Revenge Strategy, wasting the power of your hate on the guiltless (XXII): WWII legacy – The war industry´s mission is to keep the peace?
Today we will continue exploring another WWII Legacy from the point of view of Eleonora Escalante Strategy.
Before progressing further, let me explain again why is it important to take care of historians (historians, historians of art, archaeologists), all the disciplines which keep the archives of our past.
I have never defined the term history in this blog. I assume we all know it. It is time to do it. History refers to “the study, knowledge, interpretation, and recording of the past in a meaningful way”. As an academic discipline, history is conducted by historians, individuals who take the time to research, interpret, and put past events into context in a recorded mode. Historians do their job by investigating the past. Their research sources are history books, essays, letters, journals, artistic remains, and archaeologists´discoveries. Until today, historians have been isolated in their own dusty world, particularly inside the academia. This has to change for the new generations. Historians are here with us not just to write encyclopedias. Historians are needed, to work for hand by hand with multidisciplinary teams, particularly in governments, public policies entities, and businesses. Each relevant consulting house (BCG, Bain&Co, McKinsey, PWC, Deloitte, ATKearney, Ernst&Young, etc); each boutique specialized consulting organization as mine; NGOs; multilateral bodies working with the United Nations network, and the private sector (each and all industry, particularly the technology sector) need historians to review their value propositions and business or program models. In brief, historians (including historians of art) and archaeologists are here with all their past expertise to help all of us to make better decision making for the present and the future. Historians also need to elevate their work, from showing or interpreting information and knowledge, to producing wisdom with all the past history of us.
Now let´s continue with our reflection about the War industry existence. Do you remember when I taught you how to design and create business models by using the Business Model Canvas from Osterwalder-Pigneur? Do you remember how to create value propositions? Let me show you the example I shared with you about the Metro-Train System. To each want (gain) and need (pain), there is a solution: there is a Gain Creator and a Pain Killer.
Now let´s apply this same value proposition methodology to the War Industry. The War industry existence is supported by needs and wants. If we live in unsafe lands, the war industry provides gain creators and pain killers to insecurity. If there is a war, the war industry provides weapons and high technology armament to solve that war. But is the war industry the solution to our insecurity issues?.
The development of the war industry is one of the legacies of WWII. This development is based on a wrong value proposition or fallacy: That we need to use weapons to keep or guarantee peace. This is silly. The most foolish value proposition I have seen in my life as a corporate strategist. We need to correct and repair it to a new one. If we wish peace we need to create conditions of peace (violence prevention) not to arm ourselves to keep the peace.
The cause of insecurity or violence (violence, war, civil conflicts, crime, gangs, terrorist attacks, etc) is usually found in a strategic wrong path which was taken by our predecessors or ancestors. Historians help us to find the real causes of problems. In the case of insecurity, or violence or conflicts, the remedy has always been to knock the door to the war industry directly, in our search for solutions to eliminate it. But by using war, we are simply not attacking the real causes of violence.
The causes of Wars or Civil conflicts are innumerable. Historians can help us in each specific context to find them. Whatever the cause of the war, the bottom line here is that the war industry won´t solve the issue. The issue will remain, and that is why we have not solved our conflicts from their roots since WWII.
- Some wars are usually caused because there is no balance or social middle ground. Some examples: The communism ideology of Karl Marx wouldn´t have emerged if the Czar´s system would have provided economic middle ground to the Russian majorities. El Salvador Civil War started because there was a reduced group of people who had the majority of resources, and the middle class was almost non-existent in the 70s.
- As we have already studied it, wars are also caused because of expansion motives. We have seen the WWI started almost 100 years before when the Prussian leaders decided to conquer European land, tired of watching how Britain and France were expanding their colonies all over the world.
- Wars are also caused because of revenge or retaliation strategies. We already have analyzed several examples.
- Another cause of war, in developing countries, is caused by famine and poverty. When there is a lack of education, health, shelter, and jobs; a group of people decides to take territorial control to gain power by using the violence.
- Wars or internal conflicts can emerge to protect and promote “drugs narcotraffic”. Examples: If you observe the Cocaine value chain industry, you can understand why the FARC has been prompt to keep this industry in Colombia for so many years. Oil producers countries know the value of their wealth core resources, and how crucial it is this supply for the planet. In consequence, they will urge to be armed to defend their territories.
- Wars can also emerge to protect geopolitical agendas to control the territories of those who don´t want to fit or don´t want to cooperate with those interests.
- Wars are triggered by a despot or some crazy leaders too who want to control the power no matter what. Ordinarily, dictators fell into this category.
- Wars can be triggered by religious motives. Islam vs Christianity. Motives which can’t continue for the next generations anymore.
Let´s dig into one of the latter causes. Many conflicts in developing countries have been originated because of a dramatic gap between rich and poor or the lack of a strong and ample middle class. Whenever you have a society with a pyramidal structure, where less than 1% of inhabitants owns the 80% of resources; and less or around the 10% are middle class holding less than 10% of resources, and the 89% of the population is categorized as poor or extremely poor; this society is surely opening a scenario for a future war or gangs violence as it has happened in my country, El Salvador. Do you think that the war industry will solve this conflict cause? Do you think that by using the war industry products and services, are we going to attack the lack of a strong middle class?
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