Problems with a ‘Started War’

Excerpt from the book, ‘Unchecked, They’ll Kill Us All’

Unlike a ‘Prevented War,’ one that is permitted to start induces factors that make it extremely difficult to stop. A ‘Started War,’ being a short-term measure for antagonistic Political leaders to release their pent-up frustration or anger against one another, has some similarities to a confrontation between any two ordinary opponents who fight or injure one another. The cooling-down period that usually follows is always too late, as the deaths and injuries already sustained cannot be erased. This period is accompanied by regrets, especially if emotional and physical injuries had occurred, or if a financial or custodial penalty is imposed for the violent actions.

However, Political leaders are not directly involved during the release stage of their frustration on an opponent. Their frustration is transmitted onto their followers, who settle their leaders’ quarrels well away from their physical presence. The Political leader’s safety being secured, the followers are exposed to the consequences of the ensuing conflict and loss of their lives, on their leader’s behalf.

A vicious cycle that involves too many other people gets unleashed during the Political leaders’ wars. This starts initially with the localized small-scale violence that elicits a reciprocal violence. Then, further violence sets in, which becomes exacerbated by emotions of hatred and dislike for the perceived enemy. This makes even further violence more malicious, savage, and increasingly disproportionate in nature.

The life of this vicious cycle is now maintained directly by the people who have been deployed by their Political leaders into the fronts of hostilities and into the path of danger. At the very least, because of their need to ensure their personal safety while in the midst of a ‘Started War,’ they develop their own emotions of hatred for the perceived enemy, few of whom they will ever see or come into contact with. With this newly personalized emotion of hatred, fuelled by the spirit of patriotic fervor, as encouraged by their Political leaders, it becomes extremely difficult to solve the problem of a ‘Started War.’ The hostilities may later cease, but the war may never end in the minds of many of those who develop such emotions.

Meanwhile, the Political leader becomes implanted in their safeareas with even more enhanced state-sponsored protection. Those areas then assume new names such as ‘The War Situation Room’ or ‘Command and Control Center.’

The different battles of the war develop a life and history of their own. Myths and legends of war are created of some wartime personalities and battlefield commanders. Lives are lost—many, many lives. Devastation is wrought on the affected communities and many people are never able to rebuild their lives again. At this stage, some of the Political leaders’ pent-up anger may have already been let out. The ensuing devastation, or their regret at allowing the destruction to start, may induce some futile peace moves between them. However, a ‘Started War’ situation is so difficult to control or stop. The pent-up anger no longer belongs only to them, but is now shared by their soldiers and community and all who would suffer any loss or pain because of their war.

The armed conflict will end in one of three ways. If victorious, the Political leader’s position is enhanced. His reputation skyrockets and he is idolized as a great wartime leader. He decides on how the booty of the war is shared, the post-war punishment for his vanquished enemy, and helps determine how the history of that war will be written. The war-related atrocities of the victorious side would, as much as possible, be glossed over, and attempts made to blacken any justification there was for the war for the vanquished side.

However, the dead on the victorious side are also losers because they will never have the opportunity of sharing in any war loot. Most of them were too young, and may not even have had the privilege of starting their own families. With their genetic imprints and inheritance gone, soon, also, their memories may be lost forever. In the long term, even the supposed gains of the victorious Political leader dissipate or are made less relevant by post-war events.

The vanquished Political leader faces humiliation at the hands of his victorious opponent. Many of them commit suicide. In some instances he flees for personal protection from his conquered community or country to another that is under the control of one of his political friends. Others are captured alive and made to face a War Crimes Tribunal, which may be organized by their victorious opponent. After this formality, many often end up staying in prison for the rest of their lives or are executed. The defeated leader is forced from his power base and loses the war-creating ability of the Unwritten Law for Wars. In a few instances, it is in the interest of the victorious Political leader to leave his defeated opponent in power, but with much reduced authority, and without the ability to start wars.

The community of a Political leader who loses a war will also suffer for a long time. Their future private efforts at sustaining their livelihoods could be converted into war armistices by the victorious Political leader and his people. The victorious people may rape their women indiscriminately, in some instances en masse. Some of their pregnant women would not be spared the ordeal; afterwards, some have their wombs ripped open and the unborn fetuses tossed with the mothers’ bodies as garbage by the footpaths. Their war widows and orphans suffer and their soldiers, maimed and disabled during the war, are not looked after.

The surviving soldiers on the vanquished side, who performed gallantly during the war, have none of those ceremonies where the brightly colored baubles are pinned onto their shirts to indicate their bravery, as was described on page 100. Age-old values and morals of their society get disrupted and attempts may be made to substitute even their basic culture with that of the victorious group.

The war may end in a stalemate. Both groups of Political leaders will then seek the meditative efforts of another Political leader who is acquainted to them, but not directly involved in the particular war. After dissipating their mutual anger to a stalemate, they now wish for any meditative effort, which, if employed in the first place, would have saved the lives of their compatriots and community from the devastation of the stalemated war. They will then accept the results, sometimes any result, of mediation. Each will then sell the results of that mediation to their respective communities as a victory. Their dead in the war, however, remain the eternal losers.

The effect of a ‘Started War’ spreads within the mind of the people, as would a rapidly growing cancer inside a body. However, with effective preventive measures, the cancer cannot develop. The possible cancer of a ‘Started War’ similarly becomes irrelevant if prevented. A ‘Prevented War’ is easier to contain, as only the few potential antagonistic Political leaders need to be identified, reached, and managed. With a ‘Started War,’ too many people become individually affected, each developing feelings and a personal agenda for revenge. Its control consequently becomes infinitely more difficult.

It is, therefore, far more beneficial for any community to have a potential war prevented than to allow anyone to organize one for them.

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