Civilians Caught Up in War
The four case studies presented in this theme illustrate the very real dangers to civilians posed by twentieth century warfare. They span regions and time periods, from Europe during World War I to Iraq in the 1970s. The earliest case studies concern the First World War: Jane Abbott was an American visitor who found herself in Vienna when the shot was fired which initiated one of the most destructive wars in human history. William Molony, a British teenager, was in Germany when war was declared and found himself not only unable to return home but subsequently imprisoned for two years. "Life or Death of the World" tells of Constance Malleson's life and adventures in England, Finland and Sweden during the Second World War. Despite some hardship, these three civilians all survived the wars which swept them up; Alex Aronson was not so fortunate. A lifelong humanitarian, he was arrested by Sadam Hussein's troops during a volunteer mission to Kurdistan in 1975 and was executed shortly afterwards.