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Anti-war

Anti-war

Overview

An anti-war movement is a social movement
Social movement
Social movements are a type of group action. They are large informal groupings of individuals or organizations focused on specific political or social issues, in other words, on carrying out, resisting or undoing a social change....

, usually in opposition to a particular nation's decision to start or carry on an armed conflict, unconditional of a maybe-existing just cause
Casus belli
is a Latin expression meaning the justification for acts of war. means "incident", "rupture" or indeed "case", while means bellic...

. The term can also refer to pacifism
Pacifism
Pacifism is the opposition to war and violence. The term "pacifism" was coined by the French peace campaignerÉmile Arnaud and adopted by other peace activists at the tenth Universal Peace Congress inGlasgow in 1901.- Definition :...

, which is the opposition to all use of military force during conflicts. Many activists distinguish between anti-war movements and peace movement
Peace movement
A peace movement is a social movement that seeks to achieve ideals such as the ending of a particular war , minimize inter-human violence in a particular place or type of situation, often linked to the goal of achieving world peace...

s. Anti-war activists work through protest and other grassroots
Grassroots
A grassroots movement is one driven by the politics of a community. The term implies that the creation of the movement and the group supporting it are natural and spontaneous, highlighting the differences between this and a movement that is orchestrated by traditional power structures...

 means to attempt to pressure a government (or governments) to put an end to a particular war or conflict.

Many groups call themselves anti-war activists though their opinions may be different: some anti-war activists may be equally opposed to both sides' military campaign
Military campaign
In the military sciences, the term military campaign applies to large scale, long duration, significant military strategy plan incorporating a series of inter-related military operations or battles forming a distinct part of a larger conflict often called a war...

; in contrast, many modern activists are against only one side's (usually the most unethical) campaigns.

Pacifist and anti-war movements are similar, but not the same.
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Encyclopedia

An anti-war movement is a social movement
Social movement
Social movements are a type of group action. They are large informal groupings of individuals or organizations focused on specific political or social issues, in other words, on carrying out, resisting or undoing a social change....

, usually in opposition to a particular nation's decision to start or carry on an armed conflict, unconditional of a maybe-existing just cause
Casus belli
is a Latin expression meaning the justification for acts of war. means "incident", "rupture" or indeed "case", while means bellic...

. The term can also refer to pacifism
Pacifism
Pacifism is the opposition to war and violence. The term "pacifism" was coined by the French peace campaignerÉmile Arnaud and adopted by other peace activists at the tenth Universal Peace Congress inGlasgow in 1901.- Definition :...

, which is the opposition to all use of military force during conflicts. Many activists distinguish between anti-war movements and peace movement
Peace movement
A peace movement is a social movement that seeks to achieve ideals such as the ending of a particular war , minimize inter-human violence in a particular place or type of situation, often linked to the goal of achieving world peace...

s. Anti-war activists work through protest and other grassroots
Grassroots
A grassroots movement is one driven by the politics of a community. The term implies that the creation of the movement and the group supporting it are natural and spontaneous, highlighting the differences between this and a movement that is orchestrated by traditional power structures...

 means to attempt to pressure a government (or governments) to put an end to a particular war or conflict.

Usage


Many groups call themselves anti-war activists though their opinions may be different: some anti-war activists may be equally opposed to both sides' military campaign
Military campaign
In the military sciences, the term military campaign applies to large scale, long duration, significant military strategy plan incorporating a series of inter-related military operations or battles forming a distinct part of a larger conflict often called a war...

; in contrast, many modern activists are against only one side's (usually the most unethical) campaigns.

Pacifist and anti-war movements are similar, but not the same. Pacifism
Pacifism
Pacifism is the opposition to war and violence. The term "pacifism" was coined by the French peace campaignerÉmile Arnaud and adopted by other peace activists at the tenth Universal Peace Congress inGlasgow in 1901.- Definition :...

 is the belief that violent conflict is never acceptable and that society should not be ready to fight in a conflict (see disarmament
Disarmament
Disarmament is the act of reducing, limiting, or abolishing weapons. Disarmament generally refers to a country's military or specific type of weaponry. Disarmament is often taken to mean total elimination of weapons of mass destruction, such as nuclear arms...

); the anti-war movement is not necessarily opposed to national defense. Pacifists oppose all war, but anti-war activists may be opposed to only a particular war or wars.

The historic peace churches
Peace churches
Peace churches are Christian churches, groups or communities advocating Christian pacifism. The term historic peace churches refers specifically only to three church groups among pacifist churches: Church of the Brethren, Mennonites including the Amish, and Religious Society of Friends and has...

 such as the Brethren
Church of the Brethren
The Church of the Brethren is a Christian denomination originating from the Schwarzenau Brethren organized in 1708 by eight persons led by Alexander Mack, in Schwarzenau, Bad Berleburg, Germany. The Brethren movement began as a melding of Radical Pietist and Anabaptist ideas during the...

, the Mennonites and the Quakers
Religious Society of Friends
The Religious Society of Friends, or Friends Church, is a Christian movement which stresses the doctrine of the priesthood of all believers. Members are known as Friends, or popularly as Quakers. It is made of independent organisations, which have split from one another due to doctrinal differences...

 teach that Jesus
Jesus
Jesus of Nazareth , commonly referred to as Jesus Christ or simply as Jesus or Christ, is the central figure of Christianity...

 advocates nonviolence
Nonviolence
Nonviolence has two meanings. It can refer, first, to a general philosophy of abstention from violence because of moral or religious principle It can refer to the behaviour of people using nonviolent action Nonviolence has two (closely related) meanings. (1) It can refer, first, to a general...

, and that his followers must do likewise.

Antebellum Era


Substantial anti-war sentiment developed in America during the period roughly falling between the end of the War of 1812
War of 1812
The War of 1812 was a military conflict fought between the forces of the United States of America and those of the British Empire. The Americans declared war in 1812 for several reasons, including trade restrictions because of Britain's ongoing war with France, impressment of American merchant...

 and the commencement of the Civil War, or what is called the antebellum era. (A similar movement developed in England during the same period.) The movement reflected both strict pacifist
Pacifism
Pacifism is the opposition to war and violence. The term "pacifism" was coined by the French peace campaignerÉmile Arnaud and adopted by other peace activists at the tenth Universal Peace Congress inGlasgow in 1901.- Definition :...

 and more moderate non-interventionist
Non-interventionism
Nonintervention or non-interventionism is a foreign policy which holds that political rulers should avoid alliances with other nations, but still retain diplomacy, and avoid all wars not related to direct self-defense...

 positions. Many prominent intellectuals of the time, including Ralph Waldo Emerson
Ralph Waldo Emerson
Ralph Waldo Emerson was an American essayist, lecturer, and poet, who led the Transcendentalist movement of the mid-19th century...

, Henry David Thoreau
Henry David Thoreau
Henry David Thoreau was an American author, poet, philosopher, abolitionist, naturalist, tax resister, development critic, surveyor, historian, and leading transcendentalist...

 (see Civil Disobedience
Civil Disobedience (Thoreau)
Civil Disobedience is an essay by American transcendentalist Henry David Thoreau that was first published in 1849...

) and William Ellery Channing
William Ellery Channing
Dr. William Ellery Channing was the foremost Unitarian preacher in the United States in the early nineteenth century and, along with Andrews Norton, one of Unitarianism's leading theologians. He was known for his articulate and impassioned sermons and public speeches, and as a prominent thinker...

 contributed literary works against war. Other names associated with the movement include William Ladd
William Ladd
William Ladd was one of the earliest American anti-war activists, and the first president of the American Peace Society.Ladd was born in Exeter, New Hampshire as a direct lineal descendant of Daniel Ladd, Sr....

, Noah Worcester
Noah Worcester
Noah Worcester was a Unitarian clergyman and a seminal figure in history of American pacifism.-Life:Born in Hollis, New Hampshire, at age 16 Worcester joined the militia as a fifer during the Revolutionary War, and was at the battle of Bunker Hill, where he narrowly escaped being taken prisoner...

, Thomas Cogswell Upham
Thomas Cogswell Upham
Thomas Upham was an American philosopher, psychologist, pacifist, poet, author, and educator. He was an important figure in the holiness movement. He became influential within psychology literature and served as the Bowdoin College professor of mental and moral philosophy from 1825-1868...

 and Asa Mahan
Asa Mahan
Asa Mahan was a U.S. Congregational clergyman and educator and the first president of Oberlin College and Adrian College.-Career:...

. Many peace societies were formed throughout the United States, the most prominent of which being the American Peace Society
American Peace Society
The American Peace Society is a pacifist group founded upon the initiative of William Ladd, in New York City, May 8, 1828. It was formed by the merging of many state and local societies, from New York, Maine, New Hampshire, and Massachusetts, of which the oldest, the New York Peace Society, dated...

. Numerous periodicals (e.g., The Advocate of Peace)) and books were also produced. The Book of Peace, an anthology produced by the American Peace Society in 1845, must surely rank as one of the most remarkable works of anti-war literature ever produced.

A recurring theme in this movement was the call for the establishment of an international court which would adjudicate disputes between nations. Another distinct feature of antebellum anti-war literature was the emphasis on how war contributed to a moral decline and brutalization of society in general.

American Civil War



A key event in the early history of the modern anti-war stance in literature
Literature
Literature is the art of written works, and is not bound to published sources...

 and society
Society
A society, or a human society, is a group of people related to each other through persistent relations, or a large social grouping sharing the same geographical or virtual territory, subject to the same political authority and dominant cultural expectations...

 was the American Civil War
American Civil War
The American Civil War was a civil war fought in the United States of America. In response to the election of Abraham Lincoln as President of the United States, 11 southern slave states declared their secession from the United States and formed the Confederate States of America ; the other 25...

, where it culminated in the candidacy of George McClellan
George B. McClellan
George Brinton McClellan was a major general during the American Civil War. He organized the famous Army of the Potomac and served briefly as the general-in-chief of the Union Army. Early in the war, McClellan played an important role in raising a well-trained and organized army for the Union...

 for President of the United States
President of the United States
The President of the United States of America is the head of state and head of government of the United States. The president leads the executive branch of the federal government and is the commander-in-chief of the United States Armed Forces....

 as a "Peace Democrat" against incumbent President Abraham Lincoln
Abraham Lincoln
Abraham Lincoln was the 16th President of the United States, serving from March 1861 until his assassination in April 1865. He successfully led his country through a great constitutional, military and moral crisis – the American Civil War – preserving the Union, while ending slavery, and...

. The outlines of the anti-war stance are seen: the argument that the costs of maintaining the present conflict are not worth the gains which can be made, the appeal to end the horrors of war, and the argument that war is being waged for the profit of particular interests. During the war, the New York Draft Riots
New York Draft Riots
The New York City draft riots were violent disturbances in New York City that were the culmination of discontent with new laws passed by Congress to draft men to fight in the ongoing American Civil War. The riots were the largest civil insurrection in American history apart from the Civil War itself...

 were started as violent protests against Abraham Lincoln
Abraham Lincoln
Abraham Lincoln was the 16th President of the United States, serving from March 1861 until his assassination in April 1865. He successfully led his country through a great constitutional, military and moral crisis – the American Civil War – preserving the Union, while ending slavery, and...

's Enrollment Act of Conscription
Conscription
Conscription is the compulsory enlistment of people in some sort of national service, most often military service. Conscription dates back to antiquity and continues in some countries to the present day under various names...

plan to draft men to fight in the war. The outrage over conscription was augmented by the ability to "buy" your way out; the amount of which could only be afforded by the wealthy. After the war, The Red Badge of Courage
The Red Badge of Courage
The Red Badge of Courage is a war novel by American author Stephen Crane . Taking place during the American Civil War, the story is about a young private of the Union Army, Henry Fleming, who flees from the field of battle. Overcome with shame, he longs for a wound—a "red badge of courage"—to...

described the chaos and sense of death which resulted from the changing style of combat: away from the set engagement, and towards two armies engaging in continuous battle over a wide area.

Second Boer War


William Thomas Stead
William Thomas Stead
William Thomas Stead was an English journalist and editor who, as one of the early pioneers of investigative journalism, became one of the most controversial figures of the Victorian era. His 'New Journalism' paved the way for today's tabloid press...

 formed an organization against the Second Boer War
Second Boer War
The Second Boer War was fought from 11 October 1899 until 31 May 1902 between the British Empire and the Afrikaans-speaking Dutch settlers of two independent Boer republics, the South African Republic and the Orange Free State...

: the Stop the War Committee
Stop the War Committee
The Stop the War Committee was an anti-war organisation that opposed the Second Boer War. It was formed by William Thomas Stead in 1899. Its president was John Clifford and prominent members included Lloyd George and Keir Hardie...

.

World War I


In Britain
United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland
The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland was the formal name of the United Kingdom during the period when what is now the Republic of Ireland formed a part of it....

, in 1914, the Public Schools
Public Schools Act 1868
The Public Schools Act 1868 was enacted by the British Parliament to reform and regulate nine of the leading English boys' schools. They were described as "public schools" as admission was open to boys from anywhere and was not limited to those living in a particular locality...

 Officers' Training Corps annual camp was held at Tidworth Pennings, near Salisbury Plain
Salisbury Plain
Salisbury Plain is a chalk plateau in central southern England covering . It is part of the Southern England Chalk Formation and largely lies within the county of Wiltshire, with a little in Hampshire. The plain is famous for its rich archaeology, including Stonehenge, one of England's best known...

. Head of the British Army
British Army
The British Army is the land warfare branch of Her Majesty's Armed Forces in the United Kingdom. It came into being with the unification of the Kingdom of England and Scotland into the Kingdom of Great Britain in 1707. The new British Army incorporated Regiments that had already existed in England...

 Lord Kitchener was to review the cadet
Cadet
A cadet is a trainee to become an officer in the military, often a person who is a junior trainee. The term comes from the term "cadet" for younger sons of a noble family.- Military context :...

s, but the immenence of the war prevented him. General Horace Smith-Dorrien
Horace Smith-Dorrien
General Sir Horace Lockwood Smith-Dorrien GCB, GCMG, DSO, ADC was a British soldier and commander of the British II Corps and Second Army of the BEF during World War I.-Early life and career:...

 was sent instead. He surprised the two-or-three thousand cadets by declaring (in the words of Donald Christopher Smith, a Bermudian
Bermudian
Bermudian or Bermudan may refer to:* Something of, or related to Bermuda* A person from Bermuda, or of Bermudian descent. For information about the Bermudian people, see Demographics of Bermuda and Culture of Bermuda. For specific Bermudians, see List of Bermudians.* Bermudian English, the variety...

 cadet who was present) that war should be avoided at almost any cost, that war would solve nothing, that the whole of Europe and more besides would be reduced to ruin, and that the loss of life would be so large that whole populations would be decimated. In our ignorance I, and many of us, felt almost ashamed of a British General who uttered such depressing and unpatriotic sentiments, but during the next four years, those of us who survived the holocaust-probably not more than one-quarter of us - learned how right the General's prognosis was and how courageous he had been to utter it. Having voiced these sentiments did not hinder Smith-Dorien's career, or prevent him from carrying out his duty in the First World War to the best of his abilities.

With the increasing mechanization of war, opposition to its horrors grew, particularly in the wake of the First World War
World War I
World War I , which was predominantly called the World War or the Great War from its occurrence until 1939, and the First World War or World War I thereafter, was a major war centred in Europe that began on 28 July 1914 and lasted until 11 November 1918...

. The European avant-garde
Avant-garde
Avant-garde means "advance guard" or "vanguard". The adjective form is used in English to refer to people or works that are experimental or innovative, particularly with respect to art, culture, and politics....

 cultural movements such as Dada
Dada
Dada or Dadaism is a cultural movement that began in Zurich, Switzerland, during World War I and peaked from 1916 to 1922. The movement primarily involved visual arts, literature—poetry, art manifestoes, art theory—theatre, and graphic design, and concentrated its anti-war politics through a...

 which were explicitly anti-war.

The Espionage Act of 1917
Espionage Act of 1917
The Espionage Act of 1917 is a United States federal law passed on June 15, 1917, shortly after the U.S. entry into World War I. It has been amended numerous times over the years. It was originally found in Title 50 of the U.S. Code but is now found under Title 18, Crime...

 and the Sedition Act of 1918
Sedition Act of 1918
The Sedition Act of 1918 was an Act of the United States Congress that extended the Espionage Act of 1917 to cover a broader range of offenses, notably speech and the expression of opinion that cast the government or the war effort in a negative light or interfered with the sale of government bonds...

 gave the American authorities the right to close newspapers and jailed individuals for having anti-war views.

On June 16, 1918, Eugene V. Debs
Eugene V. Debs
Eugene Victor Debs was an American union leader, one of the founding members of the International Labor Union and the Industrial Workers of the World , and several times the candidate of the Socialist Party of America for President of the United States...

 made an anti-war speech and was arrested under the Espionage Act of 1917
Espionage Act of 1917
The Espionage Act of 1917 is a United States federal law passed on June 15, 1917, shortly after the U.S. entry into World War I. It has been amended numerous times over the years. It was originally found in Title 50 of the U.S. Code but is now found under Title 18, Crime...

. He was convicted, sentenced to serve ten years in prison, but President Warren G. Harding
Warren G. Harding
Warren Gamaliel Harding was the 29th President of the United States . A Republican from Ohio, Harding was an influential self-made newspaper publisher. He served in the Ohio Senate , as the 28th Lieutenant Governor of Ohio and as a U.S. Senator...

 commuted his sentence on December 25, 1921.

Between the World Wars


In 1924 Ernst Friedrich published Krieg dem Krieg! (War Against War!): an album of photographs drawn from German military and medical archives from the first world war. In On the pain of others Sontag
Susan Sontag
Susan Sontag was an American author, literary theorist, feminist and political activist whose works include On Photography and Against Interpretation.-Life:...

 describes the book as 'photography as shock therapy' that was designed to 'horrify and demoralize'.

It was in the 1930s that the Western anti-war movement took shape, to which the political and organizational roots of most of the existing movement can be traced. Characteristics of the anti-war movement included opposition to the corporate interests perceived as benefiting from war, to the status quo
Status quo
Statu quo, a commonly used form of the original Latin "statu quo" – literally "the state in which" – is a Latin term meaning the current or existing state of affairs. To maintain the status quo is to keep the things the way they presently are...

 which was trading the lives of the young for the comforts of those who are older, the concept that those who were drafted were from poor families and would be fighting a war in place of privileged individuals who were able to avoid the draft and military service, and to the lack of input in decision making that those who would die in the conflict would have in deciding to engage in it.

In 1933, the Oxford Union
Oxford Union
The Oxford Union Society, commonly referred to simply as the Oxford Union, is a debating society in the city of Oxford, Britain, whose membership is drawn primarily but not exclusively from the University of Oxford...

 resolved in its Oxford Pledge
The King and Country debate
The King and Country debate was a discussion at the Oxford Union debating society on 9 February 1933 of the resolution: "That this House will in no circumstances fight for its King and Country". It was passed by 275 votes to 153, and became one of the most well-known and notorious debates...

, "That this House will in no circumstances fight for its King and Country."

Many war veteran
Veteran
A veteran is a person who has had long service or experience in a particular occupation or field; " A veteran of ..."...

s, including US General Smedley Butler
Smedley Butler
Smedley Darlington Butler was a Major General in the U.S. Marine Corps, an outspoken critic of U.S. military adventurism, and at the time of his death the most decorated Marine in U.S...

, spoke out against wars and war profiteering on their return to civilian life.

Veterans were still extremely cynical about the motivations for entering WWI, but many were willing to fight later in the Spanish Civil War
Spanish Civil War
The Spanish Civil WarAlso known as The Crusade among Nationalists, the Fourth Carlist War among Carlists, and The Rebellion or Uprising among Republicans. was a major conflict fought in Spain from 17 July 1936 to 1 April 1939...

, indicating that pacifism
Pacifism
Pacifism is the opposition to war and violence. The term "pacifism" was coined by the French peace campaignerÉmile Arnaud and adopted by other peace activists at the tenth Universal Peace Congress inGlasgow in 1901.- Definition :...

 was not always the motivation. These trends were depicted in novels such as All Quiet on the Western Front
All Quiet on the Western Front
All Quiet on the Western Front is a novel by Erich Maria Remarque, a German veteran of World War I. The book describes the German soldiers' extreme physical and mental stress during the war, and the detachment from civilian life felt by many of these soldiers upon returning home from the front.The...

, For Whom the Bell Tolls
For Whom the Bell Tolls
For Whom the Bell Tolls is a novel by Ernest Hemingway published in 1940. It tells the story of Robert Jordan, a young American in the International Brigades attached to a republican guerrilla unit during the Spanish Civil War. As an expert in the use of explosives, he is assigned to blow up a...

and Johnny Got His Gun
Johnny Got His Gun
Johnny Got His Gun is an anti-war novel written in 1938 by American novelist and screenwriter Dalton Trumboand published by J. B. Lippincott company.-Plot:...

.

World War II




Opposition to World War II
World War II
World War II, or the Second World War , was a global conflict lasting from 1939 to 1945, involving most of the world's nations—including all of the great powers—eventually forming two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis...

 was most vocal during its early period, and stronger still before it started while appeasement
Appeasement
The term appeasement is commonly understood to refer to a diplomatic policy aimed at avoiding war by making concessions to another power. Historian Paul Kennedy defines it as "the policy of settling international quarrels by admitting and satisfying grievances through rational negotiation and...

 and isolationism
Isolationism
Isolationism is the policy or doctrine of isolating one's country from the affairs of other nations by declining to enter into alliances, foreign economic commitments, international agreements, etc., seeking to devote the entire efforts of one's country to its own advancement and remain at peace by...

 were considered viable diplomatic options. Communist-led organizations, including veterans of the Spanish Civil War, opposed the war during the period of the Hitler-Stalin pact but then turned into hawks after Germany invaded the Soviet Union
Operation Barbarossa
Operation Barbarossa was the code name for Germany's invasion of the Soviet Union during World War II that began on 22 June 1941. Over 4.5 million troops of the Axis powers invaded the USSR along a front., the largest invasion in the history of warfare...

.

The war seemed, for a time, to set anti-war movements at a distinct social disadvantage; very few, mostly ardent pacifists
Pacifism
Pacifism is the opposition to war and violence. The term "pacifism" was coined by the French peace campaignerÉmile Arnaud and adopted by other peace activists at the tenth Universal Peace Congress inGlasgow in 1901.- Definition :...

, continued to argue against the war and its results at the time. However, the Cold War
Cold War
The Cold War was the continuing state from roughly 1946 to 1991 of political conflict, military tension, proxy wars, and economic competition between the Communist World—primarily the Soviet Union and its satellite states and allies—and the powers of the Western world, primarily the United States...

 followed with the post-war realignment
Western betrayal
Western betrayal, also called Yalta betrayal, refers to a range of critical views concerning the foreign policies of several Western countries between approximately 1919 and 1968 regarding Eastern Europe and Central Europe...

, and the opposition resumed. The grim realities of modern combat, and the nature of mechanized society insured that the anti-war viewpoint found presentation in Catch-22
Catch-22
Catch-22 is a satirical, historical novel by the American author Joseph Heller. He began writing it in 1953, and the novel was first published in 1961. It is set during World War II in 1943 and is frequently cited as one of the great literary works of the twentieth century...

, Slaughterhouse-Five
Slaughterhouse-Five
Slaughterhouse-Five, or The Children's Crusade: A Duty-Dance with Death is a satirical novel by Kurt Vonnegut about World War II experiences and journeys through time of a soldier called Billy Pilgrim...

and The Tin Drum
The Tin Drum
The Tin Drum is a 1959 novel by Günter Grass. The novel is the first book of Grass's .- Plot summary :The story revolves around the life of Oskar Matzerath, as narrated by himself when confined in a mental hospital during the years 1952-1954...

. This sentiment grew in strength as the Cold War seemed to present the situation of an unending series of conflicts, which were fought at terrible cost to the younger generations.

Vietnam War




Opposition to U.S. involvement in the Vietnam War
Vietnam War
The Vietnam War was a Cold War-era military conflict that occurred in Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia from 1 November 1955 to the fall of Saigon on 30 April 1975. This war followed the First Indochina War and was fought between North Vietnam, supported by its communist allies, and the government of...

 began slowly and in small numbers in 1964 on various college campuses in the United States. Countercultural works such as the notorious MacBird
MacBird
MacBird! was a 1967 satire by Barbara Garson that superimposed the transferral of power following the Kennedy assassination onto the plot of Shakespeare's Macbeth....

 by Barbara Garson
Barbara Garson
Barbara Garson is an American playwright, author and social activist.Garson is best known for the play MacBird, a notorious 1966 counterculture drama/political parody of Macbeth that sold over half a million copies as a book and had over 90 productions world wide...

 encouraged a spirit of nonconformism and anti-establishmentarianism. This anti-war sentiment developed during a time of unprecedented student activism
Students for a Democratic Society (1960 organization)
Students for a Democratic Society was a student activist movement in the United States that was one of the main iconic representations of the country's New Left. The organization developed and expanded rapidly in the mid-1960s before dissolving at its last convention in 1969...

 reinforced in numbers by the demographically significant baby boomers, but grew to include a wide and varied cross-section of Americans from all walks of life. The anti-war movement is often considered to have been a major factor affecting America's involvement in the war itself. Many veterans
Vietnam veteran
Vietnam veteran is a phrase used to describe someone who served in the armed forces of participating countries during the Vietnam War.The term has been used to describe veterans who were in the armed forces of South Vietnam, the United States armed forces, and countries allied to them, whether or...

 of Vietnam
Vietnam War
The Vietnam War was a Cold War-era military conflict that occurred in Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia from 1 November 1955 to the fall of Saigon on 30 April 1975. This war followed the First Indochina War and was fought between North Vietnam, supported by its communist allies, and the government of...

, including U.S. Senator John Kerry
John Kerry
John Forbes Kerry is the senior United States Senator from Massachusetts, the 10th most senior U.S. Senator and chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. He was the presidential nominee of the Democratic Party in the 2004 presidential election, but lost to former President George W...

, and disabled veteran Ron Kovic
Ron Kovic
Ronald Lawrence Kovic is an anti-war activist, veteran and writer who was paralyzed in the Vietnam War. He is best known as the author of the memoir Born on the Fourth of July, which was made into an Academy Award–winning movie directed by Oliver Stone, with Tom Cruise playing Kovic...

 spoke out against the Vietnam War on their return to the United States.

South African Border War



Opposition to South Africa's border war spread to a general resistance to the apartheid military. Organisations such as the End Conscription Campaign
End Conscription Campaign
The End Conscription Campaign was an anti-apartheid organisation allied to the United Democratic Front and composed of conscientious objectors and their supporters in South Africa...

 and Committee on South African War Resisters, were set up.

2001 Afghanistan War



There was considerable opposition to the 2001 Afghanistan War
War in Afghanistan (2001–present)
The War in Afghanistan began on October 7, 2001, as the armed forces of the United States of America, the United Kingdom, Australia, and the Afghan United Front launched Operation Enduring Freedom...

 in the United States and the United Kingdom
United Kingdom
The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern IrelandIn the United Kingdom and Dependencies, other languages have been officially recognised as legitimate autochthonous languages under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages...

. Opposition was organised locally by the Revolutionary Association of the Women of Afghanistan
Revolutionary Association of the Women of Afghanistan
The Revolutionary Association of the Women of Afghanistan is a women's organization based in Quetta, Pakistan, that promotes women's rights and secular democracy...

 and internationally in the form of protests
Protests against the invasion of Afghanistan
The ongoing decade-long War in Afghanistan has prompted large protests around the world, with the first large-scale demonstrations beginning in the days leading up to the war's official launch on October 7, 2001....

 by various anti-war organisations who went on to organise much larger protests against the 2003 Iraq War.

Iraq War




The anti-war position gained renewed support and attention in the build up to the 2003 invasion of Iraq
2003 invasion of Iraq
The 2003 invasion of Iraq , was the start of the conflict known as the Iraq War, or Operation Iraqi Freedom, in which a combined force of troops from the United States, the United Kingdom, Australia and Poland invaded Iraq and toppled the regime of Saddam Hussein in 21 days of major combat operations...

 by the U.S. and its allies. Millions of people staged mass protests
Protests against the Iraq War
Beginning in 2002, and continuing after the 2003 invasion of Iraq, protests against the Iraq War were held in many cities worldwide, often coordinated to occur simultaneously around the world...

 across the world in the immediate prelude to the invasion, and demonstrations and other forms of anti-war activism
Activism
Activism consists of intentional efforts to bring about social, political, economic, or environmental change. Activism can take a wide range of forms from writing letters to newspapers or politicians, political campaigning, economic activism such as boycotts or preferentially patronizing...

 have continued throughout the occupation. The primary opposition within the U.S. to the continued occupation of Iraq has come from the grassroots
Grassroots
A grassroots movement is one driven by the politics of a community. The term implies that the creation of the movement and the group supporting it are natural and spontaneous, highlighting the differences between this and a movement that is orchestrated by traditional power structures...

. Opposition to the conflict
Opposition to the Iraq War
Significant opposition to the Iraq War occurred worldwide, both before and during the initial 2003 invasion of Iraq by the United States, United Kingdom, and smaller contingents from other nations, and throughout the subsequent occupation...

, how it had been fought, and complications during the aftermath period divided public sentiment in the U.S., resulting in majority public opinion turning against the war for the first time in the spring of 2004, a turn which has held since. Anti-war groups protested during the both the Democratic National Convention and 2008 Republican National Convention protests held in St. Paul
Saint Paul, Minnesota
Saint Paul is the capital and second-most populous city of the U.S. state of Minnesota. The city lies mostly on the east bank of the Mississippi River in the area surrounding its point of confluence with the Minnesota River, and adjoins Minneapolis, the state's largest city...

, Minnesota
Minnesota
Minnesota is a U.S. state located in the Midwestern United States. The twelfth largest state of the U.S., it is the twenty-first most populous, with 5.3 million residents. Minnesota was carved out of the eastern half of the Minnesota Territory and admitted to the Union as the thirty-second state...

 in September 2008.

Possible War against Iran



Organised opposition to a possible future military attack against Iran
Iran
Iran , officially the Islamic Republic of Iran , is a country in Southern and Western Asia. The name "Iran" has been in use natively since the Sassanian era and came into use internationally in 1935, before which the country was known to the Western world as Persia...

 by the United States is known to have started during 2005-2006. Beginning in early 2005, journalist
Journalist
A journalist collects and distributes news and other information. A journalist's work is referred to as journalism.A reporter is a type of journalist who researchs, writes, and reports on information to be presented in mass media, including print media , electronic media , and digital media A...

s, activists and academics such as Seymour Hersh
Seymour Hersh
Seymour Myron Hersh is an American Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative journalist and author based in Washington, D.C. He is a regular contributor to The New Yorker magazine on military and security matters...

, Scott Ritter
Scott Ritter
William Scott Ritter, Jr. was an important United Nations weapons inspector in Iraq from 1991 to 1998, and later a critic of United States foreign policy in the Middle East. Prior to the U.S. invasion of Iraq in March 2003, Ritter stated that Iraq possessed no significant weapons of mass...

, Joseph Cirincione
Joseph Cirincione
Joseph Cirincione is the President of the Ploughshares Fund, a public grant-making foundation focused on nuclear weapons policy and conflict resolution. He was appointed to the presidency by the Ploughshares board of directors on March 5, 2008...

 and Jorge E. Hirsch
Jorge E. Hirsch
Jorge E. Hirsch is an Argentine American professor of physics at the University of California, San Diego. He is known for his for public warnings in 2005 and 2006 about the increasing risk of nuclear war that he claimed was being caused by an unnecessarily aggressive military nuclear policy on the...

 began publishing claims that United States' concerns over the alleged threat posed by the possibility that Iran may have a nuclear weapons program
Iran and weapons of mass destruction
Iran is not known to currently possess weapons of mass destruction and has signed treaties repudiating the possession of weapons of mass destruction including the Biological Weapons Convention, the Chemical Weapons Convention, and the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty...

 might lead the US government to take military action against that country in the future. These reports, and the concurrent escalation of tensions between Iran and some Western governments, prompted the formation of grassroots
Grassroots
A grassroots movement is one driven by the politics of a community. The term implies that the creation of the movement and the group supporting it are natural and spontaneous, highlighting the differences between this and a movement that is orchestrated by traditional power structures...

 organisations, including Campaign Against Sanctions and Military Intervention in Iran
Campaign Against Sanctions and Military Intervention in Iran
Campaign Against Sanctions and Military Intervention in Iran is a group of academics, students and professionals of Iranian and non-Iranian backgrounds formed to oppose sanctions on Iran by the United States.-History:...

 in the US and the United Kingdom
United Kingdom
The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern IrelandIn the United Kingdom and Dependencies, other languages have been officially recognised as legitimate autochthonous languages under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages...

, to advocate against potential military strikes on Iran. Additionally, several individuals, grassroots organisations and international governmental organisations, including the Director-General of the International Atomic Energy Agency
International Atomic Energy Agency
The International Atomic Energy Agency is an international organization that seeks to promote the peaceful use of nuclear energy, and to inhibit its use for any military purpose, including nuclear weapons. The IAEA was established as an autonomous organization on 29 July 1957...

, Mohamed ElBaradei, a former United Nations weapons inspector
United Nations Special Commission
United Nations Special Commission was an inspection regime created by the United Nations to ensure Iraq's compliance with policies concerning Iraqi production and use of weapons of mass destruction after the Gulf War...

 in Iraq
Iraq
Iraq ; officially the Republic of Iraq is a country in Western Asia spanning most of the northwestern end of the Zagros mountain range, the eastern part of the Syrian Desert and the northern part of the Arabian Desert....

, Scott Ritter
Scott Ritter
William Scott Ritter, Jr. was an important United Nations weapons inspector in Iraq from 1991 to 1998, and later a critic of United States foreign policy in the Middle East. Prior to the U.S. invasion of Iraq in March 2003, Ritter stated that Iraq possessed no significant weapons of mass...

, Nobel Prize
Nobel Prize
The Nobel Prizes are annual international awards bestowed by Scandinavian committees in recognition of cultural and scientific advances. The will of the Swedish chemist Alfred Nobel, the inventor of dynamite, established the prizes in 1895...

 winners including Shirin Ebadi
Shirin Ebadi
Shirin Ebadi is an Iranian lawyer, a former judge and human rights activist and founder of Defenders of Human Rights Center in Iran. On 10 October 2003, Ebadi was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for her significant and pioneering efforts for democracy and human rights, especially women's,...

, Mairead Corrigan-Maguire
Mairead Corrigan
Mairead Maguire , also known as Mairead Corrigan Maguire and formerly as Mairéad Corrigan, is a Northern Irish peace activist. She co-founded, with Betty Williams and Ciaran McKeown, the Community of Peace People, an organisation dedicated to encouraging a peaceful resolution of the Troubles in...

 and Betty Williams, Harold Pinter
Harold Pinter
Harold Pinter, CH, CBE was a Nobel Prize–winning English playwright and screenwriter. One of the most influential modern British dramatists, his writing career spanned more than 50 years. His best-known plays include The Birthday Party , The Homecoming , and Betrayal , each of which he adapted to...

 and Jody Williams
Jody Williams
Jody Williams is an American teacher and aid worker who received the 1997 Nobel Peace Prize jointly with the campaign she worked for, the International Campaign to Ban Landmines...

, Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament
Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament
The Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament is an anti-nuclear organisation that advocates unilateral nuclear disarmament by the United Kingdom, international nuclear disarmament and tighter international arms regulation through agreements such as the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty...

, Code Pink
Code Pink
Code Pink: Women for Peace is an anti-war group that is mainly composed of women. It has regional offices in Los Angeles, San Francisco, New York City, and Washington, D.C., and many more chapters in the U.S. as well as several in other countries...

, the Non-Aligned Movement
Non-Aligned Movement
The Non-Aligned Movement is a group of states considering themselves not aligned formally with or against any major power bloc. As of 2011, the movement had 120 members and 17 observer countries...

 of 118 states, and the Arab League
Arab League
The Arab League , officially called the League of Arab States , is a regional organisation of Arab states in North and Northeast Africa, and Southwest Asia . It was formed in Cairo on 22 March 1945 with six members: Egypt, Iraq, Transjordan , Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, and Syria. Yemen joined as a...

, have publicly stated their opposition to a would-be attack on Iran.

Arts and culture



English
England
England is a country that is part of the United Kingdom. It shares land borders with Scotland to the north and Wales to the west; the Irish Sea is to the north west, the Celtic Sea to the south west, with the North Sea to the east and the English Channel to the south separating it from continental...

 poet Robert Southey
Robert Southey
Robert Southey was an English poet of the Romantic school, one of the so-called "Lake Poets", and Poet Laureate for 30 years from 1813 to his death in 1843...

's 1796 poem After Blenheim
After Blenheim
"After Blenheim" is an anti-war poem written by English Romantic poet laureate Robert Southey in 1796 . The poem is set at the site of the Battle of Blenheim , with the questions of small children about a skull one of them has found...

 is an early modern example of anti-war literature — it was written generations after the Battle of Blenheim
Battle of Blenheim
The Battle of Blenheim , fought on 13 August 1704, was a major battle of the War of the Spanish Succession. Louis XIV of France sought to knock Emperor Leopold out of the war by seizing Vienna, the Habsburg capital, and gain a favourable peace settlement...

, but at a time when England was again at war with France. Alfred Tennyson
Alfred Tennyson, 1st Baron Tennyson
Alfred Tennyson, 1st Baron Tennyson, FRS was Poet Laureate of the United Kingdom during much of Queen Victoria's reign and remains one of the most popular poets in the English language....

's 1854 poem The Charge of the Light Brigade
The Charge of the Light Brigade (poem)
"The Charge of the Light Brigade" is an 1854 narrative poem by Alfred, Lord Tennyson about the Charge of the Light Brigade at the Battle of Balaclava during the Crimean War...

 focussed on leadership failures and unnecessary loss of life in the Crimean War
Crimean War
The Crimean War was a conflict fought between the Russian Empire and an alliance of the French Empire, the British Empire, the Ottoman Empire, and the Kingdom of Sardinia. The war was part of a long-running contest between the major European powers for influence over territories of the declining...

, while American
United States
The United States of America is a federal constitutional republic comprising fifty states and a federal district...

 author Stephen Crane
Stephen Crane
Stephen Crane was an American novelist, short story writer, poet and journalist. Prolific throughout his short life, he wrote notable works in the Realist tradition as well as early examples of American Naturalism and Impressionism...

's 1895 novel The Red Badge of Courage
The Red Badge of Courage
The Red Badge of Courage is a war novel by American author Stephen Crane . Taking place during the American Civil War, the story is about a young private of the Union Army, Henry Fleming, who flees from the field of battle. Overcome with shame, he longs for a wound—a "red badge of courage"—to...

, set during the American Civil War
American Civil War
The American Civil War was a civil war fought in the United States of America. In response to the election of Abraham Lincoln as President of the United States, 11 southern slave states declared their secession from the United States and formed the Confederate States of America ; the other 25...

, cast war in a negative, anti-heroic light.

World War I
World War I
World War I , which was predominantly called the World War or the Great War from its occurrence until 1939, and the First World War or World War I thereafter, was a major war centred in Europe that began on 28 July 1914 and lasted until 11 November 1918...

 produced a generation of poets and writers influenced by their experiences in the war. The work of poets including Wilfred Owen
Wilfred Owen
Wilfred Edward Salter Owen MC was an English poet and soldier, one of the leading poets of the First World War...

 and Siegfried Sassoon
Siegfried Sassoon
Siegfried Loraine Sassoon CBE MC was an English poet, author and soldier. Decorated for bravery on the Western Front, he became one of the leading poets of the First World War. His poetry both described the horrors of the trenches, and satirised the patriotic pretensions of those who, in Sassoon's...

 exposed the contrast between the realities of life in the trenches and how the war was seen by the British public at the time, as well as the earlier patriotic verse penned by Rupert Brooke
Rupert Brooke
Rupert Chawner Brooke was an English poet known for his idealistic war sonnets written during the First World War, especially The Soldier...

. German writer Erich Maria Remarque
Erich Maria Remarque
Erich Maria Remarque was a German author, best known for his novel All Quiet on the Western Front.-Life and work:...

 penned All Quiet on the Western Front, which, having been adapted for several mediums, has become of the most often cited pieces of anti-war media.

Pablo Picasso
Pablo Picasso
Pablo Diego José Francisco de Paula Juan Nepomuceno María de los Remedios Cipriano de la Santísima Trinidad Ruiz y Picasso known as Pablo Ruiz Picasso was a Spanish expatriate painter, sculptor, printmaker, ceramicist, and stage designer, one of the greatest and most influential artists of the...

's 1937 painting Guernica
Guernica (painting)
Guernica is a painting by Pablo Picasso. It was created in response to the bombing of Guernica, Basque Country, by German and Italian warplanes at the behest of the Spanish Nationalist forces, on 26 April 1937, during the Spanish Civil War...

, on the other hand, used abstraction rather than realism to generate an emotional response to the loss of life from the fascist
Fascism
Fascism is a radical authoritarian nationalist political ideology. Fascists seek to rejuvenate their nation based on commitment to the national community as an organic entity, in which individuals are bound together in national identity by suprapersonal connections of ancestry, culture, and blood...

 bombing of Guernica
Bombing of Guernica
The bombing of Guernica was an aerial attack on the Basque town of Guernica, Spain, causing widespread destruction and civilian deaths, during the Spanish Civil War...

 during the Spanish Civil War
Spanish Civil War
The Spanish Civil WarAlso known as The Crusade among Nationalists, the Fourth Carlist War among Carlists, and The Rebellion or Uprising among Republicans. was a major conflict fought in Spain from 17 July 1936 to 1 April 1939...

. American author Kurt Vonnegut
Kurt Vonnegut
Kurt Vonnegut, Jr. was a 20th century American writer. His works such as Cat's Cradle , Slaughterhouse-Five and Breakfast of Champions blend satire, gallows humor and science fiction. He was known for his humanist beliefs and was honorary president of the American Humanist Association.-Early...

 used science fiction themes in his 1969 novel Slaughterhouse-Five
Slaughterhouse-Five
Slaughterhouse-Five, or The Children's Crusade: A Duty-Dance with Death is a satirical novel by Kurt Vonnegut about World War II experiences and journeys through time of a soldier called Billy Pilgrim...

, depicting the bombing of Dresden in World War II
Bombing of Dresden in World War II
The Bombing of Dresden was a military bombing by the British Royal Air Force and the United States Army Air Force and as part of the Allied forces between 13 February and 15 February 1945 in the Second World War...

 (which Vonnegut witnessed).

The second half of the 20th century also witnessed a strong anti-war presence in other art forms, including anti-war music such as "Eve of Destruction" and One Tin Soldier
One Tin Soldier
"One Tin Soldier" is a 1960s era anti-war song written by Dennis Lambert and Brian Potter. The Canadian pop group Original Caste first recorded the song in 1969. The track went to No. 6 on the RPM Magazine charts and hit the No.1 position on Canada's most influential radio chain, CHUM-AM, in Canada...

 and films such as M*A*S*H and "Die Brücke
Die Brücke
Die Brücke was a group of German expressionist artists formed in Dresden in 1905, after which the Brücke Museum in Berlin was named. Founding members were Fritz Bleyl, Erich Heckel, Ernst Ludwig Kirchner and Karl Schmidt-Rottluff. Later members were Emil Nolde, Max Pechstein and Otto Mueller...

", opposing the Cold War
Cold War
The Cold War was the continuing state from roughly 1946 to 1991 of political conflict, military tension, proxy wars, and economic competition between the Communist World—primarily the Soviet Union and its satellite states and allies—and the powers of the Western world, primarily the United States...

 in general, or specific conflicts such as the Vietnam War
Vietnam War
The Vietnam War was a Cold War-era military conflict that occurred in Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia from 1 November 1955 to the fall of Saigon on 30 April 1975. This war followed the First Indochina War and was fought between North Vietnam, supported by its communist allies, and the government of...

. The current American war in Iraq
Iraq
Iraq ; officially the Republic of Iraq is a country in Western Asia spanning most of the northwestern end of the Zagros mountain range, the eastern part of the Syrian Desert and the northern part of the Arabian Desert....

 has also generated significant artistic anti-war works, including film maker Michael Moore
Michael Moore
Michael Francis Moore is an American filmmaker, author, social critic and activist. He is the director and producer of Fahrenheit 9/11, which is the highest-grossing documentary of all time. His films Bowling for Columbine and Sicko also place in the top ten highest-grossing documentaries...

's Fahrenheit 9/11
Fahrenheit 9/11
Fahrenheit 9/11 is a 2004 documentary film by American filmmaker and political commentator Michael Moore. The film takes a critical look at the presidency of George W. Bush, the War on Terror, and its coverage in the news media...

, which holds the box-office record for documentary films, and Canadian
Canada
Canada is a North American country consisting of ten provinces and three territories. Located in the northern part of the continent, it extends from the Atlantic Ocean in the east to the Pacific Ocean in the west, and northward into the Arctic Ocean...

 musician Neil Young
Neil Young
Neil Percival Young, OC, OM is a Canadian singer-songwriter who is widely regarded as one of the most influential musicians of his generation...

's 2006 album Living with War
Living With War
Living with War is the twenty-ninth Grammy and Juno Award-nominated studio album by Canadian musician Neil Young, released in 2006. The album's lyrics, titles, and conceptual style are highly critical of the policies of the George W. Bush administration; the CTV website defined it as "a musical...

.

See also

  • Anti-militarism
  • Die-in
    Die-in
    A die-in is a form of protest where participants simulate being dead.- Overview :In the simplest form of a die-in, protesters simply lie down on the ground and pretend to be dead, sometimes covering themselves with signs or banners...

  • List of anti-war songs
  • Nonkilling
    Nonkilling
    Nonkilling refers to the absence of killing, threats to kill, and conditions conducive to killing in human society. Even though the use of the term in the academic world refers mostly to the killing of human beings, it is sometimes extended to include the killing of animals and other forms of life...

  • Nuclear-free zone
    Nuclear-free zone
    A nuclear-free zone is an area where nuclear weapons and nuclear power are banned. The specific ramifications of these depend on the locale in question....

  • Peace movement
    Peace movement
    A peace movement is a social movement that seeks to achieve ideals such as the ending of a particular war , minimize inter-human violence in a particular place or type of situation, often linked to the goal of achieving world peace...

  • Pro-war
  • List of anti-war organizations
  • Raging Grannies
    Raging Grannies
    The Raging Grannies are activist organizations in many cities and towns in Canada, the United States, and in other countries. They are social justice activists, all women old enough to be grandmothers, who dress up in clothes that mock stereotypes of older women, and sing songs at protests...

  • War resister
    War resister
    A war resister is a person who resists war. The term can mean several things: resisting participation in all war, or a specific war, either before or after enlisting in, being inducted into, or being conscripted into a military force....

  • Women Against War
    Women against war
    Women Against War is the name of two organizations of women opposed to war.-Women Against War, 1960s:Mary Phelps Jacob founded an organisation following an article, during the 1960s.-Women Against War, Delmar New York:...


External links