Glorifying peace or war at the cost of other is sheer ignorance
Since the two words are quite opposite to each other but they have been shaping the world throughout the centuries. However in the earlier centuries wars were romanticized and those who fought them were regarded as, ‘Heroes,’ and ‘Real men of the nation.’ These men were glorified through literature, paintings, folklores and bedecked with rosaries and gifts of precious kinds.Wars were considered as glorious opportunities for men to prove their courage. Ardent warriers were highly regarded and seen as the gallant forces of their motherland. The legends of Hercules and Achilles were popularized to such an extent that even after centuries they ring on the ears of common masses. There was little scope for peace and at times battles were merely fought to exhibit the power of the Crown. Eventually through succeeding decades the aroma of the peace was felt and the Crown powers restored to peaceful means and negotiations.
Nonetheless in the modern and civilized era war continued to inspire people. While in his efforts to unify Germany, the Prussian statesman, Otto Von Bismarck came up with his policy of ‘Iron and Blood.’ He argued, “Not through speeches and majority decisions will the great question of the day be decided but by iron and blood.” The great German philosopher of the nineteenth century Friedrich Nietzsche was of the view that only conflict could facilitate the growth of civilization. The Italian theorist, Vilfredo Pareto argued that people who were able and willing to use force to achieve their goals constituted the governing elites in most of the societies and he tagged such people as “lions.”
The destructions and the catastrophes which wars usually brought with them made people to realize the importance of peace and need for the creation of an egalitarian society on some basic values. The idea that the peace and progress go hand in hand engrossed the society. People began to value peace. Pacifism popularized the ideas of non-voilence and giving up of force. Pacifist and dovish ideas were best recognized by the common masses who had seen the worst of the two World Wars. Literature too played an important role to break the illusive images of the war people have created in their minds. G.B. Shaw an Irish playwright and iconoclast in his famous play, “Arms and the man” ridiculed the glorification of the war and rather depicted his protagonist as chocolate cream soldier who would have chocolates in his pockets instead of bullets. The establishment of the supreme institutions like League of nations and then United Nations propagated with them the noble idea of peace. United Nations in its charter of 1945 declared to save the future generations from the scourge of war as one of its main objectives.
The idea of peace is not fully understood to all. People see peace as absence of arms conflict and bombings. Peace in its broadest sense means the absence of all those violent methods which terrorize people and instigate a conflict between nations, communities or people. It emphasizes the end to all structural violences existing in the society and co-existence of different shades of people under the same umbrella with love and harmony. Unless all the coercive methods used to suppress the people in the name of religion, race or ethnicity are uprooted, peace remains only an ideology and nothing else. The castles of the peace must be constructed within the minds of the people to establish it in perpetuity. United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural organization observes, “Since wars begin in the minds of men, it is in the minds of men that the defences of peace must be constructed.”
War and peace both play decisive roles at times. Neither war should be eulogised nor peace. War in the modern world is considered as a calamity but sometimes for peace one has to wage a war. World War II proved disastrous in its actual terms but on the other hand millions of colonized people attained independence and free will. Wars taught people the essence of peace because when for a long a principle is rooted in the society most take it for granted and forget its importance. It was the World War II which defied the occurrence of III World War in the bipolar World. In the name of peace people should not act cowardly and bear all the hardships and brutalities. By all means people had to fight against them first in non-voilent manner but if it seems impossible they had to give a further push and use force if the situation demands. Gandhi who was the pioneer of the non-voilent methods during Indian Independence struggle himself raised the slogan of, “Do or die,” when all the peaceful methods proved futile. War must be the last option on the table but you cannot completely take out war in the name of peace.
Peace on the other hand is an ever growing process which brings it with the news of blessings and harmony. It binds the people together and carves out of them the best human being. Its existence saves the humanity from the scourge of the wars. It brings prosperity and progress and leads to the development of an individual. It is only peace which depicts the humane nature of the man otherwise wars only show the beast hidden in it. Intermingling of cultures and exchange of ideas is only possible in an atmosphere of peace, thus bringing the World closer than ever. In fact peace is a soothing tale which brings one to sleep and augments the world of possibilities. If for any nation to move forward by leaps and bounds it must be free from all kinds of violences whether it be structural or arms. Conflicts are a curse and it is only peace which can cure these curses.
As it is a well know fact that striking of two hands produce a clapping sound, in the same way presence of peace and war thrives for the betterment of the society. War, no doubt is a mistake and the solution of this mistake is peace.Whenever a war occurs, at its end, humans come up with new and fine ways to establish peace. Both wars and peace have their own roles to play.Thus glorifying peace or war at the cost of other is sheer ignorance rather than an act of intellectuality.
Author is a student of Class 11th at Sayyid Hamid Senior Secondary School AMU, Aligarh.
Disclaimer: Views expressed are exclusively personal and do not necessarily reflect the position or editorial policy of Oracle Opinions.