Things are moving fast and in what feels like every realm. The foreign element is very much tied to domestic control where it feels internal legitimacy is connected to USG’s foreign muscle. If it seems to be in every sphere of interaction, it is by design. It is not just Uncle Sam’s NGO and dollar weapons. An incredibly interesting article on the new era of unrestricted warfare clues us into what is going on globally.
Unrestricted warfare is back, but not in the old notion of ‘anything goes’ with regards to fighting on the battlefield. It now means all weapons on all battlefields that affect your opponent.
From the article:
Colonels Qiao Liang and Wang Xiangsui argued that war was no longer about “using armed forces to compel the enemy to submit to one’s will” in the classic Clausewitzian sense. Rather, they asserted that war had evolved to “using all means, including armed force or non-armed force, military and non-military, and lethal and non-lethal means to compel the enemy to accept one’s interests.” The barrier between soldiers and civilians would fundamentally be erased, because the battle would be everywhere. The number of new battlefields would be “virtually infinite,” and could include environmental warfare, financial warfare, trade warfare, cultural warfare, and legal warfare, to name just a few. They wrote of assassinating financial speculators to safeguard a nation’s financial security, setting up slush funds to influence opponents’ legislatures and governments, and buying controlling shares of stocks to convert an adversary’s major television and newspapers outlets into tools of media warfare.
This does make sense if you have read some Sun-Tzu. This does make the Chinese “vendor financing” of the American consumer through their reserve recycling process. Reserve recycling alters the interest rates of your opponent, giving you leverage. The American economy, being based on finance, becomes susceptible to the lender on the margin just as much as it is dependent on the borrower on the margin for expansion. The Reserves become a weapon. The Saudi Arabians are threatening to sell off reserves and cause market problems, but China holds a billion or so more than the nervous kingdom. This is from a 1999 paper by the Chinese, so the idea of them accumulating reserves and getting into a quasi-MAD situation with USG in economics offered protection.
There is no single battlefield.
This is being proclaimed as new, but that statement can only be made with willful blindness with regards to any hegemon and any modern war. The USG has been using the World Bank, IMF, media, rating agencies, etc. to impose its will on any challengers or defectors. The North Vietnamese won because of the Blue Empire’s control of American media, campuses, and congressional funding. The British before America used financial means to manipulate pieces on the global chessboard. Lord Cromer only served brilliantly because he was first put there to make sure Egypt could pay back the millions they had borrowed from large Continental European and British banks.
The element that is new is the amazing amplification of individuals that an interconnected world continuously feeds. The macro push for greater connection via globalization and the micro push for technological control and connectivity has created problems. From later in the article:
In 1999, the ability to assault all elements of an opponent’s society seemed to require the resources or sponsorship of a powerful nation state. Now, an increasingly interconnected world allows adversaries at keyboards — from states to terrorist groups to disgruntled citizens — to instantly vault oceans and continents to strike at any element of another nation and society without ever having to encounter defending military forces. A basement hacker in Sarajevo can target the City of London’s financial networks one moment and a Brazilian municipal power grid the next — and never change out of her pajamas.
Thomas Friedman has discussed the idea in his books over a decade ago of a flat world with amplified humans. Friedman would not argue the negative side to this, as he has pushed globalization for decades as a boon to humanity. Adding in an increasingly paralyzed-by-fake-trauma Western leftist mindset, people like the hacker Weev can take advantage of open printers to broadcast a counter-progressive message of “wow just wow” hate through the Internet.
This is only going to grow and embolden not just rising sovereign states versus the current American hyperpower or possible defector states, but also grant immense power to individuals and small cabals. Russia is accused of funding nationalist parties in Europe. Google already plays this game with their aid in the Egyptian protests and even offers of aiding Syrian defectors to topple Assad. Google has immense resources. While economics and money will matter, it will not just leave men like George Soros, Mark Zuckerberg or the Koch brothers as billionaires playing with the world like a game of Risk. The flip side to those men and their power would be their fears if an individual just happened to arm a little drone with a simple rifle.
It would take time for that individual power level that Nick Land calls X-Risk Democratization. The point where individuals or even a small group of men could become Bond villains is in the distance, and right now the American Imperium is in a dynamic moment. The current chaos in the EU may have states not entirely onboard the suicide cult train thinking of alternatives. Rather than a nuke or a competent air force, pursuing strategic capabilities for weaponization need not involve massive capital involvement, nor be entirely of a military threatening manner. In the meantime as the USG imperial sands shift, expansion of the battlefield greatly helps current vassals of the USG system.