[Man runs from sniper in Homs, Syria. 2012]
What does it look like when your relatively safe, stable and secure way of life is plunged into chaos, disorder and violence? Though history is replete with examples of entire civilizations collapsing for various reasons, we need only review the events of the last century to see how quickly modern-day society can devlolve into hell on Earth.
Whether the cause is a natural disaster, economic and monetary calamity, political revolution, or armed conflict, the consequences for the general population can be severe.
When just-in-time food and medicine distribution systems fail, utility infrastructures crumble, emergency response becomes non-existent, and the rule of law becomes unenforceable, only survival will matter.
Selco of SHTF School, who survived the war in the Balkan region during the 1990’s, recounts how everything changed after TEOTWAWKI:
Nothing is like it was before. When you defend your home you need to have [a] mindset change. Home is not [a] cozy secure place anymore. Home is the place [in which] you chose to defend yourself and loved ones. You will feel very different about the place you used as defensive base forever.
When you live in a grid-down situation, especially in the midst of armed conflict, the necessities for life that we take for granted in the West become a daily struggle, often requiring you to put your life in danger. The following pictures were recently taken over the course of a week by Mulham Al-Jundi in the eastern Homs neighborhoods of Syria, where shelling, killing and unrest are taking their toll on the civilian population.
We reached Al-Jundi on Skype, as he was recovering from being shot in the leg by a sniper.
“Snipers have tried to shoot me so many times,” he says. “Today, they got their goal.” He was treated in a poorly-equipped field hospital, much like the one he photographed earlier in the week.
Before he had to go back to resting, he expressed anger that kids were out in the streets, selling cigarettes and gasoline to get by. “They should be in school!” Schools, of course, are closed for the time being.
Source: France 24
Homes damaged from shelling and gun fire. The streets are riddled with debris:
The power grid and maintenance services have collapsed. Residents create burn piles and bonfires to stay warm. Trash accumulation will lead to unsanitary conditions and disease.
Food is scarce. Residents complain that there are no fruits and vegetables to be had. Those with the ability to do so provide direct commodities like bread, eggs, gas, meat and even cigarettes for sale or trade.:
Photographer Mulham Al-Jundi before being shot in the leg by a sniper. He tweets “A sniper is right behind me!” :
The other perspective. Syrian snipers take aim at ‘rebels’ :
Video Report: Syria: the horror of Homs, a city at war
If The United States were to undergo a paradigm shift like that which have seen in Syria, Libya, Iraq, Afghanistan, the Balkans, or any number of countries and regions in the last hundred years, including World Wars I and II which changed the face of the entire world and claimed the lives of over 100 million people, everything will change and the entire system in which we live, including our conceptualization of the laws by which society and civilization are supposed to function, will be turned on its head.
No matter how much we prepare for the expected and unexpected, when the laws of society and humanity break down no one is really ready for what the singularity of collapse will bring.
Selco Recounts: Being In a City Under Siege:
Some dark memories hide deep inside of me. Not easy to get to them. But this is one that came back.
My friend got caught with his comrade in one house, actually two of them are left something like behind enemy lines, in basement of destroyed house. Enemy group, some 150-200 men was doing sweeps through that street, robbing, and killing civilians who had no time to run. He said to me that they spend two days in basement, covered with all kinds of junk, watching outside through a small opening, few meters from opening was a corpse of girl, maybe 10 years old.
In order to see if somebody is coming to their basement, one of them needed to be constantly on that small opening, watching. He said he managed to watch atrocities that those people did to civilians and somehow push that deep inside his brain, over the time, to put these memories away. But to stare at dead kid, all the time, with her eyes wide open, blond hair, he almost lost his mind.
One of them had a pistol and few bullets, other one had a rifle , 30 bullets and homemade grenade (made from unexploded tank grenade).
They make agrement, if they see enemy is coming to the basement, they gonna fire everything and blow themselfs with that grenade. Nobody came in basement, burned house was not interesting for other guys. After two days enemy group just pulled back.
While difficult for many to accept, societal breakdowns are a common occurrence on our planet. They happen more often than governments of industrialized nations and the mainstream media like to admit. Often, entire populations of cities, regions and countries are thrown into impossible and unimaginable circumstances.
The world as we know it today, with all of its current political, economic, financial and social instability may very well be on the brink of a wide-spread, historic collapse of unprecedented proportions.
Worst case scenarios have happened before. For many, they are happening tonight.
Let history be our guide. Let current events be our warnings signs. One day the worst case scenario may not be just a hypothetical event.