On the 5th of May we celebrate Liberation Day. Being freed from Nazi Germany in 1945, on May 5th, is still a very precious memory, though many of us weren’t born yet. Still the stories our ancestors told will never be forgotten. We take freedom for granted, and nothing is further from the truth. Just look around you and imagine being in one of the warzones in this world. There are many. When will we ever live in peace, all of us?
So when I came upon this slogan I couldn’t agree more: ‘Next year, let’s celebrate world peace.’ Yes, let’s! Enough already. I’ve always been a fervent anti weapon fan. Let’s remove all deadly weapons from this earth, please. Now I know it’s kind of naive to think this way. As I once heard mention that as soon as we have the knowledge you can’t take it back. So even if we would agree to throw away all weapons, there will always be a few people who will take advantage and rebuild them. Just to get some power.
We would have to change our believe in power. Why is the person with most weapons the winner? And why, therefore, has to be a loser? OK, we can’t take all weapons out, let’s divide them equally and teach world leaders to never ever use them. In a recent conversation, this was the meaning of many. As long as we have weapons, the ‘enemy’ will be careful to attack, ’cause they know there will be a counter attack and they may lose. ‘If it wasn’t for the many weapons, the world would’ve ended a long time ago’, someone tried to convince the others.
I have my doubts. I can understand president Zelensky when he is convinced the only thing that will make Ukraine win this war is more sophisticated weapons. He doesn’t want to discuss other possibilities with president Putin ’cause ‘they won’t help, anyway’. He’s probably right. A cease fire is never acknowledged, promises are never kept. As long as there is no trust, there will be no hope for peace. But then, when is enough finally enough?
It’s a problem I won’t be able to solve. As long as we are convinced weapons are the only answer to end a conflict, we will never have peace. I am, one more time, pointing at my good friend Tom Crum, who has written a few books on how to solve conflicts. He introduces us to different ways, we may never have thought about before. It’s very well worth a read. Especially for people who don’t believe in peace anymore. Who keep reaching for weapons to kill, instead of more creative solutions.
Will it help?
I have no idea. One never gives up. It’s a start. When I asked him how he thought of a way out, he pensively said the way to start would probably be to get back to the child within. The unstable youths of many, will have an effect on their actions in the future. We were quiet, thinking about this when he made me laugh out loud, when he continued: ‘Then again, maybe they are just f..ing idiots.’ And that’s right. Some people may want to stick to their beliefs, no matter what.
I once wrote an article in a paper wondering about the incredible creativity of criminals. It got a load of negative criticism. I loved it, because it meant people were thinking about it, at least. And I still think it worthwhile to educate prisoners, criminals, to help change their creative minds into doing good. Have you ever considered the planning, the meticulous exercise in bringing the plan to fruition, all the work, the energy it takes. What would happen if we could help these (usually young) people to direct that energy towards a goal everybody benefits from?
Not only do they learn to be proud with their achievements, but it will also help this world be a better, more peaceful place. Fantasy? I don’t think so. There have been examples of this working. Instead of putting them away for years, with other ‘misfits’, lets try to make them fit again. It’s a human need to want to fit in, no matter what others tell you. I am hopeful for our future. So, do we have a deal? Will we celebrate world peace day on May 5th 2024? I say, YES!