Imagine this: Aliens from an unknown planet somewhere in the Universe attack Earth and they want to take over. They don’t target individual Countries, for obvious reasons- they don’t give a crap.
How do you think we would react?
Is each country going to prepare its own defence plans or would like to co-ordinate with others? Would America let Chinese pilots fly its planes? Would Pakistan allow India to use its logistics? All this considering that if you don’t co-operate with one another you are likely not going to survive and that forgetting your differences and helping each other out will guarantee that the Earthlings win and the Aliens lose.
Now, imagine this: Aliens have lost, and the Earthlings have won a glorious victory. Humans have fought side by side forgetting their differences; North Koreans have fought alongside the Japanese, Muslims alongside the Jews, Brahmins alongside Dalits.
The war is over. . .
Will things get back to normal? Will the Muslims still hate the Isrealis (by extension, jews) knowing (lets say) that it was due to Israel’s advanced weapons that the Arab world was saved and millions of Muslim lives saved? Will Pakistanis still view India as their enemy and believe in the Two Nation Theory, even after realizing that it was due to their combined effort that most of the people of the two nations are alive and that they aren’t that different after all?
Of course, not. May be it would. I cannot say for sure, but I have a hunch that things would not go back to normal. Hate-mongering will go down, new alliances will be made, when not too long ago it was thought to be an impossible feat.
Why? Not because of gratitude, but because of the realization that ultimately the wall that have been constructed by the state and non-state actors are meaningless; they are artificial separations of a common identity of a biological species. The identities are not real, they are man made. They can easily be broken down. Once broken, its equally meaningless and utter stupidity to build them back up. Every Human in the World will finally be (at least for a while) a truly Global Citizen, the ultimate Globalization would have been achieved.
What is an identity? A sense of belonging to some region or being someone, being somebody as opposed to the numbness of being a nobody in a World of 7 Billion just like you.
Identities just don’t just grow naturally, they are indoctrinated by states, by your peers, by your parents,etc. You are brainwashed into believing you belong to an XXX great nation and XXX great Religion or an XXX community and the behaviour for that identity is also defined, some explicitly, some subtly by both forces seen and unseen. If you are an American, you HAVE to believe that America is the greatest Country in the World. If you are a Muslim, you have to believe, to the point of absurdity, that Islam is the only “true Religion” in the World.
I am not saying I have no identities at all or have completely rejected them. I do have them, but I also realize the hollowness of it all. I need a root, but also wings. I need to feel grounded, to feel proud, but at the same time empathize with someone with a completely different idea of himself, with a wholly varied point of view from myself. I want to be a Global Citizen, as well as cheer for my Country in the World Cup or the Olympics.
For some, their intellect forces them to pick sides. You are either embrace your identity and become one with it; Or, reject the whole idea of it and see the World anew. As for me, I am lucky. I don’t want to pick sides. I am comfortable being both and I think I am damn good at it. You may call it hypocrisy, perhaps. But, I don’t see any harm in behaving this way.
Would I tolerate it if India (hypothetically) attacks an innocent set of people who are not Indians and will I blindly support it? Definitely not! That would aghast me. My Global Citizen in me will kick in. If India is beating that same Country in Cricket or Hockey or whatever, I would hope the other team is decimated.