Viewpoint by P. Soma Palan
COLOMBO (IDN) — I am a free thinker and not a qualified celebrity in any field or a public figure of sorts. When the nation is gasping for its very survival due to a chain of unprecedented crises in its history, the President of the Nation seems to be preoccupied with the task of training the Sri Lankan Military in modern warfare. He has got his priorities wrong.
Firstly, I am at a loss to understand with whom Sri Lanka is poised to go into a war. Why is such preparation in modern warfare necessary? Is there an imminent or later threat of conquest by any country or even an internal armed threat?
This is ludicrous and a futile bloated ego to be militarily powerful. Can an insignificant small country like Sri Lanka face the military might of larger nations, even if the military forces are equipped with training in modern warfare?
Isn’t this grand scheme a futile exercise in investment when a large segment of the population is in poverty and facing an existential crisis? Shouldn’t attention and resources be applied to alleviate conditions of poverty rather than prepare for an imaginary threat of war?
It is my conviction that instead of strengthening the military, all Nations of the world should get together under the sponsorship of the United Nations Organization and take a unanimous and positive resolve to abolish the standing Armies of all nations of the world.
A complete disarmament by dismantling all the weapons of destruction, military infrastructures, and armament Factories is necessary to save the Planet Earth from total destruction so that the planet Earth can be a utopia of peace and harmony. It is the existence of Armies that poses a real threat to world peace. The existence of Armies is justified for self-defence.
If there are no Armies, the need for counter defence does not arise. Further, isn’t the very existence of Armies an insult to human intelligence and cultured living? The world has reached the pinnacle of human civilization, and yet we carry with us relics of barbarian tribalism in our blood.
Armies and civilized living are mutually contradictory and antagonistic. Leave aside the two World Wars of 1914 and 1944/45, and see the carnage that is inflicted on humanity in the ongoing Ukraine War today. It is reported that about 28,500 people have been killed and 1.2 million people have fled the country, and 140,000 residential buildings have been destroyed.
This is what Armies of nations led by mad people can do. Ukraine is for all purpose a de facto and de jure a separate country by its own volition, though a former part of Russia. It has a sovereign right to exist. But Russia thinks it has the right to reclaim it for itself.
If this is so, one can argue that, similarly, India has a stronger case to annex Pakistan and Bangladesh, which only the British created at the time of granting Independence to India. Similarly, China has its One Country policy in respect of Taiwan and thinks Taiwan is part of China.
But de facto Taiwan is a reality and exists and has a right to exist. Nations are armed with nuclear weapons. If you have Armies with nuclear weapons, it is for use and not for show. One day a lunatic leader will use it, and that is the end of the Planet Earth.
That is why I say that all Armies of nations should be disbanded along with their weapons and military infrastructures, so that resort to war to solve bilateral or multilateral disputes will give way to civilized discussion or arbitration by International Court.
War occasional disaster management and rescue operations, and as at present, to help the Police in the enforcement of Law and Order at queues at Gas and Petrol outlets. Military forces are mere ornamental showcases.
The real need is to down-size the military forces rather than to give training in modern warfare. [IDN-InDepthNews – 16 September 2022]
The writer, who describes himself as a world citizen, is a peace activist with an abiding interest in the preservation of Planet Earth. He has been influenced by spiritual celebrities like Swami Vivekananda, Sadh Guru, Jiddu Krishnamurti and others. He can be reached at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Photo: Acting Costa Rican President José “Don Pepe” Figueres Ferrer takes a sledgehammer to the Cuartel Bellavista military barracks, 1948. Source: World Beyond War.ORG
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