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Ultimate Violence: Now Upon Us?
Greatest Danger Occurs in Times of Greatest Denial
When I began my Newsletter one-and-a-half years ago with the theme, “Societal Safety and Survival,” I felt an urgency to warn against “Ultimate Violence.” This is why I began with a “Prescription for Survival 2022,” expanding upon our original “Prescription for Survival” against the Covid-19 pandemic. The new “Prescription” urged that: “The currently still-expanding “MAD”, or Mutually Assured Destruction, state of world affairs … urgently be declared incompatible with life.”
The proxy war with Russia was just underway. Tensions with China were such that the U.S. was constructing a NATO-like alliance in the Pacific, even involving the European NATO in it, while the Chinese were rushing to arm themselves in opposition far more significantly than ever before. Tensions in the Middle East with Iran, Lebanon, and Palestine were growing, though not yet explosive.
I did not separate these issues into being political or related to international affairs, because, fundamentally, all these human affairs are psychological at their base. Especially now, the psychological issue of importance is that we have entered a collectively suicidal state—and all other considerations are subordinate to this fact.
Because of this collective state now extending over all humanity, no region is immune. The world conflagration crisis is in all places: in Europe through Russia, in Asia through China and North Korea, and in the Middle East through Palestine, Iran, Syria, and Lebanon. All this is occurring as even our own country slides into a new kind of civil war that may yet explode as never before, or may just gradually consume us, as a political analyst colleague recently described: “like a boiling pot of water eventually left burned and empty.”
In the midst of all this, as a country and as individuals, we need to be far more honest with ourselves if we are to avoid the “Ultimate Violence” of World War III. For example, there is a method used for intervening in situations of violence called “de-escalation.” Taking sides and adding to the violence is not the only choice we have.
Yet, in all cases our government and the military-industrial-CIA-media complex that rules us would have much of the American public cheering for war and “victory”, even when there are other options. Not only that, to expand further our state of being in various states of war in many places, with preparations and propaganda for all to greatly expand is the de facto stance that the U.S. has taken and has patterned for the rest of the world.
These are the ominous headlines that have appeared just today:
· ‘Six Steps’ from WWIII
· China Sends Warships to Mideast
· Pentagon More Deployment Orders
· Israel Warns: Hamas Chem Weapons
· Strike Head of Snake Iran?
· 100,000 Protestors March through London
· Pentagon Activates Deployment of Defense Systems throughout Mideast
· Rebellion at State Department against Biden War Policies
· China Erupts at U.S. after It Vetoes UN resolution on Gaza-Israel Issue
· Unprecedented Jewish Demo in Congress for “Ceasefire” this Week Results in 300+ Arrests
· 400+ Capitol Hill Staffers Demand U.S. Call for Mideast “Ceasefire”
· Did Israel Attack in Syria? Disturbing Reports—Israel ‘Incapacitates’ Syria’s Main Airports
· Chinese Media Issues Ominous War Warning to US: ‘Global Scale’
· Consequences will be ‘Devastating’ If Hezbollah Enters War
· Russia Threatens U.S. with ‘Serious Consequences’
· China Deploys Six Warships to Middle East over Fears Israel Crisis Could Spark WW3
Though foreign policy is not my area of expertise, I have worked with political scientists and international affairs experts throughout my career in public health approaches to violence prevention. The textbook I have written on the subject, considered to be the most comprehensive to date and used in universities worldwide, takes an interdisciplinary approach that includes political and international perspectives. It urges all the different fields of inquiry to work together toward the prevention of the greatest threat to humankind: itself.
Currently, there could not be a greater emergency than avoiding World War III. There may be doubt, concern, and confusion about what our country is doing and why, but there can be no doubt as to which direction we ought to be heading.
Time is running out. The Doomsday Clock, ticking louder and faster than ever before in history, reminds us that there is a point of no return, which is its metaphorical Midnight. And I have even noted that the current keepers of the Clock, now staffed with persons from the foreign policy establishment directly aligned with the U.S. government, rather than purely of scientists, are failing us by wrongly stalling the Clock so as not to alarm the public.
We need, rather, to align our thinking back with the original creators of the Doomsday Clock, namely Albert Einstein, J.R. Oppenheimer, and other leading scientists who seventy-seven years ago warned us about what we must do for survival. Their book, One World Or None, and the reasons they rushed it into print soon after the first use of nuclear weapons, need now to be urgently readdressed before it is too late.
The issues we are currently grappling with at existential scale go beyond mere foreign policy and international politics. The questions we need to ask ourselves go beyond even the psychological to verge on the spiritual: how did we, as a species, reach a point in human affairs, when within a few hours human civilization itself can be destroyed and inflict unimaginable misery brought upon us all? How have we reached a point where there is such seemingly cavalier talk about and ferocious preparations for World War III? As one of humanity’s most rational and humanistic thinkers told us before his death in 1955, less than a decade after he began advocating “One World or None,” Albert Einstein was not sure just which super weapons would be used to fight World War III, but he was sure that the weapons that would subsequently be used for World War IV would be “sticks and stones.”