August 14, 1945, or Victory over Japan Day, many consider to be the official end of World War II (though others point to the formal surrender of Japan on September 2, 1945, and others to V-E Day on May 8, 1945). Whichever date you prefer, the fact remains that a war to the scale of WWII has not followed, and according to Christopher Fettweis, one never will.
In his book Dangerous Times?, to be released later this Fall, Fettweis argues that world wars like those of the twentieth century—the true clash of civilizations—are unlikely to be repeated in the close-knit world of the twenty-first century.
On this anniversary of the end of the largest war our world has ever seen, we’d like to share the introduction to Dangerous Times?:
What horrors will the twenty-first century bring? For many people, catastrophic terrorist attacks and prolonged guerrilla quagmires are chilling visions of things to come. Official signals, like omnipresent color-coded threat warnings and mystifying orders to stockpile duct tape and plastic sheeting, add to overall levels of anxiety. Six in ten Americans apparently think that a world war is “likely to occur” in their lifetime; others, including influential politicians and pundits, believe that one has already begun. Little wonder, then, that overwhelming majorities of people from all walks of life harbor the impression that the world is a far more chaotic, frightening, and ultimately more dangerous place than it was during the “simpler” times that came before.
Pessimism dominates the academy as well. Senior scholars tell us that we will “soon miss the Cold War,” and that multipolarity and renewed great power rivalry are right around the corner. Global warming is likely to lead to one environmental catastrophe after another, which will spark resource competition and conflict galore. Civilizations will clash. Anarchy will come…