Tuesday, 20 February 2007

10 Institutions That Ruin The World - #9

I have started a list of the 10 institutions that are ruining the world and how, in spite of their lofty aspirations, they actually end up doing harm. Today we have:

#9 - The Peace Movement

There are few organisations that are more hypocritical than the peace movement. Wikipedia defines a peace movement as being
"A social movement that seeks to achieve ideals such as the ending of a particular war (or all wars), minimize inter-human violence in a particular place or type of situation, often linked to the goal of achieving world peace." That seems a fair description.

The modern peace movement began at the end of the 19th century and really grew legs after WWI, which was quite understandable given the unprecedented carnage and social upheaval resulting from that conflict. Unfortunately, the peace movement quickly came under the control of socialist organisations and, in effect, became their 'acceptable' public face.

By the middle of the 1930s, the movement had gained a great deal of public sympathy and support and was one of the most vocal bodies calling for England's non-aggression towards Germany, in spite of that country's significant build up of its military which was in direct contravention of the Treaty of Versailles signed at the end of WWI. The effect of the 'peace at any price' position was to delay England's build up of its own forces, lionise Neville Chamberlain for his negotiations with Hitler that led to his famous 1938 "Peace in our time" speech and darned near cost England her country. Because the Allies won the war it is assumed by the younger generation that it's because they were much stronger and, of course, after the US entered the war and Stalin switched sides they were. However, for over two years it was touch and go for England and could easily have resulted in a loss. Had the Japanese not chosen to bomb Pearl Harbour who knows what might have happened?

After the Second World War and the beginning of the Cold War the peace movement really hit its stride. With an increase in financial support and command-and-control from the Soviet Union the peace movement became a powerful propaganda tool with a stridently anti-Western focus. One of its main objectives was unilateralism whether that be withdrawal of US forces from Europe, withdrawal of European from alliances with the US or unilateral nuclear disarmament (where have all the unilateral nuclear disarmament protesters gone since the collapse of the Soviet Union?)

Of course, the peace movement had a significant, and negative, role in the conflicts in Korea and Vietnam, as well as the UK's conflicts in Malaysia and the Falklands. Old peaceniks are particularly proud of their role in stopping the US funding of the Vietnam war but remain callously blind to the three million victims of their 'high moral' position.

The peace movement didn't protest against any Soviet aggression and
protested against Kennedy's reaction to the Cuban Missile Crisis, initiated by the Khrushchev, that seriously altered the balance of power. It wasn't anywhere to be seen during Hungary in '56, Angola or Afghanistan to name but a few. It has been on the side of the Arab aggressors in all of their wars with Israel. It could have cared less about the Iran-Iraq war but certainly got its skates on when the US got involved in the Gulf. It hasn't protested civil wars that have killed millions in Ethiopia, the Congo, Mozambique, Sudan or Somalia. It said nothing about Kosovo until the US decided to go in and stop the genocide that was taking place.

Nothing sums up the lack of seriousness of the peace movement than the bumper stickers that read "I'm already against the next war", which requires a deep cognitive dissonance. One presumes that if the US is attacked then the correct strategy is to roll on your back and hope that the enemy gives you a good tummy rub for being nice?

For promoting an agenda that unilaterally weakens those nations that have worked the hardest to bring peace to the world since the end of WWII the Peace Movement takes the #9 spot on my 10 Institutions That Ruin The World.

#10 - The Intelligent Design Movement, Discovery Institute

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