#191 - What makes armies commit atrocities? | Curio

#191 - What makes armies commit atrocities?

24 mins | Apr 19, 2022

Today's episode from 19th April 2022. As harrowing news reports emerge out of the city of Bucha of possible evidence of Russian war crimes, we explore what makes soldiers and armies commit atrocities. We hear how this isn't simply the chaos of war but more that Russian soldiers have a history of dishing out brutality. Then later, they were once the go-to software for accountants and now they've become everyone's favourite way of organising. We take a look at how spreadsheets have made a comeback as a productivity hack. All wars contain some degree of atrocity and loss of human life. However, the devastation observed in Ukraine shows that for armies like Russia, brutality can often be pursued rather than be considered a last resort. For Foreign Policy, Bret Devereaux, a historian specializing in the Roman economy and military, argues that this is in fact no coincidence, and such behaviours can be explained by the country's history and be the "product of organizational culture, command decisions, and an institutional structure that shields a military from civilian checks or accountability. The venerable (and yes, super dull) piece of officeware is getting reinvented as a tool for non-coders to automate and simplify their lives. For Wired, Clive Thompson examines closely many of the surprising benefits embracing the tool could give us outside of the workplace. Wake up with Curio is a different kind of morning show that gives you the context behind the news and gets you motivated for the day ahead, every Monday - Friday.

publisher logo

From Wake Up with Curio

Read along