Survey finds most people support rules of war

A majority of people questioned in a recent ICRC-commissioned survey feel that rules of war developed in the second half of the 20th century still make an important difference in protecting lives during conflict. According to a survey of 17,000 people in 16 countries conducted by WIN/Gallup International, some 80 per cent of people in countries at war believe that civilian deaths are unacceptable and not simply an inevitable part of war. However, the survey also found some troubling trends: an increasing number of people (and the average number in all surveyed countries) feel that civilian deaths in conflict zones are an inevitable part of war (from 30 per cent in 1999 to 34 per cent in 2016). See our Resources section, page 29, for more about the People and War survey.

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It’s the stuff of science fiction: machines that make decisions about who and when to kill. Referred to as “autonomous weapons”, they’re already in use to some degree. But as more sophisticated systems are being developed we wanted to an expert in the field about whether such systems comply with international humanitarian law and what it means for humanity to give machines the power over human life and death.

‘Wildfire diaries’ and radical change in communications

In this episode, we talk with humanitarian communicator Kathy Mueller who produced our first magazine podcast series, The Wildfire Diaries, about massive wildfires in Northern Canada in 2017. We talk about that series, her many international missions, and the big changes in humanitarian communications since she began with the Canadian Red Cross almost 20 years ago.

The power of storytelling

In this episode, we talk about the power of storytelling to inform and inspire. “Storytelling is a fundamental aspect of human communication,” says our guest Prodip, a volunteer and multi-media storyteller for the Bangladesh Red Crescent. “It inspires us to be a hero of our own community.” We also speak with one such community hero, Dalal al-Taji, a longtime volunteer and advocate for inclusion of people with disabilities in emergencies response. “In disasters. persons with disabilities sometimes get forgotten.”

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