New Profile, the feminist movement to civil-ize Israeli society, wrote Minister of Education, Gideon Saar, this morning, strongly condemning his recent instructions to prohibit its members' participation in high school debates convened by the Association for Civil Rights in Israel (ACRI) on questions of human rights and freedom of expression.
New Profile wrote the minister that his act had exposed the government's true stand on civil rights and freedom of expression, also belying the Education Ministry's professed respect for tolerance.
“The minister's step was taken in tandem with the decision he took to send yet more military personnel into schools—a move designed to increase enthusiasm for fighting,” New Profile advised in its letter.
It’s well established that many people who join the U.S. military do so because of their economic status. It could be that they do not see options for a civilian job that pays a livable wage, they cannot afford health insurance, or they believe they’ll never be able to go to college without financial aid from the Post-9/11 GI Bill. Whether this belief is accurate or based on an individual’s limited awareness of alternatives, military recruiters are effective at exploiting economic predicament to meet their monthly quotas. Many of us refer to it as economic conscription or the “poverty draft.” It is the reason why counter-recruitment groups spend much of their time and energy gathering and distributing information on alternative sources for job training and college financial aid.
In order to relate militarisation and youth in Chile, we must look to the past and recognise the hundreds of years of militarism in the history of this region. Chile has seen territorial and violent occupations by European colonists, the construction of 'homeland heroes' as the core motivational idea behind patriotism, the legalisation of mandatory military training, huge increases in military spending as compared to social spending, the incorporation of military practices within civilian schools, among many other examples. The brunt of these actions has been born by the population’s most economically vulnerable group, but potentially the strongest in political terms: the country’s boys, girls and young adults. The vulnerability of this segment of the population has allowed it to be exposed to militarisation with ease; potential pockets of resistance are neutralised.
Today, militarism is instilled in society through three different approaches:
On 14th June 2013 the Norwegian parliament decided to introduce conscription for women. The question was on the agenda of all the political parties’ yearly meetings this spring, spearheaded by women from a young generation. The most surprising thing, bearing in mind the Norwegian context, is that the socialist party’s young women were at the very front in calling for this change. The surprise is because this party, and especially the younger generation, have in the past taken a strong antimilitaristic stand. Now, their main argument is that women should have the same rights, as well as taking the same duties, as men. What has happened? Why is conscription for women so important to introduce? What has happened with the former feminist stand that was based on values of worthiness, anti-patriarchy and non-hierarchy, and not automatic equality on the male society’s premises?
Kazakhstan will introduce universal military training for all adult citizens, according to a government decree published on 2nd August.
"The goal of universal military training of citizens is to attract the population to civil defence activities, prepare for necessary contingencies, and build up the armed forces in the period of martial law," the document said.
Training will be compulsory for males aged 16 to 60 years, and women between 18 and 45 years who are childless or whose children are older than 10 years.
Through articles, images, survey data and interviews, Sowing Seeds: The Militarisation of Youth and How to Counter It documents the seeds of war that are planted in the minds of young people in many different countries. However, it also explores the seeds of resistance to this militarisation that are being sown resiliently and creatively by numerous people. READ MORE