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War - What is it good for?
Causes of war
Impacts of war
Injury or death
War breaks up families
Painful memories
Child soldiers
A shattered land
Weapons vs welfare
Stages of conflict
Case study: Rwanda - Part 1

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War - what is it good for?
In the last 3500 years, there have only been 230 years without a war somewhere.
Take a look at the last decade.

A decade of war

Click on the map for a larger version.

Died in wars

Armed conflicts now kill and maim more civilians than soldiers because wars today are fought not on battlefields but in villages, towns and cities. Since 1990, war has killed over two million children and seriously injured or permanently disabled more than six million children. Millions more have been forced to leave home, separated from their parents, or affected by war in some other way. Most of the children who die in armed conflict are not killed by bombs or bullets, but by starvation and sickness. In African wars, lack of food and medical services, combined with the stress of flight, have killed about 20 times more people than those killed by weapons.

The toll of war

"...the front line... is the corner of the neighbour's house and the enemy is the neighbour. During World War II you could be quite safe in many, many places; now the front line is the front door."
Dr Magne Raundalen, child psychologist, First Call for Children, UNICEF, 1994.

"Today, the scale and horror of modern warfare, whether nuclear or not, makes it totally unacceptable as a means of settling differences between nations. War should belong to the tragic past, to history. It should find no place on humanity's agenda for the future."
Pope John Paul, Coventry, June 1982.

     War words and more
  1. Match the war words to the correct definition.
    War Words:




    civil war

    guerrilla warfare


    a war between groups within a country.

    a feeling of strain which could lead to conflict.

    when one group does not have resources to fight in battles against regular armies so instead they attack important economic targets such as power stations and railways instead.

    a disagreement, argument or fight between people, or groups of people.

    person who uses violence against ordinary people, who cannot fight back, to achieve an aim.

    a violent conflict between countries to resolve differences.

  2. From the facts and quotes on this page, list three ways war has changed in the last century.

  3. What do you notice about where the countries with conflict are located on the map?