Real Test of Power to Prevent War


PEACE QUOTE: Real Test of Power to Prevent War--PEACE SIGN BUTTON

PEACE QUOTE: Real Test of Power to Prevent War–PEACE SIGN BUTTON

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This peace quote reverses the typical notions of is typically viewed as the ability to make things happen.  That is certainly true in the context of the capacity to make .  However, the power to exert brute force and is very different from the type of force is needed to build and sustain peace.  , in its essence, is about restraint.  By contrast, is simply having no restraint or limits on one's actions.   Thus, when comparing the capacity to make versus the capacity to prevent war, or to create peace, these concepts of power tend to clash.  War is hardly an exercise in restraint.  While war may require a lot of discipline in many respects, it requires unleashing incredible brute force that by its very cannot be controlled.  One simply has to recognize the that for every combatant killed in wartime, approximately ten non-combatant are killed.  Clearly, war is not a precise surgical procedure, despite all the talk about smart bombs and laser guided systems.

As the United States is beating the drums of war against , there is talk about the right thing to do, the thing to do.  Of course, most of this talk is couched in terms of all the , bad, or immoral things that some other parties are doing.  Sort of by default, is imputed on people who oppose such doings and doers.  Unfortunately, what is lost in the mix, mostly of lies, is that is more about restraining one's own behavior than about restraining another's behavior.  By losing our focus on our own behavior, we can drift dangerously close to the unaccountability needed in order to wage war.  If you think war-making requires restraint and discipline, try peacemaking and loving your .  The difficult task of taking personal for one's behavior both as an individual and as a citizen of a nation can be costly.  However, there seems to be an  inertia in the human condition that defaults to blaming others for one's own problems, and shifting the cost of relating to one another as human beings to other people that we see at fault.  Even if I have a relationship with someone where a or “problem” is 20% mine and 80% theirs, this does not relieve me of being accountable for my 20%.  Rather than taking care of our own and , we often feel justified in focusing the blame and the full costs of the onto those we see as .  It is impossible to successfully wage war without demonizing one's .  This is the only way to justify killing a combatant.  This is definitely the only way to justify killing non-combatant.   Show me a nation that can create peace in the face of potential war and I will show you the most morally powerful nation on earth.

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