About Peace…

John Lennon and Yoko Ono had it right, “War Is Over (If You Want It)”. Peace can only be achieved through peace; wars cannot bring peace. We enjoyed this Grammy Award performance of Imagine, with Herbie Hancock, Jeff Beck, India.Arie, Seal, Pink, and others.

Join us at 11:00 a.m. on Saturday, August 6, 2011, at the intersection of Routes 212 and 375 in Woodstock, NY, for our third annual Woodstock International Walk for World Peace. We will be joined by The World Peace Prayer Society once again, for the procession of flags through town to Comeau Field, where we will hold the Flag Ceremony, followed by musical and other entertainments. Denise Jordan Finley and Daniel Pagdon have agreed to perform, as has James Cannings; other speakers and performers are to be announced. We look forward to seeing you come together to affirm our profound wishes for peace throughout the world.

We need a new approach if we are to achieve lasting peace throughout the world, an approach that focuses on human security—everyone needs access to clean water, adequate food, safety from violence, education, housing, and freedom of religion, if we are to build a more peaceful world. That is the basic concept behind Shannon D. Beebe’s and Mary Kaldor’s book, The Ultimate Weapon is No Weapon, which outlines a framework for this to happen. They propose that our military be re-purposed to assist in bringing about a more peaceful world. Lieutenant Colonel Shannon D. Beebe is a West Point graduate, and Senior Africa Analyst, Office of United States Army Deputy Chief of Staff, Intelligence; and Mary Kaldor is a professor of political science and director of the Centre for Global Governance at the London School of Economics and Political Science. Their words have weight and merit, and I urge you all to read this most worthwhile book.

Thomas Barnett makes many of the same points in this interesting TED talk. While I object to his insistence upon the initial use of overwhelming force, many of his other ideas are worth serious thought. His book, The Pentagon’s New Map: War and Peace in the Twenty-First Century, contains many of the same ideas as Beebe’s and Kaldor’s book. While I cannot completely disagree with his basic concept of the “functioning core” of nations, it is worth noting that there is much about this “functioning core” that is dysfunctional at best, as attested to by the millions of currently unemployed in the so-called “developed world”. We can do better here, too.

Join us, to show your most profound hopes are for peace.

The above views are my own, and do not necessarily reflect those of The Woodstock Council for World Peace.

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