Make peace without weapons – This means not only creating security for our own survival. It also means ending the senseless waste of our country’s labor and wealth for the production of war tools and the outfitting of huge armies of young people, who are thereby removed from productive work. Shouldn’t we help the hungry all over the world, instead of continuing to prepare for our own deaths?
Blessed are the meek,
For they shall inherit the earth.
(Jesus of Nazareth in the Sermon on the Mount)
Up to now the balance of horror has prevented nuclear war only by continually postponing it to tomorrow. The peoples of the world fear this approaching morning of horror. They are seeking new ways to give peace a better foundation. The “Berlin Appeal” is also an expression of this search. Think about it, make suggestions to our politicians, and discuss this question everywhere: What leads to peace, what leads to war?
Confirm your approval of the “Berlin Appeal” by adding your signature. Berlin, January 25, 1982
Names of the first signatories (GDR citizens from a number of different cities): Reiner Eppelmann, pastor of the Samaritan parish in Friedrichshain and county youth pastor [Kreisjugendpfarrer]; Manfred Altmann, craftsman; Axel Bayer, laborer; Evelyn Bayer, laborer; Eva-Maria Eppelmann, housewife; Volker Elste, deacon student; Stefan Preyer, mechanic; Lorenz Göring, deacon student; Katja Havemann, housewife; Robert Havemann, scientist; Eberhard Henke, manager; Ralf Hirsch, metalworker; Michel Heinisch, deacon student; Christfried Heinke, deacon student; Gerd Jäger, deacon; Daniela Karschewsky, employee; Rosemarie Keßler, laborer; Günter Keßler, laborer; Olaf Kraensel, employee; Detlef Kucharzewski, laborer; Regine Maywald, employee; Johannes Maywald, employee; Lothar Niederohe, laborer; Rudi Pahnke, parish pastor and county youth pastor; Jürgen Pagel, deacon student; Lutz Rathenow, writer; Thomas Schulz, laborer; Ralph Syrowatka, deacon; Friedhart Steinert, laborer; Bernd Schulz, laborer; Winfried Weu, mechanic; Andrea Weu, nurse; Günter Weu, county catechist; Bernd Weu, engineer; Hans-Jochen Tschiche, pastor and director of the Protestant Academy [Evangelische Akademie] in Magdeburg.
Source “Berliner Appell – Frieden schaffen ohne Waffen” [“The Berlin Appeal: Make Peace without Weapons”] (January 25, 1982); reprinted in Wolfgang Büscher et al., ed., Friedensbewegung in der DDR. Texte 1978-1982 [The Peace Movement in the GDR. Texts 1978-1982]. Hattingen, 1982, pp. 242-44.
Translation: Allison Brown