Warfare casts its dark shadow across most of human history. Countless men, women and children have died under awful conditions. And the scars of battle are still visible on many fields and in many towns, if you know where to look.
For instance, whole city centres of many British cities had to be rebuilt after heavy bombing in World War 2. You can see the evidence of post-War reconstruction in places like Plymouth, Coventry, Birmingham, and the Canning Town area of East London. A more recent example is the destruction of Groznya, the capital of the
Chechnya, a war-torn region in the Caucasus mountains of central Asia.
These pages explore close links between the history of physics and war. Why have so many physicists done war work? Is it possible to be a physicist without becoming an instrument of war? War research raises profound moral questions for physicists today.