Peace and Disarmament
On May 15th, 15.000 youths walked in solidarity to express their civic involvement in the streets of Montreal, Canada. This event was organized by Club 2/3, the youth division of Oxfam Quebec. These young people walked in support of the populations in the poorest countries and of environmental issues. They are aware that individual and collective actions have a positive impact on their future and on future generations.
Several important objections have come in, from knowledgeable and experienced observers, to my last column arguing that pronouncing oneself in favour of human rights should predicate opposition to war. One is from Professor George Kent of the University of Hawaii, who says:
*“I think it is important not to mix outrage at particular incidents within wars with opposition to war as such. The two call for quite different strategies.
Prospects for dealing with particular violations of humanitarian and human rights law seem better than prospects for banishing war altogether. New institutional arrangements are needed to ensure accountability for those violations. Having the perpetrators chant, ‘We are investigating’ is not good enough”*.