Wars and battles are as old as humans themselves. War actually refers to strategized and often extended periods of conflicts between two or more relatively large groups or parties, and involving extreme physical violence, social disorder and economic disturbance.
Wars have been around for several thousand years, with Prehistoric warfare referring to human conflicts and battles taking place during the age before writing. In fact archaeologists working in the Jebel Sahaba region along the Egypt-Sudan border have found fresh evidence that point to the earliest historical warfare occurring some 13,000 years ago. Records suggest that this Mesolithic warfare might also have been among the first of the ancient water wars, caused due to conflicts arising as a result of the desertification of the region. History has been witness to numerous such instances of armed fighting over monopolization of the limited available resources.
Recent scanning of the fossils, unearthed by Fred Wendorf and his team back in 1964, reveals that it was in fact a race war taking place between the locals of the Black African ancestry and another unidentified group of people most likely to have come from the Mediterranean Sea basin. Researchers have been able to establish distinct differences between the two groups: the locals were tall with comparatively short torsos and pointed faces, while the foreigners were shorter with long torsos and blunt faces.
The Jebel Sahaba region, along the Nile river, possesses three of the earliest prehistoric burial sites, of which, “Cemetery 117” is the most famous. Around 59 bodies, including 24 women and 13 children, were recovered from the area in the 1960s. These remains are believed to be 13,000 to 14,300 years old, with many containing signs of fatal injuries.
Modern analysis techniques have been implemented to arrive at the conclusion that many of the battle injuries were actually caused by arrow wounds. This inference is supported by flint fragments that have also been salvaged from the site. Archaeologists believe that the battle at Jebel Sahaba went on for years, mainly due to disputes arising out of severe and often extended periods of drought and resulting in a large number of casualties.