Saturday, November 16, 2019

food for thought

The past year I have been working my way through a new reality. I joined the Canadian Armed Forces 15 Dec 2018. Since then I have been learning as much as I can about the military. One new reality is keeping my opinions concerning government to myself. It is for that reason I have not posted anything for almost one year.

However, on a global scale I am still of the mind that we are lacking any sense of direction towards a better world. In the pas decade we have millions of people who are forced to leave their own countries due to complete mismanagement, which in many cases has deterioratied into civil war. As I think of this I am often brought to a very popular quote:

Many forms of Government have been tried, and will be tried in this world of sin and woe. No one pretends that democracy is perfect or all-wise. Indeed it has been said that democracy is the worst form of Government except for all those other forms that have been tried from time to time.…’Winston S Churchill, 11 November 1947

The part of the quote I often think about is this - No one pretends that democracy is perfect or all-wise. Since we know it is not perfect, there must be another system which is? Or, are we not intelligent enough to fully allow the basics of democracy to be implemented? For me, I am usually one who looks to the person using the system before the system being used.

Wednesday, December 19, 2018

Seeking Global Peace: Combatting Corruption


Written by David Porter


Global peace relies on a network of individuals, organizations and systems. Often we forget that

organizations and systems can not function or exist without the individual. Each of us carries a certain

amount of responsibility for the actions of these organizations and systems. As we build organizations

such as governments and systems such as courts, the reality still remains that both rely on the individual

to ensure peace. Conversely, crime, war, violence and corruption also rely on the individual to carry out

acts that destroy peace. Looking deeply into this reality reveals the complexity of global peace and the

importance of the individual. The following work explores the relation between the individual and global


The nature of corruption must deal with the distrustful acts of those seeking personal gain at the

expense of others. One manifestation is the global economic crisis due to a number of schemes and

loose governance that has allowed global peace to subside. The Jasmine Revolution is one such example

where life and economic conditions felt by one person spread throughout the world.

The Jasmine Revolution began with the suicide of Mohamed Bouazizi who was a university graduate

working as a street vendor. During Jan 2011 in Tunisia, Mr. Bouazizi had experienced what he felt was

humiliation and no hope for a better life under the current government. After setting himself on fire the

people of Tunisia demonstrated to end the corruption and poor management within the Tunisian

government. The demonstration did in fact bring down the Tunisian government and spawned the Arab

Spring. The Arab Spring movement has seen the governments in Libya and Egypt topple. Currently the

governments in Syria, Yemen, Bahrain and others are facing opposition of all degrees due to corruption

and misspent leadership.

Further to the Jasmine Revolution and the Arab Spring, there are other issues that threaten global

peace. These issues are the global human trafficking rings, weapons trades, conflict resources and a vast

amount of trade to further terrorist activities. All of these activities comprise an effort to destabilize and

erode global peace. How can we ensure global peace when so many daggers of corruption are sinking

into the body of peace?

There is no doubt we have made great strides to ensure global peace. Due to these successes we are

now more aware of the scope and impact corruption has on global security. For example, the ongoing

war in the Democratic Republic of Congo is assisted indirectly through a global network of criminal

capitalistic consumerism. We have known this link exists for decades/centuries. It is only the past few

years that we have tuned into our role that assists the ongoing war. This very example may indeed give

us the perception that peace is very far away however, the opposite is true.

For our world to be at peace each of us must experience it on a personal level, all 7.6 billion of us. The

leaders we choose, how we act towards each other, how we think and how we plan to solve our

problems are very much linked to the greater society. The link begins with our education, experience

and expectations. These three elements shape our minds as we begin to formulate plans which ensure

global security. We have our own individual understanding of the world and we express them through

our actions. “Self-expression is thwarted at the root unless the certainties we are asked to accept

coincide with the certainties we experience.”1

In terms of corruption, what are we being asked to accept as we analyse the above quote? The certainty

we are asked to accept in combatting corruption is a peaceful society. If not a peaceful utopian society

then at least some trusted semblance of predictable order is expected. Where do we draw the line? Are

we experiencing a measure of peace by tolerating some corruption?

Ultimately this line will be determined by each and every one of us on an individual basis. Even though

the individual will always be the ultimate decider of where the line is drawn, in order to provide a


definition of where the line is, society has created rules. However rules change which make the lines less

clear. This is where leadership is most needed and the leaders are usually politicians.

The connection between global peace and politicians is very clear. Anecdotally, there is a commonly

held belief that politicians are untrustworthy. This belief is a major point of battle which brings the

seeds of corruption into the minds of everyone. For example, the elections in the Republic of the United

States are among those most closely watched. In the election held during November 2012, for example,

the public endured “attack ads” which were intended to destroy opponents. Often these tactics blur the

facts. In an article written about attack ads for the Responsibility Project, this statement is made, “I've

never seen more irresponsible personal attacks, mean-spirited slander, and flat-out dishonest attack

ads, and I don't expect that tone to change before the election.” 2 Examples such as these attack ads are

often defended using the cultural relativist3 argument. The argument states that politics is a tough

business and you have to have thick skin. That line is a moral decision and often in the world of hawks

and doves, moral stands get shouted down. However, attack ads are a stepping stone which gives

credence to behaviour that we know is unwanted. This behaviour of attacking, destroying and deception

seeps into the mindset of society. The buildup of such ideology evolves into the vernacular which then

leads to an even deeper level of shock value needed to create a similar impact. With this knowledge we

must ask ourselves how far is enough?

When peaceful methods are shouted down it is due to the ingrained understanding that the world is the

Hobbesian state of nature and not a peaceful environment. This mindset is a learned reality which at

some point the individual must make the decision to agree with or see no other viable option but to go

along with it. Societies which fall into chaos are perfect examples of the belief in the Hobbesian state of


An example emerged with the second invasion of Iraq. At the time of the invasion the world had made it

known it was an illegal act yet still the world sat by and allowed it. As the years played out we have

witnessed many violations of human rights. Even as this piece is being written the German courts are

looking into the case of Khalid el-Masri.4

The European Court of Human Rights ruled that Khaled El-Masri, a German car salesman was an innocent victim

of torture and abuse. Khaled El-Masri says he was kidnapped from Macedonia in 2003, mistaken for a terrorism

suspect, then held for four months and brutally interrogated at an Afghan prison known as the "Salt Pit" run by the

U.S. Central Intelligence Agency. He says that once U.S. authorities realized he was not a threat, they illegally sent

him to Albania and left him on a mountainside.”5

Other countries have also been looking into the treatment of prisoners during the “war on terror” as

well as those that were detained during “rendition” exercises. Such activities that circumvent individual


rights are cases which speak to the decay of individual and global peace. In addition to the victim, those

that carry out the torture must follow an ideology which rots the mind of peace and therefore can be

seen as victims too. These acts perpetuate the ideology that the world is indeed a violent place. Such a

mindset is the very beginnings of how each individual becomes comfortable with corruption.

These beliefs perpetuate and take shape through education. In essence it is the corruption of the mind

which can lead to deadly conflicts. These people are pawns and have been educated to believe that

more violence will bring an end to the greater global issue of cultural and religious differences. We can

see the carnage of religious martyrs that have been indoctrinated to missions of suicide in order to seek

revenge. How many countries have been torn apart due to religious beliefs dominating political policy?

From religion to politics to economics, such subjects envelope all facets of life. In terms of economics we

can trace the links of corruption through resources such as gold, oil and diamonds, there are others too.

In the late 1990s, so strong was the lure of eastern DRC gold, casserite, and coltan, that neighbouring countries of Uganda and

Rwanda invaded with proxy militias and their own armies. In 2000, the Rwandan military and politicians made $250 million

moving coltan out of eastern DRC to Western-based mining companies. Metal traders then sold the resources to companies

that manufactured parts for the likes of Sony and Motorola to make cell phones, video game consoles, and computers valuable

to western personal technology. This conflict, waged in part so the West can have its personal electronics, cost the lives of

three to five million Congolese and other Africans, according to many NGOs.6

As mentioned, it is the lure of acquiring some commodity or status over others that fuels the

destabilization of peace. We can look to Cambodia and the Khmer Rouge as an example where peace

had almost completely been lost. From the smallest village to the largest of cities society was held

captive due to ideology and corruption. Such corruption is a multilayered operation, made very

apparent in Iraq and Cambodia. One of the longest battles the world has witnessed in recent years deals

with the mining/resources in Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). Within the quoted piece by John

Lasker above, the link is obvious as to the participation of the individual to global peace. The trade of

such resources provides the finances to continue the suppression of others.

It is obvious that the fight to maintain or increase global peace hinges on the reduction of corruption.

Over the past few years we have witnessed many influences which spawned violent chaos (Iraq, Libya,

Syria and Egypt), economic collapse(United States and Greece) and many environmental disasters

deforestation, industrial waste and pollution (India, Brazil and Nigeria). In each of these cases there have

been macro level operators and micro level operators (individuals and organizations). Participation in

corruption must also take into account the financing of terrorism. The issue of financing terrorism is one

that has gathered a great deal of attention in recent years. Dean C. Alexander discusses this matter in his

book Business Confronts Terrorism.7

As such practices take root in any society, eventually these practices will become part of the

culture/fabric of society, which leads to cultural relativistic acceptance. “Day to day corruption

corresponds to bad cultural habits which paves the way to grand corruption. The existence of petty

corruption is often the sign that you are in a country exposed to grand corruption.”8 That quote also

sums up the point why attack ads erode peace. If the political leaders do not emulate peaceful conduct,

the entire system is put into question. In conflict zones, attacks by political leadership has usurped


peace. Further to that, development in post conflict areas is rife with political corruption due to the

culture and chaos of war, which becomes ingrained as a normal way of life.

Post-conflict development needs to reduce corruption, facilitate effective governance and promote environmentally sound, socially equitable, economically robust sustainable development that requires re-evaluation of existing policies, strategies, legal and regulatory frameworks and institutional arrangements, then adjust accordingly.9

When the system, method and/or rules of society are put into question, wide spread distrust and social

breakdown can occur. Sometimes the breakdown results in massive protests such as the Occupy

Movement. Other times social breakdown results in war as in Syria. What remains will be the need for

society and the individual to formulate a new reality where corruption and violence end or at least are

greatly reduced. For many organizations one system/method of peacebuilding involves the building of

state institutions of democracy and capitalist economies. “Tackling corruption is part of ‘liberal

peacebuilding’, which seeks to consolidate peace through democracy and free market economies.”10

During the past few years there has been a grand debate which concerns the ideology of peacebuilding,

which corruption is a major issue. “Approaches to peacebuilding are often controversial. In particular,

the effectiveness and appropriateness of promoting liberal democracy and market economics in volatile

conflict-prone societies are contested.”11 This liberal peacebuilding is a top down approach which

neglects the input of the average person and relies on what is known as the “trickle down effect”12. The

problem with a trickle down approach is that trickling is what takes place. The promise of change is a

slow (if at all), minimal flow of change and sharing.

Promises to people create problems, if failed to fulfill. However, development has great potentials for achieving stability and peace and addressing expectations of people if available resources are used transparently, following good governance principles and rule of law. Political interference, bureaucratic manipulation, corruption and malgovernance are the deadly bottlenecks for development sector.13

Looking back to the Harold Laski quote,“Self-expression is thwarted at the root unless the certainties we

are asked to accept coincide with the certainties we experience.”14, the people are asked to accept

peace, democracy, free markets. The most glaring problem in a post conflict society is that peace,

democracy, and honest governance/society are rarely experienced. This creates the understanding that

a new dictator has come into power. The way of life has changed and a new way is being forced upon



We are asked to believe in a democratic system because it is supposed to foster global peace, order and

good government. What is missing is the understanding that the people who live in post conflict and

conflict areas know that corruption is a part of life for people in countries like Canada. That reality only

gives further support to engage in corruption as the examples of peace, order and good governance also

engage in corruption.15 With that in mind, we must step back and look at the poor governance


Why is the current economic collapse taking place? Why did the world stand by and allow the illegal

invasion of Iraq to happen? Why has it taken so long to bring small arms and light weapons treaties into

force and many other valid issues/questions. “Corruption should not only be ‘fought’ in domestic

governance at the state level, but must also be addressed in a broader sense at multiple sites and

interconnections.” 16

On a micro level, we can look at the peace process in Libya as an example of the difficulties with

engaging the people and the society. “What complicates Libya's peace process is the regionalism and

tribalism, enmeshed with clan-type politics. What is needed for the protection of tolerance is both

short-term and long-term legal, political, social, educational and religious sets of solutions to curb the

assault of Libya's nascent peace process.”17 Again, there is a disconnect with the reality people are asked

to accept and the one they are experiencing in Libya. However, on a global scale there is progress being


Our collective experience throughout history has proven that areas which have the least amount of

corruption also experience the most peace. Comparing data compiled by Transparency International and

the Institute for Economics and Peace (Appendix 1) with the information compiled within the Global

Peace Index (Appendix 2), the correlation between peace and corruption is easily understood.

Comparing the least corrupt societies to the most peaceful societies, these countries are very similar. In

the face of such truth, we must ask why this is. The challenge is to act upon on those findings as we build

a society where corruption is no longer a threat to peace. We can strive for total eradication of

corruption but in reality there will always be some form of corruption.

Although the main consequences of corruption are overwhelmingly negative, functionalist arguments about corruption suggest that some forms of corruption may occasionally have positive effects. Corruption may help in securing some
degree of political, economic and social stability. Although corruption needs to be ‘rooted out’ as early as possible, it is often very difficult rapidly and effectively to address local sources of grievances and conflict. In this respect, some of the political and social effects of corruption may provide a short-term solution – such as buying out ‘peace spoilers’ or authorizing illegal but licit (i.e. accepted by custom or morality) economic activities that sustain local livelihoods.18


As mentioned above, we must deal with the individual and the organization (in all its manifestations).

Both realms have many layers and complications. Due to the reality that people make up the

organizational realm, measures to govern both realms must be created. It is paramount that we

understand the personal realm ultimately will ensure a peaceful global society. Participation in

corruption is a choice each of us must make every day. “The risk always is that the freedom which choice

and participation imply might not be used well and wisely where upon, corruption and collapse may

follow.”19 Within that quote we come across the issue of participation.

Participation is a main ingredient, which is represented by the term self-expression. How we choose to

act or express ourselves is an ongoing fact of life. The choices we make are the components to which

self-expression takes form. Sometimes there are events where the wishes of the people do not coincide

with the actions of government. In such circumstances we may see individuals revolt, call for

resignations, protest and sometimes turn to acts of war.

As distrusting situations progress, peace erodes within a community and if left unchecked, the

community will fall into chaos. For societies where life is a daily Hobbesian state of nature, struggle and

distrust will thrive and become ordinary. “Corruption is the norm and often seen as the only way to be

successful in many countries. That ideology permeates into the minds of the people, including the

youth. Frustration with the government’s mismanagement leads to increased unrest among youths and

students.”20 This exact scenario is playing out in Greece, Tunisia, Egypt, Yemen and many other

countries around the world.

In the most rudimentary understanding of securing global peace, we have come to understand that each

of us has a responsibility to each other. This responsibility we carry is to ensure that others can trust

each other to be peaceful. When distrust is evident, organizations must be formed to ensure a peaceful

society. Now because organizations are made up of individuals there will (inevitably) be corrupt

organizations. Slowly, our efforts have been improving the overall situation as organizations are being

brought under the adherence of laws. One example of such an initiative to manage global schemes is

the United Nations Convention Against Corruption. Article 13 of that convention speaks to the role of

government (Appendix 3).21

We have been asked to act locally yet think globally. This mindset asks that we believe in a common

vision to some degree. “The citizen today is forced into an international outlook without any experience

of what a world-civilization means”.22 We are also asking, what is global peace? As we seek such

answers we are piecing the parameters of understanding together.

As we piece together these parameters, there have been many efforts made to enshrine common

values, laws and systems to combat corruption. Within the study of peace, there has been the focus of

transitional peace which studies the theories being applied as people transit from violent conflict to

peace. “One strategy to confront corruption problems is the systems approach. The systems approach

offers a set of practices for describing and solving complex problems. Its focus of attention goes beyond


the individual parts and covers ‘the whole’ and the connections between interacting parts.”23 It is the

connecting parts of corruption that needs to be a focus for programs. The connections between macro

level organizations and the individual (micro) will offer insight as to why and how these connections are

made, thus giving valuable information as to how to curb expansion of corruption.

A number of efforts have been made to uncover the truth of how a major conflict grew out of control.

One such example is with Rwanda. Initiatives such as Truth and Reconciliation, sought out the impact

and the reality of life as the violence spun out of control. The world had to understand the failures of

society so that lessons could be learned. In tandem with the national program of Truth and

Reconciliation there are restorative justice programs in communities which seek out similar answers.

Ultimately these programs are experiments in transitional peace work. Through these programs we are

learning that the end of violence is only a portion of the battle. The culture of corruption and distrust is

a battle that rages long after the violence stops.

Truth and Reconciliation programs seek to form a common understanding of how peace is eroded. To

engage in these exercises is to bring a common goal for society to focus on. “Building common values

had reached a pinnacle with the United Nations Millennium Declaration. Among the signatories were

leaders of some of the most oppressive and aggressive regimes on earth; yet they too agreed to uphold

the Declaration’s values to combat violence, terror and crime”.24

The United Nations has been in the business of peace and order from its birth. In addition, there are

many organizations that have sought to bring order to the world. The number of such organizations

grows daily. “With governments committing huge sums of resources to solve the world’s most pressing

problems, corruption is an obstacle to achieving much needed progress.”25

A few other initiatives that have come into being are:

Transparency International In 1993, a few individuals decided to take a stance against corruption and

created Transparency International.26

Responsibility to Protect("RtoP" or "R2P") is a new international security and human rights norm to

address the international community’s failure to prevent and stop genocides, war crimes, ethnic

cleansing and crimes against humanity. 27

International Association of Anti-corruption Authorities, The establishment of the International

Association of Anti-Corruption Authorities (IAACA) was initiated at the High-Level Political Conference

for the Purpose of Signing the United Nations Convention against Corruption (UNCAC) in Merida, Mexico

in December 2003, and has since received enthusiastic support among the various anti-corruption


authorities in many countries, as well as critical advice from the United Nations Office on Drugs and

Crime (UNODC) at Vienna.28

Crimes of corruption, illegal trading of Small Arms and Light Weapons(SALW), and human trafficking

are common border-related activities.”29 These activities/scenarios can not take place unless an

individual crosses borders and the official (if present) allows the crossing. In either situation the

individual is ensuring the current level of peace is maintained and possibly increased. Even though there

are efforts being made on the macro level there has to be an effort on the micro level. This reality

indicates the need for international organizations to work together as well as individuals.

The lasting impact of corruption on both society and the individual should not be underestimated. For

example, the society/culture that has evolved throughout history in both Congo’s provides ample

evidence. “When Belgian business men transformed the Congo into a nightmare of unspeakable horror,

that was for personal gain couched in the profit making motive.”30 This example shows how personal

choices were not concerned with the wellbeing of an entire society/culture. Once personal gain is put

before societal peace and cohesion the destructive power of corruption takes hold for generations. We

can see the impact on the Congolese people. The culture that exists has been exposed to distrust,

violence, poverty, ruin and corruption for so long that it has become normalized. Perhaps Hobbes would

point to this culture as proof to his state of nature?

We can see similar states of existence in Afghanistan, Columbia, Pakistan and Iraq. Such realities are not

limited to countries experiencing violent chaos. The current state of global economics has fallen due to a

lack of governance in the countries that are proclaimed to be “beacons of society”(Western civilization).

Within the “beacons of society” the last few years 2006 – 2012, the world has seen a number of events

that have chipped away at global peace. The most evident has been labeled as the “housing bubble”,

sub-prime fiasco”, “credit crunch”, “bank collapse” as various “ponzi schemes” are brought into the

open. To state the case of those labels here is a quote to support the claims in relation to the U.S.

financial crisis that came to a head in 2008.

The deregulation in financial markets and institutions as well as the easy money policy had increased lending, liquidity, greed, “innovations”, corruption, speculation, and prices in financial and real assets (stocks and real estate, housing) which caused two other enormous bubbles, “the stocks bubble” and “the housing bubble”. Some people (“the world’s planners”) burst the bubbles in 2008, creating the worst housing and financial crisis, which in 2009 was followed by the most severe recession in modern economic history.”31

In comparison we can look back to the lack of governance during the 1920's which allowed the

circumstances of the great depression and the current economic situation to unfold. If such situations

can happen in countries with strong governance structures, imagine how easily and prolific the

corruption is in post-conflict countries.


The information in appendix 2 indicates that such a large scale of economic collapse should not happen

yet that is exactly what transpired. In the more stable societies of the world where the rule of law and

wide spread civility are the norm, corruption is expected to be held to a degree that is easily managed.

However, the current economic collapse was the fault of corrupt business practices in stable societies.

There are many examples throughout history where loose governance brought untold harm to the

world. On the political side, the illegal invasion of Iraq has been a grand example of how difficult it was

for global governance systems to enforce international law. These economic and political examples

highlight the vast challenges we face as everyone will be impacted.

Using the second invasion of Iraq as an example, such a reality is one that touches upon moralistic

reasons for global peace. The question we are left with is how do we attain peace and equality when a

might makes right attitude prevails? Let us think about the following quote, “Violent entrepreneurship is

the concept of organized force to be converted into money or other assets.32 In some respect the Iraq

invasion is understood as securing oil resources and in other respects it is seen as a global security war

on terrorism. Either reason will not negate the fact that the invasion of Iraq in 2003 is an illegal act. If

the reason was to secure oil or even peace, there has been an organized illegal force put upon a people

to secure an asset – be it peace or oil.

On a global scale, the Iraq invasion is an example of how a few individual countries acted in a corrupt

manner. Bringing that reality to light, the question of how to enforce international law and governance

is not easily answered in the face of violent entrepreneurship and might makes right mentality. The

invasion of Iraq was a blatant act of disrespect towards global systems which were invented to bring

order to a violent world.

No doubt more books will be written, noting the massive corruption, the overkill of pouring billions of dollars into poor, occupied countries, the disorganisation behind the effort, the pointlessly self-serving vanity projects - internet classes in towns without electricity - and the abysmal quality of the greedy contractors, on-the-make corporations and lame bureaucrats sent in to do the job. Even former National Security Adviser and Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, George W Bush's accomplice in the invasion of Iraq, now admits that "we didn't understand how broken Iraq was as a society. We should have worked with the tribes. We should have worked with the provinces. We should have had smaller projects than the large ones that we had"33

Iraq is not an isolated case. Many post conflict operations have enormous problems with corruption.

Nepal is one such country.

There exists a plethora of literature and evidence to suggest that development in Nepal so far has failed miserably. This has happened because of many diverse factors, including centralisation in Kathmandu of both the government and the private structures, widespread corruption and abuse of authority by bureaucrats and politicians, overdependence on foreign aid, failure of donors to ensure the proper use of their funds and effective coordination of their activities and the exclusion of large sections of the population from a role in devising policy and programme development, to name a few.34


In both societies of Nepal and Iraq the culture of corruption is an emergent problem. As long as the

chaos of conflict continues, the greater the culture of violence is entrenched and the entire society is

enveloped in a spiral of corruption. “Fraudulent police and border controls become very susceptible to

bribery and corruption during war. This corruptness of law enforcement and military personnel, allows

criminals to function.”35 As the situation continues, the conflict will rage on until the people revolt again.

Corruption and malpractices during the supply of medicines and rations to police are frequent. Resisting the wrong and illegitimate order of senior officers becomes always a fire-test. In contrary, such issues remained unheeded for a long run. It had to come out in a volcanic way, and it did. Police revolt in Nepalgunj followed by some other disputes is the crystal exemplification of such inner conflict within police bureau.”36

The quote above shows the need for governments and citizens to work in tandem, not opposite or

separate. Such a working relationship is paramount in a globally peaceful society. The most difficult part

is that change is slow and there are so many thoughts on governance and how to achieve peace.

Whenever governance is discussed, people form their own opinions about how governments should

and could be run. “The core objective of governance is to build effective and legitimate structures that

secure personal security, equal justice and the rule of law”.37 Within that ideology there has to be

acceptance of these structures. The structures that are built must have a wide base of support and belief

in the equality of its function. This wide support is a challenge to both community and global

governance structures.

One of the largest issues in developing a broad governance structure is finding the balance of legitimacy,

accountability and authority. Furthermore, the challenge of connecting the importance of both the

individual and society/organizations to share responsibility is a constant battle. This ideology has been a

foundation of every peaceful society and it remains true today. “Too often there is reliance on highly

personalized and centralized systems of governance in which corruption is rampant and civil servants

are inadequately trained for their respective offices. In such circumstances, there is a general lack of

accountability at all levels of government.”38 Reconstituting legitimacy in post-conflict states involves

expanding participation and inclusiveness, reducing inequities, creating accountability, combating

corruption and introducing contestability (elections).39

In every example provided that deals with cultural, organizational and/or societal corruption, we must

be aware of the systemic violence/oppression which is created. “Systemic violence/oppression refers to

the institutionalization of such practices into mainstream society.”40 For example such ideology allowed

the detention of Khalid el-Masri . The Rwandan genocide is another example to take place as well as


other ethnic crimes to be committed all over the world. There is also the fight that Mahatma Gandhi

took up to end the oppression of the “Untouchables” in India. As we look for ways to control corruption

we must view corruption as a method of oppression. With that view we have the question of how, if at

all, have we defeated oppression?

In an effort to answer the above question, two community development principles state41:

1 The most effective way to overcome major sources of discontent is to identify the concern within a

community, stimulate that discontent and turn it into wise use of anger so that community members

want to do something about their situation.

2 Channel the anger onto the sources of the discontent and develop long and short term strategies to

change the situation.

The above two principals are emulated within efforts to build peace and end corruption. A tangible

example of the two principals is also evident in the Kimberley process. “The Kimberley Process (KP) is a

joint government, industry and civil society initiative to stem the flow of conflict diamonds – rough

diamonds used by rebel movements to finance wars against legitimate governments.”42 By instituting

laws/practices of this nature, we are seeking to build legitimate, peaceful, trusting systems.

Relating our efforts to curb corruption to the Laski quote, a person must experience the freedom to

voice concerns about all facets of society. A person must experience the benefits of responsibility for

participation in building peaceful societies. As these experiences are nurtured, the individual will employ

the culture of peace when operating within the macro level of society. In turn there will be rules built to

acknowledge both the individual and the organizations of society. The rules will help foster an

environment where a person will be able to live a life knowing there is a fair and equal system in place. If

that system is not protected we are on the path to violent chaos.

In conclusion, we must understand that global peace begins in the mind of the individual as does

corruption. Through the individual our governments, corporations and societies take shape. Legitimate,

trustful systems are icons of peace for the people to emulate and believe in. Within that ideology, the

individual is relied upon to participate to ensure a peaceful society. As always, there will be difficulties

with governance while corruption works to be as unknown as possible. To ensure a peaceful society we

need to at least envision so we can experience a peaceful society. “We share a planet and we need

common rules to guide our actions… We are becoming more and more dependent on each other and let

us hope this will lead to our understanding and respecting each other better.”43


Appendix 1

Transparency International 2010 corruption Index

Top Ten (least corrupt) Bottom Ten (most corrupt)

Rank Country Score

1 - 10

Rank Country Score 1-10

1 Denmark 9.3                                            168 Equatorial Guinea 1.9

1 New Zealand 9.3                                      170 Burundi 1.8

1 Singapore 9.3                                            171 Chad 1.7

4 Finland 9.2                                                 172 Sudan 1.6

4 Sweden 9.2                                                172 Turkmenistan 1.6

6 Canada 8.9                                                 172 Uzbekistan 1.6

7 Netherlands 8.8                                        175 Iraq 1.5

8 Australia 8.7                                              176 Afghanistan 1.4

8 Switzerland 8.7                                         176 Myanmar 1.4

10 Norway 8.6                                             178 Somalia 1.1


Appendix 2

World map of the Global Peace Index 2011. Countries appearing green are ranked as more

peaceful, countries appearing red and black are ranked as less peaceful.

Appendix 3

Participation of society

1. Each State Party shall take appropriate measures, within its means and

in accordance with fundamental principles of its domestic law, to promote the

active participation of individuals and groups outside the public sector, such as

civil society, non-governmental organizations and community-based organizations,

in the prevention of and the fight against corruption and to raise public

awareness regarding the existence, causes and gravity of and the threat posed by

corruption. This participation should be strengthened by such measures as:

(a) Enhancing the transparency of and promoting the contribution of the

public to decision-making processes;

(b) Ensuring that the public has effective access to information;

(c) Undertaking public information activities that contribute to non-tolerance

of corruption, as well as public education programmes, including

school and university curricula;

(d) Respecting, promoting and protecting the freedom to seek, receive,

publish and disseminate information concerning corruption. That freedom may

be subject to certain restrictions, but these shall only be such as are provided for

by law and are necessary:

(i) For respect of the rights or reputations of others;

(ii) For the protection of national security or ordre public or of public health or morals.

2. Each State Party shall take appropriate measures to ensure that the

relevant anti-corruption bodies referred to in this Convention are known to the

public and shall provide access to such bodies, where appropriate, for the reporting,

including anonymously, of any incidents that may be considered to

constitute an offence established in accordance with this Convention.


1 Laski, Harold J. The Dangers of Obedience and Other Essays. Harper & Row, 1930. Pg. 29.

2 Bennet, Andrea. Civility in America. The Responsibility Project. 10 Sept 2012. Retrieved from this website:



3 Cultural relativism is a term that describes a commonly held belief or practice within a defined group

4 Singh, Amrit. European court of Human Rights finds against CIA abuse of Khaled el-Masri. The Guardian. 13 Dec.

2012. Retrieved from website.


5 Charlton, Angela. Khaled El-Masri, German Allegedly kidnapped By CIA in Afghanistan, Wins Case. Associated

Press. 13 Dec 2012. Retrieved from website


6 Lasker, John. Digging for Gold, Minning Corruption. Canadian Dimension, Vol 43, No. 6, 29 October 2009.

7 Alexander, Dean C. Business Confronts Terrorism: Risks and Responses. University of Wisconsin Press, 2004.

9 Edited by Ghimire, Safal, Bishnu Raj Upreti, Sagar Raj Sharma and kailash Nath Pyakuryal. The Remake of a State: Post-Conflict

challenges and State Building in Nepal. NCCR North-South, Human and Natural Resources Studies Centre, Katmandu University.

2010. pg. 131.

10 Le Billon, Philippe. Corruption Peace? Peacebuilding and Post-Conflict Corruption. International Peacekeeping, Vol. 15, No.3,

June 2008. Pg. 344.

11 Newmann, Edward, Roland Paris and Oliver P. Richmond editors). New Perspectives on Liberal Peacebuilding.

United Nations University Press, 2009. Pg. 4.

12 Trickle down policy is the act of putting laws or programs in place and relying on those to filter throughout

society. Sivapalan, V. The failure of ‘trickle down’ poliices. Digital News Asia, 23 Oct 2012. Retrieved from website,

13 Ghimire, Safal, Bishnu Raj Upreti, Sagar Raj Sharma and kailash Nath Pyakuryal, (Editors). The Remake of a State:

Post-Conflict challenges and State Building in Nepal. NCCR North-South, Human and Natural Resources Studies

Centre, Katmandu University. 2010. pg. 43.

14 Laski, Harold J. The Dangers of Obedience and Other Essays. Harper & Row, 1930. Pg. 29.

15 For example Canada has major issues with government being shut down at the whim of the current leader, voter

tampering scandals, organized crime within construction, spies with in the military, meat processing plants

contaminating world food supplies, etc…

16 Le Billon, Philippe. Corruption Peace? Peacebuilding and Post-Conflict Corruption. International Peacekeeping,

Vol. 15, No.3, June 2008. Pg. 344.

17 Sadiki, Larbi. Libya: Testing Tolearnce. Aljezerra, 04 September 2012. Retrieved from the website,

18 Le Billon, Philippe. Corruption Peace? Peacebuilding and Post-Conflict Corruption. International Peacekeeping,

Vol. 15, No.3, June 2008. Pg. 355.

19 Davis, J.C. Utopia and the ideal society: A study of English utopian writing 1516-1700. Cambridge University

Press. 1981. Pg. 372.

20 Cronje, Jean-Marie. Achieving Visibility in War: An Analysis of Women's Participation in Conflict and post-Conflict

Situations since the End of the Cold War. University of the Witwatersrand, 2010. pg. 116.

21 United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, United Nations Convention Against Corruption. United Nations, 2004. Article 13.

Pg. 15.

22 Laski, Harold J. The Dangers of Obedience and Other Essays. Harper&Row 1930. Pg. 64.

23 Borgenhammar, Edgar and Jonas Hartelius. Corruption as a threat to international security and conflict

resolution: a systems approach to preventing and stopping corruption. Carnegie International Report series 1,

Swedish Carnegie Institute. Stockholm, 2011. Pg., 23.

24 Booth, Ken and Tim Dunne (editors). Worlds in Collision: Terror and the Future of Global Order. Palgrave

MacMillian, 2002. Pg. 286.

25 Transparency International. Corruption Perceptions Index 2010. October 2010. pg. 2.

26 Retrieved from website,

28 Retrieved from website,

29 Edited by Ghimire, Safal, Bishnu Raj Upreti, Sagar Raj Sharma and kailash Nath Pyakuryal. The Remake of a State: Post-

Conflict challenges and State Building in Nepal. NCCR North-South, Human and Natural Resources Studies Centre, Katmandu

University. 2010. pg. 255.

30 Laski, Harold J. The Dangers of Obedience and Other Essays. Harper&Row 1930. Pg. 268

31 Harris, Dana M. and Ioannis N. Kallianiotis. What Went Wrong with our International “Laissez-faire, Laissez-passer” Economic

System? International Research journal of Finance and Economics, Issue 50, EuroJournals Publishing. 2010. pg,i.

32 Volkov, Vadim. Violent Entrepreneurs: The use of force in the making of Russian capitalism. Cornell University Press, 2002.

Pg. 27.

33 Van Buren, Peter. How not to reconstruct Iraq, Afghanistan - or the US Aljezeera, 28 August 2012. Retrieved from website:

34 Edited by Ghimire, Safal, Bishnu Raj Upreti, Sagar Raj Sharma and kailash Nath Pyakuryal. The Remake of a State: Post-

Conflict challenges and State Building in Nepal. NCCR North-South, Human and Natural Resources Studies Centre, Katmandu

University. 2010. pg. 46.

35 Cronje, Jean-Marie. Achieving Visibility in War: An Analysis of Women's Participation in Conflict and post-Conflict Situations

since the End of the Cold War. University of the Witwatersrand, 2010. pg. 44. (UN, 2002:17).

36 Edited by Ghimire, Safal, Bishnu Raj Upreti, Sagar Raj Sharma and kailash Nath Pyakuryal. The Remake of a State: Post-

Conflict challenges and State Building in Nepal. NCCR North-South, Human and Natural Resources Studies Centre, Katmandu

University. 2010. pg. 229.

37 Boyce, James K. and Shepard Forman. Financing Peace: International and National Resources For Post conflict Countries and

Fragile States. World Development Report 2011. October 6, 2010. pg.,1.

38 Ndulo, Muna and Sara Lulo. Free and Fair Elections, Violence and Conflict. Harvard International Law Journal, Vol. 51, July 5,

2010. Pg. 161.

39Brinkerhoff, Derick W. Rebuilding Governance in Failed States and Post-Conflict Socities: Core Concepts and Cross-Cutting

Themes. Public Administration and Development Vol 25, 3:14. 2005, pg. 5.

40 Mullaly, Bob. Challenging Oppression: A critical social work approach. Oxford University Press, 2002. Pg., 64.

41 Mullaly, Bob. Challenging Oppression: A critical social work approach. Oxford University Press, 2002. Pg., 210.

42 Retreived from the website,

43 Fry, Douglas P. The Human potential for peace: An Anthropological Challenge to Assumptions about War and

Violence. Oxford University Press, 2006. Pg.,247.