14 MARCH 1958, Page 18


SIR,—I am much obliged to you for your reference under Tarry or Burn (March 7) to what you call the 'King-Hall line,' but still more grateful that the Spectator alone amongst non-pacifist publications has realised that there is a 100 per cent. non-pacifist argument for the abandonment by this country of nuclear energy for military purposes. In order to understand why this is so requires a prolonged mental effort starting from a reassessment of what war and defence are in the Nuclear Age. I call this effort getting through the thought-barrier in Defence Think- ing. A lot of the emotional outcry against nuclear weapons comes from people who, if they are through the thought barrier (which I doubt), have made the passage stern first and are still thinking about war in pre-nuclear-age terms. Looking backwards. The writer of Tarry or Burn has tackled the problem head on; a little more effort and he will get through the barrier.—Yours faithfully, STEPHEN KING-HALL

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