Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Twelve Facts About War

1. Those who have the power to start a war are rarely personally threatened by the wars they start.

2. Wars today are enormously expensive, so as to be virtually unaffordable for even the richest nations.

3. Most of the victims of war are innocent civilians, by such a large margin that a decision to participate in war today, for any nation, is automatically a decision to choose to kill and injure innocent people.

4. It's much easier to start a war than to stop a war.

5. Everyone has the option of refusing to participate in a war, although for some the price is much greater than for others.

6. Wars are environmental disasters.

7. Warfare destroys families, life, and family life. To be pro-life and pro-family, one must be anti-war.

8. Fighting and/or winning a war is rarely as important as what you, I, and everyone was doing before the war began.

9. War is a failure. It's a failure of diplomacy, patience, understanding. It's failing to respect the humanity of other people. It's a failure to grant others the same privileges and rights we want for ourselves.

10. Those who support and approve of a war will claim that the soldiers fighting are defending the US, but those who are honest and really paying attention will recognize that as inaccurate. Attacking another country as an act of retaliation for some perceived wrong (ie Afghanistan) is every bit as likely to endanger, as it is to protect, the attacker. None of the dozens of wars the US has participated in, supported, or financed in my lifetime (the past 60 years) had anything to do with defending the United States and that includes the Vietnam, Nicaragua, El Salvador, Afghanistan, and Iraq.

11. The economic crises we are currently in as a nation, and to some extent the rest of the world is in, is not just a result of greed and disrespect for the earth, but is primarily because of the two current wars, and numerous smaller conflicts, which are costing trillions of dollars, money not available to meet human need, and that's just the financial cost. The human, moral, spiritual, and environmental cost is much greater.

12. A decision to participate in war has an enormously destructive impact on the spiritual integrity and spiritual quality of a nation.

13. (A bonus fact!) Wars destroy freedom by killing people. A dead person has no freedom of speech, press, or religion, no democracy, and no choices on election day.

Leonard Nolt

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