Although the above conflict has dominated the news for the past month, at least until the British arrested the airline terror suspects, it is not the deadliest armed conflict in our world today. I think the fighting in the Congo, which seems to have near perpetual civil and regional warfare, would qualify as that. I have read that the loss of life in the Congo is at a pace of 100,000 people per month. That sounds high, but even if it is greatly exaggerated it would still be more lives lost than in Israel and Lebanon. Not all the deaths are the result of direct combat; many are because of famine and diseases that persist because it is impossible to develop any sort of infrastructure given the many years of war there.
Yet we hardly ever hear news about the Congo. It is rarely on the front page of my newspaper and usually not even in the first section, and I can't help but wonder why. Is it because there are no nuclear weapons in the nations involved in the Congo fighting? Is it because the fighting is not near any large oil reserves? Maybe it's because the combatants are black and not Caucasian. Or could it be because we are all so tired of the news from Africa of poverty, hunger, disease, war, and corruption that we have given up on the continent?
I'm not sure of the answer. As in most complex situations, it is probably a combination of factors. But it hardly seems fair, does it? The death of a young Congolese child grieves his mother as much as the death of a Lebanese child does his.