Social Action Now!

An objective view to worldwide social issues

WHY DO WARS EXIST?

The only way to win a war is to avoid it

This sentence was once stated by George Marshall, secretary of state of the United States during the World War II. Unfortunately, not much of that statement has been taking into consideration throughout history. Indeed, wars have taken place since the beginning of the recorded history, and they certainly had occurred before. Generally, this tends to happen when a group of people tries to force their will on others and the latter decide to fight back, starting this way, a violent conflict.

The Finnish anthropologists Douglas Fry and Patrick Soderbeg haveguerras frequently claimed that the “addiction” to war is not in our human nature and therefore, wars did not start until the first hierarchies as well as societies started to emerge. Nevertheless, this way of thinking contrasts considerably with other theories related to this issue.

On the one hand, Sigmund Freud once said that aggressiveness is a human instinct. He actually claimed that the instinct of violence is immersed in the very nature of humans. This statement leads us to the little reassuring feeling that wars are unavoidable.

On the other hand, when powerful countries want the natural resources from others which may be less developed, it is also another excuse to start a war. In fact, some Asiatic countries are the proof of this.

Besides, war can also be an extremely useful “weapon” to distract people from the internal conflicts of their own country. Indeed, according to the American sociologists Joan Dalgleish and Maurice Walsh, a war can redirect the anger and frustration of a particular nation to an external conflict. In other words, the wrath and discomfort an economic crisis may cause can be channel to another direction. As an example of this, Napoleon or Hitler, who were definitely known for their charisma and facility to influence people.

Finally, other sociologists such as Gaston Bouthoul, Gunnar Heinsohn or Samuel Huntington support the “theory of the predominance of youth”.

el_futuro_de_las_guerrasAccording to this theory, wars tend to take place in countries where there are many young men. Heinsohn estimated that the greatest risk arises when young people between 15 and 29 years old represent 40% of the male population, are unemployed or have a very low wage. Moreover, this situation is exacerbated in societies where religion has a great weight and he insists that this is the main cause of the Islamic radicalism.

MAIN SOURCES

1- Kyle Almond (August 28th, 2013), 6 claves para entender que pasa en Siria. CNN. Retrieved December 20th, 2013 from http://cnnespanol.cnn.com/2013/08/28/6-claves-para-entender-que-pasa-en-siria/

2-Guillermo Altares (January 21st, 2013), Como acaban las guerras. El País. Retrieved December 20th, 2013 from http://internacional.elpais.com/internacional/2013/01/21/actualidad/1358765441_847977.html

3- (July 22nd, 2013), ¿Porqué la humanidad siempre está en guerra?. RT Actualidad/Sociedad. Retrieved December 20th, 2013 from http://actualidad.rt.com/sociedad/view/100724-causas-principales-humanidad-guerra

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