Before the ‘No to war’, by Ana Bernal-Triviño


When we woke up on Thursday with the news of Russia’s attack on Ukraine, social networks began to fill with messages. Although the reasons behind it were not well known, it was shown solidarity with a drifting population. The image with the phrase “Not to the war” multiplied by Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.

I looked at one of those images for a few seconds and thought about everything that comes before a ‘No to war’, which is years of tension and rivalry. I remembered the reporter Ryszard Kapuściński when he said that “wars always begin long before the first shot is heard, they begin with a change in the vocabulary of the media”. And I would add, now, “and on social media.”

To go to war you have to first generate a grudge that justifies everything. And to encourage hate, in the Ukraine, in Russia or right here, you just have to promote confrontation and make everything a matter of dispute. Even of human rights themselves, which are questioned and denied here too, and which always collide with an economic model that puts money before people. Let us never think that a war cannot touch us. Our grandfathers and grandmothers lived it and our mothers and fathers grew up in the post-war period. It’s not that long ago.

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Before any conflict, words become weapons. The vocabulary of enemies, the blows to the chest for the country, the resentment and resentment from the gut, the justified violence, the attack on rights, the banality of evil… It all adds up. These days the phrases of ‘No to war’ will continue but there will be those who say it having contributed in their environment, in their town, in their city or in their country to the opposite. Because with the media that we applaud, with each tweet that we write, with each conversation that we have with our own, we add fuel to the fire or help put it out. Otherwise we only create people without conscience and without empathy, dominated by impulses. for something, History always repeats itself.


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