publisher sciencespolitics di informazioni apprese con la frequenza delle lezioni di International History of Peace e studio autonomo di eventuali libri di riferimento in preparazione dell'esame finale o della tesi. Non devono intendersi come materiale ufficiale dell'università Roma Tre - Uniroma3 o del prof Moro Renato.
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