To begin with, I value Zichy's comprehension that the forces fomenting and fanning the flames of destruction are fundamentally spiritual in nature. Zichy chose to depict these forces in the form of two demonic figures, male and female, hovering over a river of carnage. Notice the manner in which both figures orchestrate the slaughter they have instigated, particularly the female demon, who actively demonstrates her possession of the human figure beneath her through the placement and form of her outstretched hand.
The humans embroiled in the massacre in the bottom half of the painting represent the various warring factions from the nineteenth century. Replacing these with the various warring factions of our contemporary world would not diminish the painting in the slightest. If anything, it would serve to highlight an eternal truth Zichy captured here concerning the true source and motivation of destruction.
I mention this because our own time and place - the here and now - is devolving into a time and place of destruction; a time and place where the genius of destruction might very well triumph, at least in the short term. And why might it triumph? Because the creation needed to counteract it and neutralize it has become scant and insufficient. As in Zichy's painting, we moderns cannot (and should not) expect any guidance or support from churches, government, or other organizations which, like the religious and political figures Zichy depicts in his composition, have nearly all become willingly complicit in the destruction the demons have spawned. When it comes to facing the genius of destruction, we are all pretty much on our own.
As is the case with our current situation, Zichy's vision is a bleak one and appears to offer little in the way of comfort and hope. But the faint figure with outstretched arms standing within the framed doorway of light on the left side of the canvas serves to remind us of the purely temporal nature of destruction's triumph, and of the glorious victory not even the genius of destruction can annihilate.