Peace Movements and Pacifism after September 11

Peace Movements and Pacifism after September 11

Edited by Shin Chiba and Thomas J. Schoenbaum

Noted international scholars from a range of disciplines present in this book Japanese and East Asian perspectives on the changed prospects for international peace post September 11. Because East Asia has not been preoccupied with the ongoing conflicts in the Middle East, the authors’ views serve as a balance to the war on terror declared in the United States.

Chapter 3: Searching for Peace in a World of Terrorism and State Terrorism

Johan Galtung

Subjects: asian studies, asian law, law - academic, asian law, human rights, public international law, politics and public policy, human rights, international politics, international relations, terrorism and security

Extract

Johan Galtung I INTRODUCTION Let me make one thing clear from the beginning. My position on peace and war, peace theory and practice, is less based on pacifism as a moral position than on pacifism as a politics of peace and war. This is spelt out in the Introduction of my book, Peace By Peaceful Means (1996), which discusses concrete applications of political/military/economic/cultural power as soft politics for the 21st century. An eightfold path is indicated, using the four forms of power both for negative and for positive peace. The position is basically pragmatic: violence, with all its bloodshed is counterproductive or at best non-productive, like leeches with their hosts. Lately I have been, within the framework of TRANSCEND (Peace and Development Network), very concerned with conflict transformation (Galtung, 2004) as the way to prevent avoidable violence and suffering— somewhat similar to primary and secondary prophylaxis as the way to prevent illness—but also, particularly as positive peace with its focus on joint projects, as a way for humankind to move forward; just like for positive health. No doubt this is a valuable approach. My preferred formulation, however, is to look at conflict transformation in Buddhist terms: that is, reduce dukkha (suffering) and increase sukha (fulfillment). This is applicable to all, including our individual selves. I see security theory and practice as an approach that is focused on ourselves, that is, as an egoistic position based on a ‘strength’ that generates the same...

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