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The Bielefeld Appeal (December 1980)

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With our appeal we want to mobilize courage for a better future, not for a utopia, but for a policy that began very promisingly ten years ago by daring more democracy and a peaceful settlement with the East. We do not want the social democratic détente policies to degenerate just because the United States wants to return to global confrontation and knows of no other way to do that than by building the Federal Republic into an advance missile base against the USSR. We understand “Courage for the Future” to mean rejecting American presumption and daring to disarm and engage in peaceful competition between the systems. In view of the huge capabilities for destruction that already exist, we do not know what we have to lose.

In any case, we did not fight and win the battle against [Franz-Josef] Strauß only to have the Social Democratic federal government get caught in the maelstrom of the policies of a Ronald Reagan.

We want a real peace policy.

Source: The Bielefeld Appeal (December 1980), Vorwärts, May 14, 1981; reprinted in Lutz Plümer, ed., Positionen der Friedensbewegung. Die Auseinandersetzung um den US-Mittelstreckenraketenbeschluß. Dokumente, Appelle, Beiträge [The Views of the Peace Movement. The Debate about the U.S. Intermediate-Range Missle Resolution. Documents, Appeals, Articles]. Frankfurt am Main, 1981, pp. 35-37.

Translation: Allison Brown

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