(by Abishikt Thomas) Awestruck kids along with their parents come flying in their family-spacecraft to see this huge glass globe. The object of attraction is however not the globe itself but the view of its inside: a fairly big tree with full-grown branches and green leaves. This futuristic and depressing vision of some artist seems more and more realistic day by day.
The efforts and worries of Greenpeace and other environmental activists have shifted into the background in recent days where the survival of people is at stake. The need for Blackpeace, Brownpeace, Yellowpeace and Whitepeace is imminent in the current milieu.
However, people are too engrossed in their lives and busy hiding behind their façade of daily life to have more than a moment, if at all, to think about the miseries of the world, wars and world wars. The world is too sweet a dream to taste the bitterness of mothers who lost their kids: POW´s (prisoners of war), MIA´s (missing in action) or killed just because they were born in the wrong place, wrong country, into the wrong religion and if they were really unlucky, with the wrong skin colour too. But relatively speaking, the days of discrimination based on this or that colour are over. Patting ourselves on our backs, we can proudly proclaim that we evolved. “International” and “Global village” are the buzz words today. Yes, we managed to evolve to a stage where discrimination sees no borders and makes no difference between colours.
Nowadays, disputes and wars over religion or even land fall rather into the primitive category in the modern war-maniac’s encyclopedia. Primitive, because you should have converted the people you wanted to your religion and conquered the land you wanted by now. If not, hard luck. Keep trying!
Not all kinds of wars tend to drop out of fashion. Some are and will remain trendy. Right now, oil tops the charts. Nations that have grown out of the primitive wars, naturally have more time to devote to the trendier wars. The smarter ones actually manage to wage wars in a “civilized” and elegant manner without bloodshed. In this global village, the ones who sweat blood for the smart ones are, ironically, in some faraway country.
The world has enough burdens to carry. It is shocking and embarrassing to hear about countries, to be more precise certain societal strata of the global village community, having obesity as one of their growing problems while at the same time there are countries that are fighting poverty and malnourishment. Billions of people still lack access to amenities like safe water and sanitation. Several major diseases have been eradicated but new ones are being discovered. The younger generations are becoming more and more susceptible to diseases like diabetes, which traditionally appertained to uncles and aunties. With major fast food joints cropping up everywhere and drastically changing lifestyles, the extent of damage is bound to grow further.
According to a U.N. Report of June 2000, a mere 0.3% a year of the world gross product is enough to achieve universal provision of basic services in the Third World. In Third World countries, the richest 20% of the population owns on average 50% of the country’s wealth, 10 times that of the poorest 20%. The divide is almost as sharp in the industrialized world, where the top 20% own, on average, 35-40% of the country’s wealth, five times that of the poorest 20%. The distance between the incomes of the richest and poorest country has increased from 3:1 in 1920, 35:1 in 1950, 44:1 in 1973 and 72:1 in 1992. The gap has only grown larger over these years.
The internal feuds and conflicts within and among the developing countries has not either helped them to prevent being left back. They urgently need to retrospect and ask themselves if they took and are taking the optimal measures for healthy progress. A consensus should also be reached among these developing countries to achieve common goals.
Another war is the last thing you would want in addition to this imbroglio. The horrid wounds of previous wars have not healed yet. Enough innocents have died for its cause. We don’t need more wreath-laying ceremonies. We need to shift the focus from war and attend to contemporary problems.
The call is not for another United Nations, but more unity. Respect to nations and people who stand up to say No! The voices against war are muffled by the tumultuous roars for war, yet we should neither lose hope nor fear to enunciate our opinion. We need to a wage a war. A war against war.
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