With these tragic events occurring in France on the heels of November 11th, Remembrance Day in Canada, Veterans Day in the US, and the recent attack in San Bernardino in the USA, what must we draw in response? Reflection first.
To begin, this is not 9/11. Secondly, we must disavow the "War on Terrorism" policy of action that has constituted such a catastrophic failure.
As we (Canada, USA, France, England, most national states) have laws on the books to go after “criminals,” this should be the method of response.
And, to stop this cycling of reactivity by nations to these violent acts perpetrated by individuals, it requires that we “reframe” and view these men and women as “rogue” supporters of organizations such as ISIS, if we are going to be successful at putting policies in place for reducing reactivity lest it spin out of control and initiate more violence. It will only be small groups or individuals sent to disrupt and cause terror and fear in Western countries, so we would do well to not make this a “War” but to use the pre-existing criminal codes and pursue the criminals who commit these crimes.
It is clear that the policies of US/western hegemony, especially US, France and Britain, over the past 100 plus years in the Middle East and North Africa has meant despair for the peoples of these regions and has attracted rage. Knowing that attacks will now likely occur in the USA, France and perhaps Belgium and elsewhere in the West we must cooperate to prevent disastrous consequences.
1. We must now respond in Western Countries to reduce the reactivity we experience and have a role in causing. We must disavow the War on Terror. We must be willing to finally take corrective action (in the name of a slightly veiled “apology” if necessary) for what we have done over the last 100 years to these countries. With this is in mind, without fail, our leaders must then put in place policies for community projects which promote reflection, restoration. We can and must rework our worlds, through Policies of Generosity. We can restructure Remembrance Day and Veterans' Day to help our nations, in a spirit of deep reflection and reverence for life.
This is why, this past November 11th, 2015, two days before the attacks in France, we called on military veterans groups in the US and Canada to openly, publicly turn away from participation and support for the “Military Industrial Complex (term coined by US President Dwight D. Eisenhower in1960)” and instead participate in a peoples' movement to embrace the renaming of November 11th from “Veterans Day” in the USA to “Remembrance Day,” as was done in Canada.
And it is time to reshape Remembrance Day observances, allowing a new paradigm of reflection and emotional healing. As such, we would create space for nations, including soldiers and civilians, to have space and time set aside for processing distressing emotional memories. Excellent therapeutic listening models are available to promote emotional safety and healing from the traumas of war inflicted on men and women everywhere.
Instead of going directly to the “honoring-mode” of November 11th that we see today, we could actually and finally provide the needed “space in time” for deep reflection and to heal emotionally from the unhealed wounds and terror of war. We can use the skills that are now available by exceptional facilitators found in countries around the world to find non-violent solutions to our differences.
To quote from 2006 OWHR Peace Conference, Keynote by US Senator and 1972 US Democratic Presidential Candidate, George McGovern, “I’m sick and tired of old men dreaming up wars in which young men do the dying.”
OWHR Institute supports the end of catastrophic policies of US, British and French “empire” building and hegemonic policy over the Middle East and North Africa.
Instead we support the analysis for truly “independent” Arab and North African countries. An excellent analysis has been prepared and presented by the progressive, former US diplomat, professor Hillary Mann Leverett and her husband, former US diplomat, Professor, Flynt Mann Leverett, in their book “Going to Tehran: Why America Must Accept the Islamic Republic of Iran” and in their public presentations. The Leverett’s present policies of generosity, and policies that will likely reduce the level of growing reactivity between nations.
We recommend you read the OWHR Institute’s Vision and Mission Statement and join us to prepare Policies of Generosity, including a Global Marshall Plan and an Environmental and Social Responsibility Charter for Canada and our world. We work hand in hand with the Network of Spiritual Progressives, to promote a “New Bottom Line” set of policies and perspective. This Now Bottom Line set of policies will put our world on track for healing and reminds us that each human being is the embodiment of the sacred.