Why Human Beings Go To War Analysis

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Why human beings go to war? Is making war, part of human nature? Are human beings hard-wired to fight and kill each other? That’s a question that philosophers have been asking for a long time. Like, Nietzsche summed it up this way: “I am by nature war-like. To attack is among my instincts.” It is a debate between Hobbes, who saw humans as war-like and violent, and Rousseau, who thought that humanity was naturally peaceful until civilization came along. Many anthropologists suggest that in pre-civilization social orders, things were pretty violent. In Australia, for example, killing and fighting was among the main causes of mortality, and archaeology has revealed evidence of warfare going back thousands of years. Now, some of these anthropological…show more content…
But if war was a response to scarce resources, why do wars still do exist? Resources are relatively easy to acquire. To examine the question, is to ask what soldiers have said about why they fight. Karl Marlnates, was a Marine lieutenant in Vietnam who wrote about his experience in the novel “Matterhom” and a memoir called “What It Is Like to Go to War”. It includes a number of revelations about the way soldiers often think and feel about war. For one thing, Marlantes says that soldiers achieve a sense of transcendence through fighting by becoming part of something bigger than themselves. He says, “There is a deep savage joy in destruction, a joy that goes beyond ego enhancement”. Now, today’s soldiers rarely fight for food or mates, but they do fight for each other. Moreover, fighting is exciting to humans. It gets the adrenaline pumping. According to Marlantes, “Combat is the crack cocaine of all excitement highs”.14 So wars happen because of human choices that go far beyond the desire for food or the need to reproduce. Obviously, war is tremendously destructive and it can be very bad for the lives of individual humans. But is it possible that violence and war have had a positive effect on human development? Wars are usually some type of competition for resources. War was the beginning of agriculture. The war can be the basis of political leadership. For example, in the ancient world, as in the Game of Thrones, successful war leaders build up a retinue of fighters in order to keep them happy, the war leaders need to supply a constant flow of booty, the spoils of war. This sets up a need for continuous war because the only way people have of paying others back is only by booty.
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