Those who read my last post might be inclined to think I’m an out-of-touch pacifist. Make no mistake, I am not. Not by a long shot.
In fact, the war cult isn’t as dangerous as the peace cult.
We have been blessed by freedom and prosperity. Blessed to the point where a philosophy of total peace, in terms of both domestic and international policy, has not only possible to espouse without being thought of as a complete lunatic. What’s more, it seems that there is a trend towards the popularization of this pacifism. A dangerous trend, I believe.
In foreign policy, I am by no means a warmonger. I believe in forceful action only in stark instances of defense. However, there is a very thin, though critically important, line between non-interventionism and isolationism. Even though in most instances prudent defense is self-defense, in some cases it involves the defense of others. United we are strong, and can defend against any threat.
The stark reality of war is this: when there is a will and a way, there is a war. If a country deems it to be worth the cost to go to war against another, it will do so. If a country is able and willing to crush and conquer a weaker one, it will. And another. And another, until it has either exhausted all means of conquest, or until there are no free countries left. If, however, attacking a nation results in war with a united coalition of nations, the chances that an assault will be deemed profitable go down exponentially. Cognizant of this fact, nations throughout the last millennium have banded together to the threat of a stronger nation going on a kingdom-stomping spree.
The same applies at an individual level. If someone wants to be violent, and they deem worth the trouble whatever they think will happen to them as a result, then they will be violent. Sometimes, this means that violence must be met with violence. An unwillingness to use violence can result in more damage being done before the aggression is stopped. This unwillingness can only lead to more violence.
How did this idea of unrealistic pacifism get started? In a word: prosperity. In much of the world today, for the first time in history, the vast majority of people die of natural causes. Death and violence have all but disappeared from the experience of the modern citizen. So much progress has been made in making the world a better place that we tend to forget that there is still darkness. Often we hesitate to meet force with force because we are squeamish about the idea of propagating destruction. It is this very hesitation that allows violence (by those who don’t share our aversion) to continue.
The fact is, this is still a dark, nasty world. We all die, and many of us would kill and destroy if given the chance. Sometimes we have to be prepared to use violence in order to stop even more violence from happening. So bury your squeamishness, there’s something worse than violence: violence visited upon the innocent. Only a sick, twisted, selfish person could feel good about not getting his hands dirty by using violence to defend an innocent person. There will be blood regardless. It is only a question of whose blood will be on our hands. Would we rather be responsible for the harm of an innocent person, or the harm of a disturbed individual, the very person who would begin the cycle of violence by harming the aforementioned innocent?
Make no mistake, there is blood on the altar of the peace cult. Innocent blood.