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War – Never Ending Money Trail!

War, as defined by the Cambridge dictionary, is; any situation in which there is intense competition between opposing sides or a great fight against something harmful. We have all known war in terms of gunfights, killings, blood, army, religious groups, emotions, borders and whatnot. However, money, comes to our minds only at the end, if ever it does.

The truth is that wars constitute a large part of the country’s GDP, which is nothing but the taxpayers’ money. So, the country has no option but to keep spending this if it fears even a little of its existence. It can’t even give a thought on reducing it, as this would directly result in a big question mark on its survival.

To keep the country safe, in any case, is the first priority. Also, it does not even depend on the type of war that the country is going through. Be it a civil war, trade war, nuclear war, wars between the armies at the border or any other kind that is ever heard of. Each requires the same amount of money and resources like any other.

Let me quote some examples, the war between Iran and Iraq, Afghanistan and the rest of the world, US-China trade war, North and South Korea and the list is endless. This can be better understood with the help of some figures.

The US has spent around dollar 5.9 trillion in wars with Afghanistan, Syria, Iraq and Pakistan since 2001. We find it difficult to even count the number of zeroes in it, don’t we? What could have happened if this amount was spent on making the world a better place to live in, instead of these useless wars which never cease. Not to forget the point, the US has also lost much money ever since it has engaged in the trade war with China. In fact, it is not only the US or the Chinese economy that has been affected, but the entire world has faced the loss.

The Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) 2018, released a list of top 15 military spenders based on current market exchange rates. According to the report, the US, China, Saudi Arabia and India are the top 4 countries who spend mainly for maintaining their military force.

Coming to the Indian context, according to reports of think-tank Strategic Foresight Group the never-ending war between India and Pakistan, if it didn’t exist, could increase about 1-2% of the Indian GDP and about 2.5% of Pakistan’s. Just think, How significant and how valuable these amounts are for developing countries like ours.

A lot of other things could be made better, like the unemployment, standard of living and more, only if the people realise. Moreover, the trade-off for the government is challenging, since one wrong decision on their part can cost the existence of the entire nation. This is just the monetary side damage war can cause. The global costs of a possible nuclear war between the two countries could prove immensely high. More than 21 million people would be killed; half the ozone layer would be destroyed. This will lead to a “nuclear winter” that will affect rains and agriculture across the globe, as per the analysis by IndiaSpend.

Now the time has come when the people realise that wars are nothing but just never-ending vicious cycles. Also, that hatred would cause them no benefit, but just fetch them money and more importantly, the lives of the innocent. War is nothing but a never-ending trail of money.

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