30/11/2017 |

Appeal from German Society: Disarmament Instead of Armament


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An unusual broad social alliance is sending an urgent call for disarmament. Signers include the Nobel laureate Paul Crutzen, the Trade Union Chairpersons Reiner Hoffmann (DGB), Frank Bsirske (ver.di), Michaela Rosenberger (NGG) and Marlis Tepe (GEW), Theologist Margot Käßmann, leading representatives of the environmental movement such as DNR Chairman Kai Niebert and the BUND Chairman Hubert Weiger, scientists including Gesine Schwan, Ernst Ulrich von Weizsäcker, Frigga Haug and Ulrich Brand, politicians from three parties such as the members of the German parliament (Bundestag) Rene Röspel (SPD), Katja Kipping (DIE LINKE.) and Katja Keul (Bündnis90/die Grünen), persons engaged in the cultural sector such as Wolfgang Niedecken, Udo Lindenberg and Renan Demirkan, as well as activists from the peace movement.

The text of the Statement, available here, states that the German Federal Government plans to nearly double the military spending to two percent of German economic output (GDP). This is what NATO agreed. But this two percent, or at least a further 30 billion euros, is missing in the civilian sector. This includes schools and day-care centers, social housing, hospitals, public transportation, municipal infrastructure, retirement provisions, ecological reconstruction, climate justice, and international aid for empowerment and capacity building.

Furthermore, there is no debate regarding security policies which require an additional large amount for military rearmament. Instead, we need more resources for conflict prevention than the main objective of foreign and development policy. We should start with this: stop military rearmament, reduce tensions, build mutual trust, create perspectives for development and social security. The military does not solve problems.

Conflict solutions in this XXI century should be based on negotiations. No increase in military expenditure. Disarming must be the order of the day. Citing Buckminster Fuller, livingry is the solution, instead of weaponry.