There MUST be a better way!

20120220-_MG_6032By Chuck Robison
September 6, 2013

By the time you read this, we will probably be past the Congressional Debate on our Next War.

The original rationale and plan for the perpetual wars of this century is contained in a document titled Project for the New American Century. Sponsored by William Kristol and Robert Kagan, this Neo-Con Manifesto outlines the plans for our take-over of the Middle East and our military domination of the rest of the world as well. This plan is predicated on our position as the sole remaining Super Power.

So far in the Congressional Debate the two choices are either “Go To War” or “Not Go To War”, as if there was only one possible choice! The Go To War justifications include the awe-fullness of the gas attacks in Syria and the need to “stand up as the leader of the world” and show the world that we are as strong and manly as ever.

Ask yourself this: Surely there must be a better way? Our National Leadership displays a remarkable lack of diverse thought and creative problem solving. We say our goal is to prove we stand for freedom and want to help others find it. Yet we, ourselves, are not able to create unique solutions.

Killing is killing whether by bullets, bombs or gas. All of it is terrible, wrong and gruesome. We have spent all of our national treasure on creating perfect killing machines, including the gasses we surreptitiously supply to governments like Syria. We use our treasure to prove to the world that we are right and our leadership of and incursion into their problems is the best and the only way to solve very complex issues.

If we really wanted to model good leadership to the world, we would lead in a different direction. America could win the respect and admiration of the world community, something we hope to get by going to War in Syria, by acting creatively, rather than doing the same thing over and over again and hoping to finally, some day, get better results than we have had in every war since 1945.

Winning in the world struggle requires a paradigm change or a shift in consciousness. More bullets, bombs and gasses are not going the win the minds of anyone involved in an apparent civil war. But a shift in our own thinking could quickly allow us to model a new kind of leadership.

Currently, it is estimated that roughly 3 million refugees have been shoved out of their homes, neighborhoods and country in this civil war, partly funded and supplied by The United States, Russia and a large army of profit oriented arms dealers.

Fully one third of these refugees are children, lost in a foreign desert, living in tents, missing their dead family members, starving, searching for a sip of almost non-existent water, feeling alone and abandoned.

America The Beautiful, right now, could shift and recognize that in civil wars, only the citizens themselves can bring about peace. We cannot. However we can bring compassion, healing, hope and health to these 1 million children and 2 million adult refugees who have been abandoned.

Imagine how the world would view us if we chose to lead compassionately in a direction that has a serious chance at success. Rather than sending bombs, missiles, planes and ultimately American soldiers to create more destruction and more refugees, we could take that same energy, money, and power and create for these refugees, a real place to live, schools, hospitals, access to water, healthy food, jobs and a support system that would create a new direction for these people when the war we currently seek to expand in Syria is over.

But here is the stunning consequence of a shift in national consciousness: We might find that our caring for others, rather than killing them, would open the way for us to show compassion to our own citizens. That’s right. We could model powerful leadership for the rest of the world by treating our citizens in the most positive ways possible. We could say to the world, the Real Red Line for America is how we treat our own citizens.

We have the power to decide that never again will an American child go to bed, night after night hungry and scared. Never again will such a large percentage of our citizens live in decay and depression because our government refuses to repair existing infra-structures and aid broken cities. We could create new transportation, free energy sources, educational systems and other civic projects that would create jobs for our citizens and hope for the future. We could declare an end to the drug war, throw open the for-profit prison doors where more than 1.5 million people are serving time for having small amounts of street drugs that are used regularly by people who will not be arrested because they are white and affluent. We could stop our government treating each of us as potential terrorist threats and subjecting us to constant surveillance and fear-based control of our daily lives.

Right now we could lead the way to a real New American Century that would show the world that wars over carbon-based energy are a thing of the past, and real enlightened self-interest is the way of this millennium.

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Comments

  1. George Armstrong says:

    My mind is clear about what you write Chuck. I am a Princeton graduate – studied with Richard Shaull and live in New Zealand. My very public ministry took me into founding the Peace Squadron here in Auckland of small boats who eventually managed to persuade the government of the day to outlaw nuclear warship visits here. We were not popular with the warmakers. If you or anyone else would like to connect I’d be glad to hear from you.

  2. “We have the power to decide that never again will an American child go to bed, night after night hungry and scared.” I consider myself an overeducated hairdresser as I also received my M.Div. from PTS and then a Doctorate in Worship and Spirituality but I also have little time for discussion as I have been blessed with the love and light to serve over 500 families here on Hilton Head Island at my food pantry I began four years ago. My heart ached when I saw little children with empty tummy’s. Hunger Hurts! This is what I know. You can bring about change when you look deep within and not outside and make the change with the one in the mirror. If each person who said they had compassion, acted on it, the change would come forth….I don’t need to end anything, but only begin one mouth at a time…..

  3. Rev. Fred Rose says:

    I agree with our friend from New Zealand. Though I have not started an kind of peace initiative or significant ministry to address hunger, I believe what Chuck Robison is saying is the only sensible answer in the Middle East. Why are our leaders so stuck in some kind of military action? There is a “better way” and compassion is a path that reaps the greatest results for the US, the world and the refugees of the Middle East. It also happens to be the most humane way to respond to an impossible situation.