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Books below are by Vijay Mehta Chair of Uniting for Peace

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Vijay Mehta's Peace Beyond Borders Book Reviews


Review by Mark Aitken, Political Editor of Sunday Mail


A Brexit vote could risk peace in Europe, experts warned yesterday. Historians, campaigners and defence experts said the EU – with Britain in it – brought countries together who had fought each other for centuries.

Europe has been largely at peace since the end of World War II, which claimed the lives of more than 60million people. Activist Vijay Mehta, author of Peace Beyond Borders, believes that’s due to the political integration of nations. He said: “Historically, Europe has been the planet’s most warring continent. Before 1945, war was a perpetual fact of European life. “It’s amazing, therefore, to see today’s Europe standing tall and proud as the world’s most peaceful, integrated continent – and it’s because of the European Union.

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Review by David Swanson, Director of World Beyond War


The European Union has become the civilian arm of NATO, expanding ever nearer Russia at the insistence of the United States, which — believe it or not – is not actually a European nation at all. Were Norway to join the EU, that could mean trouble for Norway’s fair and humane economy. But Britain? Britain is a drag on the EU, there at the insistence of the United States which needs puppet-veto power over any European moves toward independence, peace, environmental sustainability, or economic fairness. The EU’s influence on Britain is largely to the benefit of the Brits.

There is perhaps a stronger case to be made that exiting the EU would be a move toward violence. This is the case for the EU as a model of peacemaking. For this argument I refer you to a new book by Vijay Mehta called Peace Beyond Borders: How the EU Brought Peace to Europe and How Exporting It Would End Conflicts Around the World. Let me make very clear that I think Mehta wildly exaggerates his case. Far more important to ending war in the world, I believe, are a number of other factors, the top two being: (1) Get the rich countries, led by the U.S. and Europe, to stop selling weapons to the world, and (2) Get the rich countries, led by the U.S. and Europe, to stop bombing, invading, and occupying poor countries.

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Review by Bernie Holland, Member, Uniting for Peace

In his latest book, “Peace Beyond Borders”, Vijay Mehta commences by presenting a historical overview of the relationships between various European nation states from the beginning of the 19th century onwards, explaining the industrial, social and political developments that were unprecedented in their rate of acceleration.

The advent of mechanised warfare is no better exemplified than that of the brutal horror of the Great War of 1914-18, the lessons of which had not been learnt, as was evident by the relatively short lived peace of the inter-war years, only to be broken again by the emergence of the tripartite axis formed by Germany, Italy and Japan which was to culminate in the first instance of the use of thermo-nuclear weapons which brought devastation to entire Japanese cities during the summer of 1945.

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Review by Luckshan Abeysuriya, Outreach Coordinator UNA South Lakes

Mehta has published an excellent and timely book, on the European Union, on not only how it has brought peace to Europe, but also is a paradigm shift, for the rest of the world, to resolve conflicts around the world.

His book is a masterpiece of how not only the EU, but the Regional bodies are trying to bring peace in the wider world. Mehta gives us a clear understanding in his very readable ten chapters and Postscript, on the paradigm of “Better Together.”

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Review by Jonathan Fryer, Writer, Broadcaster, Lecturer and Lib Dem Politician

Despite what most Brexiteers believed, the European Union has been a great success as a peace project. That is the central thesis of veteran Indian peace and justice campaigner Vijay Mehta’s latest book, Peace beyond Borders (Catapult, £9.99), in which he argues that exporting the EU model to other parts of the world would help end conflicts. In fact, several other parts of the world have indeed been regionalising in recent decades, from South East Asia (ASEAN) to the Gulf Arab states (GCC) and South America (UNASUR). None has up till now gone as far in terms of economic let alone political integration as the EU, but they all acknowledge that they are stronger together.

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Review by James Grayson, Journalist

Vijay Mehta produces interesting books. In this addition to his oeuvre the thesis is that because Europe has been peaceful since WWII one can extrapolate conditions which form a sufficient cause for continuing peace elsewhere:

 1)  Enshrined democracy and the rule of law
 2)  Economic truce
 3)  Open borders and human ties
 4)  Soft power and shared values
 5)  Permanent discussion dialogue and diplomacy
 6)  Financial incentives and support
 7)  Veto and consensus building
 8)  Resistance to external interference
 9)  Rules human rights and multiculturalism
10)  Mutual trust and peaceful coexistence.

The EU lacks military forces and is mostly, “Protected,” by NATO which moved into the former Soviet Union sphere of influence at the first opportunity and politicians failed to consider the consequences.

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Review by Ian Hackett, World Federalist Party


Having been writing about climate change and world federalism for over 40 years now*, I was encouraged recently to come across two excellent new books that present up-to-date and persuasive perspectives on these 2 related issues. In the first, The Collapse of Western Civilization – A view from the Future, Naomi Oreskes and Eric M. Conway, science historians at Harvard and CIT, imagine themselves in the 2nd People’s Republic of China in 2393 and, using hard facts and conservative extrapolations, chart our now almost inevitable climate-change-driven collapse from the late 20th Century through to the end of the 21st.

In the second, Peace Beyond Borders, peace activist Vijay Mehta sees climate change as just one of a number of threats to our peace and prosperity, but looks at the evolution of the European Union and the way Europe has been transformed, since 1945, from centuries as the world’s most war-ravaged continent to one enjoying an unprecedented 70 years of relative peace and prosperity, and analyses Europe’s post-1945 evolution as a model for the rest of the world’s regions.

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Review by Peter Popham, Resurgence and Ecologist


The referendum debate last summer over the UK’s membership of the European Union was monopolised by arguments about domestic issues; the international dimension of the question – the possible consequences for world peace of Britain’s staying or leaving – barely got a mention. But if Vijay Mehta is right, the UK’s departure could seriously weaken an organisation that not only has brought peace and democracy at home, but also, in his view, is a model and inspiration for similar forms of supranational cooperation around the world. President Obama put that view pithily during the recent G20 summit in China. “I continue to believe”, he said, “that the world benefited enormously from the UK’s participation in the EU.”

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