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Editorial: Prospect 2014

2014 promises to be profoundly challenging for global peace. No end is in view to the conflict and suffering in Syria, and its destabilising effects across the Middle East, whose Arab Spring has widely deteriorated into bleak winter. Israel's hardline policies render progress to a just resolution of its conflict with Palestine most unlikely. The Iran-West nuclear accord is very welcome, but prospects for a Middle East Nuclear-Free Zone remain stalled. Across Africa, interventionism and clandestine US military actions backing exploitative multinationals are sparking jihadist groups and failed states. Asia sees a dangerous China-Japan arms race and power rivalry, as Chinese political, economic and military expansionism clashes with Japan's nationalist re-assertion under pro-military premier Shinzo Abe, committed to change Japan's post-1945 peace constitution. Obama's military reorientation to the Pacific, against China, is making the situation more tense.

Strong initiatives at UN and other global forums, using diplomacy, dialogue and soft power, are the best way forward. The Peace Movement must campaign for these priorities - and use the centenary of the 1914-18 pointless carnage to warn against the ever-present danger of militarism. Uniting for Peace aims to maintain momentum of the '4D for World Peace' campaign with our Spring Conference on 'A New Momentum for Peace: No Syria Intervention - What Next?', the Erskine Childers Lecture,other events around UK,lobbying parliamentarians, and publicity. We believe our awareness-building and campaigning is more vital than ever, to help achieve a more peaceful, just and sustainable world. We invite your support in 2014 - and your generous donations so we can advance our endeavours for peace.

Brian Cooper (Co-ordinator) & Vijay Mehta (Chair)

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