Aggression as a Post-War Defense Mechanism

Scientific Proceedings of  Vanadzor State University Humanitarian and Social Sciences (ISSN 2738-2915)        

2023 vol 1

Aggression as a Post-War Defense Mechanism

Vahan Meliksetyan


Key words: aggressive behavior, post-war aggression, protective function of aggression, physical and psychological post-traumas


The study addresses the psychological causes of the post-war aggression of war participant servicemen, their peculiarities, and the protective function of aggression. The specificity of the manifestation of aggression cause by trauma was studied as well. In the post-war period, the tendency of self-mutilation during aggression and self-aggression increases, because there are many not outlived emotions. For these emotions to find their way of manifestation, they somehow turn into anger and aggression and function as a defense mechanism. Participation in a war has a strong impact on a person’s consciousness, subjecting him to serious qualitative changes. At the heart of personal transformations, according to most researchers, are changes in the semantic core of the personality that develop after an extreme situation.

After returning to civilian life, combatants experience stress associated with difficulties in adapting to new conditions: they face misunderstanding, condemnation, difficulties in communication and professional self-determination. The primary stress received during the war is superimposed by the secondary one that arose after returning home, which becomes the internal basis of the psychological and social maladjustment of a person in society.

Combat traumatic stress and its consequences are one of the main internal barriers to the social adaptation of combatants in civil society.

Psychological trauma can have an impact throughout an individual’s whole life, and aggression is often used to get rid of the accumulated energy. The traumatic experiences of war survivor servicemen are exacerbated by not being able to express their emotions and accumulating suppressed emotions. Not outlived emotions, i.e. disappointment, discouragement, sadness, pain of loss, feeling of injustice and helplessness, find their expression in aggressive manifestations.