Hotspots, flashpoints: Humankind, a failed species

Today we are speaking about the humanitarian situations in Donetsk, Lugansk, after the Fascist massacres in numerous cities in Eastern Ukraine earlier this year. Today we are speaking about the massacre of the Yazidi by ISIL, today we are speaking about Syria... and yesterday? And tomorrow? Humankind, a failed species.

Nature has given us a beautiful home to share with its wonderful inhabitants. The original idea was for us all to cohabit our collective biosphere, respecting one another and thanking Nature for the resources it provided us, adopting sustainable strategies which worked as much for the victim as for the victor in the hunt. Yet Nature has some rules. One of these is that if a species fails, it disappears.

Yesterday, I spent perhaps one of the best thirty-minute periods of my life watching a puppy, a kitten and a fox cub playing in one of the fields on my small farm. It was a triangular tag game, with rules, and involved running into positions, holding them and raiding the positions of the others. They were all having fun, they all knew the rules and were communicating with one another, God alone knows how, until Mrs. Fox, the vixen, came and screeched at her cub "Oi! Don't play with those two!" and the cub toddled off behind its mother to their den in the wood.

Humankind, for some reason, does not have this capacity. We are supposed to get along together, we are supposed to communicate with one another. Twice organisms were set up trying to provide forums for this (League of Nations and the United Nations Organization) and neither of them have worked because their authority has been abused by one country or another.

As I speak, a Palestinian girl looks at the TV screen from a bed in Gaza, her neck broken by an Israeli attack on a UN school, paralysed, denied treatment in a hospital in Germany, Turkey or the USA because Israel hasn't authorized her exit papers. As I speak, indiscriminate shelling is taking place in Donetsk against the civilian population by the Ukrainian Armed Forces, the only country in Europe to be firing missiles at civilians.

Our newspapers speak about Ukraine and Gaza and Iraq. Syria has dropped back to page 5. But there are countless other hotspots and flashpoints: 120,000 refugees struggling to stay alive in the DR Congo; thousands of refugees in Libya, a country with the highest Human Development Index in Africa under Muammar al-Qathafi and rendered a failed State by the intervention of the Finger of Death, NATO; thousands fleeing fighting with terrorists in Lebanon, spilled over from Syria, another Finger of Death intervention by NATO; and forgotten corners of the world, such as Somalia, where a humanitarian crisis looms.

Then there is South Sudan and Ethiopia, there is Mali, Chad, there is the Central African Republic, the Ebola outbreak in West Africa, spreading; the ongoing cholera outbreak in Haiti which has been forgotten; Afghanistan and Northern Pakistan; Armenia, Azerbaijan and Nagorno-Karabakh...stories of human suffering, of indescribable scenes of horror unimaginable in the comfortable living rooms of so many, but the reality for many more.

Add to this handful of hotspots (there are many more), the question of women's rights, the right of women to education and jobs, children's rights, trafficking in human beings for slavery or prostitution, child pornography, add to this the growing wave of heroin addiction, a scourge which is starting to affect cities across the northern hemisphere yet again, and we question, is Humankind a failed species?

Political positions apart, and to avoid naming and blaming those who are responsible (the unelected lobbies which dictate policies) in the year 2014, why is Humankind unable to live in peace and play together like that kitten, puppy and fox cub? Why can we not respect Nature and its laws and communicate together? Help each other? Remember that development is more important than deployment?

And collectively, we spend 1.7 trillion USD per year, every year, on weapons systems and related expenses (NATO accounts for 1.2 trillion USD of this).

Some countries try to appeal to dialogue, others are intent on conflict. It matters not which side we are on, the result is the same. The human body is contaminated by a cancer which has morphed into a corporatist tumor, which controls our body from beginning to end, has turned education and healthcare into a business and has flooded the supermarkets with processed products which are downright dangerous, to the extent that the packets of food people buy should have a health warning on them, like cigarettes.

If this cancer is not stopped, Humankind will become a failed species and Nature will do the rest.

Timothy Bancroft-Hinchey


([email protected])


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Author`s name Timothy Bancroft-Hinchey