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O społecznym sensie prawa z Profesorem Andrzejem Zollem rozmawia Judyta Papp
   15 Apr 2013
There is news of a war that could originate in the distant North Korea and upset the balance of power not only in Asia, but also around the world – and it does not appear that Europe is seriously taking it into consideration. Not everyone is aware that every international armed conflict in which the opponent is threatened with the use of an atomic bomb or other, more advanced versions thereof, may encompass the whole world and cause the outbreak of World War III, a war that would be immensely different in effect from the previous two, one that would be even more cruel and destructive.

Sadly, Korea has a rich history of wars, but the war that divided the country into North and South occurred over the period of 1950-1953 and the effects of its ideological undertones are felt to this day. I remember how in middle school, which I attended in Zywiec in 1950, students were sent out to go from home to home and ask for donations for Korean children, victims of the war that was taking place in Korea at that time. We had nothing against helping the victims of the war, but we were conscious of the fact that what we were doing was not so much about the children that were dying and suffering, bur rather about instilling in us, young students, the notion of who was the aggressor in this war and who was the victim. And it is known the war broke out due to North Korea’s aggression.
Even today, one can distinguish in Korea’s history the key differences between a communist totalitarian country and the modern system of a democratic country. To this day, the country has yet to experience perestroika, the ideas of the ‘Solidarity’ movement have to yet to manifest there; there is only the dictum of the sole, just and all-knowing party and the resultant cult of personality. It is possible that modern European societies are unable to comprehend what this is all about, but the older generations, who have experienced many decades of communist dictatorship, know perfectly well what methods such a dictatorship uses and to what end, so that it can achieve its goals. It makes one wonder how it is possible that such a system of enslavement has managed to survive for so many decades, a system long since recognized and thought of as inhuman, serving the party oligarchy and holding in contempt the common good of a society.
After World War II, Europe has been priding itself on the decisions, which were made 50 years ago, regarding the creation of the European Steel and Coal Community and, later on, regarding the coordination of actions that were supposed to serve as a barrier against the invasion of the communist ideology and of the economic, societal and cultural structures of the communist system. Thanks to these decisions, Europe has created a political and economic system which, having been based on the western standards of democracy, was able to indicate the direction in which the Polish economy and its vision of a democratic system should move. This was done, first and foremost, in order to show and accept the subjectivity of a citizen toward the country and, following that, to introduce a system of adjusting oneself to the requirements, mainly legal ones, of the country in question and of the European Union.
It is true that Europe – aside from the Balkan war in former Yugoslavia, so in Europe, but outside the European Union’s reach – has avoided wars in the classic sense of the word. Territorial wars, religious wars, wars over national identity. But it has yet to discover a method that would prevent serious internal conflicts that destroy the fabric of society of particular countries, where people argue which party, which political orientation should tell the citizens what is the sole, just model of their lives. There can be as many models as there are individuals in a given society, especially if the differences dividing them are not related to important societal bonds, but only to the way of experiencing them and their efforts of creating unity in diverseness.
Should we have reason to fear that Korea will go to war? Certainly so! First and foremost, because each war violates the highest of human principles which are dignity and freedom, and even life itself. Dignity – because war, as a rule, places the goals it wants to achieve over the dignity of man who stops being the subject of laws, instead becoming an object that is used to achieve intended political goals, set out by those who have stepped on the path of war. Freedom – because there is probably nothing else that would limit man’s freedom more than the rules present during war. Finally, war decimates countless people, it causes incalculable material and moral losses. There is also one other very serious reason to oppose solving arguments through war, which can potentially turn into an all-destroying nuclear war and lead to conflict on a global scale.
The older generations of Poles need no explanation of what war is since they have lived through it. The younger people know of it mainly from books, movies and computer games, which treat war more as play, a kind of entertainment that makes it easy to relieve one’s dormant aggression. Real war, however, is not a toy, but a solid and destructive force, aimed against man whom it humiliates and destroys.
Every war begins first in the heart of a man who is unable to forgive and who, instead of extending one’s hand for peace, reaches for deadly weaponry.

Author: Bp Tadeusz Pieronek / ©
Illustration: The Kapo Peasant War against the Japanese in 1892
National Gallery of Korean Art in Pyongyang

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