To all heads of states and governments of the world
On the occasion of the World Peace Forum Luxemburg 2010 more than 2400 delegates convened from May 9th to June 6th in Schengen. Students and professors from numerous universities from all continents wrote the following “Appeal of Schengen”.
APPEAL OF SCHENGEN
According to investigations of the Heidelberg Institute for International Conflict Research, in 2008 a total of 345 wars and armed conflicts were registered.
We spot the reasons for this in the superiority of national interests and the fact that a sustainable policy of peace is not truly wanted from a large number of nations and that it is also not institutionalized.
Documentation for this is the global expense for armament that has raised to almost 1,5 trillion US-$ (that is 215 US-$ per inhabitant of our earth). As a a consequence armed conflicts and wars are manifested as a financial liability, even if no war is waged. These financial resources are missing in other places.
14,000 wars with 3.5 billion dead persons are documented in the history of humanity.
(Baylis, John et al.: The Glob. of World Pol., Oxf. Univ. Press)
Due to war being the last step of escalation in an aggressive process, we formulated the guiding idea: “War is more than the absence of peace!”.
This is made clear by the permanent required avoidance of aggressiveness; and because of this, freedom is not avoidance of war but creation of tolerance by understanding each other and practicing social justice, especially between nations.
“Property and concentration of power always led to war. Deconcentration of property and power benefits peace. The creation of a peace income and the institutionalization of peace are indispensable conditions for this.”
“In the event of war, countries give an allowance to their soldiers.
Why do they not give an allowance to their citizens in times of peace?”
As of now an institutionalization of these permanent tasks does not exist, therefore we issue the following request:
“We ask you, the representatives of all the peoples of the world with your governing position, to create a national and separate institution for peace on the base of a governmental ministry/department in every country.
We urge you to create a Ministry, a Department of Peace!”
Our demand is attended by the appeal to embed peace as an independent school subject in the educational system. So far we concentrate in history class on conflicts and their causes. It is just as important to recognize from childhood, the creation of peace and its preservation as a vital necessity for civilization. Everybody shall be brought to the position of being capable to notice, value, convey, preserve, and to augment this. Peace is a subject that concerns everyone. It forms the foundation for the protection and preservation of human dignity. Therefore the institution of a Department of Peace has to go along with teaching the topic of peace as a school subject.
Peace contributes a lot more to prosperity and growth than war and defense spending. The multiplier of peace spending is a lot higher than the multiplier of military spending.