Editorial: Turn right to buy weapons, left for the Church


Arms companies will be out in force at next week's RAF conference to explore "Strategic Partnerships for Air Power". Nothing unusual about that, one might say. Military top brass from Britain and the US, plus chiefs of staff from Brazil, Qatar and Sweden, will be at events sponsored by big names such as Lockheed Martin and MBDA missile systems.

The incongruity is that the event will take place at Church House, the home of the General Synod of the Church of England. Red-faced Anglican bureaucrats protest that they no longer own the venue, which was sold off some time ago. The point is a fair one, as far as it goes. But it might have been sensible for the Church to have put restrictions on the sale, to prevent the building – which also houses the Archbishops' Council, the Church Commissioners and the C of E Pensions Board – being hired to quite such inappropriate guests.