But when the blast of war blows in our ears,
Then imitate the action of the tiger;
Stiffen the sinews, summon up the blood,
Disguise fair nature with hard-favored rage;
Then lend the eye a terrible aspect.
King Henry the Fifth (1598-1600), Act: III, Scene: i, Line: 1
The purpose of this paper is to discuss the effects of war. It should be understood that the information presented here is merely generic in that it is information that generalizes across all wars and does not attempt to distinguish differences in the nature of the war (wars fought with spears vs. wars fought with high tech weapons), where the war is fought (wars conducted by small island peoples, or global wars), the outcomes of war (e.g., liberated a people or enslaved a people), or the reasons the war was undertaken (to aggress upon another perhaps peaceful nation, or to protect the world from a takeover of a tyrant bent on world domination such as Hitler).Whether it be a war fought by the ancient Roman Empire or World War II, no distinctions are made. This limitation must be kept in mind when considering the information presented.
War has harmful effects on both civilians and soldiers. Soldiers can suffer from stress, negative health consequences and often posttraumatic stress syndrome or PTSD (Devilly, 2002). After months of stress due to worry and concern about the soldier, their families can suffer another blow even when the soldiers return unharmed from the conflict in that there can be an increased risk for family conflict and domestic abuse due to the stress and emotional trauma the soldier has experienced (Benotsch, Brailey, Vasterling, Uddo, Constans & Sutker, 2000). Moreover, during war, a small subset of soldiers sometimes fall victim to a sense of impunity which can lead them to commit horrific acts on civilian populations such as rape, torture and murder (Kordon, 1991).
In children, there is an increased risk for maladaptive soc...