human rights, peace and democracy - agenda and debates

August 18, 2008 May 18th Memorial Foundation Francis D. Lee

Key Impact of Globalization
 Emergence

of global politics - multilayered governance and the diffusion of political authority  Expansion of organized violence: military, war system, global arms dynamic, etc.  Global trade, global markets  Global finance  Corporate power and global production networks  Migration of people  Communication and environmental impact of industrialization

About Peace
 Threat,

Protection, Static…  Threat from ouside  Threat from inside

뭘 얘기해도 합의가 안되는 가족이 있지만 , 안 그런 가족의 경우 다른 사람의 의견을 들으며 차분히 상의한다 . 이해하려고 노력한다 .

결국 결정을 내려 모두 기분좋게 된다 . 서로 등돌리지 않으며 , 그럴 경우 곧 화해한다 . 이유는 서로 존중하고 사랑하기 때문 .

그렇지만 항상 서로 고함치고 싸우는 가족도 합심하는 경우가 있는데…

바깥으로부터 어떤 위협을 받을 때 .

여러 사람들의 집단도 마찬가지

함께 일하거나 놀거나 관심사를 공유하는 사람들은 경쟁집단을 상대로 단결하지만 , 더 큰 상대를 만나면 경쟁집단하고도 단결하게 된다 .

국가간 분란이 일어나면 우리는 우리의 국기와 제복과 신념과 역사와 전통을 걸고 단결한다 . 그리고 단결한 마음으로 병사들을 내보낸다 . 상대방도 마찬가지 .

상대방 견해를 잘 들을 수 있다면 싸우지 않고 논란을 해결할 수 있는 경우도 많은데

그리고는 피해위에 상처가 , 모욕위에 경멸이 , 거짓말위에 사기가 겹겹이 쌓인다 .

국가는 패전을 애도한다 . 그러나 승리한 국가 역시 쓰라린 진실에 직면한다 . 시간이 지난 후 슬픔과 분노 , 쓰라림과 죄책감을 느끼게 된다 .

그렇지만 같은 실수를 왜 반복하는지 . 왜 전쟁에 나갈 준비를 하고 위험한 지도자들에게 무기를 대주는가 ? 위험이 존재하는 한 싸울 태세를 해야 하는 국가… 가장 어이없는 면이 다.

Key Points from the slides

Team/Identity  Source of unity or violence Dispute  Not always a conflict Internal order  by external threat or something else

Leader’s role  envisioning or pointing fingers to outside Reconciliation or revenge Different views on sacrifice, bravery, contribution to one’s country…

Peace Agenda
Questions (problematizes)  What? - ‘violence’ and ‘violences’ - things and attitudes that make violence

And, makes an ethical choice, in relation to victims


Object of threat is socially created (educated). Antagonism is educated and internalized. Dominant forces use people’s threat-feeling and antagonism.

Social Enemy Construction
War experience re-interpreted  Dehumanization, demonization, exaggeration of the enemy  Binary identity formation: Us vs Them, Superior vs Inferior  Psychology of ‘we alone”  Vertical hierarchy of belief and obedience  Obsession with order and unity

Globalization and New Forms of Violence
 “Global

warming is a weapon of mass destruction.” of Debt” (Debt Bondage)

 “Violence  New


 We need a stop, a break.

HR as a break, why?
 Universality

- non-derogability
 Indivisibility  Interdependance

 Int’l

hr laws are directly mainly to public authorities: weak in regulating the social effects of international business economics: market entities are for-profit. Human rights are forpeople. A clash. International trade, investment, corporate institutions are designed to promote economic gains, not social values.

 Liberal

 Do

you agree or disagree? “It is only the world hegemonic powers and their elite who are benefiting from human rights agenda, and the actually suffering people around the world have not much benefited.”

Big Corporations with Human Rights?

TNC’s enormous power, sometimes translated in political power, is sometimes beyond the effective control of national governments. Particularly difficult: TNC’s move around/regulations come later, their huge influence in national political system, difficulty of multiple states’ action, difficulty of assessing TNC impact on persons and their human rights) A regulation in one country may be seen as curtailing the competitiveness of “its” corporations vis-à-vis others.

Economic Policies: Impact on HR
 Debt, Loans, and Structural Adjustment Programme


 Reducing government expenditure, by making public-

sector redundancies, freezing salaries, and making cuts in health, education and social welfare services;

 The privatisation of state-run industries, leading to

massive lay-offs with no social security provision and the loss of inefficient services to remote or poor areas;

 Currency devaluation and export promotion,

leading to the soaring cost of imports, land use changed for cash crops, and reliance on international commodity markets; Raising interest rates to tackle inflation, putting small companies out of business; price rises for basic goods and services.

 Removal of price controls, leading to rapid

 Is

it possible to reconcile the tension between security and human rights? Which agenda takes priority, when, why and how? the need to have economic development override human rights obligations? Why or why not? are the key requirements for human rights to go beyond being just a set of hopes?

 Can

 What

HR and Justice
 Do

not discriminate  Protect the minorities  Empower to say no to wrong authority

Challenged Areas of HR
 Capitalism

oriented  Right to Private Property  Right to Development  Right to Peace  Right of Peoples to Control Economic Powers

HR is… HR does…
a break dignifies a person an ethical standpoint makes things happen globalizes our view…

Peace and PM
Violences (not just wars)  Respecting differences  Empower to say no to resort to hatred, threat and violence

 Two

ethical bases of Justice today: Peace and HR (in global context)

State, We and Security
 Security

is the core of modern politics and power relations.  Security is a language about threat, danger, fear, we, them, life-death, and protection.  Security is ‘politics’ of securitization with the purpose of domination.  With security politics, little democracy

A New Agenda
 How

de we dismantle ‘security politics’? = how to de-securitize?

 Redefine

threat (make voice)  Dissolve security expertise (become one)  Redefine ‘we’ and ‘them’  Care and coordination to replace protection

Visions for New Democracy
 New

Vision for Development  Deep Democracy  Guarantee of Peace  Redefine Civil Society  Question the status of religion

New Vision for Development
Looking at development as democracy: In judging development it is not adequate to look at only the growth of GNP or other national indicator as well as it is not fruitful to rebuke development as a concept of progress, but rather it is important to look at how economic development impacts on the lives and capabilities of people including expanding social and cultural rights. How to make development as a key component of democracy?

Deep Democracy
As it is clear from past experience across Asia, instituting a multiparty democracy and an electoral process at local, regional and national level doesn’t ensure economic justice and social justice. So, how to envision a new structure of governance which will ensure justice?

Looking at long lasting peace (not just absence of conflict) and democracy as intertwined process. Which means addressing entrenched societal structure which violates as being basic tenet of democracy and how to address them in a democratic framework?

Re-think Civil Society
How to re-imagine and reconceptualize civil society in an Asian context to make it more inclusive which will transcend the parameter laid by the state so as to make democracy more inclusive and vibrant?

Religion and Secularism
Considering the fact that all countries in South Asia today face a challenge from majoritarian religious mobilization. The need is to bring back secularism as a key tenet of democracy i.e.: striving not just for a secular State but also how to constantly secularize societies.

Sensitivity of ‘Power Relations’
 Visions

for change of power relations starts from many things… (HR, Peace, Justice, Ethics, Democracy, Poverty Eradication… etc) it also starts from myself, here and now… to build deep democracy from here and now!

 But,

 Think

of power/powerless in daily life  Power resources: capital, position, gender, race, status, age, voice, weapon, passport, language, knowledge, frame of thinking (scientism…), colonialism…  Who are those that lack these?  Are they powerless because of that?  Redefine ‘power’

Dignity of human person is the foundation of peace… only if…

 We

keep on thinking and acting critically…