Today, our world is going through a very delicate phase where the threat of a major war looms constantly, and the possibility of the ongoing war escalating further is a continuous concern. There are numerous tensions between many major countries like- Israel-Hamas war, Russia-Ukraine, China-Taiwan and More. It is unclear when these tensions might escalate into a small or large-scale war.
The threat to the world escalates even further when situations resembling war arise between nuclear-powered countries, and today is a time when countries like India, China, USA, Russia, Israel, North Korea, and Pakistan are in significant tensions with one another. The fear of these tensions evolving into military conflicts always persists.
- China has border disputes with nearly 18 countries worldwide.
- The Russia-Ukraine war.
- Deep-rooted tensions between North Korea and South Korea.
- Global concerns, especially for India, due to terrorism sponsored by Pakistan.
- A recent war between Israel and the terrorist organization ‘Hamas’.
When things like these occur between big and powerful countries, their impact affects the geopolitics of the entire world. Let’s now take a look at the dangerous wars and tensions currently unfolding in the world, whose impact is being felt globally, and which you should also be aware of.
1. Israel-Hamas war (Israel vs Palestine)
The conflict between Israel and Palestine has been ongoing since the inception of both countries, where they both claim each other’s territories.
One of the major reasons for this conflict is the city of Jerusalem, which is one of the holiest cities for three religions (Christianity, Judaism, and Islam). In particular, the control over Israel’s “Temple Mount” is a significant source of tension between Israel and Palestine, as well as other Arab countries.
The tension escalated even further when on October 8, 2023, Hamas launched more than 5000 rockets at Israel. In response, Israel carried out airstrikes on the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip.
This sudden attack by the designated terrorist group Hamas was strongly condemned by the United States, the United Kingdom, Japan, Israel, and many other countries and organizations. As a result of these events, over 1,200 people have lost their lives in Israel, and thousands have been injured.
Israel has suffered its most significant losses since the Arab-Israeli war in 1973, and this number is expected to rise, which is indeed a tragic situation.
Reasons for Israel-Hamas war 2023
Hamas’ military commander, Muhammad Al-Deif, has named this terrorist operation “Al-Aqsa Flood” or “Al-Aqsa Storm,” and he has provided the following reasons for the operation:
- The mistreatment of women in Israel.
- The desecration of the Al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem.
- The ongoing siege of Gaza.
Israel-Hamas war: Israel, too, has cited several reasons for launching its mission in response to this terrorist attack, which they named “Operation Iron Sword.”
2. Russia and Ukraine
At present, one of the largest wars underway in the world involves Russia on one side and Ukraine on the other. This war began in February 2022. Western countries refer to it as ‘The Russian invasion of Ukraine,’ while Russia calls it a ‘Special Military Operation.’
According to reports, this war has resulted in approximately 500,000 casualties and Injuries in both countries so far. Ukraine has received significant support, particularly from the United States, enabling them to defend themselves in this war.
The ongoing war between Russia and Ukraine has several reasons, and some of the most important ones include:
- NATO expansion – Russia has always perceived the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) as a threat to its security, and it demanded that Ukraine not be included in NATO. However, when the issue of Ukraine’s NATO membership arose, Russia initiated this war.
- Ukraine’s pro-Western leanings – Russia was concerned about Ukraine’s growing alignment with Western countries.
- Russia’s annexation of Crimea in 2014 – Russia took control of the Crimean Peninsula and started supporting separatists in eastern Ukraine, particularly in the Donbas region. This led to increasing tensions between both countries. The main reason for Russia’s annexation of Crimea was to maintain its supremacy in the Black Sea region.
3. Armenia and Azerbaijan
The conflict between Armenia and Azerbaijan is quite ancient. This conflict has been ongoing between the two countries since the early 20th century when Nagorno-Karabakh was a part of the Russian Empire.
In recent times, this conflict has escalated significantly, and there are often clashes between the two nations. In 2014, there was a conflict between the Armenian and Azerbaijani forces, resulting in the loss of over 100 lives.
On the 19th and 20th of September 2023, Azerbaijan launched a large-scale military offensive, and tensions between the two countries continue to persist.
- Both Armenia and Azerbaijan consider Nagorno-Karabakh to be part of their territory. While most of the population in Karabakh is Armenian, it is located within Azerbaijan’s internationally recognized borders.
4. Syrian War
The Syrian civil war is a glaring example of how a once prosperous country can be devastated due to the hunger for power among those in positions of authority. The ancient city of Aleppo, one of the world’s oldest cities, now appears to be in ruins, and Syria as a whole has been greatly affected.
The heart-wrenching conflict began in 2011 and, according to a report, the civil war, airstrikes, and terrorist attacks in Syria have resulted in approximately 500,000 to 615,000 casualties.
Even today, this country continues to experience frequent attacks, resulting in the loss of innocent lives.
The beginning of such horrific incidents in Syria started with protests against the current Syrian president, Bashar al-Assad, and his leadership. The Assad regime has been accused of human rights abuses, corruption, and inadequate governance. This led the Syrian people to start demonstrating against his regime.
There were several other reasons behind the Syrian people’s protests against him, such as:
- The Assad family had been ruling Syria for over 50 years, and many people were unhappy with their policies.
- There was a significant wealth gap between the rich and poor in Syria.
- The majority of the country’s population is Sunni Muslims, while the Assad family belongs to an ‘Alawite’ (a heterodox form of Shia) background.
One of the main reasons was the Arab Spring in the early 2010s, in which people in Arab countries such as Tunisia, Egypt, and Libya were removing authoritarian regimes and demanding democratic reforms. Inspired by the Arab Spring, the Syrian people also demanded democratic reforms, and the Assad regime responded to these demands with violence, leading to the protests turning into a civil war.
The Syrian conflict involves several superpower countries, such as the US and Western countries, which are against the Assad regime, and Russia and Iran, which support the Assad government. This further complicates and intensifies the conflict.
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5. China and Taiwan
If a war were to break out between China and Taiwan, it would be nothing less than a nightmare scenario for the entire world. Taiwan is a country that holds over 60% of the global market share in semiconductors, which are like the brain of any electronic device or gadget. If China were to attack Taiwan, it could lead to a severe shortage of semiconductors worldwide, causing significant disruptions.
Apart from semiconductors, this war could pose a substantial threat to the world for several reasons. Defending Taiwan against China could potentially involve the United States, India, the UK, or other countries sending their forces or weapons, escalating the conflict to a much higher level.
Currently, there is no ongoing war between these two nations, but according to reports, China may launch an attack on Taiwan before the end of 2024.
- You might be wondering why China would invade Taiwan. There are several reasons behind this, such as:
- The conflict between China and Taiwan began after the end of the Chinese Civil War in 1949, where the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) defeated the Kuomintang (KMT).
- After this defeat, the KMT retreated to Taiwan and established a separate government there.
- Since then, China has considered Taiwan a breakaway province that should be part of the mainland.
In the past few years, China has been engaging in various activities related to the practice of taking control of Taiwan, such as:
- Sending its fighter planes into Taiwan’s airspace.
- Releasing videos depicting how they plan to seize Taiwan.
- Conducting military drills near Taiwan and many other similar actions.
As of now, the world is facing five of the most serious tensions that are affecting the entire world and involve countries with nuclear weapons capabilities, either directly or indirectly and the most recent war is the Israel-Hamas war.