There are some places that are, and seemingly always will be, contentious- Kashmir, Jerusalem, Haiti and Brooklyn immediately spring to mind- places where too many people want control for too many different reasons. To find a peaceful solution to these problem areas would take men and women of honor putting aside their nationalistic tendencies and all working together for the greater good. Since that’s never gonna happen, the other alternative is to just nuke em and make them completely unlivable for everyone for a few thousand years. Extreme, but effective. Or, there is a third option…The Open Region Initiative. What the hell is that you ask? Well okay, I’ll tell you:
The Open Region Initiative (ORI) would take cities and regions that are forever a bone of contention and free them from all the various factions that are attempting to control them and place that control into the hands of a world body…make them open to all, for all intents and purposes, neutral, like Switzerland. Anyone from any religious or political party could go there, provided they don’t have criminal warrants against them, or are Donald Trump. No weapons allowed, except by security forces. No booze, gambling, drugs or nudie bars (unless the residents vote for it with a 7/8ths majority) and never any discrimination.
If a certain site like, say, the Temple Mount in Jerusalem, is claimed by more than one religion as a holy place, then it becomes not just say, a synagogue, but a multi-denominational place of worship- a church, a mosque and a synagogue. Muslims pray there on Friday, Jews on Saturday and Christians on Sunday. The rest of the week fat tourists in checkered shorts, sandals and gym socks take pictures. All symbols, the crosses the crescents and stars, stay in place side by side, symbols of peace and understanding. And also in the interest of peace, no restaurant would sell pork chops or cheeseburgers.
If it’s a whole region that doesn’t have a particular religious significance but a geo-political one, like Kashmir, then not just Indians and Pakistanis, but everyone in the world owns it, and yet no one owns it. Hindus and Muslims are free to build temples there, but each respects the other’s right to worship in the way they see fit. Once again, no roast beef dinners or bacon, lettuce and tomato sandwiches (you get the idea, so I’ll stop beating that one to death…it’s making me hungry.).
I know very few people actually like or trust the United Nations, but it would have to be a world body along those lines that would administer these areas. Or I could do it; I’m looking for work right now and I’m a Libra, so you know I’ll be fair. And I wouldn’t ask for much- a couple mil a year, like ten or twelve, tax free, would be fine. And a jet; I’d need to get around easily. Oh, oh, and a house, a really nice one, in each place too. Not a palace or anything, but not less than twenty rooms with a fenced in backyard to run the dogs. And wi-fi with Hulu, that’s very important too.
These places, due to either their natural beauty (Kashmir) or their religious significance (Jerusalem) would be self sustaining financially; can you imagine how many tourist dollars these areas, if there was no danger of being disassembled by a car bomb or ventilated by an AK-47, would bring in? Plus, they could become examples to the surrounding areas that still hate each others guts of how working together could, uh, work.
I truly believe that if just one these ORI sites could be organized and shown to work, other countries would be actually nominating regions of their countries to become a part of the Initiative. Each country could pick areas of their nations, even if there’s not any fighting going on, to join in on the economic bonanza ( I nominate Johnsburg, New York, as long as they can do something about the black flies.).
People would begin to realize that the other guy isn’t so bad just because he dresses, eats and worships differently. Life could be beautiful there. And of course, if it didn’t work out, if the various groups found they just couldn’t live together in peace and harmony, we go ahead with Plan B and nuke the place out of existence. Just think about it is all I’m asking. Hell, I’ll even negotiate on the twelve mil and go down to fifteen rooms, as long as I still have a separate master bath and a Jacuzzi. But the fenced yard stays, no matter what.
PS: Oh yeah…Don’t forget to vote today.