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The website of the Westmorland General Meeting 'Preparing for Peace' initiative


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Activity 2  The Arms Trade: A “Diamond Nine” exercise


To get pupils talking about war and peace.

To raise awareness of the different kinds of problems wars cause.



The sheet of nine cards should be cut up.

You could photocopy them on to card and then cut them up.

You could laminate them for greater durability.



Secondary.  Older pupils may do the task quicker, and it could be used as a starter to more in-depth study of issues of war and peace.



  1. Give a set of cards to each pupil, or pair of pupils.
  2. Point out that wars can only happen if people have weapons.
  3. Explain that each of the nine cards gives one of the results of the arms trade- selling weapons made in Britain to other countries round the world.
  1. The pupils have to arrange the cards in a diamond shape (-one at the top, two in the next row, then three, then two again, then one) according to their importance. They have to make their own decisions about what is more, and less, important.
  2. Discuss the similarities and differences between the various diamond arrangements they come up with.



Further information about the issues raised in this exercise can be found through the Westmorland General Meeting “Preparing For Peace” project, particularly in the following lectures:

Sir Samuel Brittan: The Ethics and Economics of the Arms Trade

Professor Paul Rogers: The environmrental cost of war

Dr. Paul Grossrieder: The human cost of war

These are available on the Project website: http://www.preparingforpeace.org

Continue The cards