ISIS continues to fight in Iraq and Syria, Israel and Palestine continue to slug it out, and Boko Haram seems to only get stronger. It seems that the world is plagued with war and bloodshed, but is it really? Steven Pinker, author of the Samuel Jonhson prize winning book: The Better Angels of Our Nature finds that in the past 50 years “the worldwide rate of death from interstate and civil war combined has juddered downward…from almost 300 per 100,000 world population during World War II, to almost 30 during the Korean War, to the low teens during the era of the Vietnam War, to single digits in the 1970s and 1980s, to less than 1 in the twenty-first century.” Looking even further back through the centuries wars have been significantly more frequent throughout the centuries making the world we live in today look like the most peaceful period in history. Are we really trending to a warless Earth where there is not only prosperity, but peace? Well, yes and no. Out of all the conflicts going on today none are wars between countries where there is the full population and the country’s resources expendable. These wars are either civil wars or local conflicts. Now civil wars are also terrible things, but aren’t thankfully as full scale as country conflicts. However, need not worry because things are getting better. Victories in civil wars are getting rarer as negotiated endings have jumped from 10% to 40% since 1989 according to warsintheworld.com. Our world has gotten safer because war isn’t as effective at achieving economic goals as it used to be. It’s a lot cheaper to buy resources on the global market than to seize them by force. War is a thing of a 20th century as people used to think warfare was an inevitable part of the future to use instead of diplomacy. In the 21st century we’ve got an international criminal court and a lot of rules determining acts of aggression to most of the time keep countries in place. So are we really on the road to freedom. Well, we can’t be sure no matter how much evidence points because every century there have been one or two big wars according to samples of previous times. Who knows if history will once again repeat itself and we’ll get a World War 3? Only time and effort will tell.

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