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B.J. Widick

SWP Meetings Prove Masses Against War

(15 September 1939)

From Socialist Appeal, Vol. III No. 70, 15 September 1939, p. 3.
Transcribed & marked up by Einde O’ Callaghan for the Encyclopaedia of Trotskyism On-Line (ETOL).

The deeply rooted anti-war sentiment of the masses of people reflected itself in the mass meetings on the war crisis and the Stalin-Hitler Pact which I addressed in the Middle West last week.

It was an inspiration to see the many new faces at the mass meetings in Akron, Youngstown and Cleveland.

Two leading Stalinists attended the Akron meeting, and asked sympathetic questions. In Youngstown a new group of workers listened attentively when Roosevelt’s war aims at their expense were exposed.

New headquarters in Cleveland furnished a good background for delivering an anti-war talk to the audience of nearly 100 people. Roosevelt’s emergency proclamation had been headlined in every newspaper just before that meeting and the impact of this event could be felt among the people.

“What can we do to stop war? To keep America out of War? To keep from going to Europe to fight?” These questions were paramount in everyone’s mind as radio bulletin after bulletin brought the latest moves to the imperialist war.

Party Mobilizing

Although the meetings were arranged at very quick notice, the fine work done by the branches was a significant indication of how the party ranks are determined to fight unceasingly against war.

Of course, there was the moment of shock felt by everyone when the bloody spectacle of mass murder, destruction, and pestilence unfolded before the world. The ghastly nightmare had become the reality.

Perhaps the bitterest comments against war came from the women in the audiences. Women whose husbands or sons face the prospect of death while Wall Street sucks the profit out of their blood.

Significantly, while many asked questions on various aspects of the Socialist Workers Party program, one fact was accepted by all – the Socialist Workers Party is the only anti-war Party in America.

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