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Offensive and Defensive Weapons – Churchill’s Thoughts…

I was reading.  It happens….

Actually, I was reading Winston Churchill’s “The Coming Storm.”  My thought on reading the following was that it stands repeating.

 

“The Foreign Secretary told us that it was difficult to divide weapons into offensive and defensive categories.  It certainly is, because almost every conceivable weapon may be used in defence or offence; either by an aggressor or by the innocent victim of his assault.  To make it more difficult for the invader, heavy guns, tanks, and poison gas are to be relegated to the evil category of offensive weapons.  The invasion of France by Germany in 1914 reached its climax without the employment of any of these weapons.  The heavy gun is to be described as “an offensive weapon.”  It is all right in a fortress; there it is virtuous and pacific in its character; but bring it out into the field – and, of course, if it were needed, it would be brought out into the field – and it immediately becomes naughty, peccant, militaristic, and has to be placed under the ban of civilisation.  Take the tank.  The Germans, having invade France, entrenched themselves; and in a couple of years they shot down 1,500,000 French and British soldiers who were trying to free the soil of France.  The tank was invented to overcome the fire of the machine-guns with which the Germans were maintaining themselves in France, and it saved a lot of lives in clearing the soil of the invader.  Now, apparently, the machine-gun, which was the German weapon for holding on to thirteen provinces of France, is to be the virtuous, defensive machine-gun, and the tank, which was the means by which these Allied lives were saved, is to be placed under the censure and obloquy of all just and righteous men…

A truer classification might be drawn in banning weapons which tend to be indiscriminate in their action and whose use entails death and wounds, not merely on the combatants in the fighting zones, but on the civil population, men, women, and children, far removed from those areas.  There, indeed, it seems to me would be a direction in which the united nations assembled at Geneva might advance with hope…”

Winston Churchill.  The Gathering Storm.  1948.  Houghton Mifflin Company.

 

Weapons do not harm people. People harm people.  People with weapons can usually cause more harm than people without weapons.  I believe that a good portion of Britain’s Bobbys are still armed only with a hickory nightstick…

About TheMorningTomatoReport

Just a normal person: - mother - daughter - sister - aunt - university student - concerned citizen - ticketed tradesman - salesperson - entrepreneur. There is a bumper sticker I have seen a few times: If you aren't outraged, you aren't paying attention! The "outraged" part is getting stronger. This is why I am here!

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