War is always as a cause of disagreements, conflicts, misunderstandings, and most often for show of power by the agents of war. Political communities in the name of states and non-state agents always get into war to help fulfil their desire of control and power over some natural or artificial resources. In most circumstances, war is prolonged and instigated by state and non-state actors. War is always resultant to extreme violence, social disruptions, religious radicalizations, and economic destruction. War, therefore, can be defined as an intentional, deliberate, and widespread conflict fully equipped with arsenals of war that are used to satisfy wrangling political communities. Over the years, countries and states have been into war and the world at large has suffered from the repercussions that war left behind. True to the nature of the world even the current generations of this 21st century are still faced with the demon of war (Hillenbrand 43). To some states, it is not a matter of if the war will occur but when will the next war occur.
All these menaces of war has continued because war has also continued to be glorified by every different state in the world. Developed countries have continued to invest heavily in their defense budgets to better position themselves against any acts of war that might happen in the future. The tools and mechanisms of war have continued over the years and undergone great technological changes and improvements to make them more lethal and effective for use in combat. Since the end of World War 11, there have also been innovations of much more tools and mechanisms of war in the entire world from missiles, helicopters, guns, bombs, and drones that have undergone significant changes. Helicopters, for instance, are getting more improved for use in combat. They are stronger, resilient, bullet-proof, stable, and even used for a missile launch. Different countries have had different specific improvements for their helicopter models (Hillenbrand 45).
Helicopters are of great importance because they can be used to perform different functions all at the same time. In most cases, helicopters are used for transportation, medical rescue, and security surveillance. When it comes to the case of war, these helicopters are modified to meet certain conditions of the war, making them military helicopters. Military helicopters are usually used for the transportation of troops from the military base to the war zone area and back (Zuckoff 67). There have been many modifications and conversions made to these military helicopters to not only serve in transportation, but also to be used for combat search and rescue, medical evacuation, airborne command post, and also armoured with weapons for attacking objects on the ground.
Even with these different modifications made on these military helicopters, they are still further converted to meet other specific functions. These specialized combat helicopters are designed to carry out certain functions, such as attack helicopters, observation helicopters, and anti-submarine warfare helicopters. Modern military depends greatly on the use of these military helicopters to help achieve their missions and operations in the sea, on land, and in the air. There has been an increasingly rising concern on the production cost of the specialized helicopters. Manufacturers of these recent military helicopters are now concerned with helicopter flexibility in use and reduction in cost. For instance, the EH-101 in the royal navy service can easily and quickly be converted into ASW or transport missions in a couple of hours with no technical difficulties (Zuckoff 12). In yet another case, in the US army’s AH-64D, variants are all fitted to be able to take the longbow radar system even though not sufficient sets have been brought to equip the whole force.
Military equipment can be armoured on to combat helicopters depending mainly on the lift capacity and the installed power of those combat helicopters. Most military amours are placed around the pilot, engines, transmissions, and fuel tanks. Usually, for the transport helicopters, the crew chamber may not sometimes be fully armoured to give the military personnel enough space for seats. The survivability of helicopters in combat is enhanced by the double placements of components to protect each other by the support they provide in case of failure of one of them during combat. For example, the Blackhawk class of helicopters always has been fitted with two engines and can continue to fly on only one during certain circumstances. The transmissions separate the engines such that when one engine flank is attacked, the engine on that flank protects the transmission and the other engine on a different side from damage.
Most military helicopters are fitted with communication gadgets like radios and navigation aids like recorded maps. In addition to the above gadgets, specialized aviation electronics like the electronic countermeasures and the identification friend or foe systems can also be fitted onto these military helicopters but is treated as military specific systems. When the mission is specific, the systems installed onto the helicopters are unique to that specific mission. Therefore, other payload systems are either fitted permanently on the helicopters or fitted to meet specific requirements of military missions. IR cameras and optical are for scout or search helicopters, searching radar and dunking sonar for antisubmarine helicopters, computers, and microchips used by helicopters to serve as airborne command post.
The modern attack helicopters include the AH-1 Cobra that was used in the Vietnam War and it is fitted with a classic format of pilots and weapons officer seated in tandem in a narrow fuselage chin mounted guns, and rockets and missiles mounted on the stub wings. These would greatly help them to find and identify their targets efficiently with much ease. A Russian Mi-24P also falls under the group of attack helicopter with a minimum carrying capacity for troops but with a large space enough to take sufficiently enough guns. The third one that is also categorized into this group of helicopters is a British operated attack helicopter that is commonly known as Westland WAH-64 Apache Longbow (Junger 50). Transport helicopters that are primarily used to transport military personnel and cargo include the Mil Mi-17 of the Kazakhstan government for transport, CH-21C helicopters, UH-1D helicopters, and the CH-53. The other helicopters are those that belong to the observation group of helicopters, they include among others the gazelle helicopter of the Frenchman OH-Kiowa and the Kawasaki OH-1. Another type of helicopters is the maritime helicopters that include the Royal Navy Merlin HM 1 anti-submarine warfare helicopters.
Therefore, in an analytical way signifies the efforts that have been put on military helicopters over the ages. The helicopters that were used during the Second World War are rendered obsolete for current combat situations because they were helicopters that were merely used for transportation of military personnel and arsenals of war. They are characterized with failures that in most cases led to losing of life and massive destruction, especially to the military personnel that were using them. The modern military helicopters like the black hawk have undergone significant modifications that have helped to improve their survivability during war. They have been made better to withstand harsh military conditions but at the same time are able to perform its functions without any difficulties. These military helicopters of this modern age can be termed to have been created to meet user specific requirements. They are of relevant use in the sea, land, and air. Countries like the US have better positioned themselves for war by investing heavily on the tools and the mechanisms used for war. They have in the recent past tremendously innovated and developed news systems and gadgets that are fitted to meet targets sets for combat (Zuckoff 89).
Other nations are also in a stiff completion to build onto their helicopters or even purchase these more improved and sophisticated helicopters from the technologically advanced countries like the US. Therefore, helicopters have played a very important role in the warfare industry across the world. The current Malaysian airlines that went missing was at first searched using the US search helicopter before it was reported that the Chinese search helicopter was the one that identified its remains in the Indian ocean. The picture created here is that the Chinese- built search helicopter might be slightly more advanced to detect objects in the sea or that the US search helicopter experienced a technical difficulty during the search. Helicopters, therefore, have been used as an important mechanism of war because they are the fastest and the quickest planes that can easily be deployed to war zones to specifically perform different tasks. They are always the first planes to be used
Another tool of war that has also significantly been used as a mechanism of war is missiles. During the Second World War, missiles was used greatly as a tool for mass destruction . A missile is generally a self-propelled but usually a guided weapon system. Missiles that are not self-propelled are usually only referred to as rockets. Missiles have four component systems that include the targeting and or directing, flight systems, engine, and warhead. There are several missiles that have different purposive functions. There are those that are propelled during power flights either by chemical reaction inside a rocket engine or any other engine type. Shells are terms that is used to refer to non-self-propelled airborne explosive gadgets and which in most cases usually have a shorter range than missiles.
The word missile is derived from Latin and it means to send. In the military field, there are a number of terms that are used to define explosives. There are bombs, missiles, rocket torpedoes, and projectiles. All these explosives are used to serve different purposes of combat. Guided bombs are usually munitions that are not powered, but they also at the same time are guided while bombs are usually munitions and generally unpowered and are not fired by a gun. Missiles, on the other hand, represent munitions that are powered, guided to travel through the air or space. A rocket, however, is an unguided munition. Munitions that are fired using a gun whether they are guided or not are always referred to as projectiles. Powered munitions that usually can go through the water are named torpedoes (Junger 23).
Missiles are usually the group of munitions that have attracted much use among states and is considerably of much value. The missile, for the fact that they are guided and powered to travel through air or space, has made them be of great value to states or non-state agents that are in the war. There has been a great improvement and development of missiles. Missiles were first used operationally by the German Nazi during the Second World War. During early world wars, two missiles were only built on a small scale. Guided missiles were later developed as a result of technological advancement in the modern world. By the use of their four components that have since been improved, the modern missiles are able to be used efficiently for targeting.
Missiles can therefore be targeted by the use of a number of ways, one being that of radiation that includes the use of infrared, lasers, and radio waves. Radiation may emanate from a number of places, such as the target. Guidance systems, such as the GIS and GPS have also been recently developed to be used for locating targets (Junger 15). The flight system of the missiles is also of high value because it uses the data from the targeting system to push the missile in flight to the target area by allowing it to counter inaccuracies and also allow it to follow moving targets.
A rocket engine or a jet engine is the most common type of engines that are used to power most missiles. The missile engine in most cases has multiple engine stages, especially for those launched on the surface. For instance, they can be having the rocket booster for launching and another jet engine to sustain flight (Freeman 120). The primary destructive power of a missile comes from the warhead even though some missiles have extensive secondary destructive power. This is as a result of the kinetic energy that the missile produces and also the unburnt fuel that might be on the missile.
Generally, missiles have in the past been classified by the use of their launch site and the intended target that they are directed too. It means that they are categorized into surface that includes ground or water then categorized into air. Missiles have in the recent past been highly modified to meet specific objectives, especially with regard to their success in hitting targets. They have continued to be important mechanisms of war has they can easily be launched to enemy targets without military personnel or troops having to be deployed on that particular target site.
Drones have also contributed greatly to the changes that have occurred on the war field. Drones that are used for military purposes are referred to as combat drones. A combat drone is an unmanned aerial vehicle that is also armoured with combat equipment. They have no human pilot on board, but are fully under human control. They are officially referred to as unmanned combat aerial vehicle abbreviated as (UCAV). In the use of drones, the equipments that are necessary for a human pilot are usually not needed. This equipment includes the cockpit, armour, ejection seat, flight control for pressure and oxygen. This is because the controller runs the vehicle from a remote terminal, therefore, resulting in a lower weight and size of the drone compared to manned aircraft. An individual by the name of Darkle de Forest, an inventor of radio devices, was one of the earliest explorers of the idea of the combat drone. UCAVS was developed and the Israel pioneered their use when they went to war with Egypt in 1973.
After the successful use of drones in war by the Israelis, many states around the world invested heavily in combat unmanned aerial vehicles. The US specifically had to acquire and adopt the Israel drones and have continued to build on then and even use them. They have in the recent past used the drones on war against terrorism with recent attacks on terror in Pakistan. Drones have helped many nations to win wars because they have been used to simulate a real plane but with human on board (Freeman 12). The enemy at war with a country or state that use drone is bound to lose because they will be fighting against unmanned combat aerial vehicle.
The development of drones has brought a new tactic or mechanism of war where state or non-state agents are able to go to war and manage to limit or even do away with the deaths experienced by the military personnel. It has significantly helped to fight terrorism because terrorists are now easily monitored on satellite radar and are easily stopped even before they perform their terrorist acts.
With all these developments that have occurred on the tools and mechanisms of war, a person is easily convinced that the modern concept of war has changed compared to what was used in the Second World War. Lessons that states and non-state agents learned during that Second World War have all since been rectified. States whose mechanisms failed have improved on their mechanisms and tools of war. New developments have taken place and still continue to take place in all the different aspects of tools and mechanisms of war.
Almost all states in the world are in a rush to equip themselves with these more sophisticated and improved war tools and mechanism to help protect themselves from war against their enemies. States have successfully been able to contain the amount of war that they get into mainly because of the heavy repercussions that would befall them, especially if they were to war against enemies with more superior and sophisticated weapons and mechanisms of trade. This has helped greatly to stop another world war but reduced the war to just but a few cases in many different countries in the world (Freeman 30).
Government and non-governmental agencies have opted for peace through exploring the option of a negotiated dialogue first before engaging in combat war. This has helped most countries to get independence or even succeed from other countries without engaging in combat war. A new dawn has come for the world at large because of this reduced combat war. Countries are now quickly getting civilized and have opted to engage in other wars but combat wars. In the recent past, China was fighting an economic and social media wars with the US and they managed to solve it without having to get into combat war.
If the will, passion, and desire of people around the world continues to be renewed to combat war or have them but aim to use mechanisms that are more improved to reduce the human deaths, the world would be such a nice place to dwell in. Technological developments, innovations, and changes in the mechanisms of war will always continue, but the human populations must always be willing and able to say no to combat war but rather tame and embrace each other in a more civilized way. States should be able to engage in signing peace agreement pacts and explore other mechanisms of conflict resolutions before rushing in to combat war.
Hillenbrand, Laura. Unbroken: A World war 11 story of survival, resilience and redemption. New York: Random house large print publishing, 2010. Print.
Zuckoff, Mitchell. Lost in Shangri-La: A true story of survival, adventure and the most incredible rescue mission of world war 11.Oxford: Oxford UP, 2011. Print.
Freeman, Gregory A. The forgotten 500: the untold story of men who risked all for the greatest rescue mission of world war 11.New York: New American library, 2007. Print.
Junger, Sebastian. A higher call: An incredible true story of combat and chivalry in the war-torn skies of world war 11.New York: Penguin group, 2012. Print.