Why I am a Militarist -- Rubinshteinic Philosophy On Militarism
Updated: 6 days ago
(Definition of militarism; Only 2 and 3 apply to this article: Militaristic - definition of militaristic by The Free Dictionary)
(This can be seen as an extension to my political philosophy of Rubinshteinism/Political Rubinshteinism)
The Importance of a Strong Military
Unless you are a very fortunate, small paradise of a nation such as Andorra or Liechtenstein, it is the nation's armed forces that ensure its survival for decades or even centuries. That is because, should you not have a big enough or a competent enough military, then your country is likely to be in danger either from the inside or outside of its borders.
Countries like Liechtenstein simply do not need a standing military because it's unnecessary to their vastly-lucky, consistent geopolitical situation.
Even if you live in a stable region, having a powerful military will ensure that such status quo will resume. For example, if it weren't for South Korea's military strength, it wouldn't be a formidable adversary to North Korean aggressive desire to unify the Korean peninsula. Therefore, it is imperative that every country that wishes for the safety of both itself and its citizens allocates a significant enough portion of its budget to the military.
A military, however, does not need to have a pompous budget in order to function effectively. You don't need, for example, to have an army stronger and more advanced than that of the United States in order to protect yourself from regional threats; that is of course unless you're being invaded by them, which means something has to be done.
However, since superpowers like the U.S. has international standing military-wise, you might not want to be too much aggressive with the armed power you have as a political leader. So what if you despise someone in your geopolitical region? Consider their allies.
It is important to find a balance between having a strong enough military to deter aggression and not spending so much on the military that it comes at the expense of other important needs, such as education, healthcare, and infrastructure. Fail to keep a proper financial budget between the departments of your government, and it can have an impact on the military as well.
The North Korean armed forces may be large in size, but they may die due to starvation, to the point that they may raid their own citizens just to survive. If the North Korean government spent enough on argiculture, as well as other ways to gain food, this wouldn't happened. And of course, it's quite demoralizing when the troops that suppose to protect you, attack you just because they are hungry.
Rationally, every nation has the right to protect itself. That may be true to an extent even on the individual level. Regardless of this premise, some nations, such as Israel, may believe that counter-attacks are also legitimate forms of self-defense. Whether this is true or not is a matter of debate.
The premise itself, nonetheless, is true to Japan and its Self-Defense Forces, the same as it is for tyrannical North Korea and its People's Army, as the suffering of its populace does not necessarily legitimize invasion and attempted liberation. Why? Because they have the right to protect themselves as well, no matter how righteous such invasion is. Furthermore, a successful liberation attempt might even worsen the situation, should the next local government be incompetent. That is the case with Libya, that remained unstable even 10 years at least after their dictator's death.
Can we really say Libya has been improved just because of the world's good intention to liberate it from its tyrant?
I believe one of the reasons why there aren't many wars in the world today is due to how expensive they are. It's more than just keeping the peace, but it also could be the abysmal financial cost of wars, while trade is far more preferable to sacrificing your army and its many expensive war machines in battle.
However, it does not at all mean that we should just dismantle countries' militaries in the name of world peace. It's impractical as this situation can be abused. That is why I am not a pacifist.
Critique of John Lennon's Words
John Lennon has said something interesting in one of his songs: "Imagine there are no countries; it isn't hard to do". Is it, really? Dismembering the militaries of all nations, including nations themselves would quickly lead to chaos and disorder, unless some kind of an international security force is to be strong enough to preserve the safety of all nation-less humans. And even then, that security force can become corrupt and make use of little-to-no opposition from the rest of the world.
The only such alternative I can think of are superheroes, which of course are too fictional to become a reality. Such people might save much money as they require less maintenance than an artillery division... But still, it is too impossible to have a single hero or heroine eliminate an entire terrorist organization. If that was only possible.. They can grow corrupt themselves, either way.
As long as there is a desire in one or more people to rebel by breaking the law or threatening the lives of someone, there will always be a need for security that is used to protect people from others. Should there be a total death to the desire to confront someone to the point of threat, John Lennon's vision will remain highly impractical.
And for that, people need to know that they may be punished, either by imprisonment or by execution, in order to keep people in line. Whether or not execution is a fair method of punishment, is a different matter. This is why guns are needed -- to serve as a counter-threat against those who might consider defying the law and the safety of the nation, both from external and internal spaces.
The reason why the U.S. allows private posession of arms comes from its constitution: To allow its citizenry to protect themselves from a corrupt government and/or tyranny in the name of freedom. Of course, this has its downsides as well in America, like people who abuse this constitutional right and become mass shooters like a certain philosopher I covered on Philosocom before. (Note: his shooting occured in Finland, but I believe he would've done the same, per his radical philosophy, if he was American).
You can say, therefore, that there is a certain "good" in weaponry, even if they kill others. Not all uses are for the greater good, but when they are, they can prevent a lot of suffering that would otherwise have happened. Either way, it is necessary that we protect ourselves because, as long as there are other human beings, there will always be a potential threat on our lives. And that is one of the reasons I prefer to isolate myself from this violent world, and focus my work. I've been traumatized enough.
Because of all these reasons, you can say that I am a militarist and not a pacifist. I can understand the desire for peace in pacifism, but without the power to utilize counter-offense, there will be no peace—and it is all the fault of those who are themselves too unwilling to be peaceful and lawful.
Even if, let's say, a post-apocalyptic event makes you and other people an isolated community, you still need an armed force to protect yourselves... well, from yourselves.
Rebellion, when the odds are greatly against you, will only cause "collective punishment" to those who did nothing wrong, in addition to you, through suppression and tighter regulations of safety.
If you live in a democracy, the answer is there, through the attempt to reform, rather to arm yourselves. If you live in an absolute monarchy or dictatorship—hide in the dark and strike when it's right, because you have far limited resources. Undergrounds movements exist for a reason.