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9  Wars since 1945


But:  What is war really?  People, who suffer from war know what war is.  The historian needs concepts.  Attempts to define war are as difficult as they are necessary.  The portrayal at our museum of the wars since 1945 has been based upon the definition supplied by the Hungarian Peace Researcher István Kende (1917-1988):

War is a mass-conflict of violence, which displays the following criteria:
a) two or more armed forces participate in the fighting, in which, at least on one of the sides, regular armed forces of the government are involved (military, paramilitary organizations, police)
b) on both sides there must be at least a minimum of centrally-controlled organization who conducts the war and the fighting . . .
c) the armed operations take place with a certain continuity and are not only occasional, spontaneous conflicts . . .

Detailed information concerning the wars since 1945, compiled by the “Working Group for the Research of the Cause of War” (Arbeitsgemeinschaft Kriegsursachenforschung) at the University of Hamburg, may be found at the Internet Terminal at the entrance of the Museum.

World War II has remained the last war on German soil up to the present day.  Even now, at the beginning of the Third Millenium, however, a large portion of the world’s population lives under the murderous and destructive conditions of war.  95 % of the wars, whether they be civil wars or wars between countries, have taken place in developing nations.  Above all, it is Africa and Southeast Asia, which have been the “battlefields” of our world.

As a monument against peacelessness, as a place against forgetting, suppressing and overlooking, this room lists all wars since the end of World War II, noting who was involved and what the issues of conflict were.  Within the room, the arrangement has been set up according to the geographical direction of the battlefields.