Cultivating political hatred requires a concerted, calculated effort, expended over an extended period of time. When executed properly, the target of the hate campaign comes to be held up as the perpetrator of all the great crimes of history, all the recent crimes which have happened nearby, all of the recent political reversals of the state, and even the petty personal hurts felt by the ordinary people.
When the state is weak, and the people come to suffer injustice, it’s natural for hatreds to develop among the people. When the laws are muddled, inconsistent, and unjust, injustice goes unpunished, unanswered, and unacknowledged. The people who believe themselves to be wronged then begin to seek justice for themselves, and to persuade other people to accept their competing ideal of justice, because the state is no longer capable of maintaining a set of laws which all the citizens are willing to obey.
Within a stable legal order, the swift response of justice prevents such hatreds from developing. If a man who kills another man’s brother, is caught, and charged with the crime in a legitimate court, upon his execution, there is little cause for a feud between the families of those men. The dispute is resolved by the hangman, and the people’s faith in order is restored.
In the absence of legitimate justice, a country can quickly become lawless, which is not to say that it is entirely disorderly: it’s just that, in lawless regions, what the law is, and who makes the law, can shift quickly, and may change even from street to street, or shift when the sun sets and rises. Under tyranny, the written and unwritten laws proliferate, but under anarchy, law becomes identical to the whims of the powerful.
When disorder comes to a country, the common people will often begin to venerate bandits and other criminals, because those bandits provide predictable security to their confederates, extended family, and lovers.
To the extent that the state is unreliable is the extent to which the sacred glow around it passes to the criminals who provide order, no matter how brutal they are to their victims, or how foreign that they appear.
Hate develops especially when multiple groups of people share conflicting and plausibly legitimate claims to authority over the same territory. The hatred derives from the necessary telling and re-telling of stories which justify the conflict between groups, but it also comes from the low-level conflicts between those groups, along with the stories that they tell one another about those conflicts.
Insults, feuds, harassment, libels, rapes, thefts, kidnapping, desecration, murders, crude jokes, caricatures, rocks, improvised bombs, bullets, mortar shells, aerial bombardments, a shot to the back of the head in a crowded street, a knife driven into the breast, and a rush of blood flooding the lungs.
When the state loses the capability of arbitrating between those groups impartially, because the knowledge of natural law or the habit of its enforcement has been lost, or the men who rule the country have turned away from the gods, conflict becomes inevitable until an agreeable order can be restored.
Hate isn’t evil. It’s a response to a sense of injustice, and persists until the injustice has been avenged, after which it can be put aside.
A hatred can only be assuaged by the correction of the injustice that lead to it. Otherwise, if a hatred derives from a misunderstanding of a crime, coming to the proper understanding, and then delivering the appropriate justice, can similarly extinguish the hatred.
‘Love conquers hate’ is an absurdity. Justice extinguishes hate. Love has nothing to do with it.