Global Political Violence. What are the Numbers/ Where is it happening ?
Here is a fascinating interactive map, which helps to place Global Political Violence in perspective. A Legend or explanation is provided here below this screenshot, tracing from 1989 to 2014 ... Once on their page click, the "Play" button, as seen below at bottom left in this picture, to see the year by year progression.
If you quickly notice a large circle over Afghanistan and Pakistan, you have correctly identified a real problem area. The results look like this:
Conventional wisdom that suggests escalating violence however, is quite wrong. This Preface confirms that, as do several of the graphic items below.
Here is another perspective on this component of Global Violence.
Current Headlines certainly attract attention. "That's their job," some would say. But historically, is our World getting more involved with war or less so? Or perhaps, no change? Have a look : (click on any of these images to enlarge as needed)
Historical Perspective :
From a U.S. perspective ...
U.S. Casualties by War ...
In the past, did most of the deaths of soldiers fighting in the war result from bullets and canons? ... No, hardly. Here are Union side statistics:
Wars have always been associated with high rates of illness.
And on both sides of the U.S. Civil War conflict, Disease accounted for 76% of deaths.
How is "religion as a source of conflict" viewed? :
A clear relation between poverty and corruption seems inescapable. The lower the per capita income of a country, the higher its corruption score :
Why leaning towards restrictions on religions is a mistake ...
If you still had any questions about Syrian refugees that start with "why?" or "why now?" ...
Since these figures were published, the death rate has only increased. What was 60,000 reported below, is now upwards of 90,000 ...
More perspective on comparative conflict magnitudes (click to see more clearly) :
Information presented to the public globally, tends to be in a format that dramatizes events. The result is an odd protection of violent events from a balanced presentation. Unbalanced and shocking news, feeds a viewer appetite for violence as entertainment. A sure cure for boredom, some would say. When they announce: "the following video contains graphic elements, and viewer discretion is advised," ... everybody looks. The reports have increasingly taken on a cinematic quality, with news reporters evolving a "look," and a manner of hurried speech, as though barely having time to divulge their secrets to ignorant listeners. Through dress, and overall style, the networks aim whenever possible, at increasing the drama. They seek to be "stars" in their own right. Increasing the drama frequently presents unbalanced representations of world events and the "State of the World," where both good and bad are actually taking place. Fearmongering becomes a major contributor to public bias, misconception, and wrong perceptions. Wrong actions follow wrong perceptions.
Because there is also much good.
Let us remain hopeful that Violence is decreasing as suggested here :
There are of course other Global Risks besides War (click to see more clearly) :
So if "things are better, not worse," ... does that mean that SendThemPeace. com should quietly pack up The Challenge and forget about it?
Not at all. Especially since Human Rights Abuse can exist independent of the presence of war.
As long as there remain individuals in the world who are suffering,
Compassion needs to be sent their way.
Others may interpret this need as a need for financial resources, manpower, aid programs, better education, eradicating illnesses, technological advancement, deposing despots,... all are laudable. Here at SendThemPeac.com, we'll continue to combine the efforts of increasing numbers of diverse individuals, unified through their participation in The Challenge. Useless, or effective? Stay tuned.
"Words. Pretty Words."
This Armenian woman ...
... is guarding the front of her home in the village of Degh, near the border with Azerbaijan.
She is 106 years old, and holds an Ak-47. The photo was taken in 1990 during the Nargorno Karabakh War. She was alive during WWI, the Armenian genocide by the Ottoman Empire, the Russian Civil War, the Red Terror, Stalin's Purges, WWII, and the breakup of the Soviet Union.
It looks like she means business, armed as she is.
Perhaps her instinctive reaction is, with each new manifestation of Man's Inhumanity To Man, to reach for a weapon to defend herself. (Certainly not an Ak-47 with the first atrocities that she survived. Perhaps just a pile of rocks).
Yet, time after time, and war after war, she was one day able to say, "Now it is over. They have declared Peace."
So one can wonder. What brought each of these conflicts to an end? What was written in the Armistice Agreement, and could the same things have been written before each war, avoiding it altogether? But in placing their confidence in such forms, the authors seemed to forget each time that "form" is impermanent, and should not become the repository of human destiny.
Something simpler and more meaningful should be written there. Something like : "No More Hate, Ever."
That would merit signing one's name under.
Who taught her to defend instead of how to dialogue?
Did she teach the same skills of bearing arms to her children, grand-children, great-grandchildren, great-great-grandchildren? Did anyone ever approach her about learning how to make Peace? Probably not. And between the atrocities, did she carry Peace in her heart, or the darkness and anticipation of the next War: The sentiment that there can never be a permanent Peace?
Did she participate in the creation of the existence that became Reality for herself and others, filling her heart with hatred which spilled over to manifest in her world?
Harsh words aimed at an old granny.
She might have thought once: "My heart didn't start out that way," but I'm putting words in her mouth. Or inviting a chicken and egg argument.
It's more likely that her response would have been: "Words. Pretty words," as she reached for a second magazine for her Ak-47.
Survival of the fittest should come to mean something else.
It's just a picture.
Perhaps what has been written here is a mirage. "Words. Pretty words."
An invention born in one's reaction to a photograph of someone we do not know.
She is 106 years old. She stares forward with a gaze that suggests she may be blind: perhaps with cataracts or glaucoma.
Perhaps the real owner of the Ak-47 simply placed it in her hands and said: "Here grandmother. Hold this. I'm going to take your picture."
And if she began shooting, it would mean that she would be blind to who her target really was. Friend, or foe?
Then again, perhaps the same could be said if the actual owner of the Ak-47 was someone else than this grandmother. Who does he shoot at?
Friend or Foe? And how would you know, at a distance?
"Uniforms..." might come the answer. Ah..., we wear uniforms to define us more accurately as being the target, or not the target.
How ridiculous it would be to stop and ask such a target: "How are you today?" "What are you feeling in your heart?" "Do you miss your family?"
The Ak of course, doesn't care. It passes its coldness equally well into any set of hands that decide to take it up. Point it. Squeeze it. It spits its deadly fire from you to them. Those who get in its way are by definition, the enemy: "them." Seems so simple even a child could be taught that.
I'm starting to understand.
Homicide Rates - International Comparisons
An interesting and informative tool for looking at a difficult topic : Homicide Rates, can be found at Knoema.com.
This is a graphic display method for presenting UN data.
Click to select Locations, Reporting Variables, Date Ranges on the Left, and chart type on the Right, once on their page.
This serves especially well, to make comparisons between countries.
For example :
If you were not aware of SPANDA FOUNDATION, and the encouraging work of Sahlan L. Momo, have a look :
Also, have a look at a SPANDA Publication, "Consciousness & Development 2.0" (7.7 MB, so takes a bit to download, but worth it, since it presents many authors who would link themselves to the concept of "Global Consciousness." This let's one peruse, consider, and decide what one thinks about the various messages presented.
One should always of course, read such material with a healthy amount of skepticism in one's approach. Some things written may sound nice, yet have very shakey science to back them up. Even worse, ... hidden agendas, like religious conversion, or, ... you guessed it, profit. So read as though scanning the landscape to see what comes into view. Ask: "Why is this presenting now?" or, "What am I supposed to buy, do or donate to?"
Be A Sun !
Our Sun converts 400 Million tons of its matter to Energy, every second!
Think of the Sun as a perfect symbol of Compassionate Action, giving of itself to create energy, light and heat for its neighbors in the surrounding Universe.
- The Sun intuitively understands the meaning of Abundance.
- Our atmosphere works quietly and consistently as the keeper of Peace, filtering out what is desperately needed for life, from what could be very harmful and damaging to life. Perfect cooperation with the Sun.
- Now if humans could just stop filling up our atmosphere with trash causing a greenhouse effect, this cooperative team could resume its prior perfection, helping humans to stay around another 100 years or so at least!
Go ahead: Be A Sun !
Meet The Challenge with others in your Universe, each day.
(Increase the Zoom on your browser (upper right in Chrome) to read what follows more easily) :