My husband asked me recently what I want most. It took me only a minute to reply- "Peace, I want peace. I'm so tired of fighting the war machine- I've been doing it all my life."
I want my children to feel good about bringing their children into this world. I want the planet to be a good place for my grandchildren, with clean air and water, enough food, and some wilderness. Spiritually, I want it to be a place where people care for one another and nations cooperate to solve global problems.
It's a relief to be rid of Bush, with his endless "war on terror", torture and mayhem and all the rest of the war crimes. During his reign, we had to be endlessly vigilant, to contain his lust for power and his drive toward nuclear war. We were able to prevent an attack on Iran, and imposition of a fascist dictatorship at home.
Now we have a new president. Although a centrist Democrat, Obama does seem to be his own person, committed to truth and accountability, and doing his best to represent the people rather than corporate interests. And he also seems committed to talking rather than fighting wherever possible. Listening to his rhetoric, I feel for a minute that I can relax, that world peace is just around the corner.
Obama is making some of the right moves. I'm especially pleased with his repeated focus on abolishing nuclear weapons; also with his willingness to scrap the Bush boondoggle called "missile defense" and reach out to the Russians for a new detente.
On the other hand, his escalation in Afghanistan is profoundly disturbing. So is his legal defense of some of the illegal activities Bush put into place as a "war president"- eg, illegal wiretapping,
The war lobby, those who profit from war, are very powerful. They still control Congress via campaign contributions. And the American people are still clinging to the notion that the US is the sole superpower that can make the rest of the world bend to our will, so that we can maintain a high standard of living relative to "third world" nations.
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"We spent over trillions of dollars a year maintaining American empire. But nobody wants to give up the empire. Not even this new administration," Ron Paul said in an interview with CNN on Saturday.
The Texas congressman referred to President Barack Obama's decision to deploy 17,000 additional troops in Afghanistan.
"They're [the Obama administration] pursuing the Bush policies in the Middle East and they're not cutting back," he added. http://www.presstv. ir/detail. aspx?id=87895§ionid=3510203
Obama is not a free agent. I would like to believe his intentions are good, and that being an intelligent man, he can see as clearly as I can that the world can no longer afford war, military buildup, diversion of precious resources into military ends. He can also see that global warming and climate change, and all the other catastrophes looming over our small planet can only be dealt with by nations cooperating in a way that looks at the whole, rather than national self-interest.
He is focusing, as most American presidents do, on making peace in the Middle East. Within the first couple of weeks. Obama appointed George Mitchell, who won the Nobel Peace Prize for his success in mediating the conflict in Northern Ireland, as special envoy, Mitchell and Hillary Clinton, the new Secretary of State, have already visited the Middle East.
I believe that if peace could be brought to the Middle East, the Holy Land, then the need or excuse to continue the endless wars in order to protect Israel would disappear, and world peace and disarmament would be much easier to achieve.
No American president has succeeded in making peace there, because it IS the Holy Land, claimed by members of three different religions who are at war with one another. Passions run high. Each group feels empowered by God- Allah, Yahweh, Father- and takes that authority to be higher than that of the president of the US, no matter how much money and power is brought to bear by the US government.
If the Israelis and Palestinians could be made to see that they worship the same God, that their scriptures, along with the New Testament, are all compatible, and that their needs are all provided for in the Holy Scriptures, then true peace would ensue. If the US president could put forth a peace plan that acknowledges the legitimate right of both Jews and Palestinians to have a portion of the Holy Land, based on boundaries that are laid out in the Torah and prophets, it would be hard to dismiss.
So now I'm putting my hopes for peace on a document that is being circulated widely among Christian ministers, and getting a good reception. It is called God's Peace Plan for the Holy Land, and is based entirely on passages from OT, NT and Qur'an. For those who respect God's authority as expressed through holy scripture, it is incontrovertible. For those who do not rely on the authority of scripture, it is still a sensible, fair and workable plan.
To see a copy, please email me at email@example.com. We are looking for people to help distribute it; if you'd like to help, please let me know.
Carol S. Wolman, MD is a psychiatrist in Northern California. A lifelong peace activist, she is helping to distribute a Peace Plan for the Holy Land- email her for a copy. She also a film producer with Paradise Cove Productions.