Your Excellencies, distinguished Nobel laureates, Ladies and Gentlemen:
Only today we find new awareness of the new historical-political reality, in which the East-West axis in matter of international crisis turned into a North-South direction, arousing the loss of a 20 year “balance of terror” and an alarming increase in the number of local conflicts.
It is definitely not a matter concerning only the African continent, scene of strong political, religious, ethnic and post-colonial tensions and theatre of warlike events, which are too often forgotten by the western moral and media attention. War emergency in Africa cruelly mirrors the difficulty in successfully facing peace issues all over the world. Could we say, in good faith, that horror and armed violence we live in today’s world is the true product of the will of all of its inhabitants?
But even in our most sophisticated forms of western democracy the citizen “in matter of peace and war” seems a subject of the most authoritarian absolute monarchies of the past; deprived of his own right to choose and literally transparent, inexistent, before the less and less clear “state reasons” leading governments towards aggressive and violent solutions. The right to refuse such politics is left to the elections at the end of the legislation, when it is always too late to really influence the facts and to put misdeeds right.
Therefore what becomes crucial is the so called “civil society”, being self organised according to its own principle of a solid and cooperative humanity and, often, the only voice rising against the politics of single States.
It is a bright history that of “civil society”, which was borne in the XIX century with the most vanguard minds of that time who, ignoring the nations borders and prescinding from political, economical, cultural and religious conditions, expressed the very same peace concept we share nowadays and founded the focal instruments of a less iniquitous planetary society. The International Committee of the Red Cross, the Nobel Foundation and its Peace Prize, the International Peace Bureau, the International Arbitration and the International Humanitarian Law have been carried out and recognised by the States thanks to the work of a part of the civil society which was strong and capable enough, as an expression of such noble, high issues and containing such a deep logic, not to be allowed to be denied by anyone. The original thought allowing the accomplishment of these objectives was the “rediscovery” of the importance of the individual combined with the concept of “humanity”: dignified human beings and not slaughter animals for battles. These “forefathers” of ours, pioneers of the future, were women and men who endorsed the values of Freedom of Conscience, Equal Rights and Protection of the Rights for everyone, and Brotherhood among all the nations of the World without any distinction of race and religious belief and devoted their strengths and passion to make these values come true, improving Humanity.
Even today, sometimes, oblivious of its own history, the “civil society” grows bigger and bigger and through its different forms of movements succeeded in sesitizing more and more citizens all around the world against war.
Unfortunately, the state of non-war is still far from being a true “peace”. Therefore we need “civil society” to consciously refound in its soul the organisation of the movements and Historical Recurrence; strengthening the recognition and respect of the thought and life of humanity to make it be the most significant transformer of the need of peace of the “peoples” trough its implementation in concrete and operative projects. To transform these needs with the necessary conviction and authority to apply a powerful transversal leverage able to impose a definitive will of peace and give a true and concrete voice to the planetary “Other Force” which is still nearly ignored: the voice of the non represented, the humble, the ignorant, the slaves, those who have no rights, the ill, the prisoners and those who are under age.
These are the reasons why Africa, tortured as never before, with its continuous emergency, represents the first, nearest and most significant test stand; and can and, indeed, must become at the same time forge and melting pot of new and determining autonomous considerations, of ideas and concrete realisations of the human work for a planetary life in which the pathology of war is completely abolished, eradicated, absent.
Therefore I find apt the quotation of an Italian scholar, friend and scientist:
“Today is the tomorrow we had to worry about yesterday”
May this sentence, with its simplicity, goad us into recovering the too much time lost in following egoistic feelings and finally build the project of Global Peace!
Rome, lì 26 novembre 2005 - Danilo Raveggi
TRANSLATED BY KATIA MEDRI - IPB-Italia Student Group