Shift to a Non-Provocative Defense Posture

(This is section 20 of the World Beyond War white paper A Global Security System: An Alternative to War. Continue to preceding | following section.)

Can we imagine a posture that is defensive AND non-provocative?
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A first step toward demilitarizing security could be non-provocative defense, which is to reconceive and re-configure training, logistics, doctrine, and weaponry so that a nation’s military is seen by its neighbors to be unsuitable for offense but clearly able to mount a credible defense of its borders. It is a form of defense that rules out armed attacks against other states.

Non-provocative defense implies a truly defensive military posture. It includes radically reducing or eliminating long-range weapons such as Intercontinental Ballistic Missiles, long-range attack aircraft, carrier fleets and heavy ships, militarized drones, nuclear submarine fleets, overseas bases, and possibly tank armies. In a mature Alternative Global Security System, a militarized non-provocative defense posture would be gradually phased out as it became unnecessary.

At one time — long before anyone now alive was born — U.S. leaders tried to conceive of a truly “defensive” system of security. (More at the article on the Gadsden flag on Wikipedia. (Image: Wiki Commons)

Another defensive posture that will be necessary is a system of defense against futuristic attacks including cyber-attacks on the energy grid, power plants, communications, financial transactions and defense against dual-use technologies such as nanotechnology and robotics. Ramping up the cyber capabilities of Interpol would be a first line of defense in this case and another element of an Alternative Global Security System.note2

Also, non-provocative defense would not rule out a nation having long-range aircraft and ships configured for humanitarian relief. Shifting to non-provocative defense weakens the War System while making possible the creation of a humanitarian disaster relief force that strengthens the peace system.

(See the related post – “Debunking Old Myths about War: We go to war to ensure our defense”)

(Continue to preceding | following section.)

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2. Interpol is the International Criminal Police Organization, set up in 1923, as an NGO facilitating international police cooperation.(return to main article)

2 Responses

  1. The only way the world will be without war is by ending the military industrial complex in the usa, good luck with that. What are you people smoking.

  2. Well one big question is whether this requires a totally non-military posture, or just a truly defensive one. The story of the Swiss military — armed to the teeth, but totally defensive — is a good example for discussion. John McPhee’s “La Place de la Concorde Suisse” ( )is a masterpiece on this subject, and there’s good discussion here:

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