In the 15-year period, 1985-1999, the world experienced at least 23 wars at the expense of 11 million human lives.
The next 15-year period, 2000-2015, only 12 wars broke out and 800,000 people were lost. So, the number of wars was reduced by 50% and the number of deaths by 90%. Nevertheless, the public has the impression that today’s world is closer to Armageddon and a Third World War than ever before.
Relentless mass media attention and social media sensationalism seems to reflex in the collective experience by the public of armed conflicts. Nevertheless, the stage is set for a next 15-year peaceful period. What to expect?
Just a few remarks for your considerations;
1. Energy dependency on the Middle East by the USA and the West is no longer a fact. Consequently, the Middle East and other fossil mining based economies are imploding. Iraq, Syria, Iran, Egypt, Libya, Chad, Sudan, Somalia, Nigeria are all drowning in tribal warfare, as we speak. These countries are no longer of consequence to the global economy.
2. Pocket rogue nations, clinging to absolutist political ideologies, like Cuba, North Korea, Venezuela, Iran, are unable to sustain their totalitarian stance. Their repositioning is inevitable and subsequent turmoil may keep world peace hostage for quite a while.
3. Central political ideologies like nationalism, fascism, communism, socialism, and religious ideals of Christianity, Islam and Buddhism are making place for societies with great diversity, that function as democracies governed by compromise consensus coalitions.
4. The global, or rather planetary economy and interdependency of areas has become so intricate that borders of all kinds are disappearing. Trade barriers, nationalities, traffic and travel limitations, national currencies, all these formalities can only continue to exist as symbols of a past history.
5. One planet wide language next to domestic languages, one world wide internet, one global currency, one fashion style and one global culture are steadfastly developing, day after day, and without recourse.
6. A major challenge to the world is to agree on a globally shared code of ethics. Morals are ethics at work and form an odd mixture of tradition and personal opinion. Moral laws may not be covered by society’s laws. Therefore the world has to convene in a permanent body to define and redefine applicable morals and ethics.
By Jacob Gelt Dekker, opinion columnist for Curaçao Chronicle.