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Salient. An Organ of Student Opinion at Victoria College, Wellington, N.Z. Vol. 2, No. 8. May 31, 1939

Not so Quiet

Not so Quiet.

To some it may seem sacrilegious to couple "The Mikado" with "All Quiet on the Western Front." Yet "All Quiet" must be subjected to a similar revaluation to "The Mikado." Both shows had a definite aim and object when they were first produced; what is their value today? "The Mikado" succeeds today as entertainment pure and simple; is the lesson of "All Quiet" relevant now?

Since the rise of aggressive Fascism, with its first manifestation in 1931, absolute pacifists have been strangely uneasy. Being sensitive people, they cannot view with equanimity the plight of the Austrian, Spanish and Czechoslovakian peoples; being intelligent they look at Fascism with abhorrence; and being pacifists they shrink from taking military measures against the aggressors. They realize, quite rightly, that no war has ever brought about the ostensible objects for which it has been fought, that the conception of sovereign states is flagrantly immoral, that belligerence has no survival value either in a single organism or in a community, and that the theories of Hegel. Bosanquet, and Mussolini as to the nature of the relationship between the State and the individual are amoral and false. Thus there is dissension in the pacifist ranks in times of crisis. For instance, Mr. C. E. M. Joad, in his latest book, "Why War?" supports Chamberlain's attitude at Munich with arguments which he presents in a half-heated manner, and which he himself appears to admit are unconvincing.