Is world peace attainable

The big questions: What world peace do we want?

the psychology of irrational thinking

If I ask fifty people if they are for world peace, they will probably all answer “yes”. But hardly anyone thinks about the design and the possible side effects.

As soon as a social consensus becomes a reflex, a matter of course that everyone supports without thinking, it should be questioned. Just like “health” or “justice”, the term “world peace” has a positive connotation, but is completely abstract. Nobody is against it, but people still get sick, injustice is widespread and war is always present. Perhaps all these high moral values ​​are nothing more than an absolutely desirable but at the same time unattainable goal, a vanishing point on the distant horizon.

The further away a point is, the more paths can lead to it. So everyone can claim that their actions will lead to world peace at some point.

Marxism-Leninism assumed that there is a paradisiacal final state, communism. There everyone lives according to their wishes and works voluntarily for the community according to their abilities. But to do this, all countries in the world must first be put on the right track, if necessary by force. Peace as the result of victory over all opponents - that is of course easy. The argument goes: "As soon as everyone has recognized that we are right, and thus the right to world government, there will be peace." However, this is by no means new. Already in the Old Testament the prophet Micah preached:

“For instruction will go out from Zion, and the word of the Lord from Jerusalem. Then he will judge between many peoples and judge powerful peoples far into the distance. There they will forge their swords into plowshares and their lance tips into winemaker's knives. ”(Mi 4,2-3)

In other words: there will be peace as soon as the other peoples have recognized the Jewish God as the only God. A righteous king appointed by God will then rule the world. Can that be achieved in a peaceful way? Probably even Micha's contemporaries didn't quite believe that.

Obsessively peaceful

Can you force world peace? Wouldn't it be more of a submission then? Was the inner peace of the Roman Empire that Pax R.omana, maybe just a euphemism used by the Romans to justify the pillaging of their provinces? Were the straight Roman roads used to quickly move troops to maintain an imperial peace, or were they supposed to promote trade that benefited everyone (civil peace)?

I guess most people in Germany imagine that world peace extends the ideal of the order that rules here to the world. In world peace there is enough work for everyone, the police officers are friendly and incorruptible, judges pass fair judgments and politicians work unselfishly for their constituents. Such a peace would then be exclusively civil. At the same time, it would also be completely fair. But is it realistic to assume that a simultaneously peaceful and consistently just world can be achieved?

How should one deal with rulers or states who want to build on past times of great power and want to recapture supposedly or actually lost territories, regardless of whether the residents think that's right? Or those, such as B. It was common in antiquity to view robberies on neighbors as a legitimate method of enrichment? Would there be a just war against them? Then one would have to weigh justice against peace.

Peace for all

This leads to the crucial question: is it possible to keep peace if not all and really all states participate? Would it be justified to give the UN a mandate to enforce peace? So far, UN peace missions have always taken place where no major power interests are directly affected, because the UN Security Council has to approve the deployment. The blue helmet soldiers are only allowed to enter if the person concerned has expressly given his consent. Furthermore, they are obliged to strict neutrality and are only allowed to use violence to a very limited extent. As the many wars of recent years have shown, that is often not enough.

But: do we really want to give the UN the right to intervene against the will of a state? Could this right not be abused? Can there be a supreme authority for world peace that can no longer be controlled?

Five options

Having said this, I would like to present five options for discussion. They reflect differently rigorous ways to achieve world peace.

  1. Wars and conquests are basically allowed and legitimate. World peace is not an issue. However, every state has to consider whether it wants to afford a war. After all, everyone else has the right to interfere. Atrocities against the civilian population and the use of nuclear, biological or chemical weapons are not permitted. The Hague Land Warfare Regulations remain in force.
  2. Only defensive wars or armed uprisings against repressive regimes are allowed (just war). Everything else is forbidden. Today's rules apply to UN peacekeeping operations. Atrocities against the civilian population and the use of nuclear, biological or chemical weapons are not permitted. The Hague Land Warfare Regulations remain in force and may, if necessary, be enforced by the international community.
  3. World peace is the rule. Only territorial citizen armies are allowed, either on a voluntary basis or on a conscription basis. A standing army is forbidden. Arms production is limited. Weapons of mass destruction and land mines are outlawed.
  4. World peace is a duty. Violence is illegitimate, even against repressive regimes. The UN (or a successor organization) receives the right to enforce peace even against the will of those involved. The manufacture and distribution of weapons of war are strictly regulated.
  5. Peace is rigorously enforced at all levels. The protection of people against individual or organized violence has absolute priority, but civil rights may be restricted. Constant monitoring is allowed. The manufacture, possession and use of weapons of war is prohibited. Violent acts, their preparation or the appointment to do so are strictly followed.

Wars demand a high price, but world peace will not come for free either. newsletter

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