Mission Time: Aggression with Weapons [Part 2]
While still keeping in mind that war is scary, that doesn’t discredit the fact that the option can prove useful. After wars, ironic as it sounds, comes peace and with peace comes calm, balance, and order…or at the least, less dead people who are below the age of 30. Just look back to the end of World War II, everyone thought that the United States of America and Soviet Russia would throw a smack down and the world would explode in a fury of mushroom clouds and radiation, but it didn’t. There was a non-war-peace for some time and it was good. So yes, wars prove useful in regaining peace and stability but I highly doubt and dislike the idea of war being the only option you can choose to restore the power balance of the international community. Not all conflict has to be resolved by violence and weapons.
Let me try and pry myself away from the biases I already have with being the granddaughter of a Filipino hippie who thrived in the 70s and really believed in flower power and a big fan of John & Yoko and their unconventional campaigns for peace. Let me also put into light that I am perhaps a pragmatic liberalist (or so I’ve come to assume nowadays since I’ve been arguing with idealist beliefs too much nowadays), someone who believes that functionalism is possible given a cultural revolution (which I understand is extremely-fucking-difficult to achieve), and a selfish person who ultimately just wants to runaway to the south side of France to paint for the rest of her days and own a cat. Noting all the aforementioned will help you understand as to why I probably think the way I do…or not at all, maybe I just wrote all of that just because I like transparency and divulging trivial information about moi-self.
ANYWAY…so, managing international relations without using the option that is war? In other words, how in the world do you begin to resolve intense conflict/s in the international system without proposing that people start readying their armies?
My answer to any and every conflict or problem is that both parties should always be transparent and honest and shouldn’t bullshit around with one another because I find that 99% of all problems are the fault of miscommunication (with 1% the fault of being hungry). I’d like to imagine that if only countries were honest with one another, the world would finally achieve peace. Chances are a mediator will always be needed as I can understand the difficulty it takes to be completely honest with another person, especially someone you don’t like and/or are fighting with, what more between heads of states? As in, those people have got to be the most stubborn, panicky, and paranoid people on the planet. I bet it just has to do with all those lies and spinning the truth they do, all their politicking and whatnot. I swear, the moment the United States of America and China get together and do something like this,
USA: Hey China, are you trying to become the new hegemon and steal my gig as the grand pubbah of this blueberry planet?
China: Pretty much, that and I never really liked your free-market, democratic ideals, so I wanna issue a new reign. I know that’s not cool but I’m really planning for a take-over.
USA: That’s not cool, but I get what you mean considering your history and all. You’re not still with Russia, are you?
China: Pfft. Nah, Russia and I broke up the moment she stopped wanting to be called Soviet Russia. I, for one, liked her first name.
USA: …whatever, you totally can’t take-over my spot as hegemon. I’m going to go send spies to your place later.
China: Bring it, I already sent enough ninjas to your soils anyway.
…is when we can all breathe easy and get ready because shit like this would obviously be televised and knowing the truth of what’s going on easily prepares the citizens of the world with what to expect and prepare for.
I know what you’re thinking by now, this girl is crazy to think that honesty as the best policy in conducting international relations and avoiding war is impossible, too idealist, and just plain D-U-M-B. But you see, I figured that’s when the mediator comes in.
Non-believer: OH REALLY? Adding in a mediator for these things will make it all the more possible for honesty to happen? Get reeeeaaaaal…
Well, non-believer, you didn’t let my finish because the role of the mediator is to whip out the ANTI-LIE RAY-GUN and blast the two parties with it so they are forced to speak nothing but the truth and the world is saved from further wars happening as we will now be dealing with the truth and nothing but the truth and that’s so much easier to deal with than lies and bullshit.
Non-believer: Okay, now you’re just being crazy and unethical.
Well actually, the Anti-Lie Ray-Gun just refers to a mediator with considerable amount of influence over both parties. Going to the previous scenario between the USA and China, you can see that I didn’t include a mediator, that’s simply because I have no idea who has a considerable amount of influence over the two…well, maybe the UN but that’s still a stretch. Though thinking of things at a smaller scale, civil wars, and perhaps terrorist attacks, all you need is a good mediator, maybe a lie-detector, and a way to get both parties in the same room at the same time (okay, I admit, this part is difficult but that’s not my problem, it’s the CIA’s) to alleviate conflict without having to pull any trigger or push any deadly buttons.
I suppose I only find this as possible because I’m a strong advocate of transparency and complete honesty in relationships when called for, and also because the following happen to be two days ago:
Two days ago, I was eating with two of my friend’s in Mashiita in University Mall. Friend A went and ordered himself some gyoza and chicken teriyaki with rice while Friend B and I didn’t order shit because we were
poornot hungry. By the time Friend A’s order arrived, I started to ask him about his current standing with this girl he liked. Friend A avoided the question and tried talking about something else, Friend B and I continued to prod on with the subject of girl. I, especially prodded on about it because Friend A had promised me before that he’d tell me about girl the next time we saw each other. That time was now and Friend A was not keeping his promises, the bastard.
I first retaliated by stealing one of his gyoza without asking for his permission. Friend A looked at me incredulously but let it slide, figuring I was hungry by then (that and I absolutely LOVE me some gyoza). I, with the help of Friend B but mostly it was my effort, continued to prod about girl until eventually Friend A said he wouldn’t talk about it.
I couldn’t believe the bastard broke his promise.
Out of sheer annoyance I tried to steal another piece of gyoza to which he caught me before my awesome chopsticks skills could get me a piece. Without a moment’s hesitation I dived for his bowl of chickecn teriyaki with rice. He didn’t expect that so now it came to a situation where I had his bowl of teriyaki and he has his gyoza and I wasn’t going to give him the rest of his food until he kept his promise and told me about girl. Friend B just watches, amused as fuck.
Friend A: Dude, give it back.
Me: Hell no. Tell me about girl.
Friend A: You do not mess without someone who is hungry.
Me: Blah blah blah, this chicken smells good and I’m hungry, now spill less I satisfy my hunger.
Friend A: No.
Me: CHICKEN IS MINE.
Friend B: You want me to protect the chicken with my stomach?
Clearly, this situation could get ugly because the following circumstances allowed for violence: 1. One person was really hungry and the food was really good that he had to eat it, and 2. One person was on her period and was being highly unreasonable and sensitive due to her ovulating . But then, ohoho, Friend B comes in and eventually lulls both parties into a compromise (especially towards me, because I was seriously about to stab Friend A with some chopsticks) by asking questions and wanting honesty. Questions like, “Friend A, why can’t you talk about girl?” and “Ysa, must you always be a bitch?” helped the situation and eventually what lead was an agreement that Friend A mentions honestly why he can’t talk about girl now and that I would end up with the last piece of gyoza if I agree to return his chicken teriyaki.
That’s diplomacy and mediation at work right there!
Most obviously, that would be harder to replicate in the real world, in real life, in the real international system, but the framework idea sounds understandable enough. The only real weakness I see to it is that is highly depends that both factions of a conflict trust each other enough to be honest and that the mediator is not secretly an evil villain. Regardless, diplomacy, in my opinion, has always been the best line of action to deal with international relations, diplomacy with some coercion involved actually.
The moral and summation and relfections of this blog post:
Things are forever easier said than done.
Honesty is impossible to give all the time, but if we start educating people in transparency right now, then who knows? Perhaps the generation of tomorrow will be able to use transparent honest diplomacy as the best means to manage international affairs.
When you think about it Friend A had money to buy food and ate with a spoon and a fork, I on the other hand had no cash for foor and fought with chopsticks. Global North vs Global South, much? Ahahahaha…over-reading…I know…
Diplomacy > War is always more favourable.
I will do just about anything for a good piece of gyoza.