International Day of Peace

International Day of Peace

Posted on the 22/09/21
This summer the world became witness to the escalating situation at the Kabul Airport, a tragic scenery dictating the global news reporting for several weeks. It gave an idea about the many layers and perspectives of war and peace – historically, socially, culturally – and showcased the heavily mismanaged withdrawal of US and NATO troops. The main conclusion: Peace is not a destination, it is a journey. In the case of Afghanistan, it is particularly important to assess the current situation not only in the context of the last 20, but 40 years. Before 1979, meaning before the occupation of Afghanistan by foreign troops, Afghanistan was a poor but peaceful country, neither dependent on humanitarian aid, nor with any significant refugee movements to be observed. Most importantly: Its people lived in peace. Fast forward to today: Afghanistan is not only a country that suffered a great deal of damage for over four decades, that is left in the ashes of war, it is also a country in which Western war crimes against the civilian population were shockingly common, e.g. in the shape of drone attacks. Helping Afghanistan within a humanitarian emergency is not a generous, gracious gesture, it should be understood as a duty, as reparation. And peace should be considered a human right.
 
September 21 is International Day of Peace. It was declared by the UN General Assembly as a day dedicated to strengthening the ideals of peace, through observing 24 hours of non-violence and cease-fire. In addition, this year’s focus lies on how we heal from a pandemic and gathering our ideas about how to provide better recoveries, build resilience, and turn this world into a more inclusive and sustainable one. 
Read more about the background of International Day of Peace here.
 
 

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