Peace abuse

Peace abuse
1 August 2019News in Brief

The Indian government has been carrying out tree-planting, statue-erecting, cycling and so on, all around the world to mark the upcoming 150th birthday of Indian pacifist Mohandas Gandhi.

Right-wing Hindu nationalist prime minister Narendra Modi is asking his Bharatiya Janata Party MPs to hold 93-mile marches (with tree-planting) in their constituencies starting on Gandhi's birthday, 2 October. 150km for 150 years.

On 3 July, an Israeli beer company, Malka Beer,…

31 March 2015News

Praise Gandhi and pass the ammunition ...

On 14 March, Britain’s military commander-in-chief David Cameron (ordering drone and air strikes in Syria and Iraq, and authorising arms exports to 18 countries about whom the foreign office has the ‘most serious wide-ranging human rights concerns’) unveiled a nine-foot bronze statue of pacifist icon Mohandas Gandhi. The glorification of the Indian ascetic in Parliament Square in London cost over £1m (the Martin Luther King Jr memorial in Washington DC, USA, cost over £80m). Cameron said of…

1 March 2012News in Brief

At least one reader was intrigued by the £990 five-day residential training being offered in early March by the NGO ‘Responding to Conflict’, a charity which provides training for groups in conflict situations around the world.

Responding to Conflict is funded by the British government’s department for international development (DFID), the Swiss government, the US government funded Institute of Peace, and many trusts. Their last available accounts (2007-2008) show an income of £712,…

24 January 2012News in Brief

Regular readers will know that PN has taken a keen interest in the story of the $120m “national memorial” statue and garden for US pacifist Martin Luther King Jr, opened in October in Washington DC, USA.

The statue has on its side a quotation from the “drum major” speech given by King two months before his assassination, in which the civil rights leader criticised the egotistical “drum major instinct”, the “desire to lead the parade”.

King said in the speech that, at his…

1 October 2011News in Brief

In August, PN learned for the first time of PUMA Peace, one of the sponsors of the World Peace Festival 2011, which took place 20-27 August in Berlin (no one invited us!). Yes, that’s Puma as in the sportswear company. “Peace starts with me” is a new annual PUMA Peace commission, launched with seven short online films from international artists and filmmakers. Jochen Zeitz, CEO of the sportswear group, said: “At PUMA we feel that we are uniquely positioned to contribute to making the world a…

1 September 2011News in Brief

The “Martin Luther King Jr National Memorial”, a statue and park in Washington DC budgeted at $120m (of which $114m has been raised) was scheduled to be officially opened on 28 August. The ceremony, which US president Barack Obama was to have attended, has been deferred for weeks, possibly months, because of the approach of Hurricane Irene. The 30-foot-high pale granite statue of King, carved by Chinese sculptor Lei Yixin in China, accompanies a 450-foot-long granite wall engraved with…