6 April 1979. Thought for the Week: "The real foundation of freedom is a spiritual reality. If the spiritual temperature of the world rises, the thermometer of oppression will drop. But if the spiritual temperature drops, then the political thermometer of oppression and tyranny will rise. And if the spiritual temperature continues to drop, what will be the end? "Let us remember that the word religion has as its root the word for "binding" - it is essentially a binding back to God of all that He has created".
Rev. Canon A.G. Fellows, in The Foundations of Liberty (1973)
ON SMALL BEGINNINGS
This is the first of a series of special reports by Mr. Eric Butler from the North American continent, where he is travelling on his way to Paraguay to lead the Crown Commonwealth League of Right's delegation to the 1979 World Anti-Communist Conference
Prince George, B.C. Canada; This report is being
prepared in a Federal Canadian constituency (electorate) in which a
small group of Canadian League of Rights supporters have demonstrated
that a Member of Parliament can be pressured by electors to change his
attitude on major policy issues. Progressive Conservative Frank Oberle,
was originally in favour of restrictive gun controls. He was foolish
enough to say so at a meeting of some 600 of his electors in one Northern
centre, whereupon a deep roar of protest arose.
As the volume of protest grew, with the local
media contributing to the campaign, Mr. Oberle clearly feared that he
could be defeated on this issue. So he announced that it had been made
clear to him that the great majority of his electors did not want restrictive
gun controls, and that he must represent his electors. He was next tackled
by electors on the Rhodesian issue. Originally he had stood with Conservative
leader Clark on an anti-Rhodesian policy. But again after being challenged
through the media, and directly by electors, he shifted his stance.
Mr. Oberle's electors have a long way to go yet,
but I pass on their experience because they do demonstrate, to quote
Confucius, that it is better to light one small candle than to go on
cursing the dark. It will be claimed by some, of course, that what has
been accomplished is relatively unimportant compared with the major
issues to be tackled.
Five years ago in New Zealand I met a married
couple, Dr. Martin Viney and his wife Jean. Both were concerned about
the subversion of education. Dr. Viney is a teacher. They wanted to
do something. I passed on the type of advice, which the League provides
for all who wish to involve themselves in some type of action in defence
of freedom. The result was the birth of The Concerned Parents' Association,
the regular production of a high quality newsletter, and the steady
growth of a genuine grassroots movement.
Also while in New Zealand I conferred with an
Anglican Vicar who has lit more than a small candle he has a miniature
bonfire blazing. The Reverend Matthew Calder, Vicar of St. Marks, Wellington,
originally felt that the World Council of Churches could serve Christian
purposes. He no longer does. He has been to Rhodesia, met with that
brave Christian warrior, the Rev. Father Arthur Lewis, and saw at first
hand the hideous results of the murderous activities of terrorists financed
by the World Council of Churches.
The greatest movement, in history started with ONE. He gathered around Him a handful of disciples, instructed them and sent them out to start converting the world. Christian Civilisation was built by a multitude of activities - from the ground up. That Civilisation will be regenerated by the same type of process. It is now taking place at an accelerating rate. From small acorns great oak trees grow. The League of Rights' mission is to help, encourage and, if asked, advise, all those who wish to make a beginning, however small.
The U.S.A. is notorious for the number of cults
of all kinds, many masquerading as manifestations of Christianity, spawned
over the years. Even patriotism and anti-Communism has been skilfully
exploited for financial gain, as witnessed by one organisation, which
appealed for funds to help the Rhodesian cause. Few of the funds left
the United States. The anti-Communist cause has not been assisted by
the revelations concerning the well-known Dr. Billy James Hargis, whose
"Christian" college enabled him to have sexual relations with both male
and female students, and the current disclosures of the activities of
Herbert W. Armstrong of the Worldwide Church of God.
The battle for Civilisation is going to be won by sane, balanced people keeping their feet firmly "on the ground", not by dangerous diversions which are often more dangerous because they do contain an element of truth.
We note that there are others (in the know) who regard the much-trumpeted Israeli-Egyptian "peace treaty" as heralding a perilous new era for the Middle East, and the world. Lord Caradon one of Britain's Middle East experts, also sees great dangers ahead. Egypt does not represent the Arab world - far from it. Sadat does not even speak, really, for most Egyptians. Most of the Arab world, even Saudi Arabia, is becoming alienated from the U.S.A., to the utter delight of the Kremlin. The lines are being drawn before our eyes: Russia is backing the Arabs, and America is backing Israel. Lord Caradon used typical British understatement when he said that the Israeli-Egyptian "peace treaty" is not a recipe for peace. It is more a recipe for an enlarged war in that region of the world, with the superpowers involved up to the eyeballs.
Mr. Douglas Wilkie, the well-known current affairs commentator of The Sun (Melbourne) has remarked recently "the United Nations could have brought Idi Amin (Uganda) down with a boycott on Ugandan coffee, export of which accounted for 95% of his revenues". "But A U.N., in which black African States now call the tune, preferred to vent racist spleen on Mr. Ian Smith and his exports of Rhodesian tobacco," Mr. Wilkie reserves a sharp jab for Mr. Andrew Peacock (Minister for Foreign Affairs) . . ."What are the lessons to be drawn from the rise and sadly belated fall of Idi Amin. One of them, perhaps is that Australia's foreign policy, based on endearing us to the Third World by emotive expressions of sympathy for black Africa, is not a simple exercise. If Mr. Peacock should extend his personal diplomacy to the African continent he'll need not only his suntan, but some burnt cork to win friends and influence people North of the Zambesi."
"On Target" is published by the Australian League of Rights, Box 1052. G.P.O. Melbourne 3001.