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How have certain modern conflicts been described as 'New Wars?'

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Introduction

´╗┐How have certain modern conflicts been classified as ?New Wars?? Whilst ?old? wars have sometimes been referred to as ?interstate industrial warfare? which involve wars between states being fought by armed forces in uniform, with decisive encounters being decided on one battlefield, ?new? wars have been described by Mary Kaldor as ?intra-state? wars. In the last 20 years we have seen a paradigm shift; from armies with comparable forces doing battle on a field to strategic confrontation between a range of combatants using different types of weapons .These so-called ?new? wars which involve the use of civilians as both targets and objectives to be won, have been said to have been led by globalisation, due to the fact that the integration created has led to ?fragmentation,? as seen in the Yugoslav wars with these wars being wars on identity. ...read more.

Middle

Furthermore, ?new? wars have differing characteristics to ?old? wars. As mentioned earlier, ?old? wars traditionally saw conventional armies fighting against each other, however with ?new? wars, we have seen a blurring between civilians and soldiers. This can be seen through the feminization of war, which has been seen in conflicts such as Rwanda, and the use of child soldiers in conflicts throughout Africa including Rwanda, Sierra Leone and Congo. This change has meant that women and children have become the main targets and victims of war and armed conflict in today?s conflicts. It estimated that 75% of all African wars are fought by children, and whilst rape has traditionally been a by-product of war for many centuries, it is now thought that War Rape is genuine military tactic. ...read more.

Conclusion

An obvious example of this is seen in the conflict in Afghanistan through the use of IEDS and roadside bombs. Essentially such strategies used in the ?war of the flea? involve inflicting pain over time without suffering unbearable retaliation in return. Lastly, ?new? conflicts differ from ?old? conflicts through their funding. Whilst ?old? conflicts were funded through the state, as seen in the WW2 and the entrance into ?total war?, ?new? wars are characterised by funding through the criminality of war. This illegal funding has been seen in Sierra Leone, where funding was acquired through the selling of blood diamonds, in Afghanistan where the Taliban are funded through the selling of opium, and finally in the Bosnian war, where counterfeit cigarettes funded Para-military groups involved in ethnic cleansing. To conclude, recent modern conflicts have been classified as ?new? conflicts as they differ through their legitimacy, funding and tactics. ...read more.

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