Sunday, March 16, 2003


My friend Phil forwarded this, which came from his friend at Rust and Associates. It certainly makes one look at the current world situation in a different way.

Dr. Robert Muller, 80 years old, is the former assistant secretary general of the United Nations, now Chancellor emeritus of the University of Peace in Costa Rica. He was one of the people who witnessed the founding of the U.N. and has worked in support of or inside the U.N. ever since. This is a synopsis of his remarks at a recent U.N. event.

I'm so honored to to be alive at such a miraculous time in history, he said. I'm so moved by what's going on in our world today. Never before in the history of the world has there been a global, visible, public, viable, open dialogue and conversation about the very legitimacy of war.

The whole world is in now having this critical and historic dialogue - listening to all kinds of points of view and positions about going to war or not going to war. In a huge global public conversation the world is asking - "Is war legitimate? Is it illegitimate? Is there enough evidence to warrant an attack? Is there not enough evidence to warrant an attack? What will be the consequences? The costs? What will happen after a war? How will this set off other conflicts? What might be peaceful alternatives? What kind of negotiations are we not thinking of? What are the real intentions for declaring war?"

All of this,
he noted, is taking place in the context of the United Nations Security Council, the body that was established in 1949 for exactly this purpose. He pointed out that it has taken us more than fifty years to realize that function, the real function of the U.N. And at this moment in history - the United Nations is at the center of the stage. It is the place where these conversations are happening, and it has become in these last months and weeks, the most powerful governing body on earth, the most powerful container for the world's effort to wage peace rather than war. Dr. Muller was almost in tears in recognition of the fulfillment of this dream.

We are not at war, he kept saying. We, the world community, are WAGING peace. It is difficult, hard work. It is constant and we must not let up. It is working and it is an historic milestone of immense proportions. It has never happened before - never in human history - and it is happening now - every day, every hour - waging peace through a global conversation. He pointed out that the conversation questioning the validity of going to war has gone on for hours, days, weeks, months and now more than a year, and it may go on and on. We're in peacetime,he kept saying. Yes, troops are being moved. Yes, warheads are being lined up. Yes, the aggressor is angry and upset and spending a billion dollars a day preparing to attack. But not one shot has been fired. Not one life has been lost. There is no war. It's all a conversation.

In the process,
he pointed out, new alliances are being formed. Russia and China on the same side of an issue is unprecedented. France and Germany working together to wake up the world to a new way of seeing the situation. The largest peace demonstrations in the history of the world are taking place - and we are not at war! Most peace demonstrations in recent history took place when a war was already waging, sometimes for years, as in the case of Vietnam.

"So this,"
he said, "is a miracle. This is what "waging peace " looks like.

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