[gha] Re: Culture of War and Militaristic Culture of Peace

  • From: Leo Semashko <leo.semashko@xxxxxxxxx>
  • To: "Charles Mercieca" <mercieca@xxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Wed, 27 Nov 2013 12:38:31 +0400

Dear Charles,

Many thanks for your interesting article in GPS book and I very wait your other 

As you know, the GHA circle of discussion of the GPS articles, including you, 
will start in February 2014 to perfect and consolidate these articles in one on 
spirit collective monograph in accordance with the Rules approved by GHA and 
posted here: 

You could modify your article with these Rules until February and include the 
bibliography (including a few your books and key articles) to 10 sources, no 

With love, best harmony wishes,


Dr Leo Semashko:
State  Councillor  of  St.  Petersburg,
Philosopher, Sociologist and Peacemaker from Harmony;
Director:  Tetrasociology Public Institute, Russia;
Founding President, Global Harmony Association (GHA) since 2005;
Director, GHA Website "Peace from Harmony": www.peacefromharmony.org
Global Peace Science from Harmony: www.peacefromharmony.org/?cat=en_c&key=585 
In Russian: www.peacefromharmony.org/?cat=ru_c&key=606;
World Interfaith Harmony Project on the ABC of Harmony Base:
GHA Program Book, The ABC of Harmony for World Peace:
GHA Peace Video: http://youtu.be/hbxY5lREOeA;
My Web page: www.peacefromharmony.org/?cat=en_c&key=253;
Address: 7/4-42 Ho-Shi-Min Street, St. Petersburg 194356, Russia
Phone: 7 (812) 597-65-71; Skype: leo.semahko
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/leo.semashko?ref=tn_tnmn

----- Original Message -----
  From: Charles Mercieca, mercieca@xxxxxxxxxxx
  To: leo.semashko@xxxxxxxxx
  Sent: 27 ноября 2013 г., 5:00:50
  Subject: Culture of War and Militaristic Culture of Peace

November 26, 2013
Dear Leo:
                Here below and attached is the first article you asked me to 
write for publication in your forthcoming book this coming spring. I am now 
working on the second article you proposed to me entitled: The Continuity of 
War in World History. This article I am sending you was very well received by 
some of my friends who read it.
Culture of War and Militaristic Culture of Peace
Charles Mercieca, Ph.D.
International Association of Educators for World Peace
Dedicated to United Nations Goals of Peace Education,
Environmental Protection, Human Rights & Disarmament
Professor Emeritus, Alabama A&M University
            A careful study of history reveals that while people in general 
always opted for peace through dialogues on a mutually beneficial basis, their 
public officials often tended to resort to struggles and wars to get what they 
want. As a result people suffered immensely. Their houses were destroyed and 
several of their family members and friends lost their lives or got maimed for 
life. Every era of history revealed conflicts between the culture of war and 
that of peace. Each time the culture of war proved disastrous while that of 
peace was beneficial.
Culture of War
            Unfortunately, the culture of war has proved always to be dominant 
in the world at large. This is revealed in the fact that there are very few 
nations which had the courage to abolish the military. Such nations have 
managed to live in peace for very long periods in spite of the turmoil that 
might have surrounded their boarders. One clear example is Costa Rica, which 
had a long history of civil wars where some 80% of the population were homeless 
and lived in poverty. Many years ago the leader of this nation abolished the 
military for good.
            The United States did not like this move and soon tried to persuade 
the government of Costa Rica of the imminent danger it faced since the 
surrounding countries were all equipped with strong military forces. Costa 
Rica’s military general who abolished the military forces from his nation said 
calmly and firmly to the USA: “We firmly believe that if we prove to be not a 
threat to any of the surrounding nations, not one of them will dream to attack 
us.” And he proved to be right. For the several decades that followed Costa 
Rica remains peaceful.
            When Costa Rica was preoccupied with having a strong military, the 
vast majority of the people were illiterate. This country for many years had 
the largest infant mortality rate among all the nations of both North and South 
America. In addition, the vast majority of the people were illiterate. They 
could not read and write. Within a matter of a few years, all the homeless were 
fully provided with adequate home facilities. Besides, Costa Rica became the 
nation in this part of the world with lowest infant mortality, less than that 
of the USA.
            When the government of Costa Rica was asked: Where did you get the 
money to provide so many people with adequate home facilities and to give them 
all free education not only at the elementary and secondary school level but 
also at the college and university level as well? The answer was quick and 
simple: You see, when we had the military we spent millions of dollars on 
weapons and the promotion of struggles and wars; now that the military is gone 
all of that money is being used constructively for the welfare of the people. 
That would include free education and free health care for everyone.
Militaristic Culture of Peace
            This furnishes us with clear evidence that the real source of all 
our earthly tragedies lies with the promotion of wars. The question to be 
raised is this: How come that all governments which resort to wars for the 
solution of problems cannot learn from a recorded history of 6,000 years of 
civilization that violence breeds violence and more violence breeds more 
violence? The situation is very serious and government officials that proceed 
to wage wars need to be properly examined due to the fact that there must be 
something very wrong with them.
            The reason often quoted by government officials for their 
justification of war is expressed by the words: national defense and security, 
which is absolutely not true. A nation is viewed to be strong and healthy when 
its people are fully educated to the maximum of their abilities, in addition to 
being in good health. Since wars have become to be highly expensive, all money 
put in them is taken away from the vital needs of the population. An example of 
this is the USA which engaged itself in more than 30 wars since World War II 
was over in 1945.
            Billions of dollars were spent uselessly on the Vietnam War, the 
war in Iraq and the Afghanistan War. While the American people suffered 
immensely because their government took a vast amount of money from the health 
care and education of its people, the civilians of the nations that the USA 
invaded had their homes destroyed, along with their schools, hospitals and 
places of worship. This has proved, as Pope Pius XII expressed on the eve of 
World War II that in a war everyone is a loser and no one is a winner.
            The waging of wars is a very complex problem because behind the 
scenes we always seem to have a mafia-type of organization whose job is to 
exploit several government officials by putting them in a state of paranoia. 
This way they could appeal to their “responsibility” to exercise machismo as to 
show that when it comes to struggles and wars they are fully fearless. To make 
things worse, this mafia-type of organization portrays the instigation and 
promotion of war as a sign of strength, courage and fearlessness.
            No matter how much time it may take us, we must proceed to bring a 
new set of people in the government who are determined to work for the welfare 
of all people without exception. This way, by the process of time, we may start 
replacing war-minded political figures with peace-oriented politicians. The 
whole world should be viewed as one global community that may work harmoniously 
for peace on a permanent basis. In this case everyone will be a winner and no 
one a loser. Since children of all nations are the adults of our future 
communities, they should be familiarized with each other by all means.
Genuine Approach to True Peace
            This way when they become adults they will start viewing the grown 
up children of other nations as their friends and partners, like they were all 
real members of the same global family. For quite a long time now, malicious 
politicians have been creating a new vocabulary that they use with people as to 
confuse them to a virtual point of no return. In Italian there is a proverb: 
Chiama pane pane e vino vino – Call bread bread and wine wine. In just plain 
English we simply say: Call it as it is. 
            If we examine all the wars the USA waged on some 30 nations since 
World War II ended in 1945, we often hear the reason given to justify such 
illegal actions with the name “national defense and security” by way of 
justification. While the USA refers to Americans killed by foreigners as 
“victims of terrorism,” they refer to innocent people they kill in conflicts as 
“collateral damage!” And the list goes on. Of course, other nations have 
created their own vocabulary as well to soften the injustices they commit 
against many innocent people.
            It looks like that the culture of war has gone so deeply into the 
minds of many government officials that when the military speaks of the culture 
of peace, it sounds more to be some sort of a joke within the context. By its 
very nature, the military in general has always existed to instigate and 
promote wars almost without ending. As observed in the early part of this 
presentation, the constant state of war in Costa Rica ended only after the 
military was abolished. If the set-up of a military unit is needed, it should 
be merely for national emergences.
            A military unit that exists to disseminate wars should be abolished 
because its presence makes it very difficult for the world to have eventually a 
genuine peace among people on both the national and global scale. The Master 
Teacher of Nazareth was very clear on this topic. He exhorted us all to do to 
others what we would like others do to us. We do not want others to hurt us and 
kill us. Likewise we should never take the initiative to solve conflicts of any 
kind through struggles and wars but only through diplomacy and healthy 

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