How not to go to war

By Ameer Tarin    19-11-2022

Vijay Mehta, author and the crusader of peace, runs a vigorous campaign to achieve peace by involving countries globally. Military Industrial Complex is the main worry as the powers that be are busy running a race to attain superiority on the land and in the skies. The criteria of the relationship in the comity of nations are based on controlling resources, political systems and defence related issues of weaker nations. Despotic and corruption infested rule or imposed democratic system indulging in human right violations and forcible occupations are the weapons kept in store to be used as and when necessary.

DEMOCRACY (a way of life)

The concept of Democracy, strictly a western brainchild, a discovery fulfilled the need to bring people out from Dark Ages. It also laid the foundation for living a free, unfettered and democratic life. The new way of living based on capitalism has so far worked successfully mainly because the concept is understood at the grass-root level and the groundwork to create awareness of this new system was carefully thought to forge positive outcome. The general public in the western society, being looked after well, refute the idea that the government they put in power can ever do anything wrong, particularly on international level.

The optimism of the idea to identify causes of the conflicts remain controversial and an unfulfilled dream. The colonial expansionism, control on resources and unfair distribution of wealth necessitates investments in preparation for war machines to justify defence and security needs. Anger of the have-nots is rising and the global war on nature; the reintroduction of mandatory military conscription creates insecurity and instability. The illegal war of sponsored aggression gains legitimacy and use of disproportionate force, resulting in gory details, is termed as self-defence.

Nuclear weapons, aircraft carriers, fighter jets, symbols of national virility and prestige rally round the national flags generally given to understand as being the deterrents. And all these deterrents are used to browbeat, harass and intimidate weaker nations to control their natural resources and riches.

ABOVE THE LAW

Artificial Intelligence, facial recognition, mass surveillance, unmanned tanks, self-aiming sniper rifles, latest Drone technology etc; once a science-fiction have become science-fact. Now, can they be used wisely, is a question mark? Vladimir Putin, Narendra Modi, Joe Biden, Tayyip Erdogan, Rodrigo Duterte, Xi Jinping, Benjamin Netanyahu and Jair Bolsonaro at the helm in major countries, believe themselves to be above the law of nations, says Mehta. Though the parity created, unfairly, amongst the world leadership smacks of trickery and chicanery.

The newly introduced promotion of non-violent means of aggression like trade sanctions, psychological warfare, destabilisation of political setups, spy agencies, services of privately owned mercenary outfits and most dangerously poised NGOs on pay-roll are delivering at the cost of total devastation of the countries involved. This all is convincingly explained to be part of the New World Order.

While dexterously ignoring rising Hindutva fascism, Mehta, instead, further emphasises that the Islamic radicalisation is just one example of a wide array of traumatic and violent incidents resulting from shortfall in mutual respect and due to this the cost of conflict, internal or external runs into trillions of dollars. Emotional and psychological damage inflicted by deaths and abuses causes a colossal damage, adds Mehta. The grand larceny termed as corruption, a global injustice receives full protection as the laundered unaccountable wealth from poor starving countries gets absorbed in the economies of affluent nations.

Mehta getting jitters mentions states like Afghanistan where business can help build peace and the creation of jobs will prevent Taliban from capturing Kabul. The solution for Palestine-Israeli conflict, according to Mehta, lies in creating sustainable social and economic institutions that can bridge differences between the communities. Fostering interfaith understanding will help build peace and harmony. It is noteworthy that since Taliban bloodless takeover Afghanistan has witnessed peace after decades of war, mayhem and destruction.

Kashmir, after Indian military occupation, helps India to maintain peace freely using the barrel of gun and at the same time some orchestral overtures to convey that Kashmir is comfortable with new union territory status. Modi’s India hopes to gain time so that the new reality at some stage is accepted by the international community.

China, Mehta asserts, is catching up. The human right violations in Tibet and the iron hand used by China’s military junta to rule are widespread. An independent nation of Taiwan is under a constant threat of an invasion by China creating a volatile situation bearing the hallmark of an impending global conflict. China, however, considers Taiwan as its breakaway state and believes has a legal claim on the ownership of this island state in the likeness of Hong Kong.

Technology as believed is potentially dangerous and in an absolute certainty rogue states and terrorists would utilize these new technologies in the very near future. It is also argued that communism and capitalism threaten nuclear oblivion as the stockpile of nuclear arsenal of all isms remains unaccountable. The strength of Indian nuclear depot and missiles also remains unknown especially when the country is run by a fascist regime having no respect for humanity. However, Mehta, with a clear intent, lauds India’s technology revolution as praiseworthy and commendable.

LGBTQ (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Queer)

Quixotic peace presentation involving a culture of funds collection, Mehta maintains that the humankind fallen into a dystopian trap needs to respect women’s rights and the rights of LGBTQ. However, no solution is offered to tackle this problem and the ball is thrown into the court of general public who are asked to donate generously to help create an environment where such oppressed communities would be treated and accepted as equals.

ILLEGAL INVASIONS

The Iraqi invasion of sovereign nation of Kuwait in 1990 is quoted as illegal and the timely action of the UNSC through a majority vote expelled the Iraqi invaders. It must be recalled that then US Ambassador to Iraq April Catherine Glaspie on July 25, 1990 gave tacit approval for the Iraqi invasion. Glaspie on record assured Saddam Hussain’s government by stating that “we have no opinion on your Arab-Arab conflicts and the matter would strictly constitute an internal affair of Baghdad.” It was also argued that Saddam would not have invaded Kuwait, had he been given an explicit warning that such an invasion would be met with force by the United States. Journalist Edward Mortimer wrote in the New York Review of Books in November 1990. In the end Saddam Hussein and his country paid heavily for shooting few SCUD missiles towards Israel which did not even explode.

UNITED NATIONS ORGANIZATION

The full support must be offered for the United Nations and its associated system of international law and a culture of peace and non-violence being a prerequisite must form the basis for any dialogue for warring factions and civilisations.

Peace Departments as argued, must advocate against the creation or continuation of grand alliances such as NATO, G-20, the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation and QUAD that threaten to divide the world into antagonistic blocs. Mehta agrees that there is no consensus on fundamental causes of war but the root causes of major conflicts worldwide are well known and on record.

Mr Mehta’s question how not to go to war remains unanswered and the only positive outcome is the suggestion to offer donations freely to fund the need for opening “peace offices” all over the world. The effort off-course will generate employment; however new initiatives to find solutions for much needed peace on international level will remain an improbability.

THE FINAL AND PRACTICAL SOLUTION

To attain much talked about peace, economic and political exploitation of weaker nations must end forthwith. To start with UNO and its subsidiaries must be shifted to an unclaimed island like Eel Pie Island, lock, stock and barrel, so that it can work freely and without any interference and leverage. UNO given the ownership of the Island will allow all member countries to visit and interact freely on the issues at hand.

Eel Pie Island

The funds needed by the organisation must be provided by member states on the basis of GDP, fiscal deficit, economic stability, economic growth, large domestic savings and foreign investment. All other institutions like International Court of Justice, Human Rights Watch, and Amnesty International etc. must be made subservient to UNO and work strictly under its command and control.

The VETO power of the big five must be done away with in order to allow the conflicts small or big to be solved through a majority vote of the member countries. The decision of the majority vote should be a binding for all member countries which will pave the way for speedy settlement of the issues involved. The UN should be empowered to use sanctions against any member country refusing to comply with the decision. The imposed selective quick-fix of issues like Eritrea or South Sudan will be consigned to the dustbin of history.