Vladimir Yakunin with an open interview with Jim Paymar at the 2017 Spirit Of Humanity Forum
Jim Paymar – You mentioned that you go back through soviet times, where are we going as the world evolves as a civilisation?
VY – Sometimes jokingly I am saying that I am a clinical optimist. But I suppose in every joke, we have a piece of a joke, because mankind is mankind of optimist, otherwise the world would not sustain as it is now. The question is a difficult one, deep and comprehensive. There are always at least two possibilities. Whether we burn out this world in a global clash, this is one option, some scientists are talking about this, this way of development, and there are others who consider that the human being should sustain. People should not only fight for survival, but for self development, societies. People should provide the younger generation with opportunities, that we were presented by our fathers and mothers. To my mind, it is extremely important, that the questions of humanity, of values, are in the focus of this conference and other conferences.
JP – Let me ask you, you are from Russia, I am from America. There has been a power rivalry for many years. No-one seems to want to bring a global peace, no-one is seeking dialogue for how we can spend less on arms and more on education and creating a better society for all of us….
VY – You are right. You are from Minnesota, I am from St Petersburg and we are not fighting. Why? I suppose you even experienced the same education as many of my compatriots, but we are talking. We have no other emotion, other than friendly emotion. I would like to draw the line between politics and societies. We should know there is something more important than the political interest of the elite, and that is the interest of the people in peace and sustainable development.
JP – The SOH Forum, why is it important? Why did you come?
VY – There was a conference I attended at the same time as Scherto Gill. I heard her talk and she heard my remarks, there was a little sparkle, we were talking the same language. I don’t mean English, or Russian, we were talking the same human language. I was interested to see with my own eyes what was going on here. From the technical point of view, we are different, but from the point of view of substance, we are the same, and that is why I came, and to meet many people that know this substance. We should unite our efforts.
JP – Does it help to come to places like this?
VY – The fact that one already feels oneself is not alone, but the member of a community. That is already a great results. Reunification of the society on the basis of natural values like family, future of the youth, and that will bring us further to protect and sustain peaceful development
JP – What one message would you send to anyone reading this?
VY – Very often we trust what we read in newspapers, or see on the TV, taking no efforts to learn or to study. That is a specific feature of human beings, not just to be curious, but to learn and to study. Education to my mind is the core element for future development of peace in the world.