Friday, August 12, 2011

You Say You Want a Revolution

According to Veysey, “… The urge towards revolution [is] no more than a final category of pronounced individual nonconformity.”[1] This “nonconformity” has now been assimilated into society. It manifests as conformity to nonconformity. It is the genesis of the dark ages warned of by Morris Berman, and the idiot culture lamented by Berstein.

Nothing is more indicative of the nonconforming conformity than tongue piercing. It tells the world that the individual is willing to mutilate themselves to express their individuality.[2]

This statement of rebellion, first seen in the 1960s when the human body became a weapon in the revolt against the mayhem in Vietnam and the authorities’ approach to law and order, is now a main stream expression. It is no longer shocking if it is accepted by the larger community.

As Veysey pointed out, “[Revolution] is the most active form of resistance, but like all other such forms it is a symptom at most of desperate tenacity rather than prophetic insight.”[3] This is essentially an act of resistance to a set of circumstances which have become utterly intolerable, and must be eliminated. It also explains why the Islamic fundamentalist, and those who are losing under the capitalistic system, have or will turn to revolution and violence to gain some sense of freedom from the perceived tyranny and oppression. This is again reinforced in Mark Colvin’s Crime Coercion Theory: Constant coercion can drive an individual to assault or murder. Extrapolation of that natural tendency also applies to the group dynamic within the sub-culture. A class level collective violence becomes acceptable against the representatives of the repressive establishment and those who occupy the institutions of the establishment.

“The existence of revolutionaries on the American scene … testifies to the incapacity of the present civilization to satisfy certain deep aspirations, including a demand for simple equality to minorities who are in their own midst. But revolution activity is futile except as an honest statement of the intensity of one’s moral convictions.”[4] This is again an observation in Veysey’s Law and Resistance: American Attitudes Towards Authority. What moral convictions do we have today? The right to consume everything we have the means to grasp without any regard for long term ramifications of that consumption? The revolting nature of today’s packaged counter culture expressions have little to do with morality and much to do with self expression in a crowded world to establish unique individuality within the press of mass humanity. At no point in history have we been more aware of our minimal existence on the globe. All of our communication technology has made that apparent. We have become crass and shocking because we are striving to express ourselves in a crowded world. But what happens when the “shocking” doesn’t produce shock, and the crass is considered normal?

The revolution takes a step up the ladder of escalation. The self-mutilation of today’s counter culture becomes the open aggression of tomorrow’s mainstream culture. That is pretty much what we are seeing, and this, too, falls in line with the coercion effect when conjoined with the normal understanding of the pathology of depression.

Depression, it is said, is anger turned inward. Is the self-mutilation an expression of group psychosis, or is it simply self expression? The answer to that question requires a clinical psychologist, and it is somewhat outside the scope of any business management report on globalization.

It is worth noting that by some reckoning 60% of the U.S. population suffers from some form of psychosis, this too is indicative of a population operating at Maslow’s level two. However, it has to be pointed out that a revolutionary reprisal which includes physical assault and murder, not just economic disruption, lacks any universally accepted morality and only breeds more violence, murder and mayhem. Such acts do not extend the cause of liberation from the “establishment.” As Versey noted back in 1970, revolution is ineffective “because of the sheer power of the establishment.” This power, in conjunction with apathetic official indifference towards the plight of the individual or group sub-culture, has not abated in the past thirty-seven years.

By assimilating, even tentatively, and institutionalizing and commercializing counter culture expressions, as seen in the boom of internet based pornography and the proliferation of sexually oriented businesses, the establishment has brought unto itself the very forces which it once tried to punish and expunge. This does not bode well for any force that still strives to alter the landscape or enter a dialogue on equal terms with the corporations and the minions once referred to simply as the establishment. Having accepted and commercialized the counter culture expression, the corporations are expecting the counter culture to fold into the mainstream. The image and expression of revolt are made glamorous and acceptable, but the root causes are ignored.

We can buy Che Guevara t-shirts at Neiman Marcus without having a clue as to the man’s life or struggle; this is not dissimilar to the selling of Jesus in the popular culture. Jesus, now molded and expressed in terms of the corporate expression of capitalism, was himself a revolutionary and was put to death by the Romans for just that reason.

Murder, violence and mayhem, as expensive to the corporations as it may be, is not the answer. Howard Zinn writes in the introduction of Beacon Press’ The Power of Nonviolence: Writings by advocates of Peace:

“Haven’t we learned anything from the Israeli-Palestinian conflict? Car bombs planted by Palestinians bring tanks and air attacks by the Israeli government. That has been going on for years. That doesn’t work and innocent people die on both sides.”[5]

“We should take our examples not from our military and political leaders shouting “retaliate” and “war” but from the doctors and nurses and medical students and fireman and policemen [and Security Officers] who have been saving lives in the midst of mayhem, whose first thoughts are not vengeance but compassion, not violence but healing.”

The only way to view the phrase “our … political leaders” is to view it within the context of globalization. It is not just the political leaders in the United States. It is also the political leaders in China, Japan, the European Union, the African Union, Russia, Israel, Lebanon, Syria, Jordan, Afghanistan, Iran, etc. Anyone driving the world to more and more violence must be addressed with humanity and compassion not retaliatory violence. This is hard for the masses to grasp. The reflex, especially within the Maslow construct, is to run away or strike back, not to look for rational peaceful solutions.

Nonviolent response is a hard, hard discipline of moral training. In the world’s view, it is weakness. The strength required to hold back the hand of retaliatory response is ridiculed, debased and diminished among the masses who know only their personal reptilian response. No matter how deep the training in nonviolence goes, no matter how civilized the psyche, the deep seated desire to stop unjust behavior can drive the deeply rooted pacifist to reconsider the stance on violence. Those without such conviction know all too well the temptation to meet violence with violence. It is primal within the human being. This is why we have the rule of law.

In the most finite specific situation specific deterrence can work. An individual can be stopped from committing a violent act by an act of violence which is just great enough to stop them. As Saint Paul wrote:

Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers. For there is no power but of God: the powers that be are ordained of God. Whosoever therefore resisteth the power, resisteth the ordinance of God: and they that resist shall receive to themselves damnation. For rulers are not a terror to good works, but to the evil. Wilt thou then not be afraid of the power? do that which is good, and thou shalt have praise of the same: For he is the minister of God to thee for good. But if thou do that which is evil, be afraid; for he beareth not the sword in vain: for he is the minister of God, a revenger to execute wrath upon him that doeth evil. Wherefore ye must needs be subject, not only for wrath, but also for conscience sake. [6]

A katyusha battery can be bombed into oblivion, the problem arises when the community surrounding the battery is also bombed. As Zinn writes concerning the current situation, “We bombed Afghanistan, and inevitably killed innocent people, because it is in the nature of bombing to be indiscriminate, to ‘make no distinction.’ Did we commit terrorist acts in order to ‘send a message’ to terrorist?’ ”[7] If the answer to Zinn’s question is “yes” then we, all, have to rethink our collective approach to the situation.

If specific deterrence works and general deterrence is only another form of coercion which allows the injustice of an act of violence against the innocent to go unchecked, then the appropriate response seems rather obvious.

In a globalized world there is a pressing need for a globalized police force to intrude within the countries where terrorist violence has become epidemic. Moreover, it needs to be able to do so with the precision that only can be applied by a well trained peace officer without the utilization of conventional weapons of mass demolition.

Civilization needs to stop the criminal elements who are utilizing terrorist tactics to further their socioeconomic political agenda without utilizing the (U.S. Air Force’s) Massive Ordnance Penetrator.[8] Its anachronism is MOP, and that is just how precise it is. Even a 500 pound bomb cuts a wide swath in an urban environment. The term “urban” is a rough description of a primitive adobe village in the middle of some forsaken scrubland.

Bombing an enemy encampment into oblivion may seem pragmatic, but by the time it comes to that, the situation has been allowed to decay beyond the point of civilized intervention. We are in desperate need of new solutions at a conceptual and application level. Inclusive in this approach must be looking at the biggest picture possible in regards to the ramifications of a given set of actions or inactions. That is not an easy task.

The U.S. is reluctant to make changes which may be costly in the short term, but produce better results in the long term, and patience does not seem to be a virtue. The well documented overthrow of the Iranian nationalist government and the imposition of the Shah of Iran in 1953 is one such case.

Conceptually, and pragmatically, the idea of utilizing a policing approach does not bode well with any nation state who thinks that its individual authority supersedes the necessity of global sanity. This applies to every sovereign nation around the world. However, when addressing the issue of global terrorism as a response to the activities of the global corporations, then either the home country must take corrective actions to deter the continuation of the crime by the competing corporations, preferably through incentives rather than through prosecution and punishment, or the community at large has to get involved to minimally separate the combatants.

In essence the country which does not want to rein in the corporate activity leaves people with little choice but to limit national sovereignty in an effort to rein in the criminality activity. Iran’s current Islamic government is a direct result to the U.K. and U.S. support of BP’s (British Petroleum) losses, after years of cheating Iran out of oil revenue. Basically Britain and the United States decided to support the theft of Iran’s natural resources, rather than tell the Anglo-Iranian Oil Company to behave and properly compensate Iran for their oil. To paraphrase a 1980s era television commercial “You can pay me now, or you can pay me later.” We are all paying today for the insolence of fifty-four years ago.

The flow of logic may be a bit accelerated, so a review of facts is in order. First, the oldest truth known to civilized man is “this too shall pass.” Everything changes! Right now, in the aftermath of the Cold War, we are experiencing a rise in decadence as the effects of the counter culture are assimilated into the mainstream culture. This is not unique in history. It happened following the Black Death in Europe in the 1340s. It has happened following every major cultural threat right up to the “lost generation” following the carnage of World War One. Our culture today is more reflective of the 1920s than it is the 1950s. In that era, known as “the roaring 20s,” the corporations ran the nations. This is not the first time; it will not be the last time.

In one form or another, the governments are run by the corporations of the world. They do so by providing jobs for those who can prove to be the least objectionable and most socially acceptable to the culture within the corporation. They do so by directly dictating who is successful and who is not, and that level of success, now based on the social standards of the corporation, allows the individual to have an influence over his environment equal to the level of success which he enjoys within the corporation. The environment is the level of civic activity which he or she can freely engage in based on his economic resources.

The corporations also control the various governments based on the supply of money. This occurs through taxation directly and indirectly, and it occurs through the contributions made to the various candidates running for public office. Foreign corporations, or alien corporations, as they are legally called, can influence candidates. This is usually done through the lobby process. They influence what is allowable and not allowable when the local candidates are not able to achieve the necessary ends.

It is worth speculation that the contributions made to the DNC by the Chinese during the 1990s did influence the opening of U.S. markets to more Chinese goods through the Wal-Mart distribution network. While the money was eventually returned to the Chinese, there was no mention at the time if the interest on that substantial fund was also returned. This donation, illegal under current campaign funding laws, did coincide with Wal-Mart’s decision. Other reports indicate that Wal-Mart’s decision was based on the economic need to boost their profitability following the death of Sam Walton on April 6, 1992. The link is peculiar to say the least. Wal-Mart, based in Bentonville, Arkansas, grew to mammoth proportions during the administration of Bill Clinton, one time Governor of Arkansas.

As noted by a retired public relations officer for a major oil firm in Las Colinas, Texas, the firm does contribute to the Democrats and the Republicans, but is more generous with the contributions to the GOP. Such contributions have spurred the debate for campaign finance reform, but every law has a work around if one can hire a reasonably bright lawyer.

The corporations have to exist in an environment which is the least fettered, and the office holders and the government for which they work need income to influence change and function. The problem arises when the interest of the public is not the interest of the corporations. This can be seen in the passing of the Taft-Hartley Act of 1947.

That act was imposed over the veto of Harry S. Truman, an attack on the “liberal policies” of the New Deal’s Wagner Act of 1935 was called "new guarantee of industrial slavery.”[9] This substantially weakened the labor movement in the United States and has led directly to the practices we now see in the globalization processes. It is sufficient to point out that the weakened unions, in conjunction with the Nixon Shock of 1971 has brought us to today’s situation.

How far back this symbiotic relationship between business and government goes is a discussion for professional anthropologists and historians. However, even in the Jewish scriptures there is a warning against judges taking “contributions.”[10] It seems to be a problematic issue going back some 6000 years. Of course, in today’s world where the competition is perceived as being fierce for corporate survival, even the institutional religions side with their various and respected corporations and industries from which they derive their support.

At one time, before Motorola lost the cell phone competition to Nokia, Willow Creek Community Church in Barrington, Illinois was humorously referred to as “The Church of Motorola” whose members were Galvanized (a reference to the company’s founder Paul Galvin). Motorola’s suburban culture became codified into the Christian expression by Bill Hybels who remains the senior pastor of the 20,000 member mega-church. This, too, is a symbiotic relationship between corporation and church, Willow Creek Community Church borrows heavily from the corporate model of Motorola. From the delivery of the sermon, to the Sunday school and nursery care, to the inside food court, the church exhibits all the traits of a modernized production line. The attendee enters one end, queues up, partakes in the various services, and exits with what services are needed.

In the late 1990s, PBS aired an anthropological study of the evangelical sub-culture. In that series they broadcasted a segment on Willow Creek Community Church, and noted that the church was also referred to a “Jesus Lite.”

Willow Creek Community Church was simply a reflection of a watered down version of the Christian Gospel. The connection to the plush suburban area of Chicago and the infusion of economic resources via the executive paychecks and creative reward systems has flavored and defined the church’s culture. This church has also been labeled Willow Creek Community Country Club.

With the decline of Motorola’s influence in the Northern suburbs of Chicago, and the ascension of Randy Frazee,[11] from the Dallas Theological Seminary (a very conservative Christian Seminary)[12] the message of Willow Creek Community Church may no longer be a “lite” version. Randy Franzee is the author of four influential books, including The Connecting Church, Making Room for Life, The Christian Life Profile Assessment Tool and Renovation of the Heart Student Edition.

The Connecting Church talks a great deal about working in small groups within the larger church community. Based on one reviewer’s commentary, the leadership structure is a reflection of the multi-level marketing structure of Amway.[13]

All of this has occurred in the back yard of a somewhat more moderate Evangelical institution of Chicago’s own Moody Bible Institute. Drawing from a more Southern expression of Christianity may be a nod to the current cultural climate emanating from Washington, D.C. This is only speculation since no new sources of information concerning this specific symbiotic relationship between Corporation, Church, and State have been revealed.

This relationship is not bad by any stretch of the imagination. Willow Creek Community Church’s food pantry is one of the most effective programs of the church. When it works, it works well. The church links a needy person with an advisor who helps the individual through the time of crisis as needed with material help as well as spiritual counseling. However, where the program is in need resides with the culturally homogeneous volunteer counselors from the predominant social strata of the community: the culture of Motorola. If the individual is not from the same cultural distinction as the counselor, the communications can become tense and ineffective.

At one time in the early 1990s, a man with a family of four visited Willow Creek Community Church. He had just suffered the humiliation of being evicted from a rental property in California which was owned by a church in the Los Angelus suburbs. This was following a protracted disability due to a ruptured disk. He had a degree. He had graduated with honors. The economy was still recovering from the peace dividend[14] recession of the early 1990s.[15] His view of the Christian community was tainted. He found himself under the care of the Jobs Ministry of Willow Creek Community Church. During the first session, the minister instructed the few ill-fated souls that they need to research in detail the company for which they want to work. This scholar asked the minister, “Why?” It was a simple question. The minister look down upon the miserable apprentice, shook his head, and said, “You are lazy,” and went back to addressing the class.

There are various activities to be self-sufficient and self-sustaining in the United States. When a discouraged person questions the validity of a given course of action, the minister who dismisses the person, in a public setting, as being “lazy” is not effectively ministering. This doesn’t even work well in a corporate environment. The minister cannot validate the instruction, which is all that is being sought, and in turn attacks the person who is seeking understanding. This ends any help which can be rendered, ends communications, and taints the institution. This type of retort is not only unprofessional, though it seems common in today Christian expression, but it is also unchristian. It does not originate from the teachings of Jesus, but from the unofficial corporate handbook.

Any question of the edicts of authority is, by default, a question of authority and is quickly quelled. It is in no way effective counseling. In a teaching environment an observation which is contrary to the instructor’s point of view is not a challenge, but it is an opening opportunity to discuss the topic further. However, such opportunity is lost on people who are indoctrinated in the authoritarian regimes of both Corporate America and Evangelical Christianity. One might even go so far as to call such a display of “group discipline” as an expression of cultural imperialism. And this is within the United States, in a suburb of Chicago, Illinois.

It is sufficient to point out that a church as defined within the context of the Christian scriptures is not a corporation. It is an institution of charity and learning. Both points are lost when the institutional Christian Church becomes immersed within the capitalistic system. The only difference between the Christian situation and the Islamic situation is the degree to which the institution espouses, or endorses, criminal activity for the cause of God. This includes inflicting economic hardship upon those seen as lesser humanity by both institutional bodies.

Islam’s culpability in criminal activity in the name of religion is a theme which is taken up with finely tuned clarity in Bruce Bawer’s While Europe Slept: How Radical Islam is Destroying the West from Within.[16] Islam directly endorses violence against infidels. Christianity indirectly endorses violence within the framework of the teachings of Saint Paul. “Rome does not carry the sword in vain,” wrote Paul.[17]

The whole of the text in Romans is an appeal to understand that civil authority is there to keep the peace and uphold the general welfare. As stated earlier, it works questionably at the individual level, but does not work in the gross, impersonal, mechanized military operations today. The distinction became blurred in World War One when civilians became direct targets of military action in order to destroy the opponent’s ability to supply the economic resources to wage war. To date, few have bothered to stop and think whether or not such action is wise.

In all fairness to the United States military professionals and the military industrial complex which supports it, the development of precision munitions has been an attempt to minimize the destruction of non-combatants and innocents. At the same time, however, criminalizing people who are defending their own country against an aggressive force is unjustifiable within any context. If a military force invades a neighbor country then all able bodied people become enemy combatants. The U.S. invasion of Afghanistan, no matter what the motives or necessity on our part, requires a dissident faction to defend its homeland. If or when a foreign power does invade the U.S., our own “Christian Red Necks” will be more than willing to take up arms to defend the nation even if they do not have the sanction and uniforms of the U.S. military.

In The Law of Peoples, John Rawls sited eight principals by which people should interact on an international level. They have a right to self-defense, and not to war. They are to observe specific restrictions when fighting a war of self-defense. They are to honor human rights.[18]

The sword of Rome may not be the best approach to asserting these principals. Moreover, it is a rather expensive proposition. As sited in the IMF’s own magazine:

Successful reconstruction after conflict involves rebuilding damaged institutions and infrastructure, which takes time and often requires continued involvement of donors and the international community. The IMF has been involved in lending in postconflict countries since 1995, as part of its emergency assistance facility. From 1995 to 2000, the IMF provided $300 million to seven postconflict countries.[19]

If the church cannot address the needs of one disheartened professional within its own ranks, how can we expect it to address the weighty issues of global politics across drastically opposing cultural lines, and highly complex issues? To expect the ecclesiastical community to develop a comprehensive plan to address geo-political conflict is idealistic and somewhat absurd. It would be nice if they would join forces and come up with a comprehensive statement based on the combined experience of centuries of all-inclusive scholastic achievement, but as cited they are more inclined to reflect the business community than the vision of the will of the Christian God.

So what are we left with? The soldier trained in the role of peace officer may still be the best deterrent to the criminal activity perpetrated by the “terrorist.” If crime is a rational choice, if specific deterrence works,[20] if the goal is to eliminate the opportunity to commit terrorism,[21] then the only viable solution is a policing approach. In such an approach, high-tech, wiz bang wonder tools cannot replace boots on the ground.

A quantity of trained men is the only viable solution. Inclusive with that are the alliances with the people being protected who allow them to trust the peace keeping forces and empower the citizens themselves to be involved in their own protection. Self defense is still a right of an individual even if many have forgotten that point over the decades of civilized jurisprudence. Moreover this local policing needs to be done by indigenous people of the given land. Iraq is the perfect example of this point. U.S. troops are policing Iraq in the middle of an Iraqi civil war. The U.S. troops are becoming collateral damage in the Iraqis war against each other.

In regards to corporatization of institutional religion, a very Greek concept instituted by Constantine with the construction of the first Universal Church (i.e. Catholic), the message of minimal violence, let alone non-violence is muted at best. Corporations do not understand the application of the concept of a just war. It is against their nature to minimize the approach they take in competition. Competition, the best and most affordable, is extolled as the ultimate good for society. Then, of course, as stated, do everything they can to quell any real competition.

War should be understood as an actual, intentional and widespread armed conflict between political communities. Thus, fisticuffs between individual persons do not count as a war, nor does a gang fight, nor does a feud on the order of the Hatfields versus the McCoys. War is a phenomenon which occurs only between political communities, defined as those entities which either are states or intend to become states (in order to allow for civil war).[22]

The War on Terrorism does not qualify as a war in any sense of the classical definition.

Since the corporations are increasingly becoming the targets of opportunity, their group think driven, moralistic response is, as Zinn stated, to “make no distinction” and “send a message” that we will “retaliate” because we are at “war.”

It is a pity when perfectly civilized people who are trained in the finer points of business management decide they have the ability to second guess men who have spent their lives studying diplomacy and war. A Yale MBA is not the equivalent of advanced diplomatic training. To address what is now occurring around the world the only view which can be applied, though distained by many, is to view it within the context of criminology. As such the better approach comes from people who are trained in social work and crime control from the intervention approach.

The manpower is already there. The expertise is there. The will to use it wisely seems to be what is lacking in the U.S. culture. This is indicated by Mr. Bush’s approach to the Islamic fundamentalists in Afghanistan, and Iraq. It is also indicated in John F. Kennedy’s decision to minimize the invasion of Cuba in April 1961.[23] It is also indicated in the escalation of Vietnam under Lyndon B. Johnson.[24]

Fidel Castro is purported to have said that the invasion as initially planned would have succeeded in toppling his government. L.B.J.’s involvement in the Vietnam escalation remains in dispute. Many historians hold that the incident, if it occurred at all, did not occur as reported by Johnson on August 4, 1964. This so corrupted the U.S. government that, according to Alan Axelrod’s Guide to American History,[25] the Tonkin Gulf incident toppled Richard M. Nixon.

The Watergate break-in, which led to Nixon’s embarrassment and eventual resignation, was an attempt to recover the Pentagon Papers. Those papers revealed that Johnson had fabricated the Tonkin Gulf Incident in much the same way Bush is accused of fabricating the WMD threat posed by Iraq. CREEP was not trying to cover up any real wrong doing by the Nixon Administration, but was trying to preserve the national honor by keeping Johnson’s duplicity under wraps. Presuming that is the case, then there can be little question as to why there is no love lost between the GOP and the Democrats. Nixon was, in effect, covering for a Democrat’s “screw up”. The Democrats, in turn, went after him like a pack of rabid dogs. This alone can explain why the Republicans persecuted Bill Clinton with such venom. It was payback for Nixon.

As stated earlier, the charge which triggered Nixon’s resignation was not stemming from the break-in. It was the personal charge of income tax evasion. In 1974, that was a very serious charge. Unlike today where the IRS notifies you that you can and should pay up, it was a serious criminal offense. In that era, moreover, when it came to the IRS, the individual was guilty until proven innocent. As such, going after Bill Clinton for his indiscretion with Monica Lewinsky, essentially a personal matter, was not off limits. It does not quite reach the level of high crimes and misdemeanors, but was sufficient to repay the Democrats for the Nixon scandal.

Nixon’s prosecution of the war, inherited from Johnson, was focused on a resolved peace through the efforts of Kissinger. Nixon’s escalation was, for the most part, an attempt to fight a limited defensive war of attrition as advised by Westmoreland. When the North Vietnamese, balked at negotiations, Nixon stepped up the pressure. North Vietnam, the Viet Cong in the South, and China knew very well that the U.S. was not in a strong position geographically, politically, or economically; the VC were not going to go anywhere, we had to, like the British of the 1770s, constantly transport our fighting forces into the region. Vietnam was not our home, it was theirs. Eventually we would leave, and they would still be there. This is the lesson learned from the French occupation earlier. As such, there was little incentive for North Vietnamese to address the peace negotiations. In their eyes, we simply had no reason to be there. They were right.

The tactics employed by Nixon were not conducive to achieving the necessary ends of foreign policy on behalf of the U.S. corporations. The real rub is that the Vietnamese, both North and South would have been, and now are, happy to buy Coca-Cola, KFC, and McDonalds, they just wanted to do it under their own flag without the interference of the United States. This now obvious fact of 20/20 hindsight is why the corporations finally stepped up to the plate to become more involved in Washington. It may not be flippant to say that the U.S. corporations would rather kill communism with kindness and cholesterol, than napalm, Agent Orange, and the excessively wasteful thermal nuclear detonation devices. Such things ultimately are bad for business and not in the best interest of the United States as a whole.

On a number of occasions there have been incidents where curbing the aggression of the U.S. military was to our advantage. The World War Two military hero, Curtis LeMay, wanted to go to war against the Soviet Union. He vehemently argued that the U.S. nuclear arsenal should have been used in a preemptive strike against the U.S.S.R. Kennedy refused. As we see today, millions of unnecessary deaths were averted by that refusal. George H.W. Bush went to Malta and ended the Cold War, and in 1991 the U.S.S.R. ceased to exist.

JFK also used minimal aggression when dealing with the Soviet Union’s missiles in Cuba. He blockaded the island, but refrained from a direct attack on it, and only interfered with Soviet shipping which may have been transporting missiles. It is a very good thing that U.S. Naval Admirals and captains can take orders from civilian presidents. The fact that Kennedy was ex-Navy himself may have bolstered their trust as well. As a PT boat commander he had a certain understanding of surface warfare tactics.

Eisenhower went a bit further in the exercise of civilian authority to stop the mayhem. After losing 54,000 men in four years of fighting in the bloody back and forth game on the Korean peninsula, he called for, and got, a cease fire, and shut down a war. He did so without any undue political fallout. Again, his credibility may have come from his reputation with the Armed Forces. “Ike,” as he was called, was one of the most respected, honored, and lauded generals of World War Two. When he moved to shut down the Korean Conflict, everyone listened.

It is an interesting note in history that the U.N. involvement in the Korean conflict was a rather bungled affair. Initially, the Truman White House sent mixed signals to the international community concerning the border conflict between North Korea and South Korea. While Joseph Stalin told North Korea not to attack South Korea, the U.S. stance was that the situation was not of interest to the United States. The ambivalence on the border skirmishes between the two antagonists signaled a green light for the initial North Korean invasion. This situation is not too different from the mixed signals sent to Iraq by the administration of George H.W. Bush. That initial ambivalence gave Saddam Hussein the go ahead to invade Kuwait.

On January 12, 1950, Secretary of State Dean Acheson[26] said that the defense of Korea was the U.N. responsibility.[27] In July of 1990, Ambassador April Glaspie told Saddam Hussein that the U.S. had “no opinion on the Arab-Arab conflicts, like [the] border disagreement with Kuwait.”[28] The similarities between the two statements may serve as a clue to international relations in the future. When the U.S. says it has no strategic interest in a given region, all parties involved need to step away from the confrontation because, if history is any guide at all, the U.S. will come down hard on whichever side it perceives as a threat to the interest of the U.S. corporations, or which is the most benefit to the corporations. This is not a good thing in the overall picture of peaceful commerce and global trade.

This discussion of Korea brings up the one dramatic, and public time that civilian authority was invoked to quell a general’s overzealousness. Truman fired General Douglas McArthur.

While some have attempted to idealize Douglas McArthur, he was labeled by Patton as being a prima donna. He had a record of stepping outside the boundaries of orders dating back to 1932; McArthur was one of the commanders who used the full force of the military to run the World One Veterans out of Washington, D.C. during the Bonus Marches in the spring and summer of that year.

By the end of the rout:

· Two veterans were shot and killed.

· Two infants died from tear gas asphyxiation.

· An 11 week old baby was in critical condition resulting from shock from tear gas exposure.

· An 11 year old boy, David Barscheski was partially blinded by tear gas.

· One bystander was shot in the shoulder.

· One veteran, Christopher Bilger, had his ear severed by a Cavalry saber.

· One veteran was stabbed in the hip with a bayonet.

· At least twelve police were injured by the veterans.

· Over 1,000 men, women, and children were exposed to the tear gas, including police, reporters, residents of Washington D.C., and ambulance drivers.[29]

McArthur’s actions, in no small part led to the discredit of Herbert Hoover, and the election of FDR. Overzealous authoritarianism against destitute people of one’s own country doesn’t bode well in the newspapers and radio broadcasts the next day. Truman was well aware of McArthur’s reputation and history of insubordination. Had he allowed McArthur to stay in his post even after ordering him not to invade or bomb China, McArthur would probably done as he felt best, outside his authority, anyway. This, in conjunction with McArthur’s losses on the ground in Korea, Truman had clear grounds to remove McArthur from command. What McArthur lost, Ike eventually shut down. Our involvement in Korea was a mistake by any stretch of the imagination.

It has to be noted that it was General George Washington who warned the infant U.S. to “beware of foreign entanglements.”[30] It was General Dwight D. “Ike” Eisenhower who warned “beware of the Military Industrial Complex.”[31] We seem to have forgotten, or are oblivious to, both warnings.

If the corporations insist on running the show, then perhaps it is best to re-evaluate their function within a capitalistic society. It is literally to make money for the owners, and create jobs for the local citizens. This is a monumental task in and of itself, but it can be done. According to John C. Maxwell, it can be done ethically.

This, of course, means rethinking the questionable use of violence to achieve an end. Within that discussion on the nonviolent approach is the retort, “well … what about Hitler?” While that specific case is somewhat outside the scope of the limited discussion on nonviolence, it has to be remembered that Hitler came to power as a direct result of the economic sanctions and punishments imposed by England and France following World War One. This economic violence, imposed over the objections of President Wilson, is consistent with official indifference as a form of coercion. As such, Germany’s response is not outside the scope of predictable behavior. If they had not been pushed into a no-win situation then they would not have responded with such reckless violence, and World War Two could have been avoided. This is consistent with Maslow’s work, Merton’s work, and Colvin’s work discussed earlier.

The rethinking of violence as a means to an end is equally necessary for the various religious and political parties around the globe. Unfortunately, Zinn and Beacon Press direct their remarks to a U.S. audience. There is some evidence, as we have noted, to support the idea that the U.S. is prone to violence, and that evidence does show why. However, violence is not just an issue in the U.S. It is an outcome of competition for resources getting out of control. That is a human issue, not just a national political issue.

Terrorism, bombing “soft” targets, is said to have started with the IRA (Irish Republican Army). The validity of that observation is somewhat questionable. The act of raping and pillaging civilian population centers, terrorism if you will, seems to be thematic throughout recorded history’s 6,500 years.[32]

In modern times the tactic of attacking civilian targets to hamper war production was first used by a desperate Germany during World War One. This was also the first use of aerial bombardment as the Kaiser sent Zeppelins against London, England on May 31, 1915. Over the course of World War One 550 British Civilians were killed by German Zeppelins.[33] This closely followed the u-boat raids on civilian commercial shipping which began on February 4, 1915.[34] This in turn brought the U.S. into World War One following, after some delay, the sinking of the RMS Lusitania. One torpedo was fired by U-20 on May 7, 1915 killing 1,198 people, 128 of them were U.S. citizens. After all diplomatic avenues were exhausted, the U.S. entered World War One in April of 1917. The war ended on November 11, 1918.

For years it was rumored that the Lusitania had been carrying munitions. This is how the swiftness of the sinking was explained. The ships manifest, however, made no mention of munitions aboard. Recently, using variations on the same technology which explored the wreckage of the RMS Titanic, examination of the Lusitania’s wreckage revealed that the German torpedo struck one of the forward coal holds (the boilers on the ship were coal fired) of the ship. The impact of the torpedo shook the coal dust loose, and the explosion ignited the coal dust. This accounts for the secondary explosion which was reported at the time. In 2006, however, during a manned exploration of the wreckage, boxes of British 303 rounds were found in the wreckage; some 15,000 rounds were discovered. While this may explain the secondary explosion for some, it has to be noted that small-arms ammunition usually “cooks off” (fires one by one as the temperature ignites the gun-powder in the brass casing). It doesn’t necessarily explode. Moreover, the on-going exploration does not invalidate the initial discovery of the torpedo’s insertion into the forward coal-hold. The disagreement goes on.[35]

The bottom line is that once blood was spilled it was inevitable that the violence would be met with more violence. Escalation was inevitable. Kaiser Wilhelm II had every opportunity to stop the targeting of civilian shipping, but chose to continue the practice. He bowed to the pressure of his admiralty.

In a work, now lost to antiquity, which was published in the 1970s, by a Canadian group espousing non-violence, it was said that once battle begins there is no thought of ideology, no thought of just or un-just causes, no thought of right or wrong, there is only battle. The man in the fire-fight is only concerned with his survival and the survival of his “buds.” This is reflected in the 2001 film by Ridley Scott, Black Hawk Down.

A careful examination of some of the activities of the U.S. troops in Iraq would indicate that the battle mindset has overwhelmed rational judgment. It is taking a toll on U.S. forces.[36] The suicide rate among our troops is escalating. Errors in judgment range from abuse of prisoners to friendly fire incidents.

Saddam used violence to suppress his own people. We’ve used violence to remove Saddam and liberate the Iraqi people. We did manage to free them from Saddam’s reign, but set off a civil war in the process. This civil war is due, in no small part, to how the British carved up the region following World War One.

It is no great leap of logic to see that World War One led to World War Two. That in turn led to the Cold War (inclusive of Korea and Vietnam). This has brought us down to today and the U.S. invasion of Iraq, and the tensions with Iran. This is the almost unbroken chain of violence which has ripped through the world since 1914. That has been some 93 years now. Isn’t it about time to find some better approach to conflict resolution? The globe honestly does not need any more wars.

Nonviolence is berated as being naive, and often unpatriotic. However, Gandhi said, “Nonviolence is a weapon of the strong.”[37] Martin Luther King said, “Nonviolence means avoiding not only external physical violence but also internal violence of spirit. You not only refuse to shoot a man, but you refuse to hate him.”[38] While some would dispute the effectiveness of nonviolence, as Joan Baez observed, “Nonviolence is a flop. The only bigger flop is violence.”[39] Gene Sharp’s[40] assertion adds clarity to the discussion.

"Nonviolent action is a means of combat, as is war. It involves the matching of forces and the waging of 'battle,' requires wise strategy and tactics and demands of its 'soldiers' courage, discipline and sacrifice. This view of nonviolent action as a technique of active combat is diametrically opposed to the popular assumption that, at its strongest, nonviolent action relies on rational persuasion of the opponent, and more commonly it consists simply of passive submission. Nonviolent action is just what it says: action which is nonviolent, not inaction. This technique consists, not simply of words, but of active protest, noncooperation, and intervention. Overwhelmingly, it is a group or mass action.”[41]

How leftist and unpatriotic were George Washington and Dwight D. Eisenhower?

Specifically, this is what George Washington said:

“The great rule of conduct for us in regard to foreign nations is, in extending our commercial relations to have with them as little political connection as possible. So far as we have already formed engagements let them be fulfilled with perfect good faith. Here let us stop.”[42]

There is little doubt that our current globalized economy would have been detestable to General Washington. He saw the trouble created by being so intertwined in the political affairs of others. While the world has changed, human nature has not.

It is not an alarmist statement to say that every war which we have engaged in since 1900 is a direct result to being entwined in the affairs of others. Some would argue that Washington was not advocating isolationism. However, based on this phrasing, he was certainly advocating caution in regards to the U.S.’s involvement with European affairs. That caution needs to be applied to the larger globalized community, now. Let’s face it, how better off would we have been if we declined the British invitation to get involved with the toppling of the Iranian Nationalist Government in 1952? Was it in the best interest of the United States to shore up the Anglo-Iranian Oil Company (now British Petroleum)?[43]

Eisenhower, the Commanding General of European Theater of Operations, cannot be considered anything less than an American patriot, yet his words seem to fall mute in this current age.

Here in America we are descended in blood and in spirit from revolutionists and rebels - men and women who dare to dissent from accepted doctrine. As their heirs, may we never confuse honest dissent with disloyal subversion.[44]

Much of what has come out of Washington, DC since September 11, 2001 has associated “honest dissent” with “disloyal subversion.” Within the context of the Uniting and Strengthening America by Providing Appropriate Tools Required to Intercept and Obstruct Terrorism Act of 2001 (Public Law 107-56) or the USA Patriot Act,[45] are we not destroying what we have struggled to gain these past? Eisenhower asked a very similar question:

How far you can go without destroying from within what you are trying to defend from without?[46]

While not perfect in his own nonviolent approach, Eisenhower understood the interplay in the economic welfare of the nation.

Every gun that is made, every warship launched, every rocket fired, signifies in the final sense a theft from those who hunger and are not fed, those who are cold and are not clothed.[47]

There is little doubt that today’s Republicans, at best, play lip service to the needs of the hungry, cold, and unclothed. In today’s world, we condemn them to wander aimlessly through the streets of our cities, and ban them from our public spaces. Based on what we have seen in the wake of Hurricane Katrina throughout the entire Gulf Cost, today’s Republicans have no concern whatsoever for the hungry, cold, and destitute. What little is left is even now being destroyed.[48] Why? Because we have collectively bought into the goals and aims of violence as a means to life. Eisenhower’s warning has not been heeded.

In the councils of government, we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military-industrial complex. The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists and will persist.[49]

The essence of his observations is summed up in his statement, “A people that values its privileges above its principles soon loses both.” It is submitted that in the current capitalistic system, governed directly or indirectly by the corporations, we are losing both our principles and our privileges. The words of Jacob Marley from the pen of Charles Dickens seem to echo down the ages:

Business? Mankind was my business! The common welfare was my business![50]

We have had, over time, leaders who have looked at the carnage of violence and have rejected it. Yet, we seem to be lacking such leadership today. We are called weak and simple if we look for nonviolent solutions to our conflict with the current enemies of our nation. We are also taught that nonviolence is essentially appeasement of the forces who are undermining our ideals and principles. This is the essence of While Europe Slept: How Radical Islam is Destroying The West From Within by Bruce Bawer. There has to be a different way! There has to be resistance without appeasement, and without violence.

It would logically seem that nonviolence should be in the kit bag of the most conservative politician. War has nothing to do with the conservation of anything, except some rather outdated impulses from the reptilian cortex, some id gratification of the infantile nature to have its own way, or worse the only solution available to someone so chained in socioeconomic deprivation that no other way is seen. Violence, more specifically war, may be seen as the ultimate form of urban renewal, but it lacks the plasticity of more creative expressions. Again, creativity comes from a higher level of development on Maslow’s pyramid, and it is not apparent in today’s culture. However, to point out the obvious, Chicago did not get rid of The Robert Taylor Housing Project,[51] or infamous Cabrini Green[52] Housing Project, by bombing them into radioactive oblivion.

Perhaps that is a weak argument. Perhaps it is not compelling enough to alter one’s thinking. However, at the end of apartheid in South Africa, Nelson Mandela set up the Truth and Reconciliation Commission and began the process of healing South Africa. It asked the victims of atrocities to come forth and tell their stories. It also asked those who committed crimes to step forth and “confess their sins.” This process brought South Africa out of years of bloody strife, and moved it into the 20th Century. The final report was delivered on October 28, 1998; it fairly denounced all sides in the South African conflict for the crimes committed during apartheid.[53]

If nothing else, how much did the TRC conserve of the corporate investment in South Africa? As asked before, how does one write off 90% of a corporation’s physical plant, the majority of its corporate officers, and a good percentage of its shareholders on a P&L? It doesn’t even save on dividend payments since they have to be paid to the estates of the survivors. War is dumb.

There is an argument that violence is inevitable. Ask any police officer about that. Ask a good police officer who takes pride in the profession and he or she will tell you that violence is not inevitable. As a matter of fact, violence is the exception in police work, not the rule. The majority of contact situations do not end in violence. The business of stopping crime and exerting the will of civilization for the common good does not have to end in violence. There are those who say that the police do not have to stoop to violence because they carry the threat of violence, but that does not seem to be the case. Violence is an expression of the cognitive landscape of the individuals involved in the confrontation. That is to say that violence is accepted. If it is not accepted then alternative means to conflict resolution becomes possible.

Police science is a science. It is studied, documented, reviewed, and re-evaluated over time. It begins with the study of criminal process which dictates the rules of conduct within the given understanding of the social process. It defines what a police officer is and is not allowed to do in a given society. It also defines what we know about the causes of crimes with a society.

Even if one doesn’t trust the courts, one can trust the police officers. Even within a society which defines itself in its liberty, the processes are there to maintain the general welfare of every individual within society. However one looks at the criminal process, neither due process nor crime control lead directly to physical violence. While the process may lead to economic violence and miscarriages of justice through human error, shortsightedness of the system, or deliberate willful corruption, it does not lead directly to physical violence. If the criminal, insurgent, revolutionary does resort to physical violence the police officer only uses as much force as is necessary to regain control of the situation and subdue the criminal. Very seldom does the situation end up with the type of mayhem experienced in war.

There are police officers who deal with dysfunctional criminals on a daily basis. It is a thankless, high stress job. They do the job with humor, honor, and dignity using their ability to think and reason in stressful situations and talk down the suspect. Though considered a situation comedy the Barney Miller, which ran on ABC Television from 1975 to 1982, is a better depiction of real law enforcement than NBC’s Miami Vice which aired from 1984 to 1989. It is, however, unfortunate that depictions like NYPD Blue (ABC, 1993 to 2005) with the sardonic, rough, seedy side of police work have become the norm in the mindset of the nation. This was style of police interactions was also reflected in NBC’s Hill Street Blues (1981-1987). While such may make for good drama, they are not the reality of the situation.

The nonviolent approach does work. Ask a London bobby if violence is necessary. Ask the arresting officers of the terrorist who recently threatened Fort Dix. Ask the police who foiled the plot to blow up airliners over the Atlantic in July of 2006. The police are dealing with very determined and violent people; yet, the police stopped them and brought them under the control of the judicial system without resorting to violence. Terrorism is a crime, but one does not have to resort to criminal activity in order to subdue the terrorist.

Unlike the dramatic fare offered up by television, Police work is pretty much mundane. Actually it is rather mind-numbing. Watch a few episodes of Fox’s COPS. What is not depicted is the hours of driving around just being visible in the community. As hokey as it may seem today the old Andy Griffith Show (1960 to 1968) depicting the challenges of police work in Mayberry, North Carolina, may actually be a closer depiction of police effort than what is in the media landscape today. The effectiveness of going in guns blazing is a myth. It is however the one we have bought into, and have made into our daily reality play. Consider this, however, more was done to secure the legal and economic status of the blacks in the U.S. during the nonviolence of the 1960’s Civil Rights movement, than was done to secure their freedom during the 1860’s Civil War. In the great struggles for human dignity within the economic system the only successful approach is nonviolent action.

By definition, within most civilized societies, people who resort to violence are “bad.” We call them bad men. We call them criminals. However, very few criminals resort to violence. Even under the conditions of severe economic deprivation most do people do not resort to wanton criminal violence.

Violent crime makes the news because it is news. It is out of the ordinary. It is unusual. It is not the staple of peaceful daily existence. It is not the norm in society. As a matter of fact, when the media stops reporting violent crime is when it is time to become concerned. Such non-coverage means that violence has become so mundane that it is no longer newsworthy. That in itself is a sad commentary on any society and the media which covers it.

When violence does erupt, the response is to go after the individual or group who committed the violence. As tempting as it is, it is poor policy and tactics to level a whole block of innocent civilian homes because there is one idiot with an AK-47. Sometimes, out of necessity, and the preservation of human life and dignity, the idiot with the AK-47 is allowed to get away. A police officer knows only too well that the criminal will be caught eventually.

The Senior trainer, Antonio “Tony” Sanchez, at Statewide Training Academy in Richardson, Texas, just north of Dallas, Texas, has a habit of referring to people as sheep. When asked, he explains that people tend to live their lives oblivious to the real threats which exist around them. “They are the sheep,” he explains, “and we are the sheep dogs. The sheep are nervous and distrusting of the sheep dogs because we look like wolves, we have teeth like wolves, but our job is to stop the wolves from attacking the sheep.”

That is a good analogy. It is valid. Our police and military are suspect because they are as dangerous as the bad guys. However, they are not the bad guys. Their use of violence in a civilized society is only as much as needed to apprehend the criminals and establish the peace. War, in contrast, strips away all civilization, and creates an environment where policing is impossible. The difference is a matter of investing in the proper policing approach to the situation in a given community. In places like Iraq, and Afghanistan, that translates to well trained troops on the ground, in mass, to patrol as law enforcement every single block of every community which needs to be pacified. Anything short of a commitment to that approach will leave the criminals in charge with opportunity to engage in violence with impunity.

Nonviolence is not just a concept within the Christian tradition. Islam has the root of nonviolence within their writings. “No one of you is a believer until he loves for his neighbor what he loves for himself.”[54] This instruction is enough to see that even in the Middle East there is a root of the tree of peace.

The Beacon Anthology on Nonviolence was released in 2002 before the U.S. invasion of Iraq. The last three entries speak mostly to the U.S. collation operation in Afghanistan. That operation was considered a success within the traditional establishment. Today, in 2007, Afghanis who supported the NATO presence in Afghanistan are uncertain if the forces there can defeat the new version of the Taliban. The traditional type of military action does not effectively subdue a population who sees itself as being occupied. Zinn asks whether we learned anything from the Israeli-Palestinian conflict; one has to wonder if we learned anything from Vietnam!

With the Vietnam conflict ending in 1975, there is a generation and a half who don’t know of the mistakes made in that mission. Moreover, many of today’s Generation X would rather not hear anymore of it. More than one discussion about the ill-fated venture in South East Asia ends with something akin to “Vietnam! Get over it!” Yet, the ill fought, ill remembered 30 year conflict still haunts the discussion on intervention and foreign affairs. Some observers have wondered if the excursions into Afghanistan and Iraq aren’t some kind of repeat of the bloody experiment by Baby Boomers and their Gen X offspring to prove that Korea and Vietnam could have been victories for U.S. foreign policy.

In the case of Vietnam, at least, it was a victory for them. The Communist forces of North Vietnam finally unified the country under a government which, arguably, works for them. Over the years since the end of our intervention in that country, a rising economy has emerged in Ho Chi Minh City (formally Saigon). While the government is communist in name, they are doing a booming capitalist business. Capitalism when approached from the right direction works under any official name. Alcoa, American Airlines, and American Express won.[55] Couldn’t that have happened without the lost of two million Vietnamese and fifty-eight thousand U.S. servicemen?

What of Korea? The South is a booming Democratic capitalist economy. The North is the ghetto of Asia which has both Japan and China worried. South Korea is bent on helping its northern neighbor get into the 21st Century. They would like to do so without the carnage of another regional war. Now that China has embraced the free market economy, they can see the advantage of sitting on Kim Jong-il until the man fades into the oblivion of the eternal. Then they can help North Korea out of the mess it has been in since it invaded South Korea in 1950.

The one major distinction between the actions in South East Asia and the current actions in Afghanistan and Iraq is that North Korea did not attack the U.S. Vietnam did not attack the U.S. The Islamic Radicals did attack the U.S. on U.S. soil when we, the individual citizens with no connection to the leadership of the nation would just have as soon left them to their own tribal squabbles in the dessert.

The corporations were involved in the Middle East on a commercial level; however, we limited our military activities to the protection of the oil fields, and arms shipments. There is no connection between Iraq and the attack on the U.S. The connection is there in Saudi Arabia and Afghanistan. We have done nothing, due to Bush’s intervention, concerning the Saudi connection. This situation differs from the early wars in Asia because we were attacked. That difference matters. And that difference has, in part, galvanized the divisions of the United States.

Some would say that nonviolence is impractical, and not realistic. As true as this may seem from an individual perspective, it has worked for the Swiss since 1815. The official Swiss stance today is as follows:

The primary objective of Swiss foreign policy is to preserve the independence and well-being of the country. To achieve this in the best way possible, Switzerland works to promote peaceful coexistence among peoples, to combat poverty and to promote human rights, democracy and the careful use of natural resources. In addition, it supports the activities of Swiss business abroad.[56]

At one time the Swiss were the rugged mountain men of Celtic origin. They were similar to the Irish immigrants who provided so much of the fighting capability of both the North and the South during the U.S. Civil War, and the Gallic forces who fought for Greece and established the region of Galatia in Mesopotamia. The Swiss, likewise, provided much of the mercenary fighting force for Europe’s various protracted religious wars.[57] At one point they realized that their bravest were dying for the idiotic causes of others. They pulled back to the Alps and became the bankers and humanitarians of the world.

What would the world be like if the U.S. decided to do the same thing? How much of the GNP would be available for national development if we stopped dumping the resources of the nation into dead end military projects? Moreover, how technologically effective would our military be if we did focus the military mission on National Defense incorporating policing tactics as opposed to offensive systems battlefield tactics? What would it be like if the majority of the nations decided to do the same? How far back in history can one go before one stops seeing today’s conflict rooted in the interference by another nation state for their own political and economic needs. What would Iran be like today if the British, upon discovering oil there, decided to act ethically with the people who owned the mineral rights to that oil and not attempt to steal it?

The U.S. takes a lot of heat from Europe, and as of late France, over the current events in the Middle East and Persia. However, this current mess was created when France and England decided to carve up the Ottoman Empire. At some point, before the current conflict ignites World War Three, something different has to be attempted. What the Western World has been doing so far is not working!

Christianity is of no small influence in the U.S. Many in the U.S. consider the nation a Christian nation, and as such evangelical in approach to spreading its culture. It considers itself on a mission for God. We have discussed this in depth. However, it is necessary to be very clear on the instructions given by Jesus on this matter:

But into whatsoever city ye enter, and they receive you not, go your ways out into the streets of the same, and say, Even the very dust of your city, which cleaveth on us, we do wipe off against you: notwithstanding be ye sure of this, that the kingdom of God is come nigh unto you.[58]

There is no ground in the Evangelical instruction to impose the Christian ethic on others through the force of arms! If other nations do not want the Christian Gospel and the Christian ethic, then let them be. If the Christian approach to life is superior to others it will prove out in the manifestation in the real world. That will prove the validity of the message. Even Jesus said they will know the tree by the fruit it bears.[59]

If insanity is defined, as it has been said, as doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results, then what we’ve been witnessing over the past 100 years can only be described as insane.

Arundhati Roy wrote, in 2001, “There is no easy way out of the spiraling morass of terror and brutality that confronts the world today. It is time now for the human race to hold still, to delve into its wells of collective wisdom, both ancient and modern. What happened on September 11 changed the world forever. Freedom, progress, wealth, technology, war – these words have taken on new meaning. Governments have to acknowledge this transformation, and approach their new task with a modicum of honesty and humility.”[60]

Not only do governments need to acknowledge this transformation, but for the sake of their own survival and collective sanity, the corporations who hold the various governments’ leashes need to re-think what is being done.

It is a rule in business that you look around to see who is prospering and, if possible, emulate them. However, the constant propensity of resorting to overwhelming force, violence, and bombardment is not working in the long run, nor is it effective in the short run. As such, the question has to be asked, why do corporations keep returning to a market strategy which is not working?

Maybe it is time to do a little brainstorming and come up with some “out of the box” ideas which might just work for business, people, institutional religions, and the various governments which give them validity.

[1] Veysey, L. (Ed.). (1970). The Spirit of Revolution. In Law and Resistance: American Attitudes Towards Authority (pp. 278-286). New York: Harper & Row, Publishers.

[2] This is not a condemnation of the choice to pierce ones tongue; it is only sited as part of the expression that using body disfiguration or adornment as a form expressed rebellion has now been accepted in the wider social expression and as such is no longer an expression of rebellion, but the acceptable expression of individualism as supported by the status quo.

[3] Veysey, L. (Ed.). (1970). The Spirit of Revolution. In Law and Resistance: American Attitudes Towards Authority (pp. 278-286). New York: Harper & Row, Publishers.

[4] Veysey, L. (Ed.). (1970). The Spirit of Revolution. In Law and Resistance: American Attitudes Towards Authority (pp. 278-286). New York: Harper & Row, Publishers.

[5] Zinn, H. (Ed.). (2002). Introduction: Retaliation. In The Power of Nonviolnce: Writing by Advocates of Peace (pp. vii-x). Boston: Beacon Press.

[6] Romans 13:1-5 KJV, italics added

[7] Zinn, H. (Ed.). (2002). Introduction: Retaliation. In The Power of Nonviolnce: Writing by Advocates of Peace (pp. vii-x). Boston: Beacon Press.

[8] GlobalSecurity.Org. Massive Ordnance Penetrator (MOP) (n.d.). Retrieved January 2, 2008, from

[9] Wagner, S. (2002, October 14). How Did the Taft-Hartley Act Come About? History News Network. Retrieved January 2, 2008, from

[10] Quint, E. (1990). A Restatement of Rabbinic Civil Law (Vol. 1). New Jersey: Jason Aronson Inc.

[11] Teaching Pastors (1990). Retrieved January 2, 2008, from

[12] About Dallas Theological Seminary: Core Beliefs (n.d.). Retrieved January 2, 2008, from

[13] Engler, J. (2006). [Review of the book The Connecting Church: Beyond Small Groups to Authentic Community]. The Barnabas Ministry . Retrieved January 2, 2008, from

[14] “The end of the Cold War was supposed to bring with it a "peace dividend" that would release resources for more productive purposes. Instead, we are witnessing an era of scattered conflicts, while terrorist groups have become more sophisticated and destructive. Between 1989 and 2000, more than 4 million people are estimated to have died in violent conflicts, while international terrorist attacks increased from about 342 a year between 1995 and 1999 to 387 between 2000 and 2001. Low- and middle-income countries have borne the brunt of the violence: almost 70 percent of major conflicts and more than 20 percent of international terrorist attacks between 1996 and 2000 took place in Asia and Africa”; Gupta, S., Clements, B., Bhattacharya, R., & Chakravarti, S. (2002, December). The Elusive Peace Dividend: How armed conflict and terrorism undermine economic performance. Finance and Development: A Quarterly Magazine of the IMF. Retrieved December 5, 2007, from

[15] “While economies do undergo a recession after the end of a major conflict as the economy is forced to adjust and retool, a "peace dividend" refers to a potential long-term benefit as budgets for defense spending are assumed to be at least partially redirected to social programs and/or economic growth. The existence of a peace dividend in real economies is still debated …”; Peace dividend. (2007, October 11). In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved 18:00, December 5, 2007, from

[16] Bawer, B. (2006). While Europe Slept: How Radical Islam is Destroying the West from Within. New York: Broadwy Books.

[17] Romans 13:4

[18] Rawles, J. (1997). The Law of Peoples. Retrieved December 5, 2007, from

[19] Gupta, S., Clements, B., Bhattacharya, R., & Chakravarti, S. (2002, December). The Elusive Peace Dividend: How armed conflict and terrorism undermine economic performance. Finance and Development: A Quarterly Magazine of the IMF. Retrieved December 5, 2007, from

[20] Stafford, M. C., & Warr, M. (2003). A Reconceptualization of General and Specific Deterrence. In Criminological Theory: Past to Present (2nd ed., pp. 272-277). Los Angeles: Roxbury Publishing Company.

[21] Cohen, L. E., & Felson, M. (2003). Routine Activity Theory. In Criminological Theory: Past to Present (2nd ed., pp. 284-293). Los Angeles: Roxbury Publishing Company.

[22] Orend, Brian, "War", The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy (Winter 2005 Edition), Edward N. Zalta (ed.), URL = .

[23] Sierra, J. A. (n.d.). Bay of Pigs - The Basics. Retrieved December 12, 2007, from

[24] Cohen , J., & Solomon, N. (1994, July 27). 30-year Anniversary: Tonkin Gulf Lie Launched Vietnam War. Retrieved December 12, 2007, from

[25] Axelrod, A. (2006). The Complete Idiot's Guide to American History (4th ed.). New York: Penguin Group.

[26] Korean War. (2007, December 19). In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved 17:40, December 21, 2007, from

[27] Ferraro, V. (n.d.). The Theme of China Lost. Retrieved December 21, 2007, from

[28] April Glaspie Transcript (1996, February 9). Retrieved December 21, 2007, from

[29] Bonus Army. (2007, December 20). In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved 21:13, December 21, 2007, from

[30] (1796, September 17). Beware of Foreign Entanblements. Retrieved June 22, 2008, from

[31] (1961). Military-Industrial Complex Speech, Dwight D. Eisenhower, 1961. Retrieved June 22, 2008, from

[32] The first codified calendar was invented by the Egyptian in the year 4,500 B.C.E.; that gives us approximately 6,500 years of recorded history.

[33] Simkin, J. (2003). Zeppelin Raids. Retrieved December 22, 2007, from

[34] U-boat. (2007, December 19). In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved 18:37, December 22, 2007, from

[35] RMS Lusitania. (2007, December 21). In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved 19:07, December 22, 2007, from

[36] Hefling, K. (2007, December 19). The last days of Private Scheuerman. Associated Press.

[37] Mahatma Gandhi quotes (2006). Retrieved June 22, 2008, from

[38] Dr. King is a greater humanitarian than I can ever think of being having grown so old in a age of violence, the threat of violence, and the constant pains of economic violence in the name of the State and Capitolism. (1957, June 4). The Power of Non-violence. Retrieved June 22, 2008, from

[39] Quotations. “nonviolencequotes”. Quotations Online 1 Nov. 2007. 23 Dec. 2007

[40] Sharp is a political scientist, professor, and founder of the Albert Einstein Institution, a non-profit organization which studies and promotes the use of nonviolent action to "democratize" the world. (Gene Sharp. (2007, October 31). In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved 17:46, December 23, 2007, from

[41] Nonviolence Quotes (n.d.). Retrieved December 23, 2007, from

[42] Vulgus, M. (2006, May 14). George Washington Didn't Say That!. Retrieved December 23, 2007, from

[43] United States-Iran relations. (2007, December 23). In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved 18:12, December 23, 2007, from

[44] Dwight David Eisenhower (n.d.). Retrieved June 22, 2008, from

[45] USA PATRIOT Act. (2007, December 22). In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved 18:25, December 23, 2007, from

[46] More quotes by Dwight D. Eisenhower (n.d.). Retrieved June 22, 2008, from,%20Dwight%20D.&s2=Dwight%20D.%20Eisenhower

[47] More quotes by Dwight D. Eisenhower (n.d.). Retrieved June 22, 2008, from,%20Dwight%20D.&s2=Dwight%20D.%20Eisenhower

[48] Burdeau, C. (2007, December 20). Battered N.O. OKs razing public housing. Associated Press.

[49] Dwight D. Eisenhower Quotes (n.d.). Retrieved December 23, 2007, from

[50] Scrooge. Dir. Ronald Neame. Perf. Alac Guinness. Waterbury Films , 1970.

[51] Robert Taylor Homes. (2007, December 5). In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved 19:31, December 23, 2007, from

[52] Cabrini-Green. (2007, December 18). In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved 19:30, December 23, 2007, from

[53] Truth and Reconciliation Commission (South Africa). (2007, December 18). In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved 19:49, December 23, 2007, from

[54] Maxwell, J. C. (2003). Ethics 101: What Every Leader Needs to Know. New York: Center Street, p. 17

[55] American Chamber of Commerce in Hanoi. 2006. 12 Mar. 2008 .

[56] Federal Department of Foreign Affairs. 31 Dec. 2007. 2 Jan. 2008 .

[57] The Swiss Guard celebrated 500 years of service to the Papacy in 2006; The Roman Curis: Swiss Guard. The Holy See. 2 Jan. 2008 .

[58] Luke 9:10-11 KJV

[59] Matthew 7:16

[60] Roy, A. (2002). War is Peace. In The Power of Nonviolence: Writing by Advocates of Peace (pp. 182-192). Boston: Beacon Press.