There are many types of civil wars. Sometimes part of the population just wants to leave and create a separate country. Other times, a rising political faction wishes to take control of the country.
In other circumstances, outside interests may attempt to divide the state to weaken it or gain access to its resources.
When a country is threatened with dissolution or partition, it strikes at the heart of nationalist sentiment. This is why civil wars can be exceptionally brutal, especially for civilians trying to flee the battlefield. Here are five of the deadliest civil wars of all time.
Chinese Civil War
The Chinese Civil War, which pitted Chinese nationalists against a revolutionary communist movement, lasted from 1927 to 1950. In the end, Chiang Kai-shek's nationalists were evacuated to the island of Taiwan to continue to exist under the name of the Republic of China, while the communists of Mao Tse-tung established the People's Republic of China on the mainland.
More than eight million people were killed during the war, mostly civilians killed by disease, starvation and reprisals carried out by one side in areas considered friendly to the other.
The initial phase of the Civil War was primarily an insurgency by Chinese communist forces against the Chinese Nationalist government. The communists did little, however, and were only able to escape complete destruction after the "long march" to the relative sanctuary of Shaanxi Province.
The great break in communist forces occurred in the aftermath of World War II, when Soviet forces in Manchuria and Korea turned over captured Japanese weapons – and surplus Soviet weapons – to Mao's armies, greatly increasing their power. of fire and their overall effectiveness. The tide turned and Chinese nationalists were eventually forced out of the mainland.
The Korean War
The Korean War is generally known in the United States as a military intervention on behalf of the South Korean government, but in general terms it can be considered a civil war that is not yet technically over.
By the end of World War II, Korea had been divided into two separate states: the South supported by the United States and the United Nations, and the North supported by China and the Soviet Union. Dictator Kim Il-Sung's North Korean People's Army crossed the international border on June 25, 1950 with the intention of unifying the country. The war triggered interventions by American, Chinese and Soviet forces.
It was also exceptionally deadly by modern standards, with several million deaths on the Korean peninsula.
Military casualties from the war are estimated at 70,000 by the ROK, 46,000 by the United States, and one million by North Korean and Chinese forces combined, or 600,000 combat deaths and 400,000 from disease .
Nearly one million South Koreans died in the war, just under five percent of the population. North Korea, which came under heavy aerial bombardment from Allied forces, suffered an estimated 1.5 million deaths, or ten to fifteen percent of the total population. These losses exceed the losses (in percentage) suffered by the Soviet Union during World War II.
Vietnam Civil War (Vietnam War, 2nd Indochina War)
The partition of Vietnam into two nations in 1954 made an attempt at reunification inevitable, especially when one side was led by the leader of a successful guerrilla army. The combination of a North Vietnam ruled by Ho Chi Minh, the man who had forced France out of his country, and a restive South Vietnamese population ruled by a corrupt government, made the conditions ripe for a war. civil.
Until 1968, the war was fought by South Vietnam, the United States and other allies against Vietnamese guerrillas and North Vietnamese regular forces. The Tet Offensive in January 1968 made the Viet Cong a military force, and North Vietnam continued to wage war until victory in 1975. The fighting also swept through and destabilized Laos and Cambodia.
The number of military dead stands at 1.5 million from all sides : 300,000 South Vietnamese and up to 1.1 million North Vietnamese. Additionally, 58,307 Americans, 5,099 South Vietnamese, and 1,000 Chinese servicemen were killed.
Up to 2.5 million civilians died in the Vietnamese Civil War, if associated fighting in neighboring Cambodia and Laos is included.
Congo Civil War
Congo's civil war has been called "the largest inter-state war in African history". Ironically, the war actually began when Rwanda attempted to rule in anti-government forces operating from the Democratic Republic of the Congo (then known as Zaire.) The fighting spread to eventually involve nine countries and 20 armed groups, fighting not only for territorial integrity but also for control of the country's natural resources, estimated at 24,000 billion dollars.
One of the deadliest wars of the past hundred years, the Congo Civil War claimed the lives of 5.4 million people over a five-year period. This translates to almost 3,000 deaths per day , a shocking figure given the general absence of conventional and decisive combat. Like most civil wars – and African wars – most of those killed in Congo's civil war were civilians, killed by starvation, disease and atrocities committed by armed groups, including children.
The civil war in Nigeria
The four-year Nigerian Civil War broke out on July 6, 1967 and lasted until 1970. The Igbo people, under military rule by the Nigerian government and with second-tier status in Nigerian society, seceded and formed the Independent State of Biafra.
Most of the international community supported Nigeria, and with their help the military government was able to seize Port Harcourt - Biafra's outlet to the outside world - and recapture oil-producing areas that could have made Biafra a viable country.
Only some 30,000 Biafrans were killed in the fighting. Isolated and impoverished by the lack of oil revenue, an estimated 2 million more died of starvation and disease. On January 11, 1970, Biafra was forced to surrender and was reabsorbed into Nigeria.
The French future
According to many professionals, former law enforcement officers such as Aton predict a civil war in France in the years to come.
This disaster scenario does not only affect underdeveloped countries, so this analysis is not so crazy.
And you, what is your future on what awaits us?