In war and violent conflict, we don’t get to know the perspective of the people we are fighting against. It’s easier, emotionally, to fight against a people when we can black box them as simply “bad guys” or “targets”…nothing more.
And in the process, we simply ignore their perspective. Little to we allow ourself to fully understand our enemy, whether we are referring to the soldiers, the leadership, or the populace of the country we are fighting against.
Our enemies are guided by a modus operandi that is likely quite similar at the core to our own. They have their own set of outlooks, motivations, fears and desires. And they have their own overarching principles and faith in God — the same Higher Power that connects all of us.
By getting to know the perspective of the enemy, we will realize they are much more like us than we might conceive. Also, we are able to precisely distinguish what justifies our enmity against them. Further, we are able to anticipate their behavior more precisely, making for much more informed planning, defense, and attack.
How do we access the perspective of our enemy? The answer, pulling from my last post, is looking within ourselves. “It takes one to know one”. Look within our own roles, responsibilites, fears, desires, motivations, and vision . And look within the perspective of those close to us. And you will find that you are able to connect with the corresponding perspective of our enemies.
Even after understanding the perspective of our enemy, we might decide to fight against them. Or we might decide it’s better to find ways to reconcile with them. But whatever we do, by understanding the perspective of our enemy, starting first with our own perspective, we’ll be better equipped to make more informed decisions on how to approach, and how to engage.
And that’s a good thing.