President's Corner

The concern about the Arms Race still rates high in Canadian public opinion as shown by the poll run by Maclean’s in its new Year’s edition. It is of some interest that in reply to the hypothetical question, “Red or dead?” 40% of those polled opted for “dead” and 50% chose “red”.

The failure of the USA to respond to the Soviet moratorium on testing, to change their representation or make significant changes in their policy at Geneva continues to draw attention to the unresolved issues left over from Reykjavik.

The fact that US Defence Secretary Weinberger should be urging the deployment of the first stages of SDI “as quickly as possible” while Kampelman, US spokesman in Geneva, alleges that President Reagan stands by his Reykjavik pledge not to deploy Star Wars for at least 10 years, shows that the arms control policies of the US are still out of control. The immediate issue seems to be whether the USA will irrevocably commit itself to S.D.I. this year in the budget before the Congress.

The failure of the USA to resolve such fundamental differences makes it all the more important that Canada define its position on the major arms control issues such as SDI, the test ban, cruise missile testing, etc. The Liberal Party convention of Nov., 1986, passed a series of resolutions for Canadian initiatives on a comprehensive test ban, making Canada a nuclear weapons free zone, an end to cruise missile testing. On the initiative of Mel Hurtig of the Council of Canadians, a meeting has been arranged with John Turner to discuss these resolutions. The meeting will take place in Ottawa in early February and I am included among those to meet with Mr. Turner.

I have received an invitation from the College Militaire Royal de Saint-Jean in Quebec to a conference April 10-11 to examine the whole concept of the pros and cons of a Canadian policy of neutrality in relation to the alliance system.

— George Ignatieff

Notes

IN MEMORIAM: PROF. EDWARD D. MAHER, Faculty of Administration, University of New Brunswick, member of the New Brunswick Chapter.

PERSONS AWARD WINNER,SfP MEMBER BETSY CARR at the awards ceremony with Prime Minister Mulroney and Alan Redway, M.P. The award went to Mrs. Carr for her work in women’s causes.

She has worked on the National Action Committee on the Status of Women, on the board of the Canadian Abortion Rights Action League, the Voice of Women and the Canadian Federation of University Women.

Recently she has traveled widely for the peace movement — to East and West Germany, the US and Britain. She is active in a number of peace groups — “really my big interest now.”

The Persons Awards, awarded annually by the Governor General of Canada, commemorate the 1929 recognition by the British Privy Council of the right of Canadian women to be considered “persons” and therefore could be appointed to the Senate. Canada’s Supreme Court had previously held that women were not “persons”.

FROM THE MINUTES OF THE JANUARY 27 BOARD MEETING:

Research director Paul LeBlond, Franklyn Griffiths and the national executive will constitute a working group for the Conference on the Arctic. The emerging scenario for the conference presents a tri-partite look at problems of the Arctic,legal, technological and environmental, and political, to be developed by Lawyers for Social Responsibility, Science for Peace and Council of Canadians respectively. Favored location is Yellowknife, NWT. Discussions will be launched with other Arctic-rim countries as soon as a definite determination of feasibility is made.

A meeting of the working group on International Monitoring and Verification will be held Feb. 19 at 4 pm in Rm. 1203, McLennan Labs at the University of Toronto.

NEXT MEETING OF THE BOARD: Monday, Feb. 23, supper at 6:30 at the Rapoports’, 38 Wychwood Park in Toronto. Call (416)656-5496 or the national office.