The history of pacifism 2⁄2


The experience of World War II and the development of new military technology, including nuclear weapon influenced the program of modern pacifist movements. After 1945, apart from the independent organization also politically motivated organizations were formed. Such was the nature of the Defenders of Peace Movement, which started in 1948 and was led by the World Peace Council appointed in 1950. This movement called for disarmament and the prevention of armed conflicts, acting also in the interests of the communist movement. From the 50s of the twentieth century independent antinuclear movements of local and national (e.g. the British Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament) and internationally (e.g. Greenpeace) became active in the West. In the 80s pacifist movements and organizations were also established in the countries of the Central and Eastern Europe. Frequently, they tied the anti-war statements with demonstrations in defense of human rights and democracy. After 1989, they gained the status of legal movements and organizations. In Poland, the most famous pacifist group was Freedom and Peace Movement.



Today pacifism is mainly associated with the hippie movement, which was activated in the United States in the 60s and 70 of the last century. The reason for the development of this movement were U.S. military interventions carried out in the Far East. Vietnam War was the most famous example of the involvement of pacifists (mainly American hippies). Antiwar demonstrations under the slogan "Make love, not war" and the attitude of the media forced the U.S. government to yield, and then withdrew from, as the pacifists were saying: dirty and imperialist struggle. Since then, the inherent pacifism symbol is the peace sign. The creator of the sign of peace was the British designer Gerard Holtom, who used, formerly used by sailors, semaphore alphabet. Holtom placed on the wheel letters N and D, which meant nuclear disarmament.