Friday, April 04, 2008

War And The Futility Of Peace Protests

Once again the voices of the morally superior are raised against the military, against war, and in favor of world peace. These well meaning souls don’t seem to have a clue about war, the meaning of war, the impact of stopping a war, the strategic impact of one-sided peace initiatives, or anything beyond their conviction that the world would be peaceful if people just stopped fighting. These are the people who think war is immoral and unnatural because inter-species fighting is immoral. Of course one only has to look at the animal kingdom to determine that inter-species killing and fighting is very prevalent. In virtually every animal species the males fight over females, territory, and resources. In some cases whole packs of animals attack and kill similar packs over territory and resources. Chimpanzees in particular organize war parties and conduct what have all of the earmarks of raids on neighboring groups where killing is the objective. The obvious conclusion is that inter-species killing is commonplace in the animal kingdom but is not viewed as being immoral but simply as the way things are.

The Darwinists believe that man is descended from a common ancestor with apes and is simply another animal. To the Darwinists man is born, reproduces, and dies just like other animals. Man has no purpose, no objective beyond reproduction, and lives a life of futility, but as usual the Darwinists want to have it both ways. On the one hand they know we are just another member of the animal kingdom but being a superior animal we have a concept of morality and of right and wrong whereas animals do not. But if we are an animal like the apes, then why are our wars considered immoral by these people? Clearly the answer must be because we have some inner voice, a consciousness that tells us what is right and wrong. This of course sounds a great deal like a soul, but I digress.

The reality is that World Peace is a dream, much like the Alchemist’s dream of changing base metal into gold. There has never been a time in human history, going back to the Neolithic when man was not engaged in some form of combat. The idea that primitive man lived a life in harmony with nature and at peace with others is simply a dream that these peace advocates have created for themselves but that is all it is – a dream. One only has to look at primitive societies today to see that they engage in warfare that frequently results in fatalities. So the idea that man is by nature peaceful is simply erroneous and those people who mount these peace rallies whose aim is world peace are really indulging in an exercise in futility.

But suppose that these people who are anti-war and anti-military were to gain enough political power that they could put their philosophy of pacifism into practice? Well the history books are filled with examples where various kings and countries have tried to buy off aggressive threats, but it never works – it only delays the inevitable and those that tried to pay tribute always come out the loser. Machiavelli points out that wars cannot be avoided – only delayed. We have examples in our own time. The League of Nations was created as a way of avoiding war, of creating a forum where issues could be talked about and resolved without violence. Well the League did not prevent Mussolini from invading Ethiopia nor did it keep Hitler from invading Austria. The “peace at any price” lobby got control of the British government led by Neville Chamberlain who was so determined to avoid war that he almost singlehandedly brought on the second World War. The United Nations was created for the express purpose of providing a forum for the resolution of conflicts without violence. It was supposed to prevent wars. It has failed and failed miserably. It has not prevented any war, stopped any war, or even come close – it has turned into an ineffectual debating society.

The fact is that war seems to be the natural state of man, but not all men and not all the time. In reality – even in ancient times – only a small portion of the population is engaged in warfare, the majority of the population is law abiding citizens going about their daily lives. Of course these are also those people who are carried off in to slavery, slaughtered by score, and find themselves exploited by the conquerors or even by their own military dictators. So it is only this small portion of the general population – the warrior class – who fight the battles that determine the fate of people, states, nations, or empires. In fact the future of these and the fate of peoples has commonly hinged on one battle, fought by a relatively small number of men, in a small area over a period of hours. These are the battles that yield not just a new order of things but may determine the future of whole civilizations.

It was the battle of Thermopylae that allowed the Athenian city states to organize and fight off the Persians. It was the battle of Waterloo that brought down Napoleon. It was the battle of Hastings that ended the reign of Harold and the Anglo-Saxons and the list goes on and on. Therefore, while the majority of the population may not want war and may not actually fight in a war, their future has always been in the hands of a few warriors. While those who seek peace and protest war may be well intentioned the fact is that war has always existed and it is the warrior who creates and maintains the peace. A nation at peace cannot remain at peace without a strong military defense and any country that disarms is ultimately doomed to destruction and enslavement.

1 comment:

Kathy said...

Interesting comments. Sad, but true. Man has always been fighting and unfortunately will always continue to fight. This is something that peace lovers have wanted to stop for generations. They have hoped that mankind would 'rise' above that inherent characteristic. And unless they did that on a collective level, we will continue to fight others for whatever reason, to gain our desires.