World War 3 News: Will Andrei Karlov’s Assassination Trigger The Next World War? [Opinion]

There is a lot of talk about World War 3 right now, and a large part of that is due to the assassination of Andrei Karlov, Russia’s ambassador to Turkey. Some people have been comparing Karlov’s assassination to that of the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand, who was heir to the Austro-Hungarian empire and the nephew of Emperor Franz Josef.

The man who brought about the unification of Germany in 1871, Otto von Bismarck, had accurately predicted the outbreak of World War I due to the conflict in the Balkans, as History described.

“One day the great European War will come out of some damned foolish thing in the Balkans.”

Franz Ferdinand’s death, the result of long-term and strategic planning by six assassins, was the “trigger to war,” as Heavy reported, and an ultimatum to the Serbian Kingdom was swiftly issued. After this, the majority of the superpowers were at war with each other, with the Allies and the Central Powers feuding and fighting.

The coffin of Andrei Karlov, Russia's ambassador to Turkey, is carried to a plane by Turkish military on December 20, 2016 in Ankara.
The coffin of Andrei Karlov, Russia's ambassador to Turkey, is carried to a plane by Turkish military on December 20, 2016 in Ankara. Will this anger powers into World War 3? [Image by Erhan Ortac/Getty Images]

So when you think of World War 3, you could easily find links between the assassination of Franz Ferdinand and that of Andrei Karlov. Ferdinand’s death caused Austria-Hungary, along with other countries, to place the blame squarely on the shoulders of the Serbian government. As Russia supported Serbia, a declaration of war was halted until Germany would agree to lend their support. This was especially important as France was also an ally of Russia.

When Austria-Hungary finally ended up declaring war, peace between European superpowers ended. Austria-Hungary and Germany were at war with Russia, France, Great Britain, Belgium, and Serbia, and World War I officially began. When World War I ended in 1918, the superpowers of the world were the United States, Great Britain, Italy, Japan, and the French Republic.

The reason that World War 3 is currently on the minds of many is because there are fears that the death of Russia’s ambassador to Turkey could possibly lead to Russia declaring war on Turkey. If this happened, it is certainly conceivable that NATO members could become angry as Turkey is a NATO member, and what happened in the first world war could happen again with various alliances teaming up together to fight.

Russia, however, has remained calm after Karlov’s assassination and despite calling the incident an act of terrorism, has not thought about declaring war. Also, there is the added fact that Donald Trump appears to be on excellent terms with Vladimir Putin, so the idea of a major war involving the United States and Russia is quite unlikely now, which means that people have less reason to fear the idea of World War 3 as events have played out quite differently now than they did at the beginning of the first world war.

On the other hand, if you choose not to look at the assassination of Russia’s ambassador to Turkey and decide to look at nuclear weapons instead, you may have cause to worry about World War 3. Just two days ago, Donald Trump tweeted that the nuclear arms race would continue.

“The United States must greatly strengthen and expand its nuclear capability until such time as the world comes to its senses regarding nukes.”

Atomic bomb damage in Hiroshima in 1945.
Atomic bomb damage in Hiroshima in 1945. Just one atomic warhead now is 30 times more powerful than the bomb that was dropped on Hiroshima. [Image by Hulton Archive/Getty Images]

As Robert Oppenheimer once said, “The pattern of the use of atomic weapons was set at Hiroshima. They are weapons of aggression, of surprise, and of terror.” The New Yorker describes how just one bomb now would be able to destroy the same target that long ago would have needed thousands of bombs. Currently, the United States has 440 Minuteman III intercontinental ballistic missiles. Each and every one of these missiles carries a warhead which is around 30-times as powerful as the one that destroyed Hiroshima.

With Donald Trump’s recent message on Twitter stating that the United States will continue to expand its collection of nuclear weapons, it is more important than ever for world powers to be aware that unless they work together, World War 3 may one day become more than just a vague idea.

[Featured Image by Keystone/Getty Images]