Cameroon – Honor and Loyalty : Brotherhood through sport or the chivalrous mystique of the peacekeeper
Friendship through sport is the motto of the International Military Sports Council. It may seem paradoxical for men of war to advocate friendship through sport, given the dramatic events involving armies in some parts of the world.
War being, by its very nature, the ultimate vehicle for the expression of the most unbridgeable enmity, it may seem obvious that there should be no sign of a compassionate impulse between soldiers on opposing sides. One of the manifestations of this kind of dehumanisation of armed contradiction is the horrors inflicted reciprocally and indiscriminately by the warring parties, whose homicidal impulses of the bearers of the sword are rooted in artful and reassuring allegories that do not leave only the extermination of the other, the idea of submission being radically prohibited because it is presumed to contain the seeds of possible rebellion.
In short, there is a fear of a subsequent conflict, a cycle of death and devastation that is suspended for a moment, but always returns. In fact, the cessation of hostilities, far from reflecting the exhaustion of resentment, continues to feed on the memory of suffering, the effects of injured pride and the loss of loved ones, of whom it is not even certain that all have been properly relocated six feet underground.
In such a context, the warrior’s glory loses substance and succulence as he is tormented by the haunting presence of companions fallen along the way, the never-ending enigmatic whispers of innocent lives needlessly snuffed out, and the dark scars left on a nature that nevertheless invited the enchantment of the gaze and the appeasement of the spirit.
Faced with the exacerbation of ideological specificities underpinned by hegemonic ambitions, diplomacy as practised in the past seems to have been sidelined, replaced by a deceptive and formalistic narrative, warmongering and extremist tendencies, as well as the plethora of short-term perspectives. Sport, and military sport in particular, appears in this combination of logical and sentimental impasses as the outlet par excellence, as an escape valve for the tensions that are constantly building up.
It is true that today sport in general has also been caught up in the whirlwind of hegemonic considerations. But it remains, to a large extent, the domain in which the expression of rivalries encourages healthy emulation rather than bloody confrontation. Only sport allows competitors of all nationalities and disciplines to help each other, to sympathise and fraternise, while at the same time fighting for victory. It is one of those considerations that does not call for cruel revenge, but promises a warmer, more inclusive reunion.
Now that the necrophagic fanatics have had their fill of human remains, isn’t it time to give the living warriors a chance to compete in jousting contests drenched in the sweat of edifying effort, face to face or side by side? Surely it is high time to let the military bring to the fore the chivalrous mystique of sport, a chivalry that inhibits pain, transcends barriers and unites impulses in sharing the joys of the only victory that deserves to be celebrated, the victory of Peace over War.
May the 137 member nations of the International Military Sports Council gather in 2023 in Bogota, Colombia, for the eighth World Military Games. Perhaps the flame of friendship will finally shine, all over the world!!!
Head of Communication Division - MINDEF
06.12 | 17:52
Initiative à encourager. Merci et bravo aux promoteurs du mouvement 👏👏
03.12 | 09:31
Buenas tardes, encantado de saludarte. Soy Jose
Quería escribirte porque me ha parecido interesante comentar contigo la posibilidad de que tu negocio aparezca cada mes en periódicos digitales como not
30.11 | 11:53
Bonjour Mme et toutes mes félicitations,
Je suis à Douala, je suis à la recherche de votre tisane. Avez-vous une représentation à Douala. Sinon comment faire pour avoir régulièrement votre produit.
28.11 | 21:45
Vive la folie de la littérature