War. Death. Destruction. A tale as old as time. A cycle that never ends. The millions of lives lost to mankind’s love of warfare is startling in quantity and impossible to grasp. 

Some wars are so ancient, the world seems to have forgotten they ever occurred. Some are so recent, it is like they happened only yesterday. But both have staggering cultural, political, economic and social repercussions. Here is a look through history at some of the most costly wars mankind has endured. 


22. The Biafran War

The Biafran War, also known as the Nigerian Civil War, was fought between the government of Nigeria and the secessionist state of Biafra from July 6, 1967, to January 15, 1970. After Britain formally decolonized from Nigeria in the early 1960s, political, economic, ethnic, cultural and religious tensions grew and Biafra sought succession. An estimated 2 million civilians perished due to famine during the blockade.