Wednesday, May 18, 2011
The Panda Bear on Wars to Spread Democracy
The Panda Bear is a believer in the innate wisdom and dignity of most common people. She will test her belief that the average person is capable about seeking profound truths by blogging about deep issues of war, peace and the human condition while other news organizations and bloggers deal with Schwarzenegger’s(the former Governor of the state of California) marriage break-up. The Panda Bear heard on the radio someone stating that given the choice most people would chose celebrity gossip news over news about the war in Afghanistan. This commentator was not speaking about the discerning and intelligent readers of the Panda Bear Blog!!!
The Panda Bear remembers learning in college two conflicting theories of why nations fight war. One motivation was primarily to preserve the national interest(including economic security). The other theory of wars is that they are religious in nature and this includes the idea that wars are for spreading “civilization” to others.
Many people would argue that the cold war was religious in nature and communism was a form of religion. The Soviet Union invaded other countries(including Afghanistan) it imposedv its ideas of civilization its ideology on the countries it invaded.
Many Westerners are quick to recognize religious natures of wars in the East. However, Westerners are quick to forget the Western world has justified wars and invasions for the reason of religion including the spreading of Christianity. Also the West has justified invading other countries for the reason of spreading civilization. There is the argument that Romans and the French. under Napoleon, brought to the countries they invaded a more “advanced” form of civilization. The Spanish believed when they invaded parts of the Americas they bringing the the indigenous peoples are higher form of culture and religion.
The Panda Bear believes that wars to spread democracy is the West’s new version of justifying wars because they “spread civilization”. The Panda Bear believes that countries should be choosing democracy on their own free will. It a contradiction to hold a gun to a country to “force” them to choose freedom.
There is also an inherent conflict of interest in wars to spread civilization and the other justification of war that it is it to protect the national interest. No matter how benevoplent the intentions are of the dominant country, the country in power probably does set up the rules to its advantage. The US has through covert operations(i.e Allende in Chile) undermined democracies that went against what the US perceived as its interest.
In short, the Panda Bear believes the only justification for war is self-defense.