SHIFT: The Beginning of War, The Ending of War

 by Judith Hand

Summary and Notes made by

Russ Faure-Brac



1)    This is a summary of Part II – How We Can End War

2)    Notes highlighted in red refer to the sections of my book Transition to Peace that are equivalent to Judith’s cornerstones.

Chapter 10 – Cornerstones of a Campaign to End War

  1. Embrace the Goal (Visualize Peace, pg. 92)
  • Spread the knowledge that ending war is possible in such a way that people will vote, donate money and time, pay taxes, possibly risk jail, prison or their life to end it.
  1. Provide Security and Order (Peace Principles, pg. 41)
  • Curtail the right of the state to make war, meaning no national military forces. Legal coercive power should be vested in some kind of peace force responsible to a global authority like the UN (to be revamped and strengthened, not replaced)
  • Nations working to end war need to protect their borders, secure their infrastructure, maintain internal social order, and initially maintain sufficient military force to defend against any entity considering a war that would destabilize the global community.
  • Stop spending on unworkable systems like Star Wars, unnecessary systems like the US Marine Expeditionary Fighting Vehicle (EFV) and exotic weapons like robot warriors.
  • Provide sufficient [humanitarian] aid to countries engaged in war so that their dictators or warlords cannot refuse it (the greater the aid the harder it is to refuse).
  • Tax dollars for defense should be matched by funding for State Department programs for aid and educational programs that advance peace.
  • Create Departments of Peace with the same funding and status as War (Defense) Departments (Create a Department of Peace, pg. 45).
  • Starve the war machine by putting out of office politicians who represent the interests of defense contractors and boycott those companies.
  1. Ensure Essential Resources (Conduct a Global Marshall Plan, pg. 47)
  • When people don’t have the basic needs of food, water and shelter, they will do whatever they can, including fighting, to acquire them.
  • We evolved in an “empty world.” We are now confronted with a radically altered “full world.”
  • Rather than massive globalized economy, people are now focusing on the importance of self-reliance (the Transition movement, pg. 72).
  • Global climate change critical to having access to essential resources. If we do nothing, we will face the collapse of order in the face of economic, social and physical chaos. Or perhaps it will bring out the best of us as we survive through cooperation instead of fighting.
  • We cannot continue to produce more humans with longer life spans. To end wars our numbers must be kept in balance with our natural resources.
  • It is critical to our campaign to recognize that happy people are reluctant to go to war themselves or to send loves ones into battle. To end war permanently, we must assure that essential resources, not massive wealth, reach all the world’s citizens in ways that foster a middle class. (implying the need for something like a Global Marshall Plan)
  1. Promote Nonviolent Conflict Resolution (Nonviolence, pg. 25)
  • Conflict is an expression of the aggressive component of our biology. We need our aggressive drive but it doesn’t need to drive us to war.
  • Cultural norms can change, such as slavery, burning at the stake and stoning. Nothing prevents us from changing if we choose.
  • The most stability-producing strategy over the long haul is called “Tit-for-tat with forgiveness” in which players:
    • Use some form of win-win solution whenever possible
    • Deliver quick punishment to offenders
    • Forgive when offenders shape up
    • We need to make heroes of and celebrate nonviolent people like Mel Duncan and David Hartsough, Jody Williams and the organizers of Ground Zero.
  1. Spread Mature Liberal Democracy (Possible Change Paths, pg. 80; Redefine Success and Happiness – Point 5, pg. 90; Reasons for Optimism, pg. 95)
  • Democracy diffuses power; therefore spreading democracy contributes to a world without war.
  • A Liberal Democracy is needed, including a rule of law protected by a constitution, independent and impartial courts, separation of church and state, equality for all under the law, freedom of speech, protection of property rights and equal participation of women in governing bodies.
  • Non-democracies need not change. They can be allies as long as their leadership finds that peace will maintain their hold on power.
  • A united global nonviolent peace system can use the carrots of trade and aid and the sticks of a global peace force, boycotts and sanctions to make war undesirable.
  1. Empower Women (Role of Gender, pg. 74)
  • The power of democracies to rein in hyper-alpha men would be greatly strengthened by addition of many women as decision-makers.
  • Male/female partnership is necessary because men are willing to embrace change and women prefer to avoid social instability. We’ll need the kick-ass spirit that is characteristic of men tempered by the let’s-all-get-along spirit more characteristic of women.
  1. Foster Connectedness (Develop Community, pg. 91)
  • Connectedness to family, community and the planet is the bedrock of long-term social stability.
  • Happy and satisfied men and women aren’t inclined to become terrorists.
  • When a war has ended, future stability depends on healing and reconciliation.
  • A religion facilitates connectedness when it teaches that war against another group is never to be sanctioned.
  • A connection with nature can also bring happiness.
  1. Shift Our Economies (Reduce Defense Spending, pg. 58)
  • Gross National Happiness is a good measure of human well-being.
  • A shift in economic priorities away from defense creates a win/win outcome because people work in positive ways and entrepreneurs make profits on constructive projects, where possible on war-ending projects.
  • The goal is not to put anyone out of business, but the war industry needs to retool.
  • For all but the war industry, war is generally bad for business. Receptive international corporations can become major allies for peace.
  1. Enlist Young Men (Create a Peace Force, pg. 49; The Allure of Violence, pg. 84)
  • A future without war will still provide a satisfactory role for manhood that does not depend on killing other people. We still have a need for law enforcement, emergency rescue personnel and the challenges of exploration. We can keep our young men occupied through policing and required or voluntary public service after high school. Make public service extremely attractive and “cool.”

Chapter 11 – Hope

  1. There are reasons for hope:
  • There are sophisticated societies that resisted the lure of war.
  • Our time in history is poised to make another massive cultural shift, one that leaves war behind.
  • There are historical and current examples of rapid social transformation.
  1. The Minoan culture on the island of Crete had been nonviolent and non-warring because they had:
  • Protection from aggressors, being an island
  • Resources that enabled self-sufficiency
  • A legitimate, strong central authority
  • An ethos of nonviolence
  • Strong female influence
  • Population density that did not exceed resource availability
  1. Two other sophisticated ancient cultures, the Caral of Peru and Harappa of the Indus Valley, may have been similar to the Minoans in avoiding war.
  1. Norwegians are transitioning from a history as a war culture (the Vikings). Today there are in an ongoing natural experiment of rejecting violence as a way to resolve disputes.
  1. Our time in history is poised for great change built on six events that began roughly 700 years ago:
  • The Renaissance and Reformation
  • Advent of the Modern Scientific Method
  • Return to Democratic/Republican Government
  • Women Securing the Right to Vote
  • Women Gaining Access to Reliable Family Planning
  • Advent of the Internet
  1. We have a narrow window of opportunity to end war given the ominous threats that could derail our efforts at peace.
  1. Current examples of change:
  • There is a growing sense that change is needed and that war is obsolete.
  • An increasing number of men recognize the importance of women.
  • The status and influence of women in increasing globally.

Chapter 12 – Pulling Elements of the Plan Together

  1. It’s time to bury the “just war” concept.
  1. We need to be realistic about the barriers to success, the five major ones being:
  • The widespread belief that ending war is impossible
  • The money that is made in war
  • The glory of war
  • Failure to acknowledge the biological roots of war
  • Underestimating the critical importance of women to social stability
  1. Ending war requires both constructive and obstructive programs. Constructive programs are the good works of people to prepare for the transformed future. Obstructive programs such as nonviolent civil disobedience or direct action are needed for a rapid shift.
  2. All elements of constructive and obstructive programs are needed to develop a plan to engineer the demise of war. The four key components of her proposed plan called FACE (For All Children Everywhere) are:
  • A shared goal
  • A clear unifying strategy such the use of nonviolent struggle with its hundreds of successful tactics
  • A mechanism for leadership and coordination such as the “massively distributed collaboration” used successfully by the International Campaign to Ban Landmines (ICBL):
    • Joining requires no dues
    • Members perform whatever work best suits them
    • There is no bureaucratic top-down structure
    • The central coordinating committee is relatively small: a few paid staff and volunteers
    • A launch and follow-up plan so that the world would sense a mighty, united entity determined to end war
  1. FACE would apply pressure to the war machine’s weakest points and serve as a hub, an ongoing basis of cohesion and momentum. The target goals would be:
  • Achievable
  • Move the campaign significantly forward and
  • Garner the most possible global attention.
  1. FACE would assess the movement’s progress, celebrate successes and provide a network so that efforts of all work synergistically.
  1. Examples of some possible starting points, ongoing efforts, possible future issues and longer-term objectives:
  • Pressure the UN to set up an ending-war think tank
  • Block any attempt to put offensive weapons in space
  • Demand the dismantling of all nuclear arsenals
  • Encourage unilateral demilitarization
  • Put an end to use of drones as offensive, killing weapons
  • Put selling arms across borders out of business
  • Pressure the UN to declare that war for any reason is illegal
  1. Rather than mobilize men as the majority front line participants, deploy women as the primary protestors. Men who enforce the system are then facing and threatening their mothers, grandmothers, sisters and daughters.
  1. Four keys to avoid backsliding into war
  • Pick leaders wisely (watch out for warmongers)
  • Pick your society’s philosophy or religion wisely
  • Have gender equity in governing
  • Attend to all cornerstones

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