Why Odds of World War III Are Slim to None

Geo Beats
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Now almost 70 years after World War II’s end, an article in THE WEEK magazine outlines why our chances of another world war are lower than ever.

Catching up on world news might leave people worried. Heartwarming and inspirational stories are typically outnumbered by the illogical and gruesome ones, featuring civil wars, terrorism, resource scarcity, and nuclear weapons, among other threats. Now almost 70 years after World War II’s end, an article in THE WEEK magazine outlines why our chances of another world war are lower than ever.

First, numbers don’t lie. According to psychologist and scientist Steven Pinker, general violence and the number of war-related deaths has continued to decline.

Second, everyone knows we could destroy each other with nuclear weapons, but no one’s ready to blow up the world in a head-to-head epic battle. As THE WEEK’S author notes, “Instead, the great powers now fight proxy wars like Vietnam and Afghanistan.”

Third, factors like international debts and fair trade agreements have radically increased global trade and economic interdependence. A single computer contains parts from a dozen countries, and requires many global resources for its assembly and shipment. Even livelihoods in military and weapons industries could be shattered by a major disruption to global trade.

Fourth, largely thanks to the spread of democracy and the Internet, cell phones, and other communication tools, people half a world away or previously isolated by their governments are now bonding. Crimes against humanity are immediately broadcast and protested. Plus, overall wealth has increased, reducing people’s greed for another country’s possessions.

All of this adds up to a global disincentive for another world war. Or do you have a different point of view?

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