Start New Year’s Resolution #1 reading The Internationalists by Yale Professors Oona A. Hathaway and Scott J. Shapiro. This intriguing, historical narrative of humanity’s taste/distaste for war describes a profound global transition from the 17th century’s Old World Order, which persisted until mid-20th century to today’s fragile New World Order born on August 27, 1928. The Internationalists will also nurture a guarded optimism regarding prospects for present global peace and security under this fragile New World Order. However, for those of you familiar with the 2020 A Year Without War Mission and the significance of the 1928 Peace Pact or Kellogg-Briand Pact as a pillar of our 2020 AYWW Mission, your optimism will be further increased.
According to The Internationalists, this Peace Pact was a singularly significant catalyst in the evolution to this New World Order. The Peace Pact, which formally outlawed war as of August 27, 1928, was signed by over 60 of the leading nations at that time. While no nation has since rescinded the Peace Pact, even to this day, nearly all of the signatories were at war within a decade of their 1928 signing. So where’s the optimism? Wasn’t this Peace Pact a failure? Paper can’t stop bullets! And humans will never fly, small pox is just part of nature and there has always been slavery. History is subtle, complicated and sometimes glacial in its movement.
With the conflagration of World War II, along with the many war-like aggressions during the 1930’s, as well as those following WW II, it has been popularly claimed that war cannot be effectively dealt with by aspiration and paper. The Internationalists makes the case that the abolition of war requires fortitude and commitment that must range over generations to finally achieve success and even then that success can be quite subtle. Long, entrenched human practices do not change easily. In the case of the long, entrenched practice of U.S. slavery, President Lincoln described this slow change process elegantly, mournfully and ruefully, “Four score and seven years ago our Fathers brought forth on this continent a new nation, conceived in liberty and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal.”
In Lincoln’s time, it had been nearly a century since that new nation had been conceived based upon a new idea and with a new dedication. However, when in 1863 President Lincoln gave his Gettysburg Address, he faced a great dark, barrier confronting this nearly century old nation in slow change to its long entrenched practice of slavery. Lincoln continued his Gettysburg Address, “We are now in engaged in a great civil war testing whether that nation or any nation so conceived and dedicated can long endure.” Today, over a hundred and fifty years since the end of that horrific civil war, we know the price of that struggle to secure a nation conceived in liberty and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal. Legally sanctioned slavery was outlawed but its shadowy pestilence, racism, is yet with us seven score and thirteen years since the passage of the 13th Amendment.
In The Internationalists, you will discover how our New World Order has subtly, but positively affected our global, cultural milieu in terms of less interstate war, increased economic thriving but also in making this time ripe for such movements as 2020 A Year Without War. Symbiotically, 2020 AYWW plays a significant role in further solidifying our New World Order’s laws and principles while formally jettisoning those of the Old World Order.
Divided into three primary parts, The Internationalists gives a scholarly account of our Old World Order, in which nations used war as a primary tool in the creation and implementation of national policy. In the early 20th century, the Outlawry of War movement was born as a reaction to the industrial slaughter of World War 1. As the Outlawry Movement argued, having rules governing war was similar to having rules governing child torture or rape. We do not have rules governing such behavior. Some behaviors are categorically wrong and are to be simply outlawed. War is simply to be outlawed. The Outlawry Movement finally secured the passage of the Kellogg-Briand Pact, The Peace Pact, of 1928. The global signing of this Pact marked the start of the Transformation Period in the mid 20th century that has led to our present, fragile, yet evolving New World Order.
French Foreign Minister, Astride Briand stated, four score and ten years ago, on that August day in 1928 at the signing of the Kellogg-Briand Pact, “Peace is proclaimed: that is well, that is much. But it still remains necessary to organize it. That is to be the work of tomorrow.” We live in Briand’s tomorrow. Now is the time that humanity’s collective voice be heard to take another solid step on our collective path to end war. It is now time for a one-year U.N. global truce. It is now time for 2020 A Year Without War.
As professors Hathaway and Shapiro acknowledge, “… this book was the story not only of the Internationalists and the world they hoped to create but also of the world that our children, now on the cusp of high school and college, will inherit.” This is our present moment for action. Please come to the 2020 AYWW website and Speak to Power. Cut and paste this blog and send it to President Trump, U.S U.N. Ambassador Haley, as well as your Congressional Representatives. All of their emails are there ready for your action.
Paraphrasing President Lincoln, “Four score and ten years ago, our fathers brought forth upon this planet a new world order conceived in peace and dedicated to the proposition that war is illegal. We are now engaged in a great global debate testing whether that new world order or any new world order so conceived and dedicated can long endure.” YOU MUST TAKE A STAND!
2018 - New Year’s Resolution #2: Dedicate 15 minutes a week to support 2020 AYWW and Speak to Power. Let the world know where you stand in this great battle of ideas. JOIN, RECRUIT, EDUCATE!