From an address April 1 by Rep. Jim Courter (R-N.J.) to the Woodrow Wilson School of Public Affairs.

A world of defensive weapons will not suit Soviet military goals, and it will not suit the Soviet political and ideological strategy that relies on their strategic nuclear forces. It will, however, be a more stable world in which to compete with the Soviet Union, and it will be less prone to the risk of deadly escalation in the next crisis that we have to face.

It will also be a world in which arms reduction is a more attainable goal. Without defenses, deep cuts in offensive forces could be risky, because the more we cut our offenses, the military significance of marginal cheating on arms control limits increases. In this sense, strategic defense can act as an insurance policy. . . .

This is the argument Gromyko made to the U.N. in 1962. It has also been made with eloquence by one of the founders of the freeze movement, Jonathan Schell, in his book, "The Abolition."

. . . Many . . . doubt the ability of the West to produce the technology that can achieve this vision. . . . I am reminded of a prediction Albert Einstein made in 1932. I quote him: "There is not the slightest indication that (nuclear) energy will ever be attainable. It would mean that the atom would have to be shattered at will."

. . . I have visited the laboratories where much of the work on the Strategic Defense Initiative is taking place. The progress to date is impressive, as is the dedication of the scientists. . . . They know that their work has a high moral purpose -- the undoing of the balance of terror that began with the discoveries made in those very same deserts of New Mexico some four decades ago.