Monday, March 25, 2013

Argumentative Essay



Argumentative Essay

It is next impossible for an individual to claim that they fully comprehend peace if they have not yet disambiguated the concept of war. For a very long time now the concept of war has attracted the interest of scholars, especially in the international relations arena. War refers to the premeditated meting out of violence by structured human groups. It is usually easy to detect and disambiguate all out military offensives launched by particular nations on others. The nature of war is not always political as has been argued by some thinkers such as Gray. On the contrary, the character of war in the contemporary society has greatly transformed with the wars being witnessed in the contemporary day indicating a great propensity towards being cultural, social and economic. It is noteworthy that apart from the political aspect of war, there are other dimensions such as the social and economic ones. As a matter of fact, unlike the Cold War and the World Wars which were caused by predominantly political reasons, many of the contemporary day wars or threats of war are closely linked to social and economic reasons. There are a variety of forces that have brought about changes in the nature of war; such forces include democracy, rate of globalization and the formation of establishments that make it almost impossible for nations to engage in war.
[1]Gray claims that the nature of war all warfare that is instigated by mankind is about politics. According to him only politics has the propensity to cause the massive loss of life and property that is usually witnessed in the occurrence of a war. The principle behind this assertion is the fact that for any form of aggression to be instigated, Gary argues that there must be a structuring of people who are tied by a common cause for meting out the aggression. According to such an argument, whether the common cause is social, cultural or spiritual, it is perceived as being ultimately political. This however fallacious; not all the structured groups in human civilization are driven by political reasons or ties to commit aggression. More often than not, political warfare necessitates that there be two or more warring sides who engage in an all out offensive against each other. The forms of aggressions being witnessed today are mostly sanctioned by ethnic factions or financial divisions in society.
[2]The modern wars being witnessed in the 21st century are more social than political in nature. Many of the root causes of these wars are linked to social injustices and inequalities which the warring groups are confronted with. These social inequalities and injustices lead to stratifications in the societies between those considered to be of high social status and the ones below. According to the Marxist principles, the oppressed realized that they are being trodden down upon and respond by retaliating.[3] Minorities who feel that they are neither discriminated upon nor treated unevenly as compared to the majority group are less likely to instigate any forms of aggression as compared to those that feel they are unfairly treated. In the late years of the 20th century, the political administration of the United States of America had to reassess and advance the rights of marginalized groups in Eastern Europe so as to avoid a civil war. In the year 2007-2008, the US administration in collaboration with the UN had to intervene in the Kenyan situation so as to abate the social inequalities that are believed to cause the 2007-2008 post election violence in which many lives were lost and much property destroyed.
[4]The nature of war is not always political due to the fact that it has a cultural dimension to it; the unmanaged socio-cultural discrepancies that exist between diverse peoples and state have been known to be the very instrumental towards causing violence or war. As a matter of fact, rather be political, most of the greatest wars in the history of human civilization have been caused by the racial, national and religious discrepancies that exist amongst the different peoples of the world. The persecutions that the Jews have gone through over the years such as the Inquisition, Pogroms, Black Plaque and the Holocaust at the hands of the Nazi Germans were very cultural in nature.  Such cultural wars or genocides were fuelled by the occurrence of one culture perceiving itself as being superior to another. Hitler was convinced of the German’s superiority to the Jews in every aspect, especially the cultural one. According to him, the Jews were an evil lot, who if not speedily annihilated had the propensity to contaminate the purity of the Germans.[5]
[6]In the modern day the issue of terrorism, believed to be funded by some wayward Arab nations is more of a socio-cultural and religious aspect than the political nature that [7]Gary argues is inherent of all wars. What many of these Islamic countries are protesting against, although in very undiplomatic techniques, is the westernization (read Americanization) of the world which is taking place as a consequence of globalization. In their efforts to keep their religion and social cultural ways of life ‘pure’ and unadulterated by the ‘evil’ western influences, the radical groups from the Islamic nations are willing to do anything. America and all other nations that are allied to it are thus perceived as enemies who should be annihilated and their ‘evil influences’ on a ‘pure’ culture brought to a stop. Despite the fact that the end result is war and aggression which consequently attracts the attention of political administrations, this aggressions is not in real sense political in nature.  The underlying causes are purely cultural.
[8]In conclusion therefore, the nature of war is not always political as has been argued by some thinkers such as Gray. On the contrary, the character of war in the contemporary society has greatly transformed with the wars being witnessed in the contemporary day indicating a great propensity towards being cultural, social and economic. It is not absolutely factual to claim that wars are inherently political in nature. On the contrary, as illustrated in this essay, many of the wars in which a majority of human civilizations have found themselves entangled have been caused by either social or cultural dynamics; such dynamics include social injustice and inequalities, feelings of cultural inferiority or superiority as well as lack of democracy and cultural imperialism by powerful nations.


Work Cited
Collins Gray: ‘Irregular Warfare: One Nature, Many Characters’ Strategic Studies Quarterly

 (2007) Pp. 35-40
Kolawole a. Owolabi: ‘Globalization, Americanization and Western imperialism’ VOL 16 NO 2
July Journal Of Social Development In Africa (2001) Pp. 71-80
Stephen Van Evera: ‘Causes and Prevention of War’ (2009) pp. 1-5
Wendy Doniger: ‘Splitting the Difference’ (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, (1999), Pp. 65




[1] Collins Gray: ‘Irregular Warfare: One Nature, Many Characters’ Strategic Studies Quarterly

 (2007) Pp. 35-40

[2] Wendy Doniger: ‘Splitting the Difference’ (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, (1999), Pp. 65

[3] Stephen Van Evera: ‘Causes and Prevention of War’ (2009) pp. 1-5

[4] Kolawole A. Owolabi: ‘Globalization, Americanization and Western imperialism’ VOL 16 NO 2 July Journal Of Social Development In Africa (2001) Pp. 71-80

[5] Stephen Van Evera: ‘Causes and Prevention of War’ (2009) pp. 1-5
[6] Kolawole a. Owolabi: ‘Globalization, Americanization and Western imperialism’ Vol 16 No 2 July Journal Of Social Development In Africa (2001) Pp. 71-80

[7] Collins Gray: ‘Irregular Warfare: One Nature, Many Characters’ Strategic Studies Quarterly

 (2007) Pp. 35-40

[8] Stephen Van Evera: ‘Causes and Prevention of War’ (2009) pp. 1-5