International Day of Peace: Proposing real solutions

Forty-two years ago, the United Nations General Assembly decided to declare September 21 as the International Day of Peace and “strengthen the ideals of peace, through observing 24 hours of non-violence and cease-fire.” Nevertheless, if we look at the realities, we are shocked.

There are far too many places experiencing war on our beautiful planet Earth. Trillions are wasted every year to further death and destruction. Political conflicts, resource wars, wars of imperialism, wars of opportunity, misguided ideologies, the list of ‘reasons’ for war goes on. But alas, how can ‘reason’ be applied to a means that belongs – at best – to the dark ages?

International Day of Peace must mean the beginning of ceasefire in all wars, an immediate engagement of diplomacy to end existing conflicts and prevent others still simmering.

Map of ongoing armed conflicts (number of combat-related deaths in current or past year) /  Image by Futuretrillionaire, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons


We believe reason would call for the world to work for peace – and eliminate the war industry as set out in our Green New Deal for Europe programme.

We therefore:

  • Strongly condemn all ongoing wars and continue to call for an immediate ceasefire, as well as complete resumption of diplomatic efforts to advance negotiations to end them. These wars continue to wreak havoc on the civilian population – only benefiting the military industrial complex, warmongers and those in favour of militarised security!
  • Reiterate our call for progressives to join forces and campaign for the establishment of a robust, international, New Non-Aligned Movement! With a view to turning the European Union from a NATO appendage to a Non-Aligned, Independent EU that works towards world peace in a world without military blocs!
  • Call for a reduction in global military spending which is currently over two trillion USD worldwide! A 50% reduction in military spending would permit:
    • Ending global hunger by investing in agriculture, social protection and rural development (~350 billion USD)
    • Ensuring essential universal health coverage (~250 billion USD)
    • Provide global access to quality primary and secondary education (~200 billion USD)
    • Supply water and sanitation facilities globally (~150 billion USD)
    • Honour climate financing pledges made to developing countries (~100 billion)
  • Rally for inclusion of the real cost of war on our environment – and bring onboard ‘military emissions’ (double marine and civil aviation combined) into the public discourse on climate change!
  • Demand an end to foreign troops on foreign soils and a closure of needless overseas military bases!
  • Insist on eliminating all weapons of mass destruction, including chemical, biological and nuclear weapons!
  • Condemn investing of public and private funds into the military killing machine!
  • Urge workers to down tools at arms manufacturing companies and related services!
  • Demand an end to all forms of collective punishments, unilateral and secondary sanctions that only hurt the public!
  • Insist on ending access of lobbyists for the arms industry to our politicians, technocrats and elected representatives!
  • Demand to accelerate progress on creating a culture of peace – including peace education in schools and universities globally!


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