Do Not Heed The Men Of War,
Men and Women Stand Together, Do Not Heed the Men of War. Stand Together Now for Ever, Ban the Bomb for Ever More.
That was me 1959, linking arms with Bertrand Russell and changing the world. CND badge, black pullover, open sandals, girls on my mind, hope on my brain, marching through sun and rain, three days on the Aldermaston March, changing the world,singing the song, this was it, I was only 13, but I cared, it mattered. No wonder I was featured in the Evening Standard and the Islington Gazette, this was History and I was a front line soldier. Some years later as an undergraduate the Jewish Chronicle would picture me. Fame indeed,nano seconds of my 15 minutes being used up.
A morning with ceramicist Marshall Coleman at the Peace Demo exhibition at the Imperial War Museum brought it all back. How we marched ,how we cared. Was it better to be Dead than Red. What would you do in the ten minutes between War Declared and the Bomb Landing. Boil an Egg, forget the toast was the popular answer. We were so scared of nuclear fall out that boys as school were sent iodine tablets to save their precious thyroids. 60 years later we still have the bomb. So much for marching.
What about 2003 ,one million marched against the Iraq war.So what, We went to war, won the war, destroyed the country, and other countries, made the world totally fragile, unleashed lunatic Muslim forces, made Blair rich, but at least we marched.
Is that the point of the exhibition, That you can be as conscientious as you like, rally as much as you want, march till you drop, demo till you are hoarse, be Common as you want, but governments know best, so its, Hey Ho, Hey Ho, Its Off to War We Go. But at least we know who has the best badges, songs and conscience. Standing in the rubble,thats a great consolation. Great exhibition.