On Fisk: Preventing future wars – Erasing colonial borders

Learn more about the Sykes-Picot Agreement on Wikipedia

Learn more about the Sykes-Picot Agreement on Wikipedia

Last November in The Indepependent, esteemed journalist Robert Fisk concluded that traditional wars waged in foreign countries, far from family and friends safe at home, are no longer possible, as proven by domestic terrorist attacks. Read the full article here.

He blames our previous wars for creating artificial boundaries and institutions considered worthless or harmful by those subjugated.  And Fisk suggests that we should replace war with judicial responses: arrest, court, prison sentences and the opportunity for rehabilitation for those who commit crimes against humanity.

Don’t have time to read the full article? Here is the last paragraph:

“We are always declaring ourselves “at war”. We are told to be merciless. We must invade “their” territory to stop them invading ours. But the days are long gone when we can have foreign adventures and expect to be safe at home. New York, Washington, Madrid, London, Paris all tell us that. Perhaps if we spoke more of “justice” – courts, legal process for killers, however morally repugnant they may be, sentences, prisons, redemption for those who may retrieve their lost souls from the Isis midden – we would be a little safer in our sceptered continent. There should be justice not just for ourselves or our enemies, but for the peoples of the Middle East who have suffered this past century from the theatre of dictatorships and cardboard institutions we created for them – and which have helped Isis to thrive.”

Discussion questions:

Can you imagine the UN playing a role in redrawing colonial boarders in an effort to prevent future conflict? Does this fit your vision of what the UN should be doing?

What do you think if Fisk’s envisioned judicial process for those who perpetuate conflict?