Conflict is an unavoidable situation which can be seenthroughout history. These conflicts have altered throughout time depending onthe desires and necessities of that period. In the past big actors were mostlyempires with the main goal of expanding their power and territory. Through therapid growth of technology, and globalization these conflicts became more intricateand complex. Conflicts nowadays consist of multiple actors such as proxy wars,large intergovernmental organizations, and all of which is dissected by the media and then fedto the public.
Since media has become a staple of our daily life we havegrown to be more conscious of the various conflicts currently active around theworld. This begs the question what is the main cause of conflict in the currentage? Some People may argue that the main cause of conflict nowadays isidentity, the idea of belonging to a certain group, race, and nationality. Thiscan be seen in conflicts such as the Kurds in Turkey and the Catalans in Spain.Even though identity is an important factor in causing conflict, there are amyriad of distinct factors that stimulate different situations such aspolitical/ governance, territorial/resources, religion, and race. Forpolitical/governance we will be analyzing the situations in Syria and Afghanistan,territorial conflict in south east china, religion the Sinai conflict inEgypt, and for race we will be analyzing the ongoing disparity betweenraces in the US. Identity as defined by the Cambridge dictionary is “the qualities of a person or a group that make themdifferent from othersCW1 .
” This idea of being of separate from others can cause internalconflicts in countries where they have diverse groups with different culturesand languages. This can be seen in two modern day cases such as the Kurds inTurkey and the Catalans in Spain. The Kurds are an indigenous group from theMesopotamian planes and the highlands which is nestled between the countries ofTurkey, Syria, Iraq, Iran, and ArmeniaCW2 . Sincethe Kurds have their own long history and adhere to their own culture, race,and language they have been trying to become its own independent state sincethe early 20th century. Through a series of false promises and thetreaty of Lausanne the Kurds ended without their own land. This has led to anongoing conflict between Turkey and the Kurds which has resulted in the deathsof nearly 40,000 people.
CW3 Todaythe conflict between the Kurds and the Turkish government has escalated after afailed attempt at a cease fire in 2015. This was only fueled by the attemptedcoupe d’état in 2016, and the conflicts seems to be far from beingresolved. Cataluña is another exampleof a group which has its own language and culture wanting independence.
Unlikethe situation in Turkey with the Kurds, the Cataluña independence was resolvedin a relative peaceful manner but it has the tendency to resurface sporadically.Throughout the years Cataluña has been one of Spain’s biggest contributors to the economy with them making up nearly 19%of its GDPCW4 . Thisyear Cataluña held an independence referendum, which was not recognized by theSpanish government and ended up with the Spanish police intervening during thevoting. The police injured hundreds of Catalans for trying to vote for their independenceCW5 . Itended up with the Spanish government dissolving the Catalan government andcalling for new elections. Both of these cases showcase how identity can leadto conflict and the different heights it can reach. The search for territory and natural resources has becomeone of the main concerns in todays world, with countries always looking toimprove their economical standings. This often leads to conflict between rivalcountries who are looking for natural resources.
This can be seen with theconflict currently going on in the south China sea. China is currently tryingto claim sovereignty over the sea and its potential 11 billion barrels ofuntouched oil and 190 trillion cubic feet of natural gas. CW6 Thishas led to conflict between China, Vietnam, Philippines, Taiwan, Malaysia, and Brunei. CW7 Chinahas furthered its quest by placing naval patrols and building islands.
Whilethe US has been placing military ships and planes in certain islands andcalling them “freedom of navigationsCW8 .” There have been various attempts at trying to reach an accord, butChina has been uncooperative with them not agreeing to negotiate with AseanCW9 .Territorial issues have been ongoing and will most likely increase with therapidly decreasing number of natural resources. Race has been a controversial topic around the globe and hasbeen a forerunner for many of todays conflicts. The issue of race can be seenmost noticeably in the United States of American with the issue of police brutalityand the disparity in the wage gape between African American, Hispanics, andWhites. In the last couple of years, we have witnessed various cases where inan African American was ruthlessly shot by American police officers, and at amuch higher rate then whites. In the years of 2015 and 2016 African Americanswere at twice the risk of getting killed by police compared to whites. CW10 One of the recent and controversial casesduring this time was the shooting of Philando Castile.
On july 6 2016, PhilandoCastile was killed in front of his girlfriend and daughter of five by a policeofficer by the name of Yanez, because of a misunderstanding where Yanez thoughtthat Philando was about to pull out his firearmCW11 . This case was broadcasted all over socialmedia, and when the jury found Yanez not to be guilty it caused a wave of angerand protest across the USA. As mentioned before police brutality is not theonly form of discrimination in the USA, it can also be seen in daily life withthe difference in wage gap between different races.
This wage gap can be seenat different points in our history, for example in 1989 the average income of awhite family was $37,630, while Hispanics had an average income of $25,064 andAfrican Americans$22,430. CW12 This difference in income is still evidentand can be seen in the 2016 where it is shown that whites earn an average $65,041compared to Hispanics who earn $47,675 and black with $39,490. CW13 These inequalities have been at the centerof many of USA modern conflicts and is a constant presence in media andpolitics. This is only spurred on with the support of organizations such asBlack Lives Matter who are an organization that fight for the rights of blackpeople around the globe.
Politics has become a vital role in todays globalized worldand is now stronger than ever as a result of large intergovernmental organizations.Through politics we have been able to achieve peace and prosperity in manyareas but just as well it has been at the center of many of todays conflicts. Anexample of this would be the current issue in Afghanistan. The Afghangovernment has been through many political transitions, and the one in 2014 mayprove to be most peaceful one yetCW14 .
As the ex-president Karzai voluntary leftoffice, a plethora of different canditates from different.