Global Responses to Global Threats
Current security policies assume international terrorism to be the greatest threat to global security, and attempt to maintain the status quo and control insecurity through the projection of military force.
Paul Rogers from the Oxford Research Group was interviewed about this new report at 0845 on this morning’s BBC Radio 4 Today programme. What he said made a lot of sense – if only the Powers That Be would read it, and consider the alternatives to their current policies! You can buy a copy of the report for only £5 from their website (link above), and/or listen to Paul Rogers via the Today website.
One of the issues Rogers mentioned was the social impact of climate change. I wrote about this in a Thought for the Day after the 1999 Turkish earthquake. The script – “One World” – is included in the Thought for the Day compilation PDF, but here is part of it:
At the end of the last Ice Age humanity numbered only about 10,000 people — less than a quarter of the numbers estimated to have perished in Turkey. The world’s population has just reached 6 billion. It’s taken less than 40 years to double in numbers. It means, among other things, that there’s nowhere to go for those who live in vulnerable places, like earthquake zones and flood plains. The recent hostilities between Kosovan refugees and local people in Dover demonstrate that, however sympathetic and generous British people might be when foreigners are displaced, they don’t necessarily want them to turn up on their doorsteps. Those who are fortunate to live in the developed world guard their privileges.
… the world’s population is still growing, fast. Within 50 years it will double again, according to some scientists. There ought to be better ways of reducing our numbers than allowing thousands to die in disasters. It’s ridiculous that an intelligent, resourceful race — the human race — should continue to be divided into nations who behave as though other nations’ problems are nothing to do with them, unless they choose to get involved.
…However uncharitable you might feel about sorting out other people’s problems, if we don’t do something about them within fifty years there’ll be a lot more refugees from man-made or natural disasters banging on our doors. It will take a complete change of attitude. Other people’s problems are our problems. Distinctions like nationality, race, party politics, gender, religion and age will have to matter far less to the next couple of generations than being citizens of the world, because the world’s getting smaller every day.
Photo courtesy of NASA National Space Science Data Center.