Orwellian logic

Scott Lucas ("How a free press censors itself", 12 November) is mistaken in supposing that the Washington Post columnist Michael Kelly was expressing an essentially American judgement when he observed that "The American pacifists . . . are on the side of future mass murders of Americans. They are objectively pro-terrorist".

In fact, Kelly was adapting George Orwell's observation in 1942 that "Pacifism is objectively pro-Fascist. This is elementary common sense. If you hamper the war effort of one side you automatically help out that of the other. Nor is there any real way of remaining outside such a war as the present one. In practice, 'he that is not with me is against me'."

The logic, now as then, is unassailable.

Oliver Kamm
London WC1

This article first appeared in the 19 November 2001 issue of the New Statesman, And now the trouble really begins