Document 3: Catherine E. Marshall to Jane Addams, 5 October 1921, Swarthmore College Peace Collection, Jane Addams Papers, Series 1 (Jane Addams Papers Microfilm, reel 14, #243-244, #125).
In contrast to the DAR's caution, members of WILPF expressed enthusiasm and hope for the upcoming Conference. They believed that complete disarmament, not military strength, was the only means to providing international peace. This letter from a WILPF Vice-President, Catherine E. Marshall, to International President Jane Addams detailed the worldwide effort to encourage public support for the disarmament negotiations. While Marshall recognized the fundamental need for national security, she suggested that the possibility of friendly borders might prove equally compelling to policy makers.
WOMEN'S INTERNATIONAL LEAGUE FOR PEACE AND FREEDOM
Geneva, 6 Rue du Vieux College
Circular letter to Executive Committee & Consultative Members (A)
National Sections (B)
Series of 1921
B.14 October 5, 1921
Mlle. Gobat, who has the Disarmament work in hand, has unexpectedly to be away from Geneva for a few days, and has written asking me to see to the printing and issuing of the Manifesto.
I enclose a copy in English of the draft prepared by Mrs. Annot Robinson, Chairman of the Disarmament Committee at the Vienna Congress. It has been seen and approved by Miss Addams. We are having the Manifesto printed here in English and French and have Frl. Heymann to get it translated and printed in German. Will you let us know at once (by wire) how many copies you would like in any of these three languages? (Tel. Address "Willif. Geneve")
Prices as follows:-
Special prices will be arranged for countries whose currency has greatly fallen in value.
1000 copies 20 Swiss francs 2000 " 35 " " 3000 45 " " every additional 1000 15 " " 10000 140 " "
Those countries which do not speak either English, French, or German, will, of course, prefer to print the Manifesto themselves in their own language. You will see that there is a sentence in paragraph five which needs alteration to suit the case of each country. We will have this alteration made for any copies you may order from Geneva. We will also, if you wish, add the name of your National Section to the heading of the Manifesto. Let us know what you wish in this respect if you send us an order for printing.
It was decided at Vienna, you will remember, that this Manifesto was to form the basis of the deputations to be sent to the Governments by our national sections; and to be incorporated in leaflets which each section was to draft and publish itself in accordance with the needs of its own country.
It was also decided to issue a pamphlet giving a summary of facts and figures on armaments. We hear from the British Section that they cannot get such a pamphlet written in time for the Disarmament week, and that they think, moreover, that there is sufficient material of this kind already available, published by other organizations. I enclose some statistics and figures which I have had worked out for my own use with the League of Nations, and which may, I think, be of use to you too. You are doubtless in touch with the International Anti-Military Bureau, Utrecht, Holland. Their monthly paper of August last gave an effective diagram showing the cost of "preparedness" quite apart from the cost of actual war.
In propaganda you will, I am sure, find it useful to quote the Resolutions on Disarmament passed by the International Financial Conference at Brussels in the summer of 1920, and by the International Federation of Trade Union Headquarters: 61 Vondelstraat, Amsterdam, Holland. I would also suggest that in sending Deputations to Governments, Prime Ministers, and War Ministers, co-operation be effected when possible with other organizations (such as those represented at the 2 conferences mentioned) which can urge with special effect the weighty arguments other than those of pacifism which should lead governments to realize the intimate connection between armaments and the serious economic and industrial difficulties with which all the world is faced to-day.
In talking with members of Governments, I find that their minds always turn to the dangers and anxieties of disarming their own countries, rather than the safety and relief of having their neighbors disarmed. This last picture makes a strong appeal to their imaginations if they can be brought to contemplate it as a practical possibility, particularly in the cases of countries which have four or five armed neighbors on their frontiers, and live in a state of perpetual fear.
I am sure our National Sections are doing admirable work on this question, and we should like to receive reports from them of what methods have been found most successful and what results have been achieved.
Catherine E. Marshall[A]
Acting pro tem. for Marguerite Gobat
A. Catherine E.
Marshall had served as Secretary of the British Section of WILPF and was a
Back to Text