Courtesy Reuters

Labor and the Peace

THE present war has been called not only a war but a revolution. If this were true, we should look for the revolutionary impetus to arise mainly from labor. Yet it is difficult to discern any such drive among the workers in any of the fighting nations. Of course, when the German armies have been defeated the populations of states subjected to Axis tyranny may be expected to overthrow Nazism, Fascism and their collaborators. In so far as Nazism and Fascism were violent revolts against twentieth century civilization this will be an anti-revolutionary movement. The peoples concerned may not want to restore everything just as it was: they will undoubtedly wish to resume their struggle for a world in which there will be a closer approach to security and abundance for all. But if they can adapt old institutions to that end, they will retain them. Once they get back their freedom they will want to go on from where they were, though perhaps in a different direction from that in which they have been led in recent years.

The labor movements of Europe have been crushed and scattered, so that it is difficult to know just what their programs are. To the extent that we have been able to keep in touch with the underground, however, it appears that they are far less concerned than before the war with the struggle against traditional domestic opponents except where these have aided the foreign conquerors. All elements from left to right seem to have united in France, for instance, to help throw out the Nazis. Their rallying point is not so much a new social order as the independence of their country; indeed, their devotion to national tradition is so fervent that it overshadows the customary prewar internationalism of labor, and may even become embarrassing in the task of world organization. A reversion to nationalism, not merely by the old European ruling classes but by labor itself, may be one of the

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