September 21, 2008

Why war? Why nuclear defense?

Although this preface was written a while ago when the world was a different place, the concept and philosophy presented are applicable to today's world. This is Francis Scheaffer's take on the pacifist movement and where they are wrong.

This article's focus on the Soviet empire was a valid focus in the days when this was written. One of our United States presidents who was described as a "warmonger" put an end to the Soviet empire by standing strong and by not being lured by the Siren song of the pacifists and peaceniks.

Francis Schaeffer's preface to Who Are the Peacemakers?

As history moves on, issues arise which Christians must think through and pray about with care. In doing so, there are always Pied Pipers who lead the unsuspecting astray with their tunes.

In the present discussion on defense there are two books which, to my thinking, are for Christians especially mistaken Pied Pipers: Nuclear Holocaust and Christian Hope by Ronald J. Sider and Richard K. Taylor and Freeze! How You Can Help To Prevent Nuclear War by Senator Edward M. Kennedy and Senator Mark O. Hatfield....

In considering the book Freeze! my own observation is that it makes various mistakes, but the primary one is the cavalier treatment of Europe. It sets forth the idea that the United states is strong enough to be safe with the atomic weapons it now has and therefore should freeze! But a careful reading shows little or no care for Europe. This is really a modern form of shortsighted isolationism.

First, this is heartless. Looking across the iron curtain anywhere as it spreads its terrible length of wire, guns, guard dogs, and land mines leaves us with a callous mind and heart if it does not cause us to cry out that this tyranny should not spread. Humanness demands an adequate deterrent so that the rest of Europe will not be so tyrannized. This is so in general but especially as we regard the Christians who live in the Soviet bloc [or today in Muslim nations]. We must not be like the World Council of Churches, or any others, who minimize the oppression of Christians where the Soviets have power.

Second, even if the West were totally heartless towards those in Western Europe who are vulnerable to pragmatism demands that the fate of Europe not be treated in a cavalier fashion. If Europe were militarily or politically dominated by the Soviets, the United States would be on a shrinking island—and a shrinking island is a most uncomfortable place to be.

Each of us in thinking through present Pied Pipers' calls for peace should have in mind the details of the peace movement of the 1930s which raged at top speed and with a shrill cry until Germany attacked Russia, and then overnight came to a dead halt. These details are set forth by Vladimir Bukovsky in the book Who Is for Peace? His essay is entitled "The Peace Movement and the Soviet Union" and is one of three essays; there is also one by me and a third by Professor James Hitchcock of St. Louis University entitled "The Catholic Bishops' Search for Peace."

Pied Pipers lead to sorrowful calamity, no matter how beguiling the melody and no matter if played in secular, Catholic, or Protestant tunes.

To understand what it means to love our neighbor as ourselves in our day is deeply needed in many areas, and in this area of defense the need is acute.

This book by Jerram Barrs is an important one to read and then hand out in large numbers to those whom Pied Pipers' notes have begun to deceive.

Francis Schaeffer

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