Det danske Fredsakademi
Kronologi over fredssagen og international politik 2. August
2012 / Timeline August 2, 2012
1. August 2012, 3. August 2012
Uzbekistan bans foreign military bases in major blow to
The Uzbek parliament passed a law on Aug. 2 banning foreign
military bases on its soil.
Reformed Teaching Of History
By John Scales Avery
Today the world urgently needs a new global ethic, - an ethic where
loyalty to family, community and nation will be supplemented by a
strong sense of the brotherhood of all humans, regardless of race,
religion or nationality.
Schiller expressed this feeling in his “Ode to Joy”, a
part of which is the text of Beethoven's Ninth Symphony. Hearing
Beethoven's music and Schiller's words, most of us experience an
emotion of resonance and unity with the message: All humans are
brothers and sisters - not just some - all! It is almost a national
anthem of humanity. The feelings that the music and words provoke
are similar to patriotism, but broader. It is this sense of a
universal human family that we need to cultivate in education, in
the mass media, and in religion.
We already appreciate music, art and literature from the entire
world, and scientific achievements are shared by all, regardless of
their country of origin. We need to develop this principle of
universal humanism so that it will become the cornerstone of a new
Educational reforms are urgently needed, particularly in the
teaching of history. As it is taught today, history is a chronicle
of power struggles and war, told from a biased national standpoint.
Our own race or religion is superior; our own country is always
heroic and in the right.
We urgently need to replace this indoctrination in chauvinism by a
reformed view of history, where the slow development of human
culture is described, giving adequate credit to all who have
contributed. Our modern civilization is built on the achievements
of many ancient cultures. China, Japan, India, Mesopotamia, Egypt,
Greece, the Islamic world, Christian Europe, and the Jewish
intellectual traditions all have contributed. Potatoes, corn,
squash, vanilla, chocolate, chili peppers, pineapples, quinine,
etc. are gifts from the American Indians. Human culture, gradually
built up over thousands of years by the patient work of millions of
hands and minds, should be presented as a precious heritage - far
too precious to be risked in a thermonuclear war.
The human race has a genius for cooperation. All of the great
achievements of modern society are achievements of cooperation. We
can fly, but no one builds an airplane alone. We can cure diseases,
but only through the cooperative efforts of researchers, doctors
and medicinal firms. We can photograph and understand distant
galaxies, but the ability to do so is built on the efforts of many
cooperating individuals. The comfort and well-being that we
experience depends on far-away friendly hands and minds, since
trade is global, and the exchange of ideas is also global.
The heritage of knowledge and culture, on which our complex
civilization depends, is a monument to cooperation. Science and
technology could not exist without the worldwide sharing of
knowledge. Art, literature and music are the common heritage of
humanity. We are who we are because of sharing.
All the peoples of the earth have contributed to the great treasure
of human culture that we all share: Agriculture was invented
independently in the Middle East, in Asia and in the New World, and
from these places it spread throughout the earth. The art of
writing and the first steps towards mathematics and astronomy had
their beginnings in Mesopotamia and Egypt. India and Arabia gave us
algebra and chemistry. The art of printing began in Asia, and
further developed in Europe. Japanese art influenced European
painters such as Degas, Gauguin and Van Gogh.
Today, the sharing of knowledge and culture is symbolized by the
Internet, which binds us all together, no matter where we are
living. The authors who contribute to Wikipedia do so from an
unselfish wish to increase the sum of human knowledge. Their names
do not even appear on their articles.
Let us use our almost miraculous modern communications media to
bind humanity together. Let us eliminate the insanity and
immorality of war from our future, and let us replace it with a
more noble goal - the development and sharing of the world's
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