Author Affiliations: Physicians for Human Rights, Boston, Mass (Dr Iacopino); and the Program on Forced Migration and Health, Center for Population and Family Health, Joseph L. Mailman School of Public Health, Columbia University, New York, NY (Dr Waldman).
In the past century, the world has witnessed ongoing epidemics of armed
conflicts and violations of international human rights, epidemics that have
devastated and continue to devastate the health and well-being of humanity.
Armed conflicts have claimed the lives of more than 100 million people in
the 20th century, and increasingly, civilians have become the victims of war
and internal conflicts.1 Today, 90% of war-related
deaths are civilians.1 Torture, forced disappearance,
and political killings are systematically practiced in dozens of countries,2 and more than 100 million land mines threaten the
lives and limbs of ordinary people.1 In 1995,
1 in every 200 people in the world was displaced as a result of war or political
Iacopino V, Waldman RJ. War and HealthFrom Solferino to Kosovo—The Evolving Role of Physicians. JAMA. 1999;282(5):479-481. doi:10.1001/jama.282.5.479