Thursday 28 September 2017
WARS WITHOUT END, AMEN
In trying to poke fun at women, a comedian came out to say that if all nations were ruled by women that there would be no wars, just a bunch of nations not talking to each other. I found nothing funny in that statement, what could be funny in making fun of women and their being given to malice and envy? Nothing. Then again I thought to myself about what could be better, rather what could be less terrible: a world without wars or a world fraught with isolation? If 'war' defines terrorism too then when there are no wars there will be no chemical weapons being dumped on Syrian kids, there will be no sleeper cells on our streets sniffing for soft targets, there will be no Taliban, Al Qaeda, Boko Haram, ISIL, SEALS, FULANI herdsmen, Al Shabaab, NATO Intervention, Crimean war, First and Second World Wars and several other wars. We would have been saved of the loss of lives and properties, we would have been saved of the trauma and the intervals of rebuilding. But being that this utopia is at the cost of isolation, perhaps one needs think again. What would isolationism mean? It has to mean more than just a policy of national isolation by abstention from alliances and other international political and economic relations (thank you Merriam Webster). Isolationism would mean lack of technology and policy transfer, and that what we do not lose in lives at war, we lose in lives in events of epidemics, pandemics and the ugly sides of crude nationalism (apologies Hussein Obama). In this Isolationism, the US of A cannot say nor do anything if Pyongyang bombs its citizens, and nobody will give a damn if any African tyrant eats his subjects for breakfast, there will be no UN, no AU, and no ICC to summon to the Hague any Amin, or whoever you have in mind. Now that both pictures are clearer, we are left in a dilemma, do we have hugs and wars, and share roses, buds and thorns or do we mind our damn business (or idleness) and wine, dine, piss, shit and die alone just so we don't have wars and thorns from those who bring hugs and roses. How would you want a world without wars, just that nations would not interact at all, where you can't go to the Bahamas on vacation, where you can't go to Mumbai for surgery, or to Leeds for you PhD? Or how would you want our world to continue like this with interaction, with FIFA World Cup, with the Visas and green cards, and endless possibilities in a global village and all the roses and interracial hugs, but with wars and international thorns, the monsters of real politik.
For me, I have always dreamt of living in a tree house somewhere in the middle of nowhere in the Amazon forest. I will have a stream just beside the tree, with bananas and monkeys living across. I will also have a small radio playing Don Williams' 'Harry and Joe'. And while the sun sets at Belo Horizonte, I will miss Macau, the Vegas of China, and I will think about the Everly brothers who went to Timbuktu searching for gold. At dawn, I will wish to have a Turkish bath in a big tub of Ottoman steam, and after that a cup of tea from the tea shops of Turin, a loaf of bread from Jerusalem and sardines from Sardinia. And while at these fantasies I will get back to the frustrations of my isolation and though I do not wish for it, I will pray the good Lord for wars, wars without guns, wars without bombs, wars without deaths, wars with roses and hugs, that is if 'wars' can define interaction, I will ask God for wars without end, Amen.