Other Than Sports, Can You Think of a Means by Which To Bring People and Nations Together?

Posted by DipNote Bloggers
May 23, 2008
Preparing for the 2008 Olympics

This last week, we’ve seen how soccer can be as big a tool of diplomacy as a bilateral. Russia and England came together at the European Champions League final, and many saw the contest as an opportunity to ease tensions between the two countries. As summer approaches, the Olympics will bring the world together in Beijing. Through international sporting competition, we see messages of understanding, cultural tolerance and mutual respect.

Other than sports, can you think of a means by which to bring people and nations together?

Comments

Comments

JOE
|
Tennessee, USA
May 24, 2008

Joe in Tennessee writes:

1. MUSIC...the most relative to all cultures and ages.

2. Inter Cultural Children activities. i.e.: In Israel they have a nature program for young children combining Israeli and Palestinian children. By showing the children the natural environment they have in common, it promotes a connection and not separation with each other. By starting early, programs such as this can aid in changing decision making as an adult in divided cultures latter. It is pro active in every way.

3. Rebuilding programs with both or all parties involved on all sides. Not simple restructuring by a third party. Most people are good in nature and working together toward a common goal which is productive can help. Perhaps one adult who would not normally talk to another now would, even in necessity: but a hammer and nail is better than gun in hand is it not?

I am sure others will come up with more, but change is hampered more by poor leaders than the civilians they lead. If we could simply eliminate the dictators and those who are a hindrance to a productive society it would be a quicker start -- but that is unrealistic.

Eric
|
New Mexico, USA
May 24, 2008

Eric in New Mexico writes:

Space, the final frontier...

Chul-hong
|
South Korea
May 27, 2008

Chul-hong in South Korea writes:

Unexpected natural disasters-tsunami, earthquake, hurricane- tend to bring people together.

Concerns over global issues such as environmental problems have a tendency to make nations collaborate.

Kathie
|
Pennsylvania, USA
May 24, 2008

Kathie in Pennsylvania writes:

Music, humanitarian causes, religion, definitely soccer, respect, It all comes down to.... DIPLOMACY...no matter what path you take to achieve it.

John
|
Greece
May 26, 2008

John in Greece writes:

Yes! But Manchester won. Not the Russians. ...As always.

Thank God in which we trust!

Don't you see what they are trying to do? Russians are trying to "buy" Europe.

By the way, this very time I am writing this comment, Eurovision is ON and "hot" in Europe's TV channels.

Please, co-bloggers, just study the voting "strategy" they use. "Which" country votes for "which" country?...

Nothing has changed since the Cold War. They (Russians) have simply changed strategy.

That's why I am for Kalomira who is a Greek-American or American-Greek (whatever) nice girl.

And I do not care about the result, because she is a LADY!

Thomas
|
Arizona, USA
May 26, 2008

Thomas in Arizona writes:

Easy ...natural disasters. We have issues with Burma's government but we were among the first to offer assistance, same after the Tsunamis a few years ago, and numerous other examples could be cited Sad that it's a the case, but it does show our basic nature.

Richard
|
Virginia, USA
May 26, 2008

Richard in Virginia writes:

I think technology has brought people together already, and continues to do the same now. To communicate and educate, no longer requires proximity.

Marcia W.
|
District Of Columbia, USA
May 26, 2008

Marcia in Washington writes:

I would like to see cities in the United States establish "sister city" relationships with cities in Iraq and Afghanistan. We could help support schools, establish pen pals (including sending pictures or artwork where there are language barriers), work toward exchange visits of officials and perhaps performing artists, etc.

John
|
Greece
May 26, 2008

John in Greece writes:

@ Eric in New Mexico -- And here is the first frontier Eric ...on the way to the "final"!

http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/phoenix/main/

I think that U.S.A., after so many efforts, sacrifices, financing etc. should change the classical "sky is the limit" into "space is unlimited."

Congratulations NASA!

Lewis
|
Japan
May 27, 2008

Lewis in Japan writes:

The Olympics are the most successful multinational events because they bring people together in a competitive manner, harnessing the national pride in the heart of every spectator across the globe.

Music and concerts are also effective in bringing nations together, as are smaller sporting events (such as the World Cup). However, both of these are successful to a lesser degree- music lacks the aspect of competition (or, at least the kind that most people find exciting to watch) and soccer lacks the variety found at the Olympics needed to appeal to all nations equally.

To be truly successful in unifying the international community, an event must be universally appealing (offering something that everybody loves; sports in the case of the Olympics) or fight something universally hated (famine, hunger or natural disaster). It must be safe from militarization- we cannot achieve an Olympic-like degree of unity through a project such as the International Space Station because missile/rocket technologies can be adapted to military purposes (hence China's invitation to the ISS was 'lost in the mail' at the behest of the U.S.). Lastly, it must be accessible- the average citizen must feel an indirect participant, either through viewing on the sidelines or simply knowing that any man can be a direct participant with suitable devotion and practice.

Multinational relief efforts are successful in bringing people together in this way, yet face stark challenges when nations fear for their sovereignity. They cannot be relied upon as a means by which to promote a joining of nations.

With these thoughts in mind, I feel that the strongest idea (of those presented in previous comments) by which we can bring people and nations together comes from Marcia- that of 'sister cities'.

The Internet has shrunk the world dramatically and would enable a wealth of new possibilities for this concept. Pen-pals are 1988; In 2008, the children of Brownsville, KY (population:637) can have daily email conversations with children in a small Iranian village 20 miles south of the holy city of Qom. Affordable screens and webcams would allow for public 'connection spots' where people strolling in a park could approach the screen and see whats happening at that moment in their sister city, then wave to passerbys there. The local newspaper of one city could also cover events occurring in the sister city- they could support one another during disasters, mail packages of local specialties back and forth, teach each other in their native tongues- the possibilities are limitless. The State Department could facilitate this process by selecting towns (with a focus on rural areas) and contacting foreign governments to find suitable companions.

fanny C.
|
China
May 27, 2008

Chan in Hong Kong writes:

WAR, sadly speaking.

Ronald
|
New York, USA
May 27, 2008

Ronald in New York writes:

Other than sports.....

Music

Art

Food

Money

Jobs

Nature

Wars

Natural Disasters

Chul-hong
|
South Korea
May 27, 2008

Chul-hong in South Korea writes:

International treaty or agency can be an example of given question.

Free Trade Agreement (FTA) could solidify market-bonds between two nations.

Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) has united oil-producing countries on behalf of their interests.

International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), aimed at the nonproliferation of nuclear weapons, has combined nations longing for the world peace.

JOE
|
Tennessee, USA
May 28, 2008

Joe in Tennessee writes:

This is a bit off topic, but on line with what may be needed.

Democratic Leadership world wide that places the value of Life and Human dignity over Political agendas would be a nice start.

The objective of making the Citizens first should not be as difficult today, given the UN would work in a more productive manner of eliminating and restricting negative imputes of regimes who do not serve the overall productive nature of Peace. That does leave the best starting place with the Children of the world; since the adult population seems inflexible, even given historic premises that more than suggest this change is mandated.

The reality of population and culture does make a difference in approach. China, with all its peoples, cannot work well with a Parliamentarian system as in New Zealand, where the small population base and limited resources, as well as self sufficiency values can apply. It is also too vast for a Congressional representation as the U.S. That fact is well documented as they do something very similar now. They do not have a separation of powers or check and balance which is why the core representation places values of State over the Citizens rights without due note. Using China is a good example, as they are a cultured and educated society; but tragically has been led by Communistic values that preclude individual rights and human dignity. That is why there is no remorse by their productions of unsafe working environment, unsafe products, poor quality, counterfeiting of International Trademarks, Products, Copyrights and so on. The Government has no respect for their own Peoples on an individual level; therefore, no respect for fair trade. That concept, of Respect, is missing in most Communist leadership.

The value that you will find in Sports, Music, Child relationships etc is RESPECT for each other on an individual basis. Even where Nature is factored, we realize there are powers beyond our control and only by working together can we restore. It provide a platform of Respect on more than one level.

What the world may need is a new Religion that circumvents all values of negative interpersonal relationships; perhaps something more logical and respectful of all, not any which are limiting. It is the encompassment of restriction of personal values that destroy respect ...and separations created by false leaders and profits to maintain their power which cause so much grief in this world. Very seldom does the average man, woman or child want to hurt. People are basically good world wide. It is their social enviornment which causes change in rational.

There is no Waldens Pond and evil will always exist; but, if we don't recognize the evil and make changes on a more permanent level we may all be on borrowed time. There is no longer time for historical political rhetoric regarding the Pendulum Swing of Life. Our level of negotiation must match our technological advancements.

Tom
|
District Of Columbia, USA
May 30, 2008

Tom in Washington, DC writes:

The Fulbright program is one of the best ways to bring people together. I was a Fulbright student in Venezuela many years ago and that experience enabled me to spend another 30 years working for NGO's in Latin America and elsewhere and now to be taking church missions to Central America.

However the use of the program as a weapon of diplomacy is a perversion of the purposes of the program.

The New York Times reports on May 30 that scholarships will be denied to young people of Gaza because Israel will not allow them to leave. This action by Israel is a fine example of the way in which our most peaceful, yet potent elements of our diplomacy is that part of the world is being manipulated by the hardliners in Israel. And it is an example of how we give in to their wishes, not matter how perverse.

Please change this policy now. Instruct your employees in Israel to pressure the government of Israel to change their counterproductive policy.

Thank you.

.

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