100 years on. And we’re still stupid!
The first world war began 100 years ago today. Have we learnt anything?
100 years ago on this very date, Austria-Hungary declared war on Serbia, as a direct consequence of the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand.
This marked the start of the First World War, a war fought across the globe, over the period of more than 4 years, with probably the largest number of lives affected in the history of mankind.
According to this article the war left behind 37 million casualties with over 16 million deaths.
The net gain from this action? Apart from the rise and fall of a few empires and powers, nothing!
The war was just a means for people to kill people, for humans to lose their sense of humanity, for race, political beliefs and power to take center-stage and overshadow everything else.
It is 100 years since then, and not much has changed.
As humans, we are different from animals because we have the ability to think. However, that is the one thing we do not do.
Over the last 100 years, we have ‘progressed’ by leaps and bounds.
We have tamed diseases. We have improved life expectancy. We have conquered outer space. We have invented satellites. We have sent a man to the moon. We have invented the computer, the Internet and smartphones.
In effect we have created technology that has the power to wipe out all boundaries, creating a unified, globally aligned, borderless society.
But in the last 100 years, we have also created nuclear weapons, chemical weapons, biological weapons and arms & ammunition that have exponentially increased the ‘bang for the buck’ when it comes to killing.
We have created the cold war. We have created the term ‘terrorism’. We have created mistrust & prejudice. We have created racial profiling. We have created a world where we are all equal, but some of us a more equal than the rest.
We have built more walls than bridges. We have divided ourselves on our beliefs, our ethnicity and our religions.
The funny thing is, when one looks at it without being embroiled in the ‘problem’, anyone would point out that this is stupidity.
Because anyone who has even an ounce of intelligence, would realize that war is a problem, not a solution.
Yet, we toe the very same line that those with power, rationalization, self-justification and a higher share of voice have identified for us. In the name of religion, salvation, promised lands, and political ideologies.
So History is doomed to repeat itself.
There will be more wars. More killing. More deaths.
And more statistics that will be quoted 100 years from now, on a blog written by someone, somewhere, which people will read, ponder over and forget, as they get on with their lives…