On April 17, Pope Francis shares his vision for Covid-19 aftermath in an exclusive meditation for Vida Nueva, the Spanish religious weekly, titled “Un plan para resucitar” which translates as “A plan to resurrect.”
What he said about the current situation is, “If there’s one thing we’ve been able to learn in all this time, it’s that no one is saved alone. Borders are falling, walls are crumbling and all fundamentalist discourses are dissolving before an almost imperceptible presence that shows the fragility of which we are made.”
The situation is worse than we thought. “The Great Lockdown is the worst economic downturn since the Great Depression, and far worse than the Global Financial Crisis [of 2008],” International Monetary Fund (IMF) Chief Economist Gita Gopinath said on the 14th of April.
Is there any way to overcome this situation? In such a crisis situation, the ability of the state or company to deal with the crisis is revealed. In fact, we usually only think this way, but there’s actually one more. It’s each one of us.
Francis wrote that the only way to conquer the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic is through “the antibodies of solidarity.” This antibody “will break all the fanaticism in which we had immersed ourselves and will allow us to feel ourselves to be the creators and protagonists of a common history and, thus, to respond jointly to so many ills that afflict millions of brothers around the world.”
Also he wrote, “If we act as one people, even in the face of the other epidemics that lie waiting for us, we can have a real impact.” I thought it was very similar to Man-hee Lee, the chairman of HWPL, who always shouted “We Are One!” His influence is powerful.
I think people who change the world think the same. All that remains now seems to be for us to practice those words. We can be cool enough. 🙂
These days, many people are self-isolating because of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19). I want to do things that I haven’t been able to do during this period, and also I’m worried about people suffering from illness.
I want to recommend some songs that make you think. It’s simple and short. 🙂
I just want you to be comfortable for 15 minutes.
“I’ve found peace far beyond all understanding” and “Peace is a promise You keep” are so impressive. While the phrase “peace is a promise” has never been thought of, it feels good.
I want to live a life that keeps that promise.
I’m not gonna be afraid I’m not gonna be afraid I’m not gonna fear the storm
I’m not gonna fear at all
The power of music is great. It creates power in unexpected places. have a communicative power. It is another education. Powerful.
I wish it were 15 minutes to make you feel good. Some of my friends got novel coronavirus (COVID-19). I pray that they are all healthy.
I was going to talk about the importance of peace, but I felt I didn’t have to mention it any more. Because we already know it too well.
In fact, this is out of the question of knowing. What is the problem? First, say it clearly. This is neither your fault nor mine. It’s all our fault.
It is none of your business
Most of us are busy making ends meet. I am also busy living my life. We don’t have time to pay attention.
We have learned the word peace from textbooks and lectures. Also, we even donate to UNICEF or Doctors Without Borders. Get a job, have a family, and raise children. Get old with my spouse.
Our lives were not always happy, but moderately unhappy, sometimes happy. Ten years after my death, at least one person will remember me.
There is very little room for peace in this general life. If there is any overlap of misfortunes, there is no more room. This is the reality.
No one can blame us for this reality
We don’t blame anyone else. We don’t call each other hypocrites.
Because we make up the majority of mankind. Compared to mankind as a whole, the people facing war are a minority.
We don’t have to worry every night that the bomb will blow up our house. We don’t have to worry about how to live after mom and dad die in the war.
So, we don’t think peace is important. No, we maybe think it’s important and we talk about importance of peace, but we usually live off the top of our head.
I’m sorry. This is real. I don’t want to let a little girl in Syria know this reality.
Change actually takes a long time. But I know that the most substantial and short-lived peace organization has achieved great achievements. So, I’m also thinking about pinning my hopes on it this time.
This posting is just my opinion. I want to say that I really respect everyone who works hard and risking their lives for peace.
Even at the Shaidahe Hospital in Herat, 38 patients attacked staff members, then fled the hospital as police stood by. (One of them is positive)
According to the New York Times article, there are many shocking things happening. They don’t know who has the coronavirus. To be honest, they may be nervous.
But the problem is that the virus is not the only problem. They are fighting another virus. Major Gulzar Kohi, who leads the Afghan Army unit in a restive district of northern Baghlan Province, said “Coronavirus be damned.” He hadn’t slept in two days.
“I am busy fighting another virus — the Taliban.”
The Taliban is a guerrilla force. They’re going to have a meeting in closed spaces across the country, and this seems very dangerous. And the troops to stop them will be in danger of COVID-19.
One might think of this as an opportunity, but I hope you will refrain from doing so for everyone’s happiness and health. There is a way to get what we want without fighting. The method is for us to support the international law called DPCW.
Not long after, DPCW will erase the war itself from human history. 🙂
Over seven million people — about two thirds of the population — are in need of aid, including around 6.9 million people experiencing hunger. Food security is expected to deteriorate more, with 7.7 million people estimated to face crisis levels of hunger. The ongoing conflict and insecurity have pushed millions to the brink of starvation for years. (MERCY CORPS statistics as of June 2019)
Due to persistent intercommunal violence, including cattle raids, revenge attacks and armed ambushes, many people in the region have been reduced to relying on relief aid.
Is there really no hope?
The more desperate man is, the stronger he becomes.
The first thing to do is to blame the system for creating this world imbalance, and then we’ll have to do what we do.
The Women is Strong
This time, women gathered strength. With support from the UN mission in the country, UNMISS, ox ploughs were handed to women’s groups.
“The challenge they reported was a lack of implements to increase their food production. That’s how the ox plough idea was born,” said Samuel Owoko, a representative of Sans Frontieres Germany, the organization implementing the project.
They did really great things. In the book of ‘Doing Good Better’, companies spend a lot of money to help, but in reality they are not helpful and often get in the way.
Ms. Agor, the women’s group leader, said “We have been using hand hoes, and with that you can only do so much. With these ox ploughs coming in, we shall cultivate bigger areas which will help us sustain our families throughout the long dry spell.”
She also had a message for the national authorities: “We want our Government to make sure that there is enough security so that we can bring in our bulls and cultivate. Without peace, that will not be possible. Right now, the roads are full of armed youth. They should go away so that our men can safely return with their cattle”.
First, we need a basic understanding of the country of Cameroon.
On December 2018, the United States assistant secretary of state for African affairs, Tibor Nagy, raised the issue of Cameroon as among the world’s most dire conflicts, stating: “I fear that [the crisis] could get much, much worse.”
The United Nations conservatively estimates that the ongoing conflict has killed more than 3 000 people and displaced nearly 700 000 more in the Anglophone regions, a staggering number that comprises about 20% of our country’s population. Most recently, on February 14, about two dozen villagers, including 14 children and a pregnant woman, were massacred in the village in the northwest region.
In fact, this is a really difficult problem. How many people died, and why did they die? The difference between ideology and thought… The resentment and anger of it do not go away. 🙁
We don’t need Violence and Weapons
So what the hell should we do? Should we just stay still? Should we turn away because we don’t know anything? What should never be done is the attitude of maintaining the status quo.
If you look at the reference article, I agree with Maurice Kamto, the president of the opposition Cameroon Renaissance Movement and a former political prisoner in Cameroon, in part.
His second plan is that the violence on both sides must end today. I totally agree with this. Talks cannot begin without the elimination of violence and weapons. Other than that, his arguments include building infrastructure like hospital schools, setting the stage for dialogue and reforming the election system.
It is a proposal that seems to be effective. But I thought this was not enough. I think “civil society” is the key. The bottom-up approach is more effective than the top-down one. And that power is incredibly powerful.
It was a international peace NGO called HWPL that showed me this powerful force. I thought it was impossible to achieve peace.
Imagine if you were a little girl in a town in Cameroon. Can we expect peace to be achieved? No, we live in anxiety every day. Then, we find a little happiness, and we will feel satisfied. We thought this was life. This is so tragic. But peace was not difficult, and furthermore it was not impossible.
HWPL brings people from all over the world together as ‘ONE.’ They shout from time to time, “WE ARE ONE! WE ARE ONE!” As if a powerful hurricane had passed, they establish a strong peace in the place that had passed. Voice of one is not enough to achieve peace, but voice as one is enough to do so.
Hi, today is March 1st. Today is the anniversary of “March 1st Movement” in my country. It is also called “Independence Movement Day in South Korea,” and “삼일절(Sam Il Jeol)”
The March 1 Movement started on March 1, 1919. Why this day? In the wake of rumors that King Gojong of the Korean Empire was poisoned, it rose up on March 1, 1919, the funeral day of King Gojong’s death.
There was another reason. After the World War I, “The Fourteen Points” of US President Woodrow Wilson became the basis at the 1919 Paris Peace Conference. The President Wilson listed “self-determination” as an important objective for the postwar world. It set off a spark of hope.
The most famous performance at this time is the “Manse Demonstrations.” In Korean, 만세(Manse) means raising both hands high. Generally, do it three times with the Korean flag.
On this day, 500,000 people gathered at 탑골공원(Tapgol Park, formerly Pagoda Park) and shouted “Manse.” From this point on, March 1st Movements were held across the country for about three months. There were 1,214 manse demonstrations during the 60 days from March 1 to April 30. The total number of participants is estimated at 1.06 million.
Japan did not sit still, but violently suppressed it. Of them, 7,509 were killed and 47,000 were arrested. However, because it was a fairly successful independence movement, the Provisional Government of the Republic of Korea was established in Shanghai in April 11, 1919.
But I don’t think it happened easily. There were 33 ethnic representatives who took the initiative. They consisted of 15 Catholics, 16 Christians and two Buddhists. (if you more info about them: my blog, wiki(ko), other) They read “The Declaration of Independence” at Taehwagwan, Insa-dong, Jongno District, Seoul. Soon after, some of them died, and they were imprisoned for about a year and a half or three years.
To celebrate this day, the national flag is hung at home. Flags are also hung on every street. But now South Korea is in an emergency because of COVID-19. There are over 3,000 confirmed cases. I hope the patients will recover quickly, and I want to send a message of support to the medical staff who are really struggling.
Since we are all the same people, I hope we don’t blame each other or split up over this incident. Because we were one in the independence movement.
The assassination by the US of Iran’s most powerful general, Qasem Soleimani, has caused an escalation in tensions between the two countries.
In the wake of an Iranian ballistic missile attack on air bases which house US forces in Iraq, U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres reiterated his call for the United States and Iran to stop the conflict and pursue peace.
President Trump’s speech after Iran’s strike
As a reaction to Iran’s strike, Donald Trump said “Iran has been the leading sponsor of terrorism, and their pursuit of nuclear weapons threatens the civilized world. We will never let that happen.
Iran’s hostilities substantially increased after the foolish Iran nuclear deal was signed in 2013, and they were given $150 billion, not to mention $1.8 billion in cash. Instead of saying “thank you” to the United States, they chanted “death to America.”
Iran must abandon its nuclear ambitions and end its support for terrorism. The time has come for the United Kingdom, Germany, France, Russia, and China to recognize this reality.
Today, I am going to ask NATO to become much more involved in the Middle East process.
Finally, to the people and leaders of Iran: We want you to have a future and a great future — one that you deserve, one of prosperity at home, and harmony with the nations of the world.”
These are just a summary of what I think is important in his speech. If you want to read the full speech, just click on the video and the link below.
UN Secretary General said “The world cannot afford Wars”
In a brief media address, Guterres said “we are living in dangerous times” worldwide as “geopolitical tensions are at their highest level this century.”
Also in a statement released by his Spokesperson, Stéphane Dujarric, on Monday António Guterres made a passionate appeal for peace.
His message to world leaders was simple:
“Stop escalation. Exercise maximum restraint. Re-start dialogue”, and “renew international cooperation.”
This appeal remains as important today as it was on Monday.
For his part, the Secretary-General will continue his active engagement with relevant actors. “It is our common duty to make every effort to avoid a war in the Gulf that the world cannot afford. We must not forget the terrible human suffering caused by war. As always, ordinary people pay the highest price.“
I condemn the Iranian missile attacks on US & @coalition forces in Iraq. #NATO calls on Iran to refrain from further violence. Allies continue to consult & remain committed to our training mission in Iraq. pic.twitter.com/6PdXMZxSNB
Jens Stoltenberg, NATO Secretary General, said like this.
The use of weapons must stop NOW to give space for dialogue. We are called upon to do everything possible to rekindle talks. There cannot be enough of that. We have established and timetested relations with many actors in the region and beyond to de-escalate the situation.
Ursula von der Leyen, President of the European Commission, emphasized the importance of not using weapon for dialogue. European countries such as Britain and France have also appealed for easing tensions.
I also think we can’t afford war. It’s really unclear whether our future will be a tragedy or a happy one. In fact, our daily lives begin again tomorrow. I don’t think we have many options. Forget it or fight it. I hope we risk our lives for peace.
Because peace is just as valuable, and war is too painful to be explained in words. The aftereffects are enormous. Who can be held accountable?
The Norwegian Nobel Committee has decided to award the Nobel Peace Prize for 2019 to Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed Ali for his efforts to achieve peace and international cooperation, and in particular for his decisive initiative to resolve the border conflict with neighbouring Eritrea. The prize is also meant to recognise all the stakeholders working for peace and reconciliation in Ethiopia and in the East and Northeast African regions.
After he heard the news of the award of Nobel Peace Prize, he said “I was so humbled and thrilled when I just heard the news. Peace is a very expensive commodity in my country.” (If you want to hear more)
When Abiy Ahmed became Prime Minister in April 2018, he made it clear that he wished to resume peace talks with Eritrea. In close cooperation with Isaias Afwerki, the President of Eritrea, Abiy Ahmed quickly worked out the principles of a peace agreement to end the long “no peace, no war” stalemate between the two countries.
Peace does not arise from the actions of one party alone. When Prime Minister Abiy reached out his hand, President Afwerki grasped it, and helped to formalise the peace process between the two countries. In Ethiopia, even if much work remains, Abiy Ahmed has initiated important reforms that give many citizens hope for a better life and a brighter future.
In line with this joyful news, there are so many efforts to achieve peace in Ethiopia.
On the 19th of October, the 2019 Ethiopia Peace Press Forum was held at the meeting hall of IPSS in Ethiopia, and Ethiopian journalists were in attendance. The theme of the forum was the “Realization of Peace Journalism and Public Journalism.”
They emphasized the role of a journalist in spreading the news of peace. Attendees also discussed freedom of expression based on Article 19 of the Declaration of Human Rights.
In addition, the journalists who attended the forum wrote and signed the Pledge of Peace Initiative, in which they promised to deliver peace news through the platform called Peace Initiative (PI) (http://peaceinitiative.net) and participate in peace projects. HWPL is running a Peace Initiative platform with journalists all over the world. This platform raises awareness of peace based on social atmosphere and the freedom of speech and press, and aims to ensure that the news of peace, which contributes to conflict resolution, can be delivered to people from all over the world.
Mr. Zelalem Girma, the Senior Editor to the Ethiopian Herald and who has participated in the Peace Initiative, emphasized the importance of a peace news channel saying, “Peace Initiative (PI) is a global journalist network in efforts of facilitating a culture of peace as contribution to conflict resolution and peace building through press freedom and freedom of information stipulated in the UN resolutions and international agreements. Individual journalists and media agencies affiliated with PI dedicate to spreading news of peace to enhance human rights and protect democracy.”
2018 Addis Ababa Summit
On 9th of July, 2018, Ethiopia and Eritrea declared an end to the conflict that has been raging for 20 years, thus promoting further peace and prosperity within Africa. Immediately after that, the work of peace was done quickly. The 2018 Addis Ababa Summit was held in Medium CR, African Union Commission and co-hosted by international organizations including the Inter-African Committee on Traditional Practices (IAC), the International Law Association (ILA) and HWPL. Politicians from Africa and the Middle East discussed the need for an international law for peace to bring out stability in the region and promote peace-related projects at all levels of society.
Mrs. Dagmawit Moges, Deputy Mayor of Addis Ababa’s municipal government, gave a speech at the event and addressed the participants saying, “Addis Ababa city administration has a deep conviction that the launching of peace education in the universities could help promote harmony among students regardless of their nationalities, cultural background and religions.” She emphasized the necessity of the integration of peace education and also stated that the City Administration will pledge to extend every support necessary to institutions engaged in the implementation of this peace education project. An MOU agreeing to implement HWPL’s peace education curriculum was also signed by the university representatives in attendance laying the foundation for peace education in Ethiopia.
On 17th of July 2019, Jayathma Wickramanayake, the UN’s Youth Envoy, visited the Security Council on Wednesday with a simple message “young people care about peace.” She said especially young women can be labelled on a “small minority” easily. These stereotypes and myths skew young people’s full potential for peace. The fact is that most young people are in fact not involved in violence.
“In the past months I have noticed with grave concern, incidents of young peacebuilders and young human rights defenders being subjected to threats, intimidation, violence, arbitrary arrest and retaliation by State and non-State Actors.” She emphasized the need to protect these young peacebuilders.
She reminded the Council that the Youth, Peace and Security agenda is being recognized and institutionalized within the UN as “core” to the Organization’s priorities for young people. So, the UN Youth Strategy, Youth 2030, will promote an environment that recognizes young people’s important and positive contributions to peace and security, while creating safe spaces and expanding opportunities for young people.
I totally agree with her. Young people have enormous potential. Protect them and help them grow tremendously. There’s something she and the young men of the United Nations are pushing now, and I think it’s so good that I’d like to introduce it. #Youth4Peace #Youth2030
We Are Here, We Are One
At the First International Symposium on Youth Participation in Peace Processes, which was held last March in Finland, the youth envoy officially launched the policy paper “WE ARE HERE: An Integrated Approach to Youth-Inclusive Peace Processes.”(Here)
António Guterres, Secretary-General of the United Nations, said “It analyses how young people can influence such efforts using diverse and innovative approaches. Around the world, young women and men are striving for justice, inclusion, gender equality and human rights. We must make the most of their power as drivers of a culture of peace.”
Ms. Wickramanayake said “I hope this is the beginning of a process… for concrete actions to bring peace. Sustainable peace must be democratized to include the communities most affected. Young people are our best chance in succeeding at that.”
International Youth Peace Movement
In the last two decades, over 1,000 peace agreements have been signed globally. It is estimated that 408 million youth live in a state or province affected by armed conflict. The co-authors, Ali Altiok and Irena Grizelj, said “No comprehensive studies have assessed the role and impact of young people in these peace agreements. This paper takes the first step towards providing emerging evidence that youth inclusion in peace processes can yield positive results.”
All we need for ‘We Are Here’ is ‘We Are One’
I’m reading this paper. Looking at it, I feel confident that peace can be achieved. How? Only, it would be necessary for all of us to work together as one. All we need for ‘We Are Here’ is ‘We Are One’. I also remember International Peace Youth Group (IPYG), a youth peace organization that is emerging most recently. It is a subsidiary organization of HWPL, international peace NGO affiliated with the UN ECOSOC and the UN DGC.
IPYG shouts “We Are One!!!”
IPYG, which represents 1.8 billion young people, is affiliated with 805 organizations of 110 countries. The number of total members is 4,600,000. In IPYG Peace Letter Campaign, youth of 23 countries have participated and the handwritten peace letters have been delivered to 9 former/current presidents and prime ministers in 8 countries.
On 14th of March 2019, all youth of the world had sent to their respective President or Prime Minister in 192countries with the expectation of a response from these heads of state. On 25th of May 2019, the “6th IPYG Peace Walk” was held in around 126 locations in 77 countries around the world, including Australia, China, Germany, India, Russia, South Africa, the Philippines, and United States of America. (What is Peace Walk?) There is enthusiastic support from young people all over the world, and this huge flow is unstoppable.
These young people are now doing all they can to get the DPCW, the best international law to put an end to the war, to the U.N. (What is DPCW?) Like UN Youth Envoy, the world is full of young people of passion for peace. Their potential can never be ignored. If all the peace groups of each country come together, and all of them shout in one voice, which country can start a war? No one will suffer any more.