Dehumanization according to dictionary meaning is the psychological process of demonizing the enemy, making them seem less than human and hence not worthy of humane treatment. This can lead to increased violence, human rights violations, war crimes, and genocide”.
Dehumanization is actually an extension of a less intense process of developing an “enemy image” of the opponent. During the course of protracted conflict, feelings of anger, fear, and distrust shape the way that the parties perceive each other. Adversarial attitudes and perceptions develop and parties begin to attribute negative traits to their opponent. They may come to view the opponent as an evil enemy, deficient in moral virtue, or as a dangerous, warlike monster.
The negative actions of one’s opponent are thought to reflect their fundamental evil nature, traits, or motives. Once own faults, as well as the values and motivations behind the actions of one’s opponent, are usually discounted, denied, or ignored. It becomes difficult to empathize or see where one’s opponent is coming from. Meaningful communication is unlikely, and it becomes difficult to perceive any common ground.
Once formed, enemy images tend to resist change, and serve to perpetuate and intensify the conflict. Because the adversary has come to be viewed as a “diabolical enemy,” the conflict is framed as a war between good and evil.
History is rife with examples of how people dehumanize those from different races, religions, or ethnic backgrounds but the Dangers, While deindividuation and the formation of enemy images are very common, they form a dangerous process that becomes especially damaging when it reaches the level of dehumanization.
Once certain groups are stigmatized as evil, morally inferior, and not fully human, the persecution of those groups becomes more psychologically acceptable. Restraints against aggression and violence begin to disappear. Not surprisingly, dehumanization increases the likelihood of violence and may cause a conflict to escalate out of control. Once a violence break over has occurred, it may seem even more acceptable for people to do things that they would have regarded as morally unthinkable before.
Parties may come to believe that destruction of the other side is necessary, and pursue an overwhelming victory that will cause one’s opponent to simply disappear. This sort of into-the-sea framing can cause lasting damage to relationships between the conflicting parties, making it more difficult to solve their underlying problems and leading to the loss of more innocent lives.
Indeed, dehumanization often paves the way for human rights violations, war crimes, and genocide. For example, in WWII, the dehumanization of the Jews ultimately led to the destruction of millions of people. Similar atrocities have occurred in Rwanda, Cambodia, and the former Yugoslavia. Nigeria against (Igbo tribe) called Biafran.
It is thought that the psychological process of dehumanization might be mitigated or reversed through humanization efforts, the development of empathy, the establishment of personal relationships between conflicting parties, and the pursuit of common goals.
Human being should be happy and love each other no matter the race colour or religion. We all flows with red blood
Violence is impractical because it is a descending spiral ending in destruction for all. It is immoral because it seeks to humiliate the opponent rather than win his understanding: it seeks to annihilate rather than convert. Violence is immoral because it thrives on hatred rather than love. It destroys community and makes brotherhood impossible. It leaves society in monologue rather than dialogue. Violence ends up defeating itself. It creates bitterness in the survivors and brutality in the destroyers.” ~ Martin Luther King
Nigeria: Nnamdi Kanu Describes Igbos, Biafrans As Most Traumatised, Dehumanised People in Nigeria
By Chimaobi Nwaiwu
Leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra, IPOB, Mazi Nnamdi Kanu has said described the Igbo people in particular and Biafrans in general as the most traumatized and dehumanized people in Nigeria, who out of their willingness to survive and resilience against all odds, remained afloat in the country.
Kanu whom also said that in spite of their traumatization and dehumanization, they are historically known to be industrious and hard-working people, who have shunned looting and exhibiting kleptomaniac and terrorist characters, yet have been deliberately denied the sense of belonging and pride in the Nigeria project.
Mazi Kanu also stated that no other people on earth have repeatedly suffered the levels of sustained genocide and pogroms, economic decapitation, emasculation, institutional marginalization and political exclusion and above all denied the benefits of citizenship and perks of nationhood, in Nigeria and yet continue shown the willingness to survive and resilience to survive like Igbos and Biafrans in general.
IPOB leader in an address he delivered to the European Parliament during his interactive session with them, which he made available through the groups Media and Publicity Secretary, Emma Powerful, alleged that many heinous crimes, that calls for justice and needs to be redressed, have been committed against the Igbos and Biafrans in general, by successive Nigerian governments, particularly the present administration in the country.
He said that IPOB will continue to seek redress against the alleged tyrannical regime of Nigeria who has since become habitual pogromists, at the African Union, in the European Court of Human Rights, the United States and the International Criminal Court.
The same governments have over the years perpetrated unchecked genocide against Biafrans, aiding and abating raping, maiming, mutilation and killing of unarmed civil populations with impunity and no regard for young or old, women and children.
Those leaders must be held accountable and the world must not allow them to keep getting away with their crimes against humanity, misgovernance, impunity, human right abuses and deliberate strategic and systematic destruction of our region, environment and infrastructure and the unending killings of my people.
Distinguished Parliamentarians, this is the 21st century. Barbarism and psychopathic dictatorships in any form or manner, especially in Africa, should not be tolerated. We are no longer in the Dark Ages; therefore, human beings, especially those charged with the governance, protection, welfare and wellbeing of others must adhere to civilized rules and norms.”
Read the original article on Vanguard.