September 28, 2023


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Death by Nationalism? – UncommonThought

8 min read
Death by Nationalism? – UncommonThought

[Photo: SPLC via MR Online]

By Robert C. Koehler
Supply:  CommonWonders

Editor’s Observe

[I am running a trial of offering my Editor’s Note in an audio format. This is my first attempt.]

Do we need to have to get out of our heads and into our hearts? It looks to me that we people are getting some really serious psychological issues and that we need to action back again, choose a breath, and hear a moment. Hear to our breath, the breath of the human being future to us, the breath of the Earth in the sigh of the wind.

The truth of the matter is that “over there” has under no circumstances been that far absent and the impacts of gatherings are often global – like a stone thrown into a lake. We can see the ripples, but even after we just cannot see them with the bare eye they journey onward till they hit an impediment (the shore, a rock, a floating log) and then they improve course. But there are also the unseen penalties of that stone – the fish hit in the ribs from nowhere, or the growing h2o degree from the h2o displacement. I try to remember examining about the birds in Britain that ended up disrupted by the nuclear checks in the Pacific. It was presumed that the huge air displacement of the explosions that ended up 1000’s of miles away was the bring about of their distress. The identical is genuine of whales reacting to ocean explosions.

So animals react to these items. Major deal. It has absolutely nothing to do with us. Actually? What about the modifications we simply cannot see, like the problems staying accomplished at the mobile level? There is now nuclear particles (with many degrees of radioactivity) all over the place on our dwelling (and in it). Tactical nukes still disperse nuclear content, and nuclear crops nevertheless pose a worldwide risk i.e. the Fukushima plant that was broken by an earthquake. The injury prompted by the broad range of loose nuclear particles is not only hidden (as in unseen) it is deliberately hidden. There are these scarce studies of environmental toxins (like radioactive elements) uncovered in polar bears – largely from their food sources. Harmful toxins contained in the course of the food items chain focus as they transfer up the chain. Just logically, what is at the best of the food items chain? Supposedly humans. That means that issues everywhere in the food items chain are in us… and have numerous consequences. Of training course, there are all forms of incentives to distract us from simple biology to the advanced as we go on the hunt for the factors we are having health issues, and why youngsters are finding ailments as soon as believed contained to (older) grown ups.

Why is it we can consider in selected points we just can’t see – like angels, God, evil spirits, and vampires – but not imagine in other issues we simply cannot see – like viruses, air air pollution, and mind-harming limited waves? And then not believe in matters that we can see like environmental destruction, and about-enhancement, or superior housing prices and the variety of people dwelling on the streets? I’d say that inquiring minds want to know, but there appear to be much less and less of those all over.

In between what we decide on not to know (or assume about) to conceptual ploys to form our perceptions and attitudes, we drop sight of factors suitable in entrance of us. Sometimes I assume we are far more conceptually constrained than we want to admit. We can cry around the reduction of just one child – or it’s possible a couple – but thousands of young children are just a human reality we can’t hold in our heads. How large can we meaningfully count? I question that most of us can grasp the prosperity held by the best 1%. What do our brains do with the simple fact that the top 1% in the U.S. held $45.9 TRILLION at the conclude of 2021? What is a trillion, or a billion, or for that subject a million? Can we actually imagine past a handful of and many? I imagine not, and so we occur up with mental shortcuts that blind us more like individuals who have worth and these who do not, and regrettably that suggests that in the long run we are all worthy of significantly less in the huge plan of points – and it appears like all the strategies are massive these times.

Robert C. Koehler

The game might be just about about.

Medea Benjamin and Nicolas J.S. Davies set it this way:

“The irresolvable problem going through Western leaders is that this is a no-acquire problem. How can they militarily defeat Russia, when it possesses 6,000 nuclear warheads and its army doctrine explicitly states that it will use them before it will take an existential military services defeat?”

Neither facet is ready to permit go of its determination: to protect, to grow, a piece of the entire earth, no subject what the expense. The game of conquest — the recreation of war, and all that arrives with it, e.g., the dehumanization of most of humanity, and the indifference to its toll on the world by itself — has been likely on for thousands of yrs. It is our “history.” Without a doubt, history is taught from war to war to war.

Wars — who wins, who loses — are the building blocks of who we are, and they have managed to take in the many counter-philosophies that crop up, these types of as religious perception in really like and interconnectedness, and transform them into allies. Appreciate thy enemy? Nah, which is foolish. Enjoy isn’t achievable till you defeat the devil. And, oh yeah, violence is morally neutral, as per St. Augustine and the “just war theory” he came up with sixteen hundred a long time in the past (as I wrote about last week). This manufactured factors so effortless for would-be conquerors.

And that philosophy has hardened into reality: We’re selection 1! Our empire is greater than yours! And humanity’s weaponry — its capacity to battle and get rid of — has sophisticated, from clubs to spears to guns to . . . uh, nukes.

Slight challenge! Nuclear weapons make clear a fact we have previously been capable to ignore: The repercussions of war and dehumanization normally, often, constantly come property. There are no “nations,” besides in our imagi-nations.

So are we stuck with all this ability we’ve aligned against ourselves in defense of a falsehood? That would seem to be the circumstance, as the war in Ukraine proceeds and escalates, pushing alone (and all of us) closer to Armageddon. A lot of the entire world is knowledgeable of the threat of this falsehood we even have a world group, the United Nations, that keeps striving to unite the globe, but it has no electrical power to pressure unity (or sanity) on the planet. The destiny of all of us appears to be in the hands of a couple leaders who truly possess nuclear weapons, and will use them if “necessary.”

And at times I concern the worst: that the only way these leaders will get rid of their electric power — to create and probably use their nukes — is for just one or numerous of them too, oh my God, start a nuclear war. Girls and gentlemen, we’re a break up-next determination away from these an incidence. Seemingly, in the wake of these a war — if human lifetime has survived and is ready to start out rebuilding civilization — sanity and a perception of worldwide wholeness could possibly locate their way to the main of the human social composition and our collective wondering, possessing no other selection, will eventually see beyond war and war planning.

Let me drop the narrative at this stage. I have no notion what’s heading to materialize, let by itself what’s going to occur “next.” I can only attain into the depths of my soul and begin praying, you may say, to each and every God on this planet. Oh Lords, let humanity grow up right before it kills alone.

And as I pray, who reveals up but the French thinker and political activist Simone Weil, who died in 1943, two decades prior to the nuclear age birthed alone, but who realized some thing was deeply wrong? And of study course, significantly was currently improper. The Nazis controlled her place. She was capable to flee France with her moms and dads, but she died at age 34, seemingly of a blend of tuberculosis and self-hunger.

But what she remaining behind in her writing is a important pearl of recognition. Is it too late? Here’s in which I drop to my knees.

“Weil,” wrote Christy Wampole in a New York Instances op-ed three many years in the past, “saw in her historical second a decline of a perception of scale, a creeping ineptitude in judgment and communication and, in the long run, a forfeiture of rational assumed. She noticed how political platforms currently being developed upon words like ‘roots’ or ‘homeland’ could use much more abstractions — like ‘the foreigner,’ ‘the immigrant,’ ‘the minority’ and ‘the refugee’ — to convert flesh-and-blood persons into targets.”

No human currently being is an abstraction! Is this where by the rebuilding commences?

And then a track started out playing in my head, in my soul. The music is “Deportee,” created and sung by Woody Guthrie 75 a long time ago, just after a plane crashed around California’s Los Gatos Canyon, killing 32 individuals — mostly Mexicans, currently being despatched back to Mexico since they were both below “illegally” or their visitor employee contracts had expired. Initially, the media discovered by identify only the genuine Americans who died (pilot, copilot, stewardess). The relaxation ended up merely deportees.

Goodbye to my Juan, goodbye, Rosalita,
Adios mis amigos, Jesus y Maria
You will not have your names when you journey the large airplane,
All they will connect with you will be “deportees.”

What does this have to do with a Doomsday Clock at 100 seconds to midnight, ongoing slaughter and nuclear powers at odds with each other in Ukraine, a earth in limitless and bloody conflict just about in all places? I have no concept.

Apart from, probably, this: If a nuclear war happens, anyone on the world is no a lot more than a deportee.


Robert C. Koehler
Robert C. Koehler

Robert Koehler, syndicated by PeaceVoice, is a Chicago award-profitable journalist and editor. His book, Courage Grows Sturdy at the Wound is obtainable. Call him at [email protected] or stop by his internet site at

Tags: dehumanization, poisonous electricity
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