FATHER Zabelka's timely reflections on the nuclear bombing of Japan should stimulate us to question the proposed siting of cruise missiles in this country.
Their almost pinpoint accuracy transforms them from being a deterrent into weapons that will be used as part of Nato's 'flexible response'. The increasing conviction of the military that it is possible to win a nuclear war. apart from being fallacious, is an indicator of its readiness to unleash these obscene devices onto mankind once again.
The Japanese bombs were 15 kilotons; today's are over a thousand times more powerful. The effects of nuclear weapons are known, the facts are freely available, and we cannot claim ignorance us a defence any longer. Father Labelka's candid remarks are a warning against complacency. We cannot allow these weapons to he used in our name and, as Christians. we should oppose the escalation of the arms race, of which the siting of cruise missiles in this country is part. Michael J. Hall, Lecturer in Medicine University of Bristol THE CONTRIBUTION by Fr George Zabelka, chaplain to the United States Army air force troops which curried out the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki throws further light on the subject.
The depths to which even a nominally Christian government can sink in time of war are indicated by the admission of one of the two English observers who accompanied the Nagasaki raid that the bomb was dropped two days-after a surrender note had been submitted by the Japanese (Group. Captain Leonard Cheshire, VC, speaking at a civil defence meeting at Saltash, December 3, 1951, as reported in the Western Morning News. Dec. 4, 1951.)
If this is so. the victims were murdered without even the pretext of military necessary.
J. J. O'Connor London, N12 YOUR INCREASING support for the disarmament and peace movement in this country is very helpful.
In Birmingham. a letter is being prepared on Christians and disarmament. signed by the Birmingham Council of Christian Churches, The Roman Catholic Justice and Peace Commissions, the World Disarmament Campaign, Christian CND.
We hope to distribute this letter outside as many Christian Churches as we can.
If any of your Birmingham readers are prepared to help with the distribution and/or a contribution toward the expense involved, please write to roe as soon as possible.
Mrs Margot Hutchison, 38 Chantry Road Birmingham B13 8DJ.
AT LAST a political leader in the western world, who says he is going to put the issue of disarmament, particularly nuclear disarmament — into the forefront of international politics. Let us see to it that we keep Michael Foot to his word.
Kevin A. Ford I .ymingt on Hants.