Are There Any “Winners” in War? Essay
Are There Any “Winners” in War?
War is not a game people play to win prizes or gain recognition for their skill. After one side surrenders, and a treaty is signed, one side does go home feeling like a winner. Both sides suffer irreplaceable losses. For this reason, there are no true winners in war.
Some people may feel that they came out of the war victoriously, but as Agatha Christie said, To win a war is as disastrous as to lose one. For example, in the American Revolution, we won, but is it really victory when 8,000 Americans died on the battlefield? We lost more soldiers than the British lost during that war, yet we came out of it looking like winners. Theres a reason that every country that participates in war is a loser, whether they lost more men, they didnt get what they wanted out of the war, or they started the war and caused all the deaths that took place within it.
So far 3,974 soldiers have died since the war was launched in Iraq on March 20, 2003. More than 81,000 Iraqis have died in the same war. These lives can not be replaced. These atrocities can not be mended. The moment lives are disrupted, and the moment a life ends, you have officially lost the war, even if it hasnt ended yet. When a soldier is sent to war, their loved ones hope for their safe return, but all the while knowing that some will be lost along the way. And all they can do is hope that their loved one will not be one of the thousands that die.
Numerous soldiers from both countries come home with severe injuries that affect how they will live for the rest of their life. 29,320 American troops alone have been wounded in the Iraq war. They are not able to do things they once could and they often regret joining the army. Because of the appalling events that soldiers are subjected to, they often return from battle with harsh psychological effects, such as Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.
I man I know has slept with a weapon in hand for thirteen years after coming back from being in the war. He sometimes wakes up in the middle of the night and thinks he is in combat. He frantically looks for his gun and screams for someone to give him orders. Some Soldiers also have survivors guilt, and they feel bad that they made it out alive but a friend didnt. In addition, some soldiers may feel remorseful over killing somebody, and from there on live a lamented, guilt ridden life. Most people who are involved with war go through at least one of these things, which is another reason that nobody comes out of war being a winner.
The countries involved in the war suffer economically as well. For example, the United States has spent almost 500 billion dollars on the war in Iraq, which could have been forestalled. Instead of using this money to support war, it could be donated to hospitals, or used to help find cures to diseases. Using the money for these causes would benefit us to a great extent, unlike using the money for war. Iraq will have to rebuild their country because of all the destruction we have caused over there, which will also cost a lot of money.
Regardless of who wins according to who drops or surrenders first, both sides lose. Neither side wins because neither side was courageous enough to go about their disputes in a means other than war. They couldnt come to a consensus over how to solve their problems. Adults should act like adults and work out their problems through conversation instead of acting through violence, because if they fail to do so, the consequences will be extremely unpleasant. In war, you always lose more than you gain. You may get what you went to war for in the first place, but in the process you have lost so much that it just isnt worth it. There are no winners in war, just survivors.