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Books below are by Vijay Mehta Chair of Uniting for Peace

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APPROACHES TO PEACE - A Book Review by Vijay Mehta

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Editor - David P. Barash
Publisher - Oxford University Press, New York (4th Edition, July 2017)
£34.67 (Amazon), 310 pages

I was pleased to receive a copy of the fourth edition of “Approaches to Peace” from Oxford University Press, New York sent by its editor David P Barash. It is a unique anthology featuring classic and contemporary selections of work on Peace and Conflict Studies.

This highly influential anthology has excellent articles from major works in peace studies by distinguished individuals. It enables us to read, reflect and take action to bring fundamental changes in our society.

Timeless classics include Leo Tolstoy (Letter to Ernest Howard Crosby), Martin Luther King Jr. (Letter from a Birmingham Jail), Mohandas Gandhi (The Gospel of Non-Violence) and Henry David Thoreau (Civil Disobedience) alongside contemporary pieces by illustrious contributors including Pope Francis (Speech to the United Nations – 2015), Noam Chomsky (The Evil Scourge of Terrorism: Reality, Construction, Remedy), Vandana Shiva (How Economic Growth has become Antilife), Gene Sharp (Seeking a Solution to the Problem of War), Desmond Tutu (No Future without Forgiveness), Dalai Lama (A Human Approach to World Peace), Amartya Sen (How to Judge Globalism) and Vijay Mehta (Reforming the UN for the 21st Century).

The piece, “Reforming the UN for the 21st Century” which is included in the anthology is a speech that I gave in Edinburgh at the Royal Over-Seas Club in 2008. In this speech, I stated that the UN has not been able to prevent conflicts around the world and it needs reforms to become a fully democratic body to be effective for building a peaceful world. However, the UN also represent a partial step in the progression from individualism through tribalism, to nationalism and then globalism, a transition that may well be essential if we are ever to give peace a realistic chance.

D P Barash’s anthology “Approaches to Peace,” is a meaningful attempt to explain different paths we can take to counter the onslaught of culture of militarism and build a just, peaceful and sustainable world. I highly recommend this comprehensive path to peace.