The great unspoken evil: War

In the US today, every social ill is spoken of as a “war.” The War on Drugs, the War on Terror, the War on Poverty.

The only wars that are never actually discussed, are the real, actual wars.

The US has been at war for 17 years.

Does anyone even notice? Or care?

Veterans come back suffering tremendous trauma, without job training and unable to work.

Meanwhile, the victims of war, overseas, presumably numbering in the millions or tens of millions (no on knows, and the US does not count) — they are never mentioned in the US press.

But war is a great evil. To build a Golden Age, we have to abolish war and declare it barbaric: akin to torture, slavery, piracy, or genocide.

How do we get there?

(i) The US should end its current wars. The single most important thing the US could do today to build peace and sustainability would be to commit to ending its current wars, in favor of cease fires, truces, political dialogue and peace treaties.

(ii) The US should commit to the use of war only in concert with allies and as permitted by international law. In cases not in self-defense, this means that the US needs to act with the authority and approval of the United Nations Security Council. If the US cannot obtain approval, violence should not be used. That is the way it works.

(iii) The US should stop sponsoring regime change. The U.S. has executed at least 81 overt and covert known interventions in foreign elections during the period 1946–2000. And that doesn’t even include the more well known, destructive regime change operations that have included such places as Iraq, Syria and Libya.

The lives of tens of millions of people have been negatively impacted by US government actions. At some point, the world will say enough.

Instead of sponsoring regime change, the US should commit itself to the defense of universal human rights. Countries that wish to adopt a human rights framework could get aid and assistance. Countries that don’t believe in human rights would be excluded from the benefits of affiliation with the US.

A value-based foreign policy would change the world, practically overnight.

(iv) The US should stop worshipping war. War is not a positive good. It is a great evil, a human action that should only be taken in the absolute last case scenario. Yet today, war is the first recourse. Glorification of the military, of the death of enemies, of weaponry: these images are everywhere, and they destroy our own sense of humanity.

US leaders must have the moral conviction to ask the culture to change and shift direction to something far more healthy and human.