Davos 2023: Where ‘war is peace’ became accepted
As if billionaires arriving on private jets to lecture us about climate change or unelected officials talking about the value of democracy weren’t enough, we have now got to the “war is peace” stage of the mind manipulation programme
By Andreas Vou
A five-day event that plays host to leaders of politics and industry in a remote mountain resort in Switzerland isn’t a scenario that instils an optimistic outlook on the world, but it seems that this year’s World Economic Forum in Davos has taken in its bleak vision for the future to another level.
At this point, it wouldn’t seem farfetched to assume that the endless panel discussions are intent on having a numbing effect on those watching on, in the hope that a desensitzsed public will not be able to see through some of the hypocritical and outright dangerous rhetoric.
As if billionaires arriving on private jets to lecture us about climate change or unelected officials talking about the value of democracy weren’t enough, we have now got to the “war is peace” stage of the mind manipulation program.
If there was still any doubt as to whether western leaders want the war in Ukraine to roll on without a viable end in sight, there should be no more. As western elites do only too well, it is achieved by framing endless conflict as a measure for peace.
Perpetuation of a conflict
Finnish prime minister Sanna Marin’s comments typified this sentiment. She believes that funds should continue to endlessly pour into the conflict in a bid to help Ukraine “win” the war – in other words, she is calling for the perpetuation of a conflict that causes immeasurable suffering to Ukrainians.
“We don’t know when the war will end, but we have to make sure that the Ukrainians will win. I don’t think there’s any other choice. If Russia would win the war, then we would only see decades of this kind of behaviour ahead of us,” Marin said.
“I think other countries are looking very closely at what is happening now in Ukraine. And if Russia would win, then it would send a message that you can invade another country, you can attack another country and you can gain from that,” she added.
NATO or Orwell? ‘Weapons are the way to peace’
But if Marin’s words seem counter-productive, NATO secretary general Jens Stoltenberg’s remarks appear to have come directly out of a dystopian novel.
The most famous of all, George Orwell’s Nineteen Eighty-Four, saw the authoritarian Party subverting reality with paradoxical slogans that, with enough repetition, came to be believed by the public.
The three slogans were “War is Peace, Freedom is Slavery, and Ignorance is Strength” – and Stoltenberg appears to be on Step 1 of the process as he proposed “more military support” as the “only way” to a “peaceful solution” in Ukraine.
“If we want a negotiated, peaceful solution to the war in Ukraine, we need to provide military support to Ukraine. That’s the only way,” he said during a panel discussion.
“Weapons are the way to peace, and that may sound like a paradox, but the only way to have a negotiated agreement is to convince President Putin that he will not win on the battlefield. He has to sit down and negotiate.”
The only relief such rhetoric will bring is to the war industry that continues to reap the profits of yet another horrible conflict.
However, for the people who pay the price – both in Ukraine as a direct result of the war – and everyday Europeans – indirectly through the cost of living surge and energy crisis – this cannot go on any longer.
Only one thing can prevent more bloodshed: a diplomatic solution that immediately stops the bloodshed.