The prospect of missiles, bombs and mortar shells raining down on cities, towns, buildings and even individuals has been a feature of mankind’s existence for thousands upon thousands of years. My own mother could vividly recall the days (but more often nights) when German planes, mostly Heinkels and Dorniers, flew over London during the Blitz. And they weren’t there just on a sightseeing tour.

The wonder of it all is that, in this the 21st century, the human race is still reliant on such basic and remarkably primitive techniques in conducting the actual business of waging war. When the average child’s bedroom contains more than enough computing power to plan campaigns and fight major battles over and over again, why is it that the big boys must insist on doing everything the hard way?

Why can’t we all decide to deal with these matters at an entirely new level of sophistication, without the need for so much of the destruction, death and anguish that always accompanies them?

Perhaps there will come a time when we can cast aside all the martial baggage that present-day conflict still demands. If so, then all that has gone before may start to make some sense at long last.