War as Transformation

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War as Transformation

Many people look for reason in warfare. The reasons humans decide to kill each other are varied. Many wars start over land, difference of religion and culture, or economic stress. While there have been many wars over the years that man has inhabited this planet, World War I sticks out because of one incident that took place during the war.

On December 25th, 1916 the Waring factions took essentially a "Christmas break" from their fighting, and went into enemy territory. They shared food and drink, and exchanged pictures of loved ones. They laughed and sang and tried to cross language barriers that the day before seemed insurmountable. The following day, they returned to their trenches, reinstated the boundaries of the war and began to fight anew. Even to this day, war is sometimes suspended for religious reasons, and no one finds this absurd or shocking. Recently, many Serbians were mad at President Clinton because he did not suspend bombing of Croatia during a holiday. As if war has a scheduled time and place. World War 1 was significant to this century because it was a war that involved peoples from practically every continent for the first time in history. It is ironic to think that the destructive force of war was something that , in a sense, brought many peoples of the world together for a common cause whether it was the Allied cause, or the German or Russian cause.

Looking at this war as an example of most wars, the causes of warfare stem from some sort of disagreement. Many of these disagreements derive from human insecurities about change. Fear of change drives people to hold tighter to their traditions and customs. When change is slow and progressive people may mutter under their breath, di...

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...rks successfully. That is why people are so dependent on it. It is much easier to break someone's spirit with brute force than to use intellect and reason. War as a transformation process will continue unless people see that the same evolutionary processes of change in society can be implemented through negotiation. But these types of processes are slow and involve a willingness to be open to change. People have to get the idea in their head that change is inevitable, it is what life is based on. The status quo can not remain forever. It is only through this realization and openness to new ideas that war as a machine of progress can ever be stopped . Skilled leaders need to motivate people to negotiation, and to acting without aggression. To lose the 'us against them mentality' should be the ultimate goal of all societies and peoples. Every day should be Christmas.

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