Natural Resources as a Cause of War Essay

  • Length: 5 pages
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  • Subject: Drama - World
  • Type: Essay
  • Paper: #42897272

Excerpt from Essay :

Natural Resourcs

War is one of the primordial human traditions. Man has always been enthusiastic about fighting, murdering and stealing from others. However, it doesn't derive us to the conclusion that interpersonal associations are dependent on war as a requisite or obligatory institution (Mises 10+).

Many believe that war is a natural necessity and man can only attain full human importance if he behaves aggressively and antagonistically (Mead 415). If the militarist theory is taken into consideration for the sake of argument, it can be accepted that man is gifted with an intrinsic natural feeling to struggle, battle and to cause destruction and damage. Nevertheless, man cannot be characterized with these instincts and primal inclinations to harm and destroy. Man is distinguished from other mortals on the basis of his intellect, rationales and imagination. It is the 'reason' and 'logic' that teaches and guides man to the right path. The 'power' of thinking makes him wise enough to create a peaceful environment where he lives in cooperation and collaboration with others. In short, man's grounds and basis teaches him to avoid the violence, rivalry and dissension (Mises 10+).War can never be considered as a biological obligation. Rather, it is invention that persuades a man to strive and struggle for various purposes. Those motives are affiliated with the development, expansion or improvement of the state. War is in fact a great effort that insatiable and avid governments put for power and possession (Mead 415).

At present, as we have crossed the threshold of the 21st century, the nature of war has changed drastically from what it had been in previous times. In the earlier times, wars were either fought for political reasons or royal succession. However, people are not skirmishing against one another with the intention of eradicating the weaker or enchaining the conquered as they used to do so in the barbaric age. Common populace of today's era is concerned about the outcomes of the inconsistencies and disagreements (Mises 10+).

The effects of warfare are diverse and long-term. Not only the natural ecosystems suffer damage; the human populations are also debilitated directly. Agriculture and infrastructure is disrupted. Such a scenario makes a nation retarded and slows down its ability to recuperate or make progress after the war comes to a close. Researchers and policy makers have studied numerous civil wars fought during and after the World War II. The main purpose of the research was to understand the sole reason of the occurrence of violent behavior and bloodshed. It has been agreed by the majority that there is no single cause of conflict. A number of political, economical and chronological factors accrue and become the reason of the failure and collapse of states ("Environmental Literacy Council").

One of the greatest confrontations in this century is the administration of a sound and sustainable environment. Human beings are currently threatened by the fact that some natural resources are running out continuously. Their exploitation and utilization level is beyond the rate at which they can be improved or renewed. This situation is an intimidation for the survival of the future generations (Gausset, Whyte, and Thomsen 20).

For the sake of the continued existence of the future generations, violent conflicts over natural resources have become an economic cause of war. A recent research carried out by the World Bank proposes that if developing countries are exceedingly reliant on primary commodities, they face significantly higher threats of violent conflicts and poor ascendancy. The presence of natural resources in an area does not mean that there is an anticipation of a conflict. In a nutshell, it is not necessary that natural resources would be the solitary basis of a conflict. On the other hand, if countries especially the ones with very low incomes are bestowed with abundant primary commodities; this aggravates the risks of conflict. If, unluckily, the conflict breaks out, the copious quantity of natural resources becomes the reason of the extension of war (Bannon, and Collier ix).

It has been acknowledged globally that environmental abundance or scarcity is an important ingredient that adds to the fundamental grounds of conflict between opponents. The history is full of diametrically opposed clashes over natural resources. England and Iceland had been involved in three Cod Wars between 1950 and 1976. The starting point of the wars was the fishing rights that contributed to the mentioned disagreement ("Environmental Literacy Council").

The large quantity of resources has been the cause of several violent conflicts. The continuing conflicts in different African nations are the result of the factor that these states possess abundant quantities of profitable and money-spinning mineral resources like diamonds, oil etc. The recent years have brought horrendous fighting in Liberia, Angola, Congo and Sierra Leone; diamonds being the sole reason of clash. The greedy and voracious influential governments have maltreated the four nations in order to develop and progress by enriching them with the African wealth ("Environmental Literacy Council").

One of the recent wars that have been ongoing in Iraq by American government can provide a good example for 'natural resources as a cause of war'. President Bush put forwarded the plan for troops to put out the blazing sectarian violence in Iraq and to make sure that America be not harmed by terrorist attacks by Al Qaeda. On the contrary, many believe that this was not the real motive behind Iraq war. The invasion is said to be based on falsehoods and the genuine purpose of attack was to have power over and be in command of the copious oil reserves in Iraq (Kaptur).

There have been several debates about the accessibility or supply of natural resources as the contributing agent in warfare. Facts indicate that the failure or success of nations does not depend on ecological insufficiency or abundant presence of natural resources. The availability of oil and diamonds in a specific area does not always cause war and insecurity in that region. Botswana, an African state rich in diamonds, is a good example in this regard. Despite the fact that diamonds are extracted in this country on a large scale; it is among the most established and wealthy African nations. It has the benefit of the desirable opulence and social peace due to the absence of racial divisions commonly present in other African countries. It has been widely acknowledged by the experts that access to natural resources in an impartial and unprejudiced way and the safeguard of minority rights and unwavering political foundations give birth to a secure and prosperous society ("Environmental Literacy Council").

There have been wars that were fought to impose premeditated damage to natural ecosystems of ecologically-wealthy areas. Even the populations and armies of the opposing side were targeted to cause harms and injuries. The best example is of Persian Gulf War fought between the Iraqis and Kuwaitis. The world witnessed one of the most ridiculous, nonsensical and senseless environmental damage inflicted by Iraqi soldiers when they set fire to around 500 oil wells in Kuwait. They not only limited this destruction to such an unreasonable act; even thousands of tons of oil were dumped into the Persian Gulf. Unfortunately, even after decades, the damage to the human health and ecological system in the region has not been improved as it has been impossible to recover the ludicrous damage ("Environmental Literacy Council").

New energy technologies have been developed worldwide in recent years. However, oil will stay as important as it is today regardless of this significant worldwide interest in new technologies. The reasonably low-cost oil is the major reason why countries do not sacrifice their financial strength in investing in its alternatives. Conversely, oil is chiefly found in places where the environment is politically unsteady ("Environmental Literacy Council").

Water is one of the major natural resources that have the predisposition to become…

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