peace movement

In the past decade, the British Government has taken a number of steps to facilitate a relationship between the Armed Forces and the civilian population, particularly young people. These include the creation of Armed Forces Day, the Community Covenant Fund [initiatives where businesses pledge their loyalty to the forces] and ‘military skills and ethos’ initiatives that introduce activities in uniform into a school-based setting.
The Armed Forces involvement in school programmes is promoted as an opportunity for disadvantaged young people to gain skills and self-confidence, to make friends and improve themselves in a structured way that may even surpass traditional education. While many children and teenagers enjoy these opportunities and feel they learn valuable skills, some individuals and organisations worry that this is a one-sided approach, focusing on specific values such as discipline and obedience rather than offering diversity, creativity and independence of thought. They also feel that these programmes come with too much of an agenda: to ‘groom’ children for military recruitment. While money has been poured into efforts to create cadet forces in hundreds of schools, Peace Education has not yet been given a fixed place in the education system. Instead, former service personnel without degrees are fast-tracked to become teachers.
The peace movement feels that there is a general bias towards the capabilities of veterans and the alleged positive impact of military-inspired education, especially for children or teenagers perceived to be “problem”. Non-violence activists argue that this needs to be balanced out with a wider approach focusing on alternatives to military interventions as the only method of conflict resolution.
  • What is the role of the peace movement in society?
  • Should military initiatives in schools be balanced with Peace Education?
  • How aware are young people of the peace movement and alternative methods of conflict resolution?
  • How might the principles of the peace movement be introduced into formal education?

New youth campaign calls for a ban on military in Scotland’s schools and colleges  | CommonSpace

Youth campaigner launches pro-peace education campaign for Scotland’s schools  THE SCOTTISH EDUCATION SYSTEM should be a complete no go zone for British military recruitment, according to a teenager who has launched a new campaign group.  Sixteen year old Jay Sutherland, a student from Kilmarnock, has launched ‘Scotland Against Militarism’ which aims to “tackle militarism within our education system”.

Source: New youth campaign calls for a ban on military in Scotland’s schools and colleges  | CommonSpace


In recent years there has been growing discomfort in some quarters around (what is seen as) increasing levels of promotion of the military and ‘military ethos’ among children and young people. Is there ever a justification for recruiting children to the armed services?Chair: Brian Larkin I Speakers: David Gee, Mairi Campbell-Jack

Logo: Edinburgh Peace & Justice Centre


Countering the Militarisation of Youth [WRI]

The Countering the Militarisation of Youth project seeks to identify and challenge the many ways in which young people around the world are encouraged to accept the military and military values as normal, and worthy of their uncritical support. Militarisation is a process which goes far beyond overt recruitment. It includes the presence and influence of the armed forces in education, public military events such as parades, and military-themed video games.This website is one is a series of efforts to bring together a network of those already working on countering the militarisation of youth in their own settings, and to encourage more people to take action on these issues.

Source: About Us | Countering the Militarisation of Youth