An anti-war movement (also antiwar) is a social movement, usually in opposition to a particular nation's decision to start or carry on an armed conflict, unconditional of a maybe-existing just cause. The term anti-war can also refer to pacifism, which is the opposition to all use of military force during conflicts, or to anti-war books, paintings, and other works of art. Many activists distinguish between anti-war movements and peace movements. Anti-war activists work through protest and other grassroots means to attempt to pressure a government (or governments) to put an end to a particular war or conflict.
Substantial opposition to British war intervention in America led the British House of Commons on 27 February 1782 to vote against further war in America, paving the way for the Second Rockingham ministry and the Peace of Paris.
Substantial anti-war sentiment developed in the United States during the period roughly falling between the end of the War of 1812 and the commencement of the Civil War, or what is called the antebellum era (A similar movement developed in England during the same period). The movement reflected both strict pacifist and more moderate non-interventionist positions. Many prominent intellectuals of the time, including Ralph Waldo Emerson, Henry David Thoreau (see Civil Disobedience) and William Ellery Channing contributed literary works against war. Other names associated with the movement include William Ladd, Noah Worcester, Thomas Cogswell Upham and Asa Mahan. Many peace societies were formed throughout the United States, the most prominent of which being the American Peace Society. Numerous periodicals (e.g., The Advocate of Peace) and books were also produced. The Book of Peace, an anthology produced by the American Peace Society in 1845, must surely rank as one of the most remarkable works of anti-war literature ever produced.
A recurring theme in this movement was the call for the establishment of an international court which would adjudicate disputes between nations. Another distinct feature of antebellum anti-war literature was the emphasis on how war contributed to a moral decline and brutalization of society in general.
A key event in the early history of the modern anti-war stance in literature and society was the American Civil War, where it culminated in the candidacy of George McClellan for President of the United States as a "Peace Democrat" against incumbent President Abraham Lincoln. The outlines of the anti-war stance are seen: the argument that the costs of maintaining the present conflict are not worth the gains which can be made, the appeal to end the horrors of war, and the argument that war is being waged for the profit of particular interests. During the war, the New York Draft Riots were started as violent protests against Abraham Lincoln's Enrollment Act of Conscription plan to draft men to fight in the war. The outrage over conscription was augmented by the ability to "buy" your way out; the amount of which could only be afforded by the wealthy. After the war, The Red Badge of Courage described the chaos and sense of death which resulted from the changing style of combat: away from the set engagement, and towards two armies engaging in continuous battle over a wide area.
In Britain, in 1914, the Public Schools Officers' Training Corps annual camp was held at Tidworth Pennings, near Salisbury Plain. Head of the British Army Lord Kitchener was to review the cadets, but the immenence of the war prevented him. General Horace Smith-Dorrien was sent instead. He surprised the two-or-three thousand cadets by declaring (in the words of Donald Christopher Smith, a Bermudian cadet who was present) that war should be avoided at almost any cost, that war would solve nothing, that the whole of Europe and more besides would be reduced to ruin, and that the loss of life would be so large that whole populations would be decimated. In our ignorance I, and many of us, felt almost ashamed of a British General who uttered such depressing and unpatriotic sentiments, but during the next four years, those of us who survived the holocaust-probably not more than one-quarter of us – learned how right the General's prognosis was and how courageous he had been to utter it.  Having voiced these sentiments did not hinder Smith-Dorrien's career, or prevent him from carrying out his duty in the First World War to the best of his abilities.
With the increasing mechanization of war, opposition to its horrors grew, particularly in the wake of the First World War. European avant-garde cultural movements such as Dada were explicitly anti-war.
On June 16, 1918, Eugene V. Debs made an anti-war speech and was arrested under the Espionage Act of 1917. He was convicted, sentenced to serve ten years in prison, but President Warren G. Harding commuted his sentence on December 25, 1921.
In 1924 Ernst Friedrich published Krieg dem Krieg! (War Against War!): an album of photographs drawn from German military and medical archives from the first world war. In Regarding the pain of others Sontag describes the book as 'photography as shock therapy' that was designed to 'horrify and demoralize'.
It was in the 1930s that the Western anti-war movement took shape, to which the political and organizational roots of most of the existing movement can be traced. Characteristics of the anti-war movement included opposition to the corporate interests perceived as benefiting from war, to the status quo which was trading the lives of the young for the comforts of those who are older, the concept that those who were drafted were from poor families and would be fighting a war in place of privileged individuals who were able to avoid the draft and military service, and to the lack of input in decision making that those who would die in the conflict would have in deciding to engage in it.
Veterans were still extremely cynical about the motivations for entering World War I, but many were willing to fight later in the Spanish Civil War, indicating that pacifism was not always the motivation. These trends were depicted in novels such as All Quiet on the Western Front, For Whom the Bell Tolls and Johnny Got His Gun.
Opposition to World War II was most vocal during its early period, and stronger still before it started while appeasement and isolationism were considered viable diplomatic options. Communist-led organizations, including veterans of the Spanish Civil War, opposed the war during the period of the Hitler-Stalin pact but then turned into hawks after Germany invaded the Soviet Union.
The war seemed, for a time, to set anti-war movements at a distinct social disadvantage; very few, mostly ardent pacifists, continued to argue against the war and its results at the time. However, the Cold War followed with the post-war realignment, and the opposition resumed. The grim realities of modern combat, and the nature of mechanized society ensured that the anti-war viewpoint found presentation in Catch-22, Slaughterhouse-Five and The Tin Drum. This sentiment grew in strength as the Cold War seemed to present the situation of an unending series of conflicts, which were fought at terrible cost to the younger generations.
Organized opposition to U.S. involvement in the Vietnam War began slowly and in small numbers in 1964 on various college campuses in the United States and quickly as the war grew deadlier. In 1967 a coalition of antiwar activists formed the National Mobilization Committee to End the War in Vietnam which organized several large anti-war demonstrations between the late-1960s and 1972. Counter-cultural songs, organizations, plays and other literary works encouraged a spirit of nonconformism, peace, and anti-establishmentarianism. This anti-war sentiment developed during a time of unprecedented student activism and right on the heels of the Civil Rights Movement, and was reinforced in numbers by the demographically significant baby boomers. It quickly grew to include a wide and varied cross-section of Americans from all walks of life. The anti-Vietnam war movement is often considered to have been a major factor affecting America's involvement in the war itself. Many Vietnam veterans, including the former Secretary of State and former U.S. Senator John Kerry and disabled veteran Ron Kovic, spoke out against the Vietnam War on their return to the United States.
Opposition to the South African Border War spread to a general resistance to the apartheid military. Organizations such as the End Conscription Campaign and Committee on South African War Resisters, were set up. Many opposed the war at this time.
There was initially little opposition to the 2001 Afghanistan War in the United States and the United Kingdom, which was seen as a response to the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks and was supported by a majority of the American public. Most vocal opposition came from pacifist groups and groups promoting a leftist political agenda; in the United States, the group A.N.S.W.E.R. was one of the most visible organizers of anti-war protests, although that group faced considerable controversy over allegations it was a front for the extremist Stalinist Workers World Party. Over time, opposition to the war in Afghanistan has grown more widespread, partly as a result of weariness with the length of the conflict, and partly as a result of a conflating of the conflict with the unpopular war in Iraq.
The anti-war position gained renewed support and attention in the buildup to the 2003 invasion of Iraq by the U.S. and its allies. Millions of people staged mass protests across the world in the immediate prelude to the invasion, and demonstrations and other forms of anti-war activism have continued throughout the occupation. The primary opposition within the U.S. to the continued occupation of Iraq has come from the grassroots. Opposition to the conflict, how it had been fought, and complications during the aftermath period divided public sentiment in the U.S., resulting in majority public opinion turning against the war for the first time in the spring of 2004, a turn which has held since. Many American writers against the war, like Naomi Wolf, were labeled conspiratorial due to their opposition, with others choosing to post their anti-war writings anonymously, such as the anonymous conspiracy author Sorcha Faal. The financial website Zero Hedge offered its anti-war writers the protection of the anonymous pseudonym Tyler Durden for those exposing war profiteering. The American country music band Dixie Chicks opposition to the war caused many radio stations to stop playing their records, but who were supported in their anti-war stance by the equally anti-war country music legend Merle Haggard, who in the summer of 2003 released a song critical of US media coverage of the Iraq War. Anti-war groups protested during both the Democratic National Convention and 2008 Republican National Convention protests held in St. Paul, Minnesota in September 2008.
Organised opposition to a possible future military attack against Iran by the United States is known to have started during 2005–2006. Beginning in early 2005, journalists, activists and academics such as Seymour Hersh, Scott Ritter, Joseph Cirincione and Jorge E. Hirsch began publishing claims that United States' concerns over the alleged threat posed by the possibility that Iran may have a nuclear weapons program might lead the US government to take military action against that country in the future. These reports, and the concurrent escalation of tensions between Iran and some Western governments, prompted the formation of grassroots organisations, including Campaign Against Sanctions and Military Intervention in Iran in the US and the United Kingdom, to advocate against potential military strikes on Iran. Additionally, several individuals, grassroots organisations and international governmental organisations, including the Director-General of the International Atomic Energy Agency, Mohamed ElBaradei, a former United Nations weapons inspector in Iraq, Scott Ritter, Nobel Prize winners including Shirin Ebadi, Mairead Corrigan-Maguire and Betty Williams, Harold Pinter and Jody Williams, Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament, Code Pink, the Non-Aligned Movement of 118 states, and the Arab League, have publicly stated their opposition to a would-be attack on Iran.
English poet Robert Southey's 1796 poem After Blenheim is an early modern example of anti-war literature — it was written generations after the Battle of Blenheim, but at a time when England was again at war with France.
World War I produced a generation of poets and writers influenced by their experiences in the war. The work of poets including Wilfred Owen and Siegfried Sassoon exposed the contrast between the realities of life in the trenches and how the war was seen by the British public at the time, as well as the earlier patriotic verse penned by Rupert Brooke. German writer Erich Maria Remarque penned All Quiet on the Western Front, which, having been adapted for several mediums, has become of the most often cited pieces of anti-war media.
Pablo Picasso's 1937 painting Guernica, on the other hand, used abstraction rather than realism to generate an emotional response to the loss of life from the fascist bombing of Guernica during the Spanish Civil War. American author Kurt Vonnegut used science fiction themes in his 1969 novel Slaughterhouse-Five, depicting the bombing of Dresden in World War II (which Vonnegut witnessed).
The second half of the 20th century also witnessed a strong anti-war presence in other art forms, including anti-war music such as "Eve of Destruction" and One Tin Soldier and films such as M*A*S*H and Die Brücke, opposing the Cold War in general, or specific conflicts such as the Vietnam War. The current American war in Iraq has also generated significant artistic anti-war works, including filmmaker Michael Moore's Fahrenheit 9/11, which holds the box-office record for documentary films, and Canadian musician Neil Young's 2006 album Living with War.
Various people have discussed the philosophical question of whether war is inevitable, and how much it can be avoided, as well as how this can be achieved i.e. what are the necessities of peace. Various people have discussed it from an intellectual and philosophical point of view. Various intellectuals not only have discussed in public but have participated or led anti-war campaigns despite it is different to their main areas of expertise. They went out of their professional comfort zone to warn against or fight against wars.
Here is a list of people who outside this field have authority and used their influence and intellectual rigor favour of in the cause of enlightening against the warmongers.
The Bogambara Prison was a 13-acre maximum security prison and second largest prison in Sri Lanka, after Welikada Prison in Colombo.Conflict (band)
Conflict is an English anarcho-punk band originally based in Eltham in South London. Formed in 1981, the band's original line up consisted of: Colin Jerwood (vocals), Francisco 'Paco' Carreno (drums), Big John (bass guitar), Steve (guitars), Pauline (vocals), Paul a.k.a. 'Nihilistic Nobody' (visuals). Their first release was the EP "The House That Man Built" on Crass Records. By the time they released their first album, It's Time to See Who's Who, on Corpus Christi Records, Pauline and Paul had left the band. Conflict later set up its own Mortarhate Records label, which put out releases by other artists including Hagar the Womb, Icons of Filth, Lost Cherrees, The Apostles, Exitstance, Stalag 17, Admit You're Shit and Potential Threat.
In 1983, Steve Ignorant, who was at the time a member of the band Crass, guested on the band's pro-animal rights single "To A Nation of Animal Lovers". After the dissolution of Crass, Ignorant later became second vocalist for Conflict on a semi-permanent basis. This followed a 1986 gig in Brixton, London, when he had joined the band on stage for a few numbers.
The band has always been outspoken regarding issues such as anarchism, animal rights, the anti-war movement and in their support for the organisation Class War, and a number of their gigs during the 1980s were followed by riots and disturbances.
Former band drummer, Francisco "Paco" Carreno, died on 20 February 2015, at the age of 49.In September 2015, it was announced that vocalist Jeannie Ford had joined the band.Fortunate Son
"Fortunate Son" is a song by the American rock band Creedence Clearwater Revival released on their fourth studio album, Willy and the Poor Boys in November 1969. It was previously released as a single, together with "Down on the Corner", in September 1969. It soon became an anti-war movement anthem; an expressive symbol of the counterculture's opposition to U.S. military involvement in the Vietnam War and solidarity with the soldiers fighting it.The song reached #14 on the United States charts on November 22, 1969, the week before Billboard changed its methodology on double-sided hits. The tracks combined to climb to #9 the next week, on the way to peaking at #3 three more weeks later, on 20 December 1969. It won the RIAA Gold Disc award in December 1970. Pitchfork Media placed it at number 17 on its list of "The 200 Greatest Songs of the 1960s". Rolling Stone placed it at #99 on its "500 Greatest Songs of All Time" list. In 2014, the song was added to the National Recording Registry by the Library of Congress for being "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant."Give Peace a Chance
"Give Peace a Chance" is an anti-war song written by John Lennon (credited to Lennon–McCartney), and performed with Yoko Ono in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. Released as a single in 1969 by the Plastic Ono Band on Apple Records (catalogue Apple 13 in the United Kingdom, Apple 1809 in the United States), it is the first solo single issued by Lennon, released when he was still a member of the Beatles, and became an anthem of the American anti-war movement during the 1970s. It peaked at number 14 on the Billboard Hot 100 and number 2 on the British singles chart.Irish Anti-War Movement
The Irish Anti-War Movement (IAWM) is a left-wing organisation.John Sloboda
John Anthony Sloboda (born 13 June 1950) was Executive Director of the Oxford Research Group, an NGO that seeks to develop non-violent approaches to national and international security issues, from 2005-2009. He is currently Co-Director of ORG's Every Casualty programme. He is also one of the founders of the Iraq Body Count Project.
He was Professor of Psychology at Keele University, UK until 2008, where he now has emeritus status. His academic work has been in music psychology - a subdiscipline which draws together psychologists, neuroscientists and academic musicians. His research interests have focused on the psychological aspects of the study of music performance, the emotional response to music, the functions of music in everyday life, and learning and skill acquisition in music. More recently, he has researched the changing nature of the British anti-war movement. In 2004 he was elected a Fellow of the British Academy where he is a dual member of both the Psychology and History of Music sections. Sloboda was formerly a local representative and teacher of Re-evaluation Counseling in the UK. In 2009 he joined the part-time staff of the Guildhall School of Music & Drama as Research Professor, where he currently directs their Understanding Audiences research programme.
From 1975 to 1995 he was the founding Director of the Keele Bach Choir, a "town and gown" choir based on the Keele University campus. He is also a Patron of Spode Music Week, an annual residential Music school that places particular emphasis on the music of the Roman Catholic liturgy.Kamal Khalil
Kamal Khalil (Arabic: كمال خليل, IPA: [kæˈmæːl xæˈliːl]) is an Egyptian engineer and labour activist. He is a leading member of the Revolutionary Socialists, a representative of the Workers Democratic Party and the founder and director of the Center for Socialist Studies in Cairo. He is a critic of the social democrats, youth parties and the Muslim Brotherhood in the post-Mubarak Egypt. He advocates more workers' unity, particularly in regions such as El-Mahalla El-Kubra, which has in the past been a center of industrial struggle by textile workers. Khalil has said Egypt's workers must create independent trade unions and a political party to represent them: "No party will represent the workers other than the workers' party itself." Prior to the Egyptian Revolution of 2011, Khalil had been arrested many times. In 2003, he was arrested by the State Security Investigations Service (SSI) and placed in solitary confinement for his role in the anti-war movement, causing the Stop the War Coalition in Britain to demonstrate outside the Egyptian Embassy in London.Larry Holmes (activist)
Larry Holmes is the highest official of the Workers World Party, holding the position of first secretary, and a member of the party Secretariat. He founded the Millions for Mumia movement, which seeks the release of Mumia Abu-Jamal, and co-founded the anti-war movement International ANSWER. He is a strong supporter of immigrants rights, and black and brown unity.
He twice ran for President of the United States on the Workers World Party (WWP) ticket, in 1984 and 1988. He was the vice presidential candidate of the WWP in 1992. In September of 2010, Holmes was among the individuals and members of the organizations who attended the conference of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad during his visit in New York. The leader of the Islamic Republic of Iran was in New York to attend the annual UN General Assembly.List of books with anti-war themes
Books with anti-war themes have explicit anti-war messages or have been described as having significant anti-war themes or sentiments. Not all of these books have a direct connection to any particular anti-war movement. The list includes fiction and non-fiction, and books for children and younger readers.Maurice Eisendrath
Maurice Nathan Eisendrath (July 10, 1902 – November 11, 1973) was a leader of American Reform Judaism, the head of the Union of American Hebrew Congregations from 1943 until his death, an author, and an activist, particularly active in the U.S. Anti-war Movement of the 1960s. The Maurice N. Eisendrath Bearer of Light Award, one of the highest honors bestowed by the American Reform Movement, is named in his honor.Not in Our Name
Not in Our Name (NION) was a United States organization founded on March 23, 2002 to protest the U.S. government's course in the wake of the September 11, 2001 attacks; it disbanded on March 31, 2008.Peace movement
A peace movement is a social movement that seeks to achieve ideals such as the ending of a particular war (or all wars), minimize inter-human violence in a particular place or type of situation, and is often linked to the goal of achieving world peace. Means to achieve these ends include advocacy of pacifism, non-violent resistance, diplomacy, boycotts, peace camps, moral purchasing, supporting anti-war political candidates, legislation to remove the profit from government contracts to the Military–industrial complex, banning guns, creating open government and transparency tools, direct democracy, supporting Whistleblowers who expose War-Crimes or conspiracies to create wars, demonstrations, and national political lobbying groups to create legislation. The political cooperative is an example of an organization that seeks to merge all peace movement organizations and green organizations, which may have some diverse goals, but all of whom have the common goal of peace and humane sustainability. A concern of some peace activists is the challenge of attaining peace when those that oppose it often use violence as their means of communication and empowerment.
Some people refer to the global loose affiliation of activists and political interests as having a shared purpose and this constituting a single movement, "the peace movement", an all encompassing "anti-war movement". Seen this way, the two are often indistinguishable and constitute a loose, responsive, event-driven collaboration between groups with motivations as diverse as humanism, environmentalism, veganism, anti-racism, anti-sexism, decentralization, hospitality, ideology, theology, and faith.Post–September 11 anti-war movement
The post–September 11 anti-war movement is an anti-war social movement that emerged after the September 11 terrorist attacks in response to the War on Terrorism.Project MINARET
Project MINARET was a domestic espionage project operated by the National Security Agency (NSA), which, after intercepting electronic communications that contained the names of predesignated US citizens, passed them to other government law enforcement and intelligence organizations. Intercepted messages were disseminated to the FBI, CIA, Secret Service, Bureau of Narcotics and Dangerous Drugs (BNDD), and the Department of Defense. The project was a sister project to Project SHAMROCK.
Starting in 1962, the NSA had a "watch list" of Americans travelling to Cuba, expanded to include narcotic traffickers. Then, from 1967 onwards, President Lyndon B. Johnson included the names of activists in the anti-war movement. Nixon further expanded the list to include civil rights leaders, journalists and two senators. The NSA included David Kahn.The names were on "watch lists" of American citizens, generated by Executive Branch law enforcement and intelligence agencies, to detect communications involving the listed individuals. There was no judicial oversight, and the project had no warrants for interception.
The 1972 Keith decision by the U.S. Supreme Court became a controversial issue mainly because, even though the court had confirmed that the government had the authority to protect the nation from subversive activity, it ruled against the government's ability to use warrantless electronic surveillance for domestic espionage purposes. This controversy became a major case against Project MINARET.
Operating between 1967 and 1973, over 5,925 foreigners and 1,690 organizations and US citizens were included on the Project MINARET watch lists. NSA Director, Lew Allen, testified before the Senate Intelligence Committee in 1975 that the NSA had issued over 3,900 reports on the watch-listed Americans.
According to Budiansky, a 1977 Dept. of Justice review concluded wiretap laws were violated, but "If the intelligence agencies possessed too much discretionary authority with too little accountability, that would seem to be a 35-year failing of Presidents and the Congress rather than the agencies or their personnel."One result of these investigations was the 1978 creation of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA), which limited the powers of the NSA and put in place a process of warrants and judicial review. Another internal safeguard was U.S. Signal Intelligence Directive 18, an internal NSA and intelligence community set of procedures, originally issued in 1980, and updated in 1993. USSID 18 was the general guideline for handling signals intelligence (SIGINT) inadvertently collected on US citizens, without a warrant, prior to the George W. Bush Administration. Interpretations of FISA and the principles of USSID 18 by the Bush administration assume the Executive Branch has unitary authority for warrantless surveillance, which is under Congressional investigation as an apparent violation of the intent of FISA.Richard Boyd Barrett
Richard Boyd Barrett (born 6 February 1967) an Irish Solidarity–People Before Profit politician who has been a Teachta Dála (TD) for the Dún Laoghaire constituency since the 2011 general election.Boyd Barrett is a former member of Dún Laoghaire–Rathdown County Council. He is chair of the Irish Anti-War Movement and on multiple occasions has been cited on war issues in the Irish media. He opposed the Iraq War and helped organise protests against it in 2003, amid concerns that the war would lead to thousands of unnecessary deaths. Domestically, he has campaigned to reverse job losses, supported the Rossport Five and voiced opposition to Ireland's bank-bail outs and the National Asset Management Agency (NAMA) among other issues.Second Superpower
"Second Superpower" is a term used to conceptualize a global civil society as a world force comparable to or counterbalancing the United States of America. The term originates from a 2003 New York Times article which described world public opinion as one of two superpowers.The term has also been applied by scholars to the possibility that the People's Republic of China could emerge as a "second superpower," with global power and influence on par with the United States.Vortex I
Vortex I: A Biodegradable Festival of Life, more commonly known as just Vortex I, was a week-long rock festival in Oregon in 1970. It was sponsored by the Portland counterculture community, with help from the state of Oregon in Clackamas County near Portland. Held in order to demonstrate the positive side of the anti-War Movement and to prevent violent protests during a planned appearance in the state by President Richard Nixon, it remains the only state-sponsored rock festival in United States history.Women in Black
Women in Black (Hebrew: נשים בשחור, Nashim BeShahor) is a women's anti-war movement with an estimated 10,000 activists around the world. The first group was formed by Israeli women in Jerusalem in 1988, following the outbreak of the First Intifada.
Peace movement/Anti-war movement
|Opposition to specific|
wars or their aspects