War and Peace
Aggression is defined to be a mechanism that is characterized by use of force or display. The destructive type of aggression is called ‘war’ and it takes the advantage of cultural differences that exist in Animal Kingdom specifically the man, causing them to have different opinions leading to rise of conflicts. It is not usually clear or evident that there is going to be a war in the future but the truth of the matter remains that people will continue fighting no matter what. There is a strong argument in favor of the thesis that war is unavoidable and that peace is not permanent. This has been argued by different authors who insist that war has been in existence for a long time and that it has also speeded the evolution process of man. This can be true or untrue statement basing the facts on how different authors view the topic of war and peace in the world as a whole. The great wars would still have happened even if individual conflicts could be avoided (Kelly, 2000). World War I is observed to have happened despite Gavrilo Princip killing Archduke Franz Ferdinand, because it is stated that the war had already been planned for by the Germans who expected a conflict to arise with the Europe since 1890’s. Kelly (2000), further notes that if an agreement would have ensued between the two nations in time maybe World War II could have been avoided. Kelly (2000), however says that sometimes wars are just and righteous and there happenings occur with a main reason that could not have been avoided.
Kant and Smith (2005), on their explanation about perpetual peace, stated that no state whether small or large was under the influence of another state. He said that all nations had a right to protect its own citizens, rule them or even to dispose them but not to be ruled by a different state. Kant and Smith (2005), stressed that the use of standing armies incited other states to also undertake precaution measures in future concerning war matters. In is his view, training of standing armies should be discouraged because he saw them as the initiators of war and at the same time they were the ones who were used to stop the same war again. He compared them to machines which are just there to be used at any time of request and this degraded human beings.
Kant and Smith (2005), describes perpetual peace to be a condition where a state tries to maintain a stable and permanent peace situation in a specific area usually in their sphere of influence. Nothing can be said concerning the probability of a nation or empire to ensure world peace but efforts have been made by some major empires to ensure peace in their territories. Examples of such empires include the British Empire and the roman empires. The instability of the ruling empires has made it impossible for their states to enjoy a permanent state of peace over a long period of time. Kant and Smith (2005), further noted that some religions have formed projects to aid them achieve their future desires of perpetual peace. He indicates that people will continue fighting no matter what and so it becomes so hard for historians to predict about the future events in advance. All this is because of differences that exist in individuals culture, values, race and beliefs.
Hitler (2003), in his quest to find what causes wars among individuals insisted that the stronger community should not mingle or intermarry with the weakling in the community because this would result to individuals who are medium thus lowering the capability of the strong ones. This view was not appreciated by those who were weakling as they saw it to be ‘cruel’ and in human. Hitler (2003), further indicated that all those who live in this world should be in a position to fight for what they want and those who were not willing to fight then they did not deserve to live. Hitler in his rule did not allow chance of reproduction take place naturally; he instead was focused on the strong and desirable traits only and disregarded those who had physical impairments.
Hitler (2003), in his reign, exterminated around 270, 000 people he termed as ‘a burden and un useful in the society’. He killed those who were aged, senile, defective children, the mentally disturbed and those who had undesirable traits such as bed wetting and deformities on the head or ears. Hitler (2003), in his actions argued that interbreeding between the genetically inferior (that is the Jews and the blacks) and the genetically superior Aryan clan would disrupt the desirable genes in the society which he terms as the ‘pure race’. He further stated that the struggle that ensues from weakling and the strong ensures the growth of healthier and desirable species. Hitler (2003), however, defended himself claiming that racial crossing of lower and higher breeds results to physical regression and lowering of the desirable qualities of the higher population which was against the will of the creator.
The outstanding modern concept that describes aggression to be inborn is detailed by Freud and Gay (1989). They explained that all those human traits that were un harmful in nature such as creating adaptive moves to cope up with changes in the environment, discovering and creating ways where there is none available, should be defined under the term ‘assertiveness’ while all those activities that aim in removing perceived irritations or being hostile in nature should be described as being ‘aggression’. They linked aggression to violence. Freud and Gay (1989) explained that a ‘force’ was a generic term that defined use or exercising of power to conquer a barrier or a strain in achievement of one’s ambitions while ‘violence’ is described to be a specific use of force to bring about destruction of an object.
It is observed by Freud and Gay (1989) that aggression is behavioral and it is motivated by external forces such as being hostile or violent. They have also indicated that aggression is inborn and can be modified through experiences in life.
Basing on the following two assumptions, that animals are instinctively destructive in nature and so man being an animal too, is expected to be destructive and that children when young are innately selfish and destructive in nature it can be presumed that being aggressive is inborn and cannot be controlled by nature (Freud and Gay, 1989). They further relate this observation to description of a war whereby he states that war involves the human institution. They argued that although some societies did not outwardly manifest aggression, they still had the trait in them but it was only suppressed by the mores (sociology names given to describe the norms, virtues and values of a society) of the society. Freud and Gay (1989), concluded that aggression in man was innate and so war was also inevitable to man.
Freud and Gay (1989) observed that war has become an outlet of most physiological needs of mankind including violence, hostility, greed and aggression. It is viewed as a social institution which has evolved and developed over long periods of time and this means that it can be modified and eradicated. For it to occur, it requires armies, propaganda, advanced technologies, weapons and scientific researches with enough supply systems. Freud and Gay (1989), in their studies observed that the human race in the past used violence to settle any form of conflict that arose among the groups involved. They further explained that this was an observation that was applicable to the animal kingdom and so man being one of them, could not be excluded.
Difference of opinion among the superior and the minors led to ruling by the strong ones. In trying to settle their differences, the strong ones decided to rule over the weaklings by deciding for them what they were entitled to do or even say. In doing this, the weak one had no authority to act in any way though they felt like they were being punished and treated unfairly. Freud and Gay (1989), further indicated that the use of strength was replaced by use of tools by those who were strong.
The winner was taken to be the one who used a more advanced weapon skillfully than the counterpart. It is also observed that the use of weapons did not deter with the main aims of fighting which was to inflict injury to the opponent making them change their opinion or drop any alleged charges. The main purpose of fighting was to completely kill the opponent so as to gain total victory over them. The idea of killing an opponent did not fully satisfy the superiors who preferred to use the service of the opponent instead of killing them. This idea gave rise to the origin of slavery on the weaklings in the society (Freud and Gay (1989).
Feud and Gay (1989) also noted that the community was involved in ensuring individual rights were not violated by those who were superior. According to them, the community came in to protect the weaklings by giving them a chance to prove their strength capability before taken into final captivity by their opponents. The community was expected to be maintained permanently, institute authorities that ensured the laws were strictly followed as expected, execute legal acts of violence, be organized and finally they were expected to formulate regulations that governed the extend of a rebellious action Freud and Gay (1989).
It is noted from the above that the involvement of the community to solve conflicts or disagreements is not only within the community but also outside the community where people live together in one place. It then becomes evident that the probability of maintaining peace in such areas is possible and not permanent but not so in all cases especially in solving conflicts between two or more different communities. In such scenario, use of fire arms might be involved to settle any conflict that arises among them.
According to Mead (1968), many theories talking about human aggressiveness have been criticized because of these theories state that warfare is contained in the genes of mankind and therefore it cannot be controlled or prevented. Some evidences have been established to illustrate that man is naturally selfish, untrustworthy and resistant to changes while growing. Social scientists however deny this fact stating that ‘war instinct’ does not actually exist even though aggression in mankind can be invoked or initiated by some external factors.
Mead (1968) noted that ‘primitive wars’ are sometimes accepted to be functional in that it is beneficial in meeting various ecological and social needs but it sometimes is dysfunctional especially when it causes adverse effects on the population. In her view, she explained that some communities were not physically prepared for war events but they were motivated to rake part in a war event when they realize that their opponents are prepared to fight with them. Although they did not intend to fight back, the provocation from the other community will make them form a defense system that will handle the attackers when they invade them.
According to Mead (1968), different communities have different views on wars. A bold and war like community such as Sioux or Maori take a war positively to be desirable and very possible to happen while minor communities such as the pueblo Indians observe it as an undesirable act but what is evident from the two communities is that war happening is unavoidable and therefore peace is not permanent. It is observed that people go to a war if only they have the invention but this does not apply to all kinds. Those who do not have an appropriate invention do not go for one instead they look for an alternative means of solving their differences and conflict that may arise within the community members.
Mead (1968), concluded that warfare was an invention known to the mankind which allowed their young ones (especially the male child) to accumulate prestige, honor, acquire a wife, cattle or even take part in appeasing the ancestors. In order to make warfare obsolete, it is the responsibility of the human race to accept that invention is possible as this will render war to be outdated and so be in search of a more modernized way of handling conflicts. Objectives can be formulated following Freuds and Gay (1989), observance of war, which stated that whatever worked against war, fostered the growth of civilization in a society or community. It is therefore evident from the above authors that war is always anticipated for by every community and it is inevitable. Although many theories argue that aggression is inborn it can be evidenced that aggression can be revoked or created within an individual. People will fight no matter what depending on the nature of the conflict among them. As it has been argued by most of the above authors, it is evident that war is unavoidable to man in that its occurrence can’t be foretold but what is evident is that it has to happen at one point of life and this means maintaining peace is impermanent.
Freud .S and Gay .P (1989), Civilization and its Contents, W.W. Norton
Hitler .A (2003), Mein Kampf, Fredonia Books
Kant. I and Smith .M (2005), Perpetual Peace, Cosimo Inc Press
Kelly.C.R (2000), Warless Societies and Origin of War, Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press
Mead .M (1968), Warfare is Only an Invention- Not a Biological Necessity, Newyork: Basic Books