There is no excuse for anyone not to know that wars and armed conflict cause huge disruptions in the social fabric of countries, communities, families and individuals potentially contributing to long-term intergenerational trauma and infrastructure destruction. People are killed, disabled, displaced, and raped. Children are abandoned and/or separated from their family, networks and social and welfare supports: the consequences are life changing for everyone.
In order to bring to our attention to current and past consequences of wars and armed conflict the IASSW Human Rights and Social Justice committee has gather articles for this 27th edition of the Social Dialogue from social workers working within their communities that have been affected by internal wars and armed conflict. They have gathered articles covering conflicts in Northeast Pakistan, the war against the Amazonian Indians in Brazil, the long serving Marawi conflict in Philippines, civil war in Sri Lanka, Columbia, Zimbabwe, Nigeria, Palestine, Kashmir, Democratic Republic of Congo and Armenian-Azerbaijan conflict, tensions between Israelis and Arabs in Israel doing social work, and the war in Ukraine. Indeed, these instances of internal conflict and wars are most often underreported or ignored. While the geo-political and cultural factors need addressing, the immediate needs of individuals, families, women and children and communities are also pressing, varied and complex. And, as with most events such as this social work has an important role to play: from peace-keeping and peace- building, to reparation, and professional interventions to address the trauma, and secure resources for peoples survival and wellbeing.
The stories in this edition are sobering, with examples of thoughtful action social workers can take when faced with war and armed conflict and its consequences. Enjoy!