Sat, 22 Apr 2000 12:56:59 -0700
At 21:21 4/21/2000, you wrote:
>Yes, I know this as well. My idea of a Pacifist Nation is for it to offer
>protection for people who cannot fight for themselves and for people who are
>tired of fighting. You don't have to accept something as inevitable. As long
>as people continue to accept that there will always be wars, there WILL
>always be wars. I am not meaning to sound naive, its just that if you carry
>hope that someday wars will end, it is possible that they will, just not
>It may take generations or eons, but humanity should be strong enough to
>break free of the cycle of wars, eventually.
It may interest you to know that this topic has already garnered a great
deal of attention in the SF writing community. Some years ago, Baen Books
published a compilation of military SF stories called THERE WILL BE
WAR. In sharp reaction, a number of writers challenged the idea that war
was inevitable and offered a number of scenarios in which war became either
impossible or self-correcting (i.e., aggressors were done in, or did
themselves in, before they could become a problem for others) called THERE
WON'T BE WAR.
The root causes of war are almost always economic, in the sense of the
Haves versus the Have Nots, although the economic underpinnings (trade
routes and tariffs, for example) are often obscured. Most solutions to the
problem of war depend on some technology or social system eliminating
poverty and unequal distribution of resources, while keeping the population
from increasing to the point that system fails.
You may be interested in reading THE ASH WAR by Peeny Harblemeyer, an SF
novel about the last war humans will ever fight. You may have trouble
finding it, as it's a trade paperback from a small press, IFD
Publications. I, myself, know the book only by its reputation and do not
know the ISBN.
Peeny Harblemeyer is an SF writer and market analyst specializing in the
defense industry. She believes that market forces and technological
changes will soon make warfare obsolete. Her novel THE ASH WAR is based on
the idea that developments of existing technology will, very soon, make
wars not only unprofitable but unwinnable.
THE ASH WAR suggests that capitalism is more important to preserving peace
than democracy and, in fact, the protagonist is a benign dictator. It
posits that warfare is NOT part of human nature and that we go to war
because the cost of peace becomes higher than the cost of war -- that peace
can have painful economic impacts that war alleviates and that many
industries and commercial enterprises have a stake in delaying peace as
much as possible. It posits five technologies that will make war
impossible and ten new weapons based on those technologies that will be
developed in the final years of warfare, but the overall thrust is that
humanity is rapidly approaching the point where it will finally outgrow war.
It also warns that peace comes with a price and that a world without war
will not be all sweetness and light. A market crash can destroy just as
many lives as an armed conflict and reduce entire populations to slavery
and starvation. Every technology is a double-edged sword and hammering all
of your swords into plowshares will not guarantee a good harvest.
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