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Can we wage war on what we don't understand?

Does a country have a right to invade another country without a developed understanding of its culture and history? Would a better international education prevent conflicts? Can we do anything to stop the conflicts by trying to understand rather than by bombing that which feels threatening?

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    May 23 2011: I think that is the only way we can wage wars. If we really took the time to understand the other culture and people we would be less likely to be willing to kill them. Which of us in our daily lives could be convinced to kill anyone else for some ideological reason? We call those who are willing to do so within a societal framework psychopaths and killers.

    It is because we as citizens of countries do not understand the agendas of leaders and plutocrats that we go to war. As Wongmo states, if we really understood the whole picture of mercenary economic agendas where lives are irrelevant and money is all we would not go to war.

    AS Einstein said; It is only when people refuse to go to war that war will stop. As long as governments are allowed to put economic issues above the lives of their citizens and disguise it in humanitarian terms - and as long as the citizens cooperate by not demanding the full truth and the full picture- there wil be wars fought by people who kill other people for reasons none of them fully understand.
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      May 23 2011: that's why it is advisable to read the comments before posting your own. now i don't have to write at all, just nod to this one.
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      May 23 2011: Debra............That last paragraph hit the nail on the head !!
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      May 24 2011: I couldn't have agreed more with Debra
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      Jun 3 2011: i just wanna repeat what debra stated, "AS Einstein said; It is only when people refuse to go to war that war will stop. As long as governments are allowed to put economic issues above the lives of their citizens and disguise it in humanitarian terms - and as long as the citizens cooperate by not demanding the full truth and the full picture- there will be wars fought by people who kill other people for reasons none of them fully understand."

      thumbs up! ^^
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    May 24 2011: It will be a good day when as a society we move past trivial tribal warfare and mercenary mentalities. War should never be waged to take what does not belong to the country waging the war. Only to prevent atrocities against humanity, such as stopping a genocide or bringing basic human rights to cultures that have been depraved of such things. I do think that the population control that has been a side effect of the wars has been helpful though. I know it sounds nasty but realistically with out war our species would be way past the current seven billion people, would the level be sustainable?

    Another question this raises to me is how do we move past the warring mentality that has been part of our way of life for thousands of years? Richard Bach had an interesting solution in his book 'One'. In this book the main characters flew into some type of quantum flux that allowed them to see different versions of themselves. In one of the parallels they visited the armies of the world were all but dismantled. This was caused by dogfighting becoming a sporting event. The pilots got paid so much to fly in the games that it made no fiscal sense to join the military. If you are familiar with it think how big NASCAR is. Can you imagine how big a televised dogfighting sport could become? In this scenario the other type of warfare followed suite of the dogfights and eventually all the best soldiers were athletes instead of military then the countries were forced to find other ways of resolving their disputes.
  • Jun 10 2011: That's a good question. Religion wages war on science, reason, and logic, and religious people don't understand any of those. Understanding is required in order to see what the really important things are. People from other cultures seem less threatening the more you know about it. Which is why i think that science needs to bury religion. Because after reading religious texts like the Bible and the Koran, i find myself even more concerned. Thats how you tell what the real problems are. I find myself understanding other cultures more and more, and i'm less and less concerned. But with religions, its like Mark Twain said, "It ain't those parts of the Bible that I can't understand that bother me, it is the parts that I do understand."
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      May 24 2011: I think it should be an issue in every free election, in every country that every free person speaks up and demands that their own country stop making weapons of war. I think we should have a world wide list of which countries produce which weapons so that we can go after each type of weapon - just as some brave people worked to eliminate land mines - in turn starting with the ones that kill the most citizens.
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          May 24 2011: Wongmo, I suspect that you might have such a good heart that you are suggesting that we all need to be careful if we do not think our own countries are involved in such things. I was shocked and crushed to learn that Canada manufactured land mines at one point. That's why we need the list- so that we can begin to wake up as citizens of every country and face the reality that we are all part of the problem.
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          May 24 2011: Wongmo, I think that it is sometimes really hard to get the information within our own countries- information that is readily available and well known to people outside is often well buried and never discussed even in societies that believe that they have free access to information. As an example on another level- Canadians never even know that a seal hunt is happening. It is not part of our awareness as it is in other countries. It just doesn't get covered by our media.
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          May 26 2011: As a start toward understanding who is producing the weapons of war I am attaching the link for Wikipedia -Arms industry- about half way down the page it lists the top countries and their dollar earnings from arms yearly from 2001 to 2010. I am sad to see that my country is on the list.

          http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arms_industry
  • Jul 2 2011: Surely we can ONLY wage war on that which we don't understand? War is driven through fear, fear of a different ideology or culture or religion, fear of losing out on vital resources, fear that our world view will be destroyed or altered. All fear is, at heart, a fear of the unknown. The familiar is never frightening. And so by understanding we lose fear, without fear we cannot go to war.
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    May 25 2011: Remove all borders

    Mankind is in the process of adopting this outlook.My generation and the ones ahead of us have to die before it will be realised.Ugly but it's happening.
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    May 23 2011: can we? well, we do, so yes. should we? well of course no, a border is as stupid as the people who defend it.