"After the First World War, reconciliation was seen as the only need to heal the wounds of the past"

On the occasion of the centenary of the end of the first world war, Alan Doss and Scott Weber consider, in a tribune to the "World", that the reconciliation between belligerents passes by the inclusion of the populations in the process of peace.

THE WORLD
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Archbishop Desmond Tutu and Pik Botha, Minister of Foreign Affairs of South Africa, at a meeting in Johannesburg, South Africa, of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, 14 October 1997.

tribune. Defeated people who are ignored or even humiliated, large war reparations and actors who defend particular interests in the short term rather than a lasting vision. One hundred years ago, at the end of the First World War – whose armistice is commemorated on Sunday 11 November – the former belligerents have shown by default the importance of achieving a reconciliation after a devastating conflict. By feeding the conditions that would lead to a second global conflagration less than a generation later.

Among the negotiators were only men, aged, or even very old for some of them. An image that did not reflect the diversity of populations. What have we learned from this four-year outing? Is the question resolved today? Far from it. In an international environment marked mostly by civil wars unlike a hundred years ago, processes are more inclusive than at the time, but much remains to be done. Proof is, for the first time since 1970, the decade started in 2010 saw more conflicts start than die.

1% of development aid for reconciliation

Worse still, nearly 60% of the civil wars between 1945 and 2009 fired again after the end of hostilities and 50% in the decade that followed. However, the interest in investing in reconciliation is undoubtedly, but it is underestimated. Violence in the world costs billions of euros. In contrast, far less than 1% of development aid is fueling reconciliation efforts. Even as every euro injected in peacebuilding avoids losing 16 in conflicts or other clashes.

Nearly 60% of the civil wars between 1945 and 2009 fired again after the end of hostilities and 50% in the decade that followed

To convince more, is there …

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