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“When the power of love overcomes the love of power, there will be peace.” Jimi Hendrix

March 10, 2013

Psalm Sunday
by guest blogger Grant Marcus

one in a series of political posts for peace

War aborts the lives of youth, it destroys, defiles
and discards our finite resources, and it pollutes
and heats up the planet.  Militarism around the
globe is responsible for 60% of our carbon foot-

It is really simple arithemetic when you think
about it.  Or as Dwight D. Eisenhower once
said, “Every gun that is made, every warship
launched, every rocket fired signifies, in the final
analysis, a theft from those who hunger and are
not fed, those who are cold and are not clothed.”

In effect, war is the bad economy, and de-
prives its citizens of a life of quality. War may be
an investment for the privileged, but it is a costly
obligation for the poor.  Or as General MacCarth-
ur instructed, “war in many ways is as materially
destructive as war itself.”

Chief Seattle put it in more profound terms:

“The Earth does not belong to man; man belongs
to the Earth.  Man did not weave the web of life,
he is merely a strand in it.  Whatever he does to
the web, he does to himself.”

For these reasons and more, it is a necessity
to achieve peace, humanity’s greatest potential;
for by necessity it should be humanity’s greatest
“Peace is the virtue of civilizations, and war
is its crime.” (Victor Hugo). War is a calamitous
failure of our ability to communicate.  Peace is
its reward.  The enemy is but a story we have
ignored, or left untold.  Peace only serves to
benefit all of us and life on our planet.

We have only made limited progress in this
goal as of late, and have reversed it in terms
of human rights, torture and offensive wars.
We are marching into sovereign nations of the
Mideast the way Hitler marched into Eastern
Europe.  We have set up military bases in 151
of 192 countries around the world.  Meanwhile,
our nuclear arms treaties are all but stagnant,
the emphasis being on fear–who to fear next–
and our re-action, war.

Albert Einstein saw, first hand, the dynamic
of the military before him, and said, “Those
who keep the machinery of war going are a very
powerful body.  They will stop at nothing to make
public opinion subservient to their murderous

General Eisenhower concurred, warning
us about the “military industrial complex,” referring
to those corporations and their lobby who push
extensively for the profits of war.  And it was Vol-
taire, who, ahead of his time, told us what this
powerful lobby of profane propaganda would
mean to our nation when he said, “When you
can make people believe in absurdities, you can
make them commit atrocities.”  And so we have
been, and so we are, in this dirty big business of

At a time, when money, fame, and “entre-
preneurship” has displaced our morality, it is
no coincidence that militarism, “the most luc-
rative of all branches” (T.Paine) is thriving and
consumes over half of every tax dollar.  And
our representatives, who have benefited most
from war, through insider trading, refuse to
fight our wars, and will not let their children
fight them.  They rely on We The People to be
the constant gardeners and slaves of their
latest endeavors.

Our fragile planet, stretched by a larger and
larger industrial global population, can no longer
carry our burdens of militarism and war.  It can
no longer carry the weight of our well-oiled ma-
chinery of death and destruction; nor can it tol-
erate we, the producers of over half the world’s

Our planet, our mother has lifted us, carried
us in her arms, fed us, and ensured our sur-
vival.  Now, after all these years of our demands
and vast developments, it is she who must be
cared for, if she–if we–are to survive.

We once made progress a long time ago
when we declared our “Department of War”
would become a “Department of Defense.”
Now we must go further, and end our defen-
siveness, and create a Department of Peace.

For the greatest way to end war is to stop pre-
paring for it.  The survival of our planet and
we as a people depend on it.

Those most honored and revered in war
are not the grunts on the ground nor the inno-
vators of weapons systems.  The greatest
heroes are those who have brought us peace.
One of our greatest heroes of peace is Jesus
Christ, the “Prince of Peace,” who in healing
a soldier’s ear, chose to die rather than live
by the sword, or by its wrath or vengeance.

At the height of the peace movement, Jimi
Hendrix put it this way: “When the power of
love overcomes the love of power, there will
be peace.”  Today, we need to look closely at
that power complex, the privatization of war,
shareholders and investments in it, and take
the Hendrix remark far more seriously.

Eleanor Roosevelt once asked, “When will
our consciences grow so tender that we will
act to prevent misery rather than to avenge it?”

Jesus Christ suggested the need for this ten-
derness when he advised us to “turn the other
cheek” and “pray for those who persecute you,”
and then “forgive 7 times 70…Blessed are the
peacemakers, for they are the true children
of God.”  This was the grace offered our hu-
manity, the guidance and forgiveness of God.

“The great enemy of truth is very often not
the lie–deliberate, contrived, and dishonest–
but the myth–persistent, persuasive, and un-
realistic”  (JFK).  Isn’t this the exact framework
of our current dilemna, our eternal wars on ter-
ror, and our onward quest of Christian soldiers?

When will we realize that war itself is terror?

When will we, as a people realize that war is
a demonic interpretation of what any God–or
what our God and Christ intended?

Christ knew that war is hate and God is love.

Love cannot be found in a bullet or the prepar-
edness for war.  He knew that our “swords”
need to be “turned into ploughshares.”  When
will our so-called Christians of today stop act-
ing like the Pharisees of yesterday?  When
will the meek–or the rest of us–begin to inherit
peace on earth?  When will we stop and desist
the abortion–the cutting short–of millions of
lives, lives of living breathing blood and flesh,
our sons and daughters, our namesakes, our
future–aborted through war?

The answer may have come from Freder-
ick Douglas, who said, “Power concedes
nothing without a demand.  It never has, and
it never will.”

I want to thank one of our local treasures, David Krieger,
for inspiring this piece on peace.  Many of the quotes
used come from David’s book (one of many) called
“Speaking of Peace,” a book of quotations relevent to the

For those of you who don’t know, David
Krieger is the founder of the Nuclear Age Peace Foun-
dation, and he has lectured throughout the world on the
abolition of nuclear weapons.  He has a Ph.D in political
science.  He resides in Santa Barbara.

Thank you for the inspiration, David. 

Psalm Sunday

Grant Marcus, Ventura, CA

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