War and religion affect every human being on earth. Thousands of colleges offer majors in Religion or Divinity or Theology, but only one, The U.S. Army War College, teaches War. The Revolutionary War is taught in grade school. The Civil War, World Wars I, II, and other wars are taught as history. An Internet search for a college course in “War,” brought up: Warehousing, Ward Supervision, Psychological Warfare, and Cyber War, but not War. Even the USMA (West Point), USNA (Annapolis), Air Force Academy, and for good measure, Citadel, a prideful military college, have no courses in War.
A PhD Professor of History said look up “Peace and Conflict Studies,” and sure enough, at Colgate, cozily dubbed “P-Con,” are courses titled: Practices in Peace and Conflict - War in Lived Experience,” and “Theories of Peace and Conflict - War, State and Society.” The word “war” does sneak into sub-titles, but hey! it’s “Peace and Conflict: P-Con.” Americans can study War if they call it Peace.
If something is bad, call it something not so bad. Doctors call pain discomfort. Bush/Cheney called torture enhanced interrogation, and when it wanted to replace tough air pollution standards with a scheme to let polluters sell each other polluting rights, called it Clear Skies When the radical right wants to disenfranchise voters, they call it Voter ID. Ergo: War is Peace.
In London, however, Kings College has an honestly named Department of War Studies. Professor James Gow, offers “Revolution, War, and the Arts,” “War Crimes,” and, “The Yugoslav War, 1991-2005.” An American student who wants to study the infinite varieties of the human compulsion to slaughter one another can sidle squeamishly into Peace and Conflict Studies, or directly engage War Studies at Kings College, London.