Paradigm for Peace is a model that I created in the autumn of 2001, following 9/11. The model has four elements:

  1. The Defensive and Aggressive Roots of Violence
  2. The Mental, Legal, and Physical Escalators of Violence
  3. Three Facets of Solutions
  4. Cooperative Dialogue

A major purpose of this model is to promote understanding, truth, and caring. In this video, I use several charts to outline some of the major Defensive Roots of Violence with regard to the Ukraine conflict. We look at fears and threats as they are experienced by Russia, Putin, and allied Ukrainians on one side of the conflict, and by US policymakers, NATO, and allied Ukrainians on the other side of conflict. In particular, we examine fears with regard to five categories of the Roots of Violence:

  1. Life and Safety
  2. Power and Freedom
  3. Wealth, Land, and Possessions
  4. Values and Identity
  5. Love, Worth, and Friendship

US policy and media makers are in the habit of trivializing, mocking, denying, and ignoring the fears of so-called ‘enemies.” Despite the prevalence of this callous, immature habit, an essential first step to resolving conflict and creating peace is quite the opposite: step into the shoes of the other side, feel their fears, and sincerely imagine what it’s like to experience those fears.

We’ll never create peace with Russia until US policymakers can do this, until they can shed the terrible habit of portraying Russia as evil and instead begin to empathize with the fears Russia, Putin, and allied Ukrainians experience. In the same way, while many of us are enraged with US and NATO foreign policymakers, we must also try to understand the fears that they and allied Ukrainians, including ultranationalists, may actually feel. Only by truly trying to understand how others feel can we figure out the pieces of the puzzle of non-violent conflict resolution. Listening deeply and understanding the other side are the first steps towards peace. If done with sincerity and followed through earnestly with practical solutions, they are powerful enough to prevent war.

Kristin Christman has been independently researching US foreign policy and peace since 9/11. Her channel focuses on US-Russian relations at https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCuNEw9-10lk-CwU-5vAElcg. Kristin graduated summa cum laude from Dartmouth College with a BA in Russian, and she holds Master’s degrees in Slavic languages from Brown University and public administration from SUNY Albany. She is a guest with former UNSCOM weapons inspector Scott Ritter and UNAC coordinator Joe Lombardo on Cynthia Pooler’s program, Issues that Matter, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QDlaLNJih7UPeace Review: A Journal of Social Justice recently published her article on suicide, culture, and peace in their special edition on suicide, Vol. 33 No. 4.  kristinchristman956@gmail.com


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