International Man: With all the hysteria surrounding the coronavirus, there has been a renewed discussion on biological warfare.
How likely will some form of biological warfare happen in the near future? What could the scenario look like?
Doug Casey: It’s very likely—in fact, inevitable. There are many advantages to biological warfare over conventional warfare.
First, it doesn’t destroy materials. That’s a huge plus. What’s the point of conquering a country if all you have to show for it is a smoking radioactive ruin? That was the major advantage of the neutron bomb, of course, but bioweapons will essentially make atomic weapons obsolescent. Bitten: The Secret His... Buy New $17.99 (as of 04:41 UTC - Details)
Second, bioweapons can be structured to attack only certain racial groups. If the US is at war with China, they could see that as an advantage. Of course, two can play that game. In any event, you can immunize your own population, or at least the military and “essential” workers, so you’re not hurt too badly.
Third, bioweapons are very cheap and easy to fabricate. If someone has access to a good high school chemistry lab, the person’s in business. There’s no need for an expensive and tricky U-235 or, for that matter, any of the junk toys the Pentagon spends hundreds of billions on.
Fourth, bioweapons don’t need sophisticated delivery systems; no need for B-2s, B-52s, cruise missiles, or any of that. A sick tourist or two, or a few packages sent in the mail will get the job done.
Fifth, bioweapons, whether they‘re viruses or bacteria, not only offer plausible deniability, but the potential to blame a third party. You can launch an attack, and nobody can really be sure who did it, or even that an attack is, in fact, being launched.
There’s every advantage to biological warfare from an aggressor‘s point of view. And, the aggressor doesn’t even have to be a nation-state, which is, of course, another excuse for governments to further clamp down on their populations—but that’s another story.
It‘s well known that the US has spent tens of billions of dollars on biological weapons, mainly at Fort Detrick, Maryland, among other places, starting in the 1950s. The American government has been on this for a long time, but I‘m sure that the Chinese and other major powers have caught up. The Pandemic Century: ... Best Price: $14.72 Buy New $14.72 (as of 04:53 UTC - Details)
World War 3 is going to have a substantial biological component.
International Man: Albert Einstein once said, “I know not with what weapons World War 3 will be fought, but World War 4 will be fought with sticks and stones.”
What do you make of that?
Doug Casey: Like most of Einstein’s observations, it’s very astute. Warfare is all about technology, along with economics and psychology. Those three things are of equal importance.
The first people to develop the bow and arrow had a gigantic advantage over neighboring tribes that only had spears or rocks to throw.
The invention of steel made bronze obsolete. The Roman legion made the Greek phalanx obsolete. Gunpowder made everything previous obsolete, including castles and armor. Nuclear weapons also created a huge change. But there have been hundreds of critical tech innovations—just listing them would take a book.
The point I’m trying to make is that warfare is a history of technological advancement.
That said, what’s World War 3 going to look like?
I see five new technologies that are going to make World War 3 quite different from World War 2. Germs: Biological Weap... Best Price: $1.28 Buy New $15.00 (as of 11:40 UTC - Details)
Number one is electronic warfare. Today, the whole world is built around computers, including utility operation, communication, aircraft, and the monetary system. Computers are critical. A major component of warfare will be trying to destroy an opponent’s electronic infrastructure, perhaps by creating nuclear bursts in the upper atmosphere to deliver electromagnetic pulses (EMPs) to fry all the circuits.
Number two, drones are going to be very big. Not just the kind of drones that we now think of, as with cruise missiles or the little four-rotor toys, but tiny insect-like drones that can be structured to attack individual people. Using visual recognition, they will be highly targeted. Perhaps thousands of them could be launched on an enemy military camp or, for that matter, an enemy city. Micro-drones are going to be very important.
The third area, related to both computers and drones, are robots. The weakest part of most war machines is the human beings that run them. Not only are they easy to damage or destroy, but they have unpredictable psychological problems.
It’s time to think in terms of an actual Terminator, as in the Arnold Schwarzenegger movie from 1985. They won’t be just bipedal robots: they will come in many shapes and flavors. It costs the US about a million dollars to train a soldier today; they’re no longer just mass-produced draftee cannon fodder. Most soldiers today are highly-trained specialists, but a lot of them are going to be replaced by robots running on artificial intelligence.
The fourth new element of World War 3 is space. There are thousands of satellites circling the earth; they not only enable communication of all types but spy on adversaries. As in the past, a military commander wants to control the high ground—to put gravity on his side. Space will be full of prepositioned weapons, waiting to rain terror downwards.
But the fifth, and probably the most important new element, is going to be biological warfare.
I’d mention the real biggie, nanotech, but that’s likely post-WW3. If we’re lucky . . . Lab 257: The Disturbin... Best Price: $3.49 Buy New $8.59 (as of 03:25 UTC - Details)
International Man: The US government spends more on the military than the next six largest countries combined.
Aside from padding the pockets for the cronies of the Deep State, what are the implications of this?
Doug Casey: First of all, it’s unnecessary for defending US territory. In fact, it’s a positive danger because it’s so provocative. It’s terrifying because everybody knows the adage: When all you have is a hammer, everything looks like a nail. Meanwhile, it’s a major factor in bankrupting the country, so it’s not making the US stronger but weaker.
The US spends something like $1 trillion on defense annually, but nobody knows for certain. These budgets are complicated; military spending is hidden here, there, and everywhere. You don’t dare question anything they say that has to do with “national security.” Who knows how many trillions of dollars are diverted to pure corruption? The Pentagon is probably better at stealing than crime syndicates in the ghetto.
Apart from the economic consequences, military spending is very dangerous, especially with rapidly expanding technology.
One of the times that the US came closest to nuclear war with Russia was in the mid-’80s when Russian generals could see that they were falling behind, and any edge they had was disappearing.
It became a question of “use it or lose it.” Fortunately, they decided not to use it, so we didn’t have World War 3.
The US could very well find itself in exactly the same position—being bankrupted by wasteful, even worthless military spending. The generals might decide that it’s now or never against China and Russia. Biowarfare and Terrorism Buy New $12.95 (as of 04:59 UTC - Details)
Russia and China are the major adversary nations, but Russia really isn’t a threat. It has half the population of the US, with a GDP that’s more like that of New York state. Remember, war is about economics as much as technology.
Russia is really just a gas station with an attached gun store sitting in a wheat field. It’s actually not a threat to anybody. But it has a right to feel threatened by NATO, which should have been disbanded after the USSR collapsed, but has instead been aggressively expanded—benefitting nobody but US arms manufacturers.
American generals are one of the greatest dangers to the US. Anybody who gets a star on his shoulder in today’s US military is really more of a political operative than anything else.
I have no doubt that as problems mount in the next few years, one or both of the candidates for president in the next election will be a general.
Because the average American has been programmed to love and trust the military. That goes for the generals as well. It does not auger well.
If a general doesn’t succeed in becoming a political operative—which they really are—they become cronies, going to work for some large defense contractor so that they can retail their knowledge and connections, to become personally wealthy.
Believe it or not, 90% of the US military is not only unnecessary but is an active danger to the people of the US. Fallout: Nuclear Bribe... Buy New $25.20 (as of 04:53 UTC - Details)
International Man: Relatively cheap equipment can be used to create billions of dollars of damage. We saw this in the Middle East, where relatively cheap drones from Yemen were able to create a substantial amount of damage to Saudi Arabia’s oil facilities.
What is asymmetric warfare, and what role will it play in the future?
Doug Casey: It will play a huge role. In Third World countries, there’s nothing cheaper than human life.
The actual cash value of a Mohammedan teenager is extremely low, measured in the hundreds of dollars. But even the cheapest weapons systems that we have, which are some of the most popular, are extremely expensive, measured in the millions or billions of dollars.
For instance, the Tomahawk cruise missile costs $1.4 million apiece. That is a pretty high price to take out a few Arab teenagers or blow up a mud hut in the middle of nowhere.
Terrorists are the ultimate in asymmetric warfare. It costs very little to send a team to an advanced country. With just a couple of high-powered rifles, they can create chaos in a city just by killing a few people a day in random places.
A couple of guys with wire cutters and sledgehammers can destroy electrical substations and likely evade capture until they’ve done many millions of dollars in damage. There’s no limit to the number of things that can be done to disrupt a high-tech society like the US. I’m just surprised that we haven’t seen a lot more of it so far. This is further proof that the War on Terror is a chimera—just like the War on Poverty, the War on Drugs, and the current War on COVID-19. Compromised: How Money... Best Price: $8.28 Buy New $16.99 (as of 04:53 UTC - Details)
One asymmetrical weapon which will be used more is massive amounts of migrants. It shouldn’t be hard to encourage poor people coming from Africa to Europe—for that matter from Central America to the US— to simply overrun the borders.
How are you going to stop them if there are thousands, tens of thousands or hundreds of thousands of them en masse? It’s unlikely they’ll be machine-gunned. So they’ll push down the fences, land their boats, and then what are you going to do? Especially since Europe and North America have millions of leftists who want to see it happen.
This is a method of warfare that hasn’t really been considered as such. But, once again, it’s extremely low-cost and very effective. So it will be used.
The fact that the US is spending hundreds of billions on junk, like F-35s, the Littoral Combat Ship, and the Burke destroyer practically guarantees it will not only bankrupt itself, but likely lose the conflict. It’s exactly equivalent to what they did before World War 2, building battleships, or before World War 1, when the cavalry was the cream of the military. They’re doing exactly the same thing today.
International Man: What do you think the chances are of a war with a big power, like Russia or China? If a shooting war started, how do you think the US would do?
Doug Casey: As I said before, Russia is not a threat. They’re not going to do anything unless they’re attacked first. China is a different question.
I don’t think there’s much doubt that the 21st century is going to be the Chinese century.
That being said, China is really half a dozen or a dozen different countries. Xinjiang Province is full of people that are not ethnically, linguistically, or culturally Han Chinese. Tibet is a similar situation. It’s somewhat similar in Inner Mongolia. The Return of Great Po... Best Price: $25.10 Buy New $25.95 (as of 05:05 UTC - Details)
Even within Han China itself, the people speak many different dialects and have many different cultures. China is a domestic empire, and it could easily fall apart if things get tough.
I suspect it will get tough even though the progress that China has made over the last 40 years is unique in world history. It’s completely undeniable. But on the other hand, there are indications that their financial system is on the ragged edge of collapse. They’ve created huge distortions and made huge, politically driven, misallocations of capital.
All the Chinese banks are bankrupt.
When Mrs. Wong goes to her bank and either can’t get her yuan out or the yuan are worth nothing, the place will fall apart and return to the kind of situation the Chinese had in the 1930s.
China is an unstable place. The US shouldn’t provoke the Chinese—sending aircraft and ships all around their borders, particularly to the South China Sea. It’s not our problem. We wouldn’t like it if they sent the Red Navy off the California coast or into the Gulf of Mexico.
China will probably fall apart on its own, breaking into smaller states in the future as, incidentally, the US itself might. Why? Because the US is no longer a nation bound by common traditions, language, and religion. The US has turned into a multicultural domestic empire.
But your opening question concerned World War 3. Of course, we’ll have it. Its consequences will dwarf those of WW2, and its most devastating element will be bioweapons.
That’s one more reason—there are many—why it makes sense to have a pleasant place in the country or in a small town, as opposed to the city or the suburbs. But that’s a whole other conversation. . .
Reprinted with permission from International Man.