THE NATION: The Lessons of History

Since long before Isaiah prophesied that nations would beat their swords into plowshares, men of good will have dreamed the noble dream of disarmament and everlasting peace. Great thinkers and artists—Kant and Rousseau, Goya and Daumier—have preached it in their works. During the interval between the two World Wars, it even seemed at times that the ancient dream was at last approaching fulfillment.

In Washington in 1922, the U.S., Britain, Japan, France and Italy signed a treaty limiting construction of capital warships. In Paris in 1928, these five nations and ten others solemnly renounced war "as an instrument of national...

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