By GENE H. McINTYRE
After Rodney King came infamously close to death by police officers’ beating, later, he famously asked, “Why can’t we just get along?”
I wonder the same these days about a number of matters, one of the most poignant is getting along without a nuclear war with North Korea. Such a war would mean near total obliteration to Koreans, both North and South, while further threatening the world’s climate to human long-term survival.
It is imagined tiresome to the average person throughout the world that certain persons among us rise to positions of power and influence which for centuries has meant nearly constant readiness for war and, in more recent times, total world war. World War I for example got underway by the assassination of an Austrian archduke and his wife but really had to do with the fight among European nations for hegemony. World War II began by Hitler’s Nazi Germany invasions and Japanese war mongers, talking the Emperor into an attack on Pearl harbor.
The world has been on the verge of more world war since 1947 with the founding of the Warsaw Pact by the Soviet Union and its counterpart, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization. When Russia replaced the USSR in 1991, the next crisis was founded by Mao Zedong’s Chinese government which staged a series of bold nuclear and missile tests. More upstarts to war again have brought tense years with the prospect of another world war dominating the world in recent years.
Meanwhile, most people throughout the world want to enjoy family lives that can be lived in loving peacefulness with a home, children, recreational and educational opportunities and a long life. Although these conditions may never have been experienced by most people in North Korea, it’s imagined that daydreams of such a life by the average North Korean is commonplace.
Paths to a lasting world peace are constantly being identified. Most of these have been tried again and again, this time regarding North Korea, with consideration given to “surgical” military strikes, imposed sanctions and isolation, diplomacy and pushing China to do more. To date, nothing has worked in what’s become known as “The Land of Lousy Options.” President Trump criticized war before becoming commander-in-chief but has since his inauguration added American troops to already existing numbers of them in Afghanistan and Syria and has not closed Guantanamo any more than reducing troop numbers all over the world. He’s also proven himself in all matters unpredictable, a pledge loyalty from every American his most important objective.
However, what bothers me most at present and will do so into the foreseeable future has a little less to do with more war as much as does global warming, out of which the Paris (climate) Accord President Trump has now withdrawn the U.S. It’s not just the rising of sea levels and the fleeing of coastlines alone. Indeed, based on what’s anticipated to happen, parts of the Earth formerly ideal for human habitation will become close to uninhabitable while other parts will be totally inhospitable. These human eradication conditions are, without a world community-of-interventions, forecasted before the end of this century.
Yes, most assuredly we must stop warring with each other (that state of peace would help decisively) devoting ourselves instead, all of us, to finding more successful ways to get along. Immediately, that’s today, we earthlings must put our heads together to save the Earth from most of it being inhospitable while those remaining parts being too hot and stormy and too contaminated of air, water and soil to support human life anywhere on this planet.
(Gene H. McIntyre lives in Keizer.)