Editor in Chief: Moh. Reza Huwaida Thursday, November 15th, 2018

A Crying Need for ‘Building a Community with Shared Future’

Humanitarian law is violated flagrantly as streams of civilians’ blood are spilled without an iota of mercy. Children bear the brunt of casualties in Syria, Yemen and Palestine. The pain and sufferings of the people continue unabated in the wake of scourge of war. Regional conflicts and terrorism have inflicted indescribable pain upon both combatants and non-combatants.
Despite the human rights discourse, a large number of people are killed on the grounds of their caste, color and creed. Ethnocentrism, racial injustice and lack of tolerance have left little room for a peaceful coexistence. Peace and prosperity remain elusive as men, women and children are killed in the worst possible way on day-to-day basis. Life has turned extremely cheap and almost 511,000 people mostly civilians were killed only in Syria’s conflict.
The vacuum for tolerance and spirit of brotherhood is strongly felt in human societies. To put it in the words of Nobel Laureate Martin Luther King, “We have learned to fly the air like birds and swim the sea like fish, but we have not learned the simple art of living together as brothers”. Violations of human rights and humanitarian law make the headlines around the globe.
“To save succeeding generations from the scourge of war, which twice in our lifetime has brought untold sorrow to mankind, and to reaffirm faith in fundamental human rights, in the dignity and worth of the human person, in the equal rights of men and women and of nations large and small,” which are stated in the preamble of the UN Charter, the world will have to adhere to building “ a community of shared future for mankind,” as it was put forward by Chinese President Xi Jinping in 2013.
To build a community with shared future, President Xi calls the world to seek common ground and settle the conflicts through communication rather than confrontation and partnership rather than alliance.
Building a community with share destiny is a highly essential for mitigating violence and extending the room for peaceful coexistence. It is self-explanatory that we live in the “global village” with shared destiny. For example, the death of Alan in Mediterranean Sea was outrage to all individuals around the world regardless of his ethnic background. If a child is killed or a woman is dishonored in any corner of the world, the entire humanity will be shocked. In other words, the outbreak of a disease jeopardizes the life of all, the economic crisis hurts prosperity everywhere, the danger of nuclear attacks threatens all nations, the operation of extremists puts the life of all at risk, and the violent death of an individual outrages the collective conscience. Hence, human societies have shared destiny in this global village and have to seek common ground to change this village into a utopia that all could live a free and prosperous life, that all could enjoy equal rights and liberties and all could exercise their human rights without fear of being discriminated on the basis of their color, race or belief. 
Although constructing a community with shared future is ambitious and challenging, it is possible if the world practices upon the following principles:
(1) Respecting the Inherent Rights and Dignity of Mankind:
It is aptly said in the preamble of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights that “recognition of the inherent dignity and of the equal and inalienable rights of all members of the human family is the foundation of freedom, justice and peace in the world”. It is further stated that “disregard and contempt for human rights have resulted in barbarous acts”.
With this in mind, all the ongoing war and violence originate from disregard to the inherent dignity and fundamental rights of peoples. That is, individual are not able to exercise their rights and liberty and they are discriminated on the grounds of their racial, ethnic and religious backgrounds.
To view the issue of terrorism, the radical militants, mainly the self-proclaimed Islamic State (IS) group, stoke sectarian violence in Iraq, Syria, Afghanistan and Pakistan and spill the blood of people merely for their religious practices. The deadly attack on an educational center in Kabul on 15 August which killed and wounded more than 100 students from Shiite ethnic group shows that the militants seeks to foment sectarianism. Moreover, the IS group killed thousands of Shiite and Yazidi people in Iraq due to their faith unlike to that of the IS. Thus, people rights and dignity are trampled upon on the basis of their color, race and faith, which is against international principles and rule of war.
(2) Practicing upon Moral Values
All human beings “are endowed with reason and conscience” and should listen to the call of their conscience and “act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood”.
Martin Luther maintains in his Nobel Lecture, “If we are to survive today, our moral and spiritual ‘lag’ must be eliminated.”
We also feel the void of moral values in our collective life. People tend to care only about their own life showing less concern to the pain and anguish of the individuals around them.
Lack of ethical code is easily tangible in the life of modern men, who show no empathy or sympathy to the civilians who lose their life in conflicts. The world turns a blind eye to the blood of Yemeni, Syrian and Palestinian children which is drying up.
But if people practice upon ethical code, they will feel the anguish of one another, raise their voice against injustice, peace and prosperity will emerge and building a community with shared future will be possible.