In wearing white poppies, we remember all those killed in war, all those wounded in body or mind, the millions who have been made sick or homeless by war and the families and communities torn apart. We also remember those killed or imprisoned for refusing to fight and for resisting war.
We differ from the Royal British Legion, who produce red poppies. The Legion says that red poppies are to remember only British armed forces and those who fought alongside them. We want to remember British military dead, but they are not the only victims of war. Suffering does not stop at national borders, and nor should remembrance.
From economic reliance on arms sales to renewing and updating all types of weapons , the UK government contributes significantly to international instability. The outcome of recent military adventures highlights their ineffectiveness and grim consequences. The best way to respect the victims of war is to work to prevent war in the present and future. Violence only begets more violence.
She spent the next 9 years living on the run. Cathy has now written a memoir, "Flying Close to the Sun. She has spent the last 20 years working as a math teacher in New York City. On February 19, , John Staples and 30, U. Marines landed on Iwo Jima, a volcanic island in southern Japan. It was the start of what would become one of the bloodiest campaigns of World War II.
It was also John's 23rd birthday. Also in this episode, Michael Sweig was a maitre d' at Chicago's Pump Room in the early s when one of his favorite celebrities, Richard Pryor, came in to the restaurant. Pryor was known for his colorful humor and the colorful language that peppered his acts. Danny Lewin was on the first plane to hit the World Trade Center in Lindy was all of nineteen when he had a memorable exchange with General George S. Gene Matthews was a missionary serving in South Korea at a time when the country was ruled by military dictators. Gene helped dissidents like future South Korean president and Nobel Peace Prize winner Kim Dae Jung by smuggling documents and ministering to victims of torture.
In , Bob Moses led an effort to bring mostly-white volunteers to Mississippi. Their job was to register African American voters and teach them about their civil rights through "freedom schools. How could a mother whose daughter had been burned to death ever be expected to understand that this and other barbarous acts were necessary to protect El Salvador from communist guerrillas, to preserve freedom and order?
The more repressive the authorities became, the more evident it became that they had no intention of changing their ways. Confronted with such arrogance, even the politically moderate members of society who had previously despised the rebels began to change their minds. The civil war swept through the land, and the fighting became part of daily life. The sound of gunfire was constant.
After dark, bombs would explode in scattered parts of the city.
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No one dared to be out on the streets at night. While the rich could afford to take refuge in Miami, the poor could not. The number of refugee camps grew as more people fled the fighting. These camps gave shelter to children who had lost arms and legs, their sight or hearing. Amid the most miserable conditions, the children died, the youngest first.
Adults in the camps were likely to have found someone to blame, someone to curse, as death overtook them. Children, on the other hand, trusted adults to the very end, thanking their mothers as they died without complaint. I am not being sentimental or melodramatic. There is nothing melodramatic about demanding that the world save mothers and children. Nor is this simplistic idealism, based on ignorance of the realities of international politics.
Killing Social Leaders for Territorial Control: The Unintended Consequences of Peace
Indeed, I believe that nothing is more tangible or more real than such suffering. I hold that the true purpose of politics is to exhaust every conceivable avenue in the effort to transform this stark reality of human suffering. I look to Josei Toda, the second president of the Soka Gakkai, as my mentor in life. When he assumed the presidency of the lay Buddhist organization in , the Korean War was raging.
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Toda stated at a special general meeting held prior to his inauguration:. No doubt there are people who have lost everything they owned, dying on the streets in grief and pain. Or youths who have died filled with outrage, angrily demanding to know why they had to give up their lives. Or elderly women killed even as they cried out that they had done nothing wrong.
And no doubt there are bands of children who can only wonder why others have parents and siblings while they do not. Most of these people probably had little idea of what communist ideology is, or why the United Nations forces have come to their land. If they were asked, "Whose side are you on? Toda's sympathies always lay with the weak and poor.
He knew that any way of thinking that does not issue from a concern for the plight of such people is without roots in reality, that it is nothing but empty theory. He saw through such theories. He knew that any system of thought that is blind to the welfare of ordinary people can cause terrible suffering, cutting through people's lives with the sharp blade of cold abstraction.
Some sacrifice is inevitable! For they express a nauseating disregard for life. They embody the delusions that lock humankind into endless cycles of war. They bear the seeds of global conflict. Whether a person is killed by rebels or by soldiers, the tragedy is in no way lessened.
That is why ordinary citizens cry out: "There's been too much slaughter! Stop the killing!
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Violence is never the answer to violence. To kill under the pretext of protecting life only perpetuates the cycle of slaughter. If we desire the fruits of peace, we must sow the seeds of peace. The life of a single individual is more precious than all the treasures of the universe. Do not report blandly, "Two civilians were found dead. It is not enough to write, "Family of five dead.
Tell us the names of the mother, father and children and the story of their lives. Tell us of their struggle with hunger, the meager meals they shared, the modest hopes they nursed. Tell us of the days when they huddled together with no words to express what they felt, or of the occasional mornings when they drew water from the well with smiles on their faces. Let the world know the details of their lives, and of the utter cruelty with which those lives were destroyed.
His answer was to the point. The fighting had become pointless. It knew no end. The army was being equipped with a limitless supply of weapons from their allies abroad. What the guerrillas lacked in sophisticated weaponry, they made up in morale. But people, everyone, had grown disgusted with the war. Some 75, people had been killed, and another 8, had been "disappeared. People had seen far too many dead bodies. They began demanding that both sides in the conflict stop. The fighting had resolved nothing. It was time to talk, time to think of the children's future.
All over the country, there were children who had never known life without war. Other countries had repeatedly tried to get the warring parties to the negotiating table, but every attempt had ended in failure. Give us a break! They aren't the kind of people you can talk to! And yet the war finally did end. The dramatic changes in the international climate resulting from the end of the Cold War were also a major impetus.
Killing for Peace by Garry Farrington | Books in Review
True courage is not found in settling differences with military force. Rather, we must find the courage to engage in dialogue! That is when humanity truly triumphs. It is a philosophy that treasures tolerance, human rights and cultural values.