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Is a new Cold War coming?

Should we dig down, or should we find maps and compasses? asks the leader of Norway's Peace Team, Kari Anne Ness.


  1. February la Secret service forward its annual report, Focus 2019, where they conclude that the security policy threat to Norway is greatest from Russia and China. Confidence between the west and the east continues to deteriorate. Why is it like that?

"Where does the past exist – if it exists at all? In documents. It is written down. In records. And…? In the mind. In human memory. In memory. Oh well. We, the Party, control all records and we control all memories. Then we control the past, don't we? ” The lines are from the novel 1984 by George Orwell. The classic psychological thriller takes place in a dystopian society, where the protagonist, who works in the Ministry of Truth, is forced to rewrite history the way the Big Brother (the dictator of society) wants it. The novel begs the question: If people cannot learn from history, how can we create a better future?

The lack of trust

The Brookings Institution (BI) – one of the most prestigious think tanks in the world – published in the 2014 article «How to Avoid a New Cold War", Where they wrote:" It is important to find a balance between sanctioning Russia […] and keeping the door open for better relations in the future. " BI warns against the West's well-known strategy of focusing on "the strong man" (Vladimir Putin) and his inner circle. This strategy failed catastrophically in Iraq, Libya and Syria – with dire suffering for the civilian population as a result. Say what you will about Putin, but he has most of his countrymen with him.

The lack of trust between Russia and the United States has its roots back to World war one. But no matter what glasses you read the story with, the most fundamental question must be: How can Russia become a partner for the West to secure world peace?

Vision of lasting peace

Mutual trust is the best prerequisite for peacekeeping. How to build trust that has been weakened over a hundred years – literally? We can learn from a Harvard professor Frances Frei, which says that trust is built off authenticity, logic and empathy. If one of these three pillars falters, confidence is weakened. These principles must be used by our leaders in local, national and international communication.

Instead of using forces on deeper trenches and stronger enemy images, rather than repeating the mistakes of history in weapon races that were previously prerequisites for world wars, let us find maps and compass that lead us where we want: to a world community with as little human suffering as possible. The maps exist! peace Work isnt!

Support canceled

Unfortunately, the support scheme "Information work for peace" has now been discontinued. Since World War II, it has contributed almost continuously to our operation of the country's oldest peace organization. Today, only work on nuclear disarmament is supported. Norges Fredslag has human resources to conduct information work and active interventions for peaceful conflict management and capacity building at local, national and international level. We believe it is a democratic problem that the population's insight into peace policy and peace culture issues is weakened. The peace group is politically independent and seeks support for the peace cause from all political ideological platforms. The Peace of Norway urges Norwegian politicians to:

• Sign the International Nuclear Weapons Association
• Introduce a preventive ban on autonomous weapons – weapon systems without meaningful human control
• Turn the emphasis on deterrence at the expense of reassuring Russia
• Be transparent and democratic in security policy decision-making

• Be authentic, logical and empathetic in their communication locally, nationally and internationally to build trust and promote peace
• Restore public support for "Enlightenment work for peace" beyond work on nuclear disarmament

See also:

The Peace of Norway

International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons: ICAN

Stop Killer Robots
Chairman of the Norwegian Peace Team

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