Wall & Peace
In August all over Europe, the US and the Commonwealth, historians and nations will join together to commemorate 100 years since the outbreak of the Great War. In the UK a war memorial will open on the White Cliffs of Dover commemorating 1.7m Commonwealth casualties in the two world wars of 1914-18 and 1939-45.
But some historians say the war of 1812 between Britain and the United States was the first truly global war. It resulted in the sacking of Washington, but also 200 years ago in September, the writing of the Star Spangled Banner by Francis Scott Key after a victory over the British at Fort McHenry.
In November Europe celebrates 25 years since the fall of the Berlin Wall and the Velvet Revolution, which led to the collapse of Communism, a united Germany and a united Europe. This year also marks a decade since the eight former Eastern Bloc countries became members of the EU.
In April, Rwandans will reflect on 20 years since the genocide – and the huge strides the country has made to be at peace with itself. It is also the 20th Anniversary of South Africa’s first democratic elections which saw Nelson Mandela sworn in as the country’s first black president, marking the end of Apartheid.
Finally, 2014 will see the withdrawal of NATO troops from Afghanistan, having occupied the country since 2001.