It all started on 1st September 1939 when Germany attacked Poland without warning and that was when the world entered into war with itself. For a period which lasted 6 years, manhood was under the threat of extinction as men slaughtered fellow men like goats and destruction of property worth billions took place (Bachrach 4).
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The World War 2 began in the year 1939 and ended in the year 1945 after the United States of America dropped two atomic bombs in the two Japanese islands of Hiroshima and Nagasaki killing more than 120000 in the two islands and leaving thousands of others suffering from the radiation effects. Surprisingly, some Japanese soldiers, who were on the isolated islands in the pacific who never got the message that the war had ended or thought it was just but a trick, continued fighting even after the war had ended.
The war was the deadliest conflict ever experienced in human history with the figures of the possible lost lives being estimated at 50 to 60 million people around the world. Most of these people were civilians who were either killed, maimed or were left homeless by the aerial bombings. With most of the soldiers having gone to the war as young and energetic people, on their return time most of them came missing limbs and also suffering from several diseases.
The Effects Of The 2nd World War:
The fall of world major powers: The war did not just end, but it had some positive and negative effect to the countries both involved and those that were not involved with the main actors in the war suffering enormously.
To the Germans, with the defeat of Hitler and collapsing of the Nazi regime, its leaders were arrested and tried for crimes against humanity though Hitler, the leader, did not go through the trial as he committed suicide to escape the trial and the execution. Germany was then divided into four zones by the victorious ally sides.
Japan, another casualty of the war, was also in ruins due to the numerous bombings. The leaders were tried and the country was placed under the US rule for some years.
For England, having been bombed severally by its neighbors (Germany), the country economy relied heavily on the aid by the US to develop and prosper to its previous economic level. Centrally to the losses countries like England, France and Germany among others experienced, the Russians in the process of defeating the Germans had established a powerful army which now occupied most of the Eastern part of Europe.
The country’s vast resources made sure that the USSR along with the USA could emerge the superpowers. For the USA, the war stimulated the economy, new industries were built all over the United States of America due to the fact that the country had escaped the physical destruction that many other countries went through thus rather than building a nation it was increasing investments.
Struggle For National Independence
With the main colonial powers coming from Europe, the 2nd World War left many weak and unable to manage their colonies due to the scarcity of resources. Many of them were preoccupied with own problems and the rise of anti- imperialist sentiments back at home easened the process of decolonization. The weakness of England and France and the defeat of Germany greatly encouraged the struggle for independence as these countries concentrated on rebuilding their economies.
War soldiers who had participated in the war came back enlightened and bearing the fact that they had seen white men also die in the war, the belief that whites were immortal was erased and the struggle for independence began. Colonies were not ready to be colonized again after what they saw during the 2nd World War.
Colonies that had helped their colonial masters during the war were granted independence after the war ended. For example countries that regained their independence were the Philippines from the United States of America in 1946, India from Britain followed in 1947, Ceylon and Burma in 1948 among others (Linter 1). The technologies on fighting diseases were advance and this reduced mortality cases leading to soaring populations.
Upon Science and technology, the World War II brought enormous technological changes for example the English developed the radar, there were also advancements in the world of electronics. The development of the atomic bomb not only did it transform the potential in future wars but also opened up the world of nuclear power industry.
The World War II also resulted in the use of women for comfort, especially in the Asian region. To reduce the stress and depression of the soldiers involved in the war, women as young as eleven years old were abducted and imprisoned where they were raped in the war camps. It is estimated that a single comfort lady could serve about 50 soldiers in a day.
Not only were these women harassed but they were also forced to procure abortions as they were not allowed to get pregnant. The small proportion that survived endured physical and emotional breakdowns through out their lives.
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The disproportionate death of mostly young men who were involved in the World War II resulted in changes in sex ratios among the people left behind. This resulted in reduced number of marriages as well as low fertility rate with children born out of wedlock increasing.
With the war ending and human race threatening itself, the world swore never to fight against itself and in 1945, an international organization to oversee peace in the name of the league of nations was formed, which later transformed to the United Nations that had the full support of the world major powers. The World War II also led to the formation of the International Monetary Fund and also for the formation of international tariffs, which were to be regulated through the General Agreement on Trade and Tariffs (GATT).
The World War 2 had both its positive and negative repercussions. Though human losses cannot be equated with any economic or technological empowerment it is advisable to note that the world also got some benefits from the war. For example, the economies of countries such as the USA expanded and there was also technological advancements and exchange between countries.
Trade relations were also improved by the end of the war as there was formation of the body GATT to guide and ensure there was free trade, colonies gained independence due to the weakening of their colonial masters and there was also the emergence of United States of America and USSR as the world super powers and finally the increased investments in the field of nuclear energy not only for war but also for economy purposes.
One thing that should remain clear is that as the countries develop and compete with others never again should the world ever fight against itself? We should always find alternative ways of solving our problems other than fighting with fellow humans.
Bachrach Susan. “History Of The Holocaust: An Overview.” Ushmm, 1994. 3rd Feb 2011. <https://encyclopedia.ushmm.org/content/en/article/an-overview-of-the-holocaust-topics-to-teach>
Linter Bertil. “How World War II Shaped Burma’s Future.” Asiapacificms, 2005. 3rd Feb 2011. <http://www.asiapacificms.com/articles/burma_after_wwii/>