Forgiveness is important in international politics because it can save thousands of lives. Its opposite, vengefulness, has played a significant part in various wars of the 20th and 21st centuries. These conflicts are examined in this book, showing how forgiveness could have avoided the tremendous ensuing bloodshed.
Despite its importance, in the context of international relations, forgiveness as a means of preventing the outbreak of war (as opposed to facilitating reconciliation after conflicts) has largely been neglected as a subject of study. Indeed, it has also been ignored by politicians, as a result of which there are few examples of forgiveness to study compared with those of revenge. This book reflects this reality, but also seeks to change it by raising public awareness of the importance of forgiveness in international affairs and the need to demand that political leaders explore this avenue.
The book also provides a succinct, informative guide to the background of today’s international affairs. Each chapter can be read independently and highlights either forgiveness in action or the futility and loss of life caused by vengefulness, demonstrating where and how forgiveness could have made a dramatic difference.