All civil wars start with some local demonstration which builds into full blown conflict. On lookers cheer on one side or the other until they are dragged into the conflict or stand aside seeing their favourite fail. In some cases, such as in China, the authorities are too strong for a popular uprising to succeed. In other cases there is a bloody revolution which succeeds in the overthrow, in the name of ideals, but often loses the plot like the revolutions in France and Russia lost the plot and ended up replacing one autocrat with another more violent and less humanitarian autocrat. Continue reading