Researched position paper
Ms. Dina Bdeir
Tuesday 4th of January 2011
Is War Inevitable? How Does War Become Integral to Society?
We have known violence since the story of Cain killing Habile, however war came later. Is war in the nature of human beings or did it come along with evolution? Many of the ancient cultures that still live till now know no violence and no concept of warfare. War became crucial in our lives because of our ancestors and the state of development they knew. The stories and the myth of our elders influenced our vision of war. Idan Barir wrote:” I’d grown up with images of the glorious fighting of 1967 and wanted to be like those great Israeli heroes who had entered the old city of Jerusalem.” (Par.1)Moreover, the culture inherited by warfare is mostly destructive and repulsive. There is no place for an open mind you have to execute the orders or it is your life and the life of your companions that is at stake, “We were trained to believe that every Palestinian was a threat.”(Barir, par.3) Even patriotism one of the great values derived from the martial institution can be poisoned in times of war. Barir wrote:” Every morning we’d have a meeting on a big porch overlooking Tel Aviv. My commander would point out across the land trying to make us believe that this was the land we were defending.”(par.5) In that time the Israeli army where conducting raids in Jenin and were not under attack that is why there was nothing to defend! Furthermore, war creates discrimination and hatred against the rival even if the other was pacifist and had nothing to do with war he will be hated. For example Barir stated that when he was in Jenin many Israeli women were protesting for peace and commander made joke implying that it is easier to deal with Palestinian if they bother you “you can shoot them in the head.”When there is a war it is like life has no value anymore; the concepts of bravery, honor and valor that once exited are abolished. Barir declared in his text that the Israeli were bombing Gaza with phosphorous and it was illegal to use such weapons cause they inflict a cruel amount of pain it is barbaric!(par.8) War will end the day all humanity will be ashamed of what we are doing to each other. Barir wrote:”As an Israeli I feel so ashamed that our army tells lies.” As Barir many will repent and I believe that for now war has been a part of our culture and it still is, but the day will come were humanity will refute this invention.
There is a sacred value for war transmitted from our ancestors, especially with all the legends of glory that enriched the tales and the history of each culture. Most of the people grow hearing their parents say that the sacrifices made by the elders preserved their people and their land. William James identified the memories and legends as “a sacred spiritual possession worth more than all the blood poured out.”(709) with all the body counts people are still ready to go to war! William James stated that if Americans were to choose to exclude their civil war from history and rewrite a peaceful transition most of them will refuse (708). Not only they are ready to sacrifice their lives, they wouldn’t omit wars from their history. Even though modern civilization sees war as only counter attack forced upon it; man and women are ready to launch another civil war to gain more power as stated William James (709). William James briefs up that the people inherit the appeal for greatness from the war stories. The irony is that the horrors don’t affect them negatively they become more mesmerized because as the author said:”War is the strong life.”(James, 709) the cause behind the glory of war is the warlike culture inherited by our ancestors as said William James:”Dead men tell no tales.”(709)
Martial virtues are essential to each civilization, thus no permanent peace can prevail. Patriotism is a core martial virtue; however it will create...