Eye on the world: Praying for peace with North Korea

In “What to think of North Korea on Peace Day,” published September 15, 2017, The Christian Science Monitor Editorial Board writes “A bias has long existed in international affairs to look at the likelihood of a conflict breaking out, a sort of fear-based model of analysis that presumes peace is merely the absence of war and that people can be led by fear. Much of the analysis thus looks at ‘negative drivers’ for war, such as a country’s economic and social fragility or a national leader’s desire to stay in power. Experts on North Korea, for example, debate the worst aspects of the regime in Pyongyang, such as its irrational behavior, and whether those factors will lead to nuclear conflict. The reverse type of analysis receives far less attention. ‘There is little data and evidence on positive drivers, or “positive interrupters” or “resilience,” ’ states the Institute for Economics & Peace in a new report about methods used to assess the risks of war. This bias toward negative factors results in missed opportunities for peace, the report concludes…. [T]he United Nations acted in 1981 to designate International Peace Day, which will again be celebrated on Sept. 21. (In 2001, the General Assembly voted for the day to be used for cease-fires.) The annual celebration presumes peace is not only attainable but that it is an activity that should include everyone, not only politicians and diplomats.”

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