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Abstract

In reaction to its militarist past, Germany has created a strong culture of peace, including solid educational and institutional supports for maintaining popular attitudes critical of war and military operations. Germany has been recognized for these efforts by a number of international organizations, including the United Nations. At the same time, Germany has sought to maintain a policy of active membership in NATO and active cooperation and participation in NATO operations. As the United States applies increased pressure on its NATO allies in the wars of Iraq and Afghanistan, many of the inherent social and political tensions in German policy have surfaced. The German experience of continuing to build a culture of peace while simultaneously participating in unpopular military operations provides a significant case study for all who would seek to build and expand a culture of peace among nations.

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