War is one of the greatest risks to countries, its inhabitants and the world in its entirety. It has even become a symbol of the rich countries, considering the fact that most of its power were acquired through violence. In other words, war has become a tool in the quest for power, disguised as quest for the protection of peace. However, this quest, has consequences, which directly affect the populace not only of the countries part of the war, but of the world itself. Hence, it is imperative that we start to really find the real and true road to peace.
In the long run, what is essential is the full understanding of the nature of peace, starting with ourselves, and eventually resulting to a clear intention and act of disarmament. First of all, it must be noted that the real meaning and nature of peace is not the absence of war, but is actually in the thought that we are secure in our status and safety, without any fear of hostilities by others, because we have learned to respect others, and vice-versa. A real and lasting peace is reached only when there is mutual understanding between countries, and not the absence of war when there are existing mutual hostilities.
The Dalai Lama said it best when he said: Real peace is something more profound than a fragile equilibrium based on mutual hostility. It ultimately depends on the resolution of internal conflict. The fact of human interdependence is so fundamental and clear today that the only peace meaningful to speak about is global peace. (The Dalai Lama, Chapter 14, Ethics for the New Millenium) Hence from the foregoing, it can be gleaned that there must be resolution as to any conflict between nations, for to allow the continuation of such hostilities, despite the absence of war, is like a ticking time bomb, waiting to explode.
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It would be very easy to find reasons to physically act on hostilities, if the intention is really present, which, albeit legal, is essentially not morally correct. An example of this is the “doctrine of pre-emptive strike” which is recognized by the United Nations and International law, which allows one nation to attack a nation which it believes is a threat to its safety. Therefore, unless internal conflicts are seriously resolved, the risk of war will never go away. Peace must start with ourselves. Although this may seem a bit too imaginative, it is an imperative element of lasting peace.
Unless individuals learn to look at others in a peaceful way and start understanding each other’s flaws, a lasting global peace may not be reached after all. It cannot be denied that war is a result of a decision of the head of a state, with the support of the people. Hence, if individually, people start to respect and instill in themselves the real nature of peace, then wars will be stopped. Leaders will hesitate to engage in hostilities with other countries because of the fear of reprisals or loss of support from his inhabitants.
In this regard, the Dalai Lama further stated: Peace cannot be imposed by force. We cannot enjoy true peace until we dismantle injustice in our own human hearts. Lasting peace is only possible when each of us makes an effort internally. We must learn to do nothing to contribute to the suffering of others. If the aim of lasting global peace is taken seriously, it is essential that the Disarmament of countries with weapons of mass destruction be implemented. This will put at rest the fears of countries that these weapons may be used against them.
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However, disarmament must be implemented to all countries, no more, no less. Furthermore, this will help the disarmed countries economically, considering the expenses needed for the production and stockpiling of the same despite the chance that the said weapons might not be used after all. Further, in order to reach lasting peace, the role of the United Nations is likewise imperative, in order for the formation of a global police force, for the protection against any violent force which may be used against countries.
Concurrently, Disarmament may cause those involved in the arms trade to think as to the economic side of the business, considering the lack of need for the same, since it practically has no use in a globally world. Upon implementation of the disarmament, a military zone of peace will necessarily follow, for the purpose of peacekeeping and the protection of a real and lasting peace in consonance with the latter’s real nature. With this, an ethics monitor must likewise be installed in order to monitor the acts and the affairs of the world, with the intention of peace.
The Dalai Lama said it best when he stated : We must learn to dialogue in the spirit of reconciliation and compromise. We need to establish a body whose principle task is to monitor human affairs from the perspective of ethics. Their deliberations would be the world’s conscience. To sum it all up, the road to a real and lasting global peace is never easy. However, the intention must start within ourselves. For without the help of the inhabitants of the world, then the dream of lasting global peace might remain as such – an unreachable and impossible dream.