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World War III... and Other Entertaining Prognostications

New - 20 July 2011

John Rapporport has suggested that Imagination is far more important than Reality... or at least the "Consensus Reality” in which so many of us get stuck, mired, and seemingly glued. In his article, Magic to the Nth; Bye Bye, Universe, Rapporport quotes Phillip K. Dick:

"...Because today we live in a society in which spurious realities are manufactured by the media, by governments, by big corporations, by religious groups, political groups. So I ask, in my writing, What is real? Because unceasingly we are bombarded with pseudo-realities manufactured by very sophisticated people using very sophisticated electronic mechanisms. I do not distrust their motives; I distrust their power. They have a lot of it. And it is an astonishing power: that of creating whole universes, universes of mind. I ought to know. I do the same thing." -- Philip K Dick, "How to Build a Universe That Doesn't Fall Apart Two Days Later," 1978.

The curious part is that, if all various nefarious, societal, corporate, religious, or governmental entities can create a reality -- with which to impose upon the rest of us -- why not everyone else do their own, personal thing? As Rapporport goes on to write:

...the clue is:

...some guys built [their] universe, so why not build your own?

Trouble is, when you've lived in this space-time vacation spot long enough, you tend to forget your have imagination. That's a drawback if you're trying to create a brand new universe.
 
However...you can imagine you have imagination. Works just as well as the real thing. Truth is, there is no real thing. Imagination ultimately IS imagining you have imagination. I know, it sounds odd, but there it is.
 
You just have to want it.

In many respects, imagination trumps reality... at least when you’re creating your own reality. Of course, there are always the naysayers that attempt to blitz you with facts, figures, and colorful graphics that prove everything is otherwise... and that furthermore any reality you might create is simply going to be unsupported by the consensus reality. But who cares about consensus? We can in fact create a super-galactic war of good versus evil, with princesses in need of saving... but we’ve already heard (and seen) that one... right?

One tact is the:

Obvious story line: Universe is an amusement park, with all the chills, thrills, and excitements of a Disney production... factoring in just the right amount of pain and suffering to give it street cred.
 
Better, the vacation scenario. You're taking the spouse and kids to a new place, you buy the ticket, and you're in. WELCOME TO UNIVERSE.

Which has its merits... i.e., the key to any really good reality is one that is entertaining. If’s it not fun to conjure up and endlessly speculate upon... then why bother? Move on.

 

Moving On... and actually getting to the point of the titled essay...

One might wish to consider the entertaining possibilities in having an epic World War III. Obviously, it would have a cast of billions, be the highest budget flick imaginable (we're talking trillions of dollars), and would definitely move people (albeit often in the form of explosions, convoys, amphibious assaults, refugees, and so forth and so on).

However... we will not in this case depend wholly upon the “suspension of disbelief” and instead, actually provide a degree of plausibility in a prophesied WWIII. This attempt at plausibility may allow many people to really get into the movie.

But first... some preliminaries.

 

Planetary Considerations (i.e., how can it be a "World War", without Planetary involvement?)

Consider initially astronomical transits, whereby from the view of one celestial object, another celestial object crosses in the face (or even occults) a third celestial object. Often the third object is the Sun, with planets, for example, transiting across its face. But one can also have from the viewpoint of the Earth, Venus crossing the face of Jupiter (depicted in the below Figure) -- an event seen on January 3, 1818, with a sequel scheduled for November 22, 2065 (the latter a curious date... as will be seen).

s

Note that the comparative closeness of Venus to Earth overcomes the much larger size of Jupiter as compared to both the Earth and Venus. It's all a matter of perspective... and your point of view. There is also Mercury occulting Uranus (21 July 1793) and Mercury occulting Neptune (15 July 2067), as seen from Earth, such that Mercury completely blocks out the larger planets.

Meanwhile, from an astrological viewpoint -- and in face of astronomical objections -- we can also assign motivations and personalities to the various involved planets... as per astrology.

Well... we're going to do it anyway.

Now... from both astronomical and astrological viewpoints, solar eclipses are important events. The astronomers see these celestial events as a wonderful opportunity to obtain grant funds in order to travel to exotic locations and photograph and measure, once again, the events of a solar eclipse (or if desperate, a lunar eclipse). For the astrologers, it’s the opportunity to describe how this eclipse (unlike the previous ~4,372 prior ones) will change the world paradigm in almost unimaginable ways... but where some of these way are in fact imaginary... or strongly dependent upon your personal natal chart.

The KEY to the solar (and/or lunar) eclipse phenomena is that one truly has a perfect or near-perfect alignment of three heavenly bodies (in the eclipse cases, the Sun, Earth, and Moon). They really do line up... as opposed to most so-called astrological geometrical combinations where differences in Declination tend to slightly negate the same bodies having identical Right Ascension. This is the old problem of Astrology: trying to describe a universe from a two-dimensional perspective, when the solar system actually moves in three-dimensions! And with the discovery of a multitude of new dwarf planets, many with extreme inclinations and eccentricities... this problem simply compounds.

[And yet, there is... hopefully... no truth to the rumor that astronomers are finding all these new dwarf planets just in order to tweak the delicate personalities of fledgling astrologers. For example, Pluto -- long a favorite of professional astrologers -- has not only been demoted to dwarf planet status, but two other bodies (Orcus and Ixion) have been found with orbits astoundingly similar to Pluto’s. The other dwarfs do find themselves in different zodiacal signs than Pluto at any given moment, and with notably different inclinations -- but probably not their basic "personalities." Astrologers must now attempt to explain to their paying clients why Pluto has such significance in a natal chart... while Orcus and Ixion... as well as Eris, Makemake, Sedna, et al... are mercifully ignored.

Well... almost ignored. There is, for example: Eris - Strife and Discord.]

But I digress.

Besides solar and lunar eclipses, there are numerous other astronomical transits, at which point astronomers and astrologers can momentarily agree.

Take, for example, Mars (the astrological God of War) transiting across the face of the Sun, as seen from Neptune (astrology’s planet of illusions and such). This is not a common occurrence, in that it requires first and foremost Neptune moving in the near vicinity of the plane defined by the orbit of Mars. But it does do this periodically, i.e., about twice in Neptune’s ~164 year orbital period.

[Technically, these are called the Nodes... and astrologically, one node is actually distinct from the other. Any such distinction, of course, is anathema to the astronomers. Sigh.]

In any case, the dates for the Neptune-Mars transits [From Savage-Garden] are: 1779, 1860 and 1862, 1942 and 1944, and in the future, 2026 and 2028.

Hmmmmm... the historically inclined just might recognize these dates as being similar to that of the:

1) American Revolutionary War (1775-1783),
2) American Civil War (1861-1865), and
3) American involvement in World War II (1941-1945).

Furthermore, these are the wars that were waged to a greater of lesser degree on American soil... while virtually every other war in which the United States has engaged are “foreign wars” (and thus “not in my backyard!”). I.e., there’s a reason that war veterans are in the USA, members of the VFW, i.e., Veterans of Foreign Wars.

Is there a traditional American bias at play here?

Well... Yes; the USA is in fact substantially unique in the world. Geopolitically, it is by far the best example of a melting pot success... with countless different cultures having learned how to deal with one another... as opposed to the abject failure of multiculturalism in Europe and elsewhere. In fact, the USA does not really fit the constraints of being a "nation" with similar cultures and so forth...but does manage to get along really quite splendidly... at least compared to other "nations". The USA really constitutes having the cultures and identities of a vast representative collection of peoples... who are not shooting at one another. In fact, the USA would probably be the first place for any knowledgeable alien invader to make their stop in order to have someone speak on behalf of the planet Earth.

The USA is also the only country with numerous warm-water ports on two oceans, along with the economy to support a military capable and (upon occasion) willing to impose Sea Power on most everyone else. This is enormously important in that trade by water is by far the most expedient... as opposed to dragging products over mountains, through deserts and swamps, and in general along unforgiving routes. Meanwhile, virtually every other nation is in a race to somehow defend its borders, while the extent of the USA problem is one of too many people wanting to live here, and doing whatever it takes to make that dream a reality... specifically the American Dream (albeit where a portion of the wages are often sent home to relatives and friends).

Whereas many nations have existential concerns, the USA expends far less of its energies thereby. In fact, an absolutely critical reason the USA could risk engaging in its no-holds-barred, all-out Civil War, was that Europe was otherwise engaged in its own wars. Now, of course, we all get along... except for the political parties... and the...

A recent, wholly unbiased, impartial, and nonpartisan poll conducted by the Pew Research Center has shown that: 38% of Americans agree that the USA stands alone above all other nations; 53% agree that the USA is one of the greatest countries in the world; and 8% claim that other countries are better. [1] Well... obviously, those 8% were probably all illegal immigrants, transient foreigners, and/or alien provocateurs... and clearly not true Americans. But I suspect you get my drift.

And if not... check out the USA's Fifth Amendment... which is NOT common in the world. In fact, it makes an immense difference in comparing law enforcement techniques worldwide.

Well... back to the thread:

So what does an alignment of the Sun, Mars, and Neptune have to do with the Earth?

No clue... other than perhaps the universe, solar system, and earth have many, many more connections than have as yet been traced by modern science. Trust me on this one... we’re all connected.

But still... three lousy connections?

Well... there’s also the transits of the Earth and Venus, as seen from Uranus. And because, Uranus has roughly half the orbital period of Neptune, you get twice as many time periods. For example, Earth makes roughly nine transits (and Venus roughly 6) during the time periods:

1773 - 1781 (Earth) and 1777 - 1780 (Venus) American Revolutionary War
1813 - 1821 (Earth) and 1816 - 1819 (Venus) War of 1812 (1812 - 1815)
1857 - 1865 (Earth) and 1860 - 1863 (Venus) American Civil War
1897 - 1905 (Earth) and 1900 - 1903 (Venus) Spanish/Philippine Wars
1941 - 1949 (Earth) and 1944 - 1947 (Venus) World War II
1981 - 1988 (Earth) and 1984 - 1987 (Venus) Peak of Cold War (1979-1991)
2024 - 2032 (Earth) and 2028 - 2031 (Venus) ?

Also... WWI was accounted for in Neptune-Earth transits, the Vietnam War by both Neptune-Venus and Neptune-Mercury transits, and both Afghanistan and Iraq wars by Neptune-Earth transits. The Korean War (aka Police Action) was not specifically covered, but inasmuch as it was essentially a continuation of WWII... we will rationalize it away without further ado.

Yes, yes, I know: One can make a reasonable argument that the planets have absolutely nothing to do with these wars... that in fact there is simply a strong tendency for the USA to become involved in a war on some sort of cyclical basis. Which is in itself, not necessarily comforting. There is also the trends of the Neptune-Mars transits, AND the more powerful nodes of the Uranus-Earth/Venus transits.

Revolutionary War: 50,000 US dead; more British) (of 4,000,000... about 1.3% of population.

Civil War: Up to 700,000 out of about 31.5 million... or about 2.2% of the population of U.S.

WWII: 25 million (military) out of 131 million... (0.31% of population) 60 million worldwide.

A steady reduction in the percentage of casualties of total population, but a whole lot more casualties.

On the other hand, there is a "?" included above... such that if there is any astrological (even astronomical) reality that might make one wonder a bit, it must be one that includes a knock-down, drag-out war circa 2024 - 2032... essentially a World War III.

 

Momentary Return to Consensus Reality

Stratfor.com does an excellent job of reporting on the diplomatic, behind-the-scenes, in-front-of-the-media-cameras, economic negotiations (some at near-gun-point), and other dealings between nations. Stratfor.com’s Thomas Friedman has even written a book based on such trends and geopolitical realities, entitled The Next 100 Years, which is one of the more fascinating reads on the planet.

Relevant to our discussion here are the following factoids (educated guesses) by Friedman:

"The U.S.-jihadist war will conclude -- replaced by a second full-blown cold war with Russia. [Just how “hot” the war becomes is extremely complicated... if only because of the multitude of different players in this latest installment of the ultimate Risk, the Game of Global Domination.]
"China will undergo a major extended internal crisis [becoming ever less of a threat to others], and Mexico will emerge as an important world power.
"A new global war will unfold toward the middle of the century between the United States and an unexpected coalition from Eastern Europe, Eurasia, and the Far East; but armies will be much smaller, and wars will be less deadly.
"Technology will focus on space -- both for major military uses and for a dramatic new energy resource that will have radical environmental implications.
"The United States will experience a golden age in the second half of the century."

These prophecies are based on all sorts of very real... consensus reality. For example:

Demographics
An end of the population explosion in advanced industrial countries (with an implied reduction in populations, and thus major labor shortages). Europe and Russia will see very substantial population decreases with the USA short of labor by 2020.

China
We can expect a decline of China in the next ten years, due to instability (resulting from the massive economic disparity between the coastal haves and the interior have nots), as well as foreign incursions (Japan, et al). Basically, “China's current "economic dynamism does not translate into long-term success." China is in fact extremely vulnerable because of its dependence upon raw materials being imported and finished products being exported... inevitably by sea... the same seas currently ruled by the USA.

Russia
From 2010-2015, there will be the reabsorption by Russia into its Soviet style sphere of influence: Belarus and the Ukraine, and separately Central Asia (Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, Kyrgyzstan, and Tajikistan). This will be followed by the incorporation of the Baltic states (Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania) in the time frame from 2015 to 2020. [As of mid-2011, Belarus and Kazakhstan have already been pretty much absorbed, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan are on the verge (primarily because no one really cares). Meanwhile, France and Germany are currently falling all over themselves to hand Russia their best military technology.]

[France, for example, is building for Russia two state-of-the-art Amphibious Landing Ships to be built in France (but with two more to be built in Russia under French Guidance). France is thus giving away major military technology. Simultaneously, one must ask why a virtually land locked Russia needs amphibious landing ships? Or how "French Guidance" can be of any real help?]

Nevertheless, Russia will fail in the world technological development sweepstakes (just as they had already tried it during Cold War I and failed). This will be due in part to its ambitious and focused promotion of its military at all other costs. The nation's hydrocarbon riches will actually hurt it, allowing for military spending, but not for developing new technologies.

The rise of Russia -- including a large well equipped military by 2020 (and thereby drawing heavily on the Russian economy) -- will initiate the second cold war between the United States and Russia, but one far milder and one that will result in the collapse of Russia sometime later in the 2020s. "Russia's future actions will appear to be aggressive but will actually be defensive." At the same time, Russia is "facing a massive demographic crisis" -- one which will limit both workers and soldiers.

Then there’s Japan, Turkey, and Poland surging back toward imperialism. Well... maybe not Japan... Fukushima may have done far too much damage... at least in the short term. But Turkey? Turkey is the essential counter balance to Iran... but may also push the envelope in the Caucasus (against Russia).

As for Poland... and to a lesser extent, Sweden. These guys are already forming Battle Groups, and including their neighbors. In Poland’s case, it is the Visegard Battle Group, which includes Hungary, Slovakia, and the Czech Republic. As soon as it also incorporates Rumania (and possibly Bulgaria), then the Intermarium will have been reinstituted. And with Sweden and Turkey protecting the flanks, Russia can be some what limited in its territorial (aka buffer states) ambitions.

Then there’s Mexico... which may well be at war (or really intense diplomacies) with the United States in the critical time frame of the 2020s. Actually, if the Mexican drug cartels simply expand their killing and wars into the United States, the process might begin a bit earlier than expected.

Friedman does assert that: The control of the seas by the United States can and probably will continue essentially unabated... provided of course that the all-important control of space is not imposed by anyone other than the United States.

"In the twenty-first century, control of the sea will be less dependent upon oceangoing fleets than on space-based systems that can see enemy ships and target them. Therefore, whoever controls space will control the sea."

A potentially key factor is that modern armies may be using advanced propulsion and transportation systems to move battle forces into position that make the distinction between flat land, marsh land, and mountain land almost irrelevant. In a manner of speaking, technology may... ready?... be ready to level the playing field. This is not to give too much credence to Air Power, but in the process of going from projectile style mass bombardment to precision destruction of targets, the role of ground troops will become one based upon increasing rapid and quick mobility... and thus very likely a whole lot less mud, mountains, and rivers with which to contend.

But the real action will be in space. Talk about high ground advantage! Just dropping a a fair sized rock from orbit can cause as much damage as a nuclear weapon (and without the nuclear radiation problem lingering thereafter). In fact... it’s already been figured out by the military imperative of the Department of Defense. It’s called “Rods from God”. [Possibly a Zeus... or other... reference.]

rods

The Object on the left is to control communications and targeting, while the left object are the rods.

Basically, one takes into space a bunch (the latter being a highly technical term; and/or military jargon) of telephone pole sized tungsten rods... with slight navigational capabilities. And then when one needs to take out the most fortified bunker installation imaginable, an aircraft carrier or amphibious landing vessel... or just a city or neighborhood... one “drops” a rod of appropriate size... which then leaves either a giant crater in the earth, or a very large tidal event at sea.

The good/bad news is that with precision weaponry, there is less (not not zero) collateral damage. This may reduce the direct military casualties of... well... USA wars, but when space is not utilized, or one is not equipped with the most advanced technologies, then many nations will simply have to resort to AK 47s, an occasional sword, and Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs). Messy, but they do get the job done, albeit horribly inefficient and unlikely to stay the course in long, drawn-out wars.

 

Less-than-Civil Wars

WWIII will almost certainly include (outside the main arena) a host of civil wars, where the up-close-and-personal conflicts can be played out. On the one hand, with everyone distracted by the main events, civil wars can perhaps take a different turn by virtue of the fact that the gorillas in the room... are not actually in the room at the time.

On the other hand, certain civil wars occurring before the main event might inspire the major powers to attempt to take advantage of the disruption to carve out their own agendas... and in the process initiate the greater hostilities -- the ones with the more substantial technologies, appetites for power expansions, and hostile agendas.

Also... Rods from God can still be used, as well as other precision weaponry. Isn't technology wonderful?

 

Presidents

There is the sense that the upcoming 2012 Presidential election in the USA is very likely going to be pretty much a “who cares?” election. The 2016 election, however, is almost certainly going to be much more important. This will provide for a presidential administration that will likely be the precursor to all the wars we’re describing herein. In effect, the USA might be electing a president who primarily fails to avoid a war, and instead gives away the store before it becomes obvious just how bad things are going to get... sort of a Neville Chamberlain look-alike.

Similarly, the 2020 and/or 2024 elections need to be (but may not be) the election of an all important “War President”... someone with serious cojones... who will not hesitate to drop the bomb/rod on whoever gets a bit out of hand... or just whoever we take a serious dislike to.

The big question will be the extent to which the next... oh say... eight years is devoted to getting ready for the USA to take control of space. That might not be all that appealing to some, but what other nation or bloc would be a better candidate? Who else would you really want controlling space? Iran? Israel? How about Belgium? They haven't been able to form a government in ages -- albeit that is a factoid which might actually argue in their favor. The reality is that only the United States of America is currently serious (if not dedicated) about having a military with which some semblance of Pax Americana could be perpetrated.

 

The Wild Card

In all analyses of trends, cycles, and so forth, there is always the possibility of a Wild Card. This is the case where all bets are off... and every trend is disrupted. The best example might be Apophis... scheduled for a 2029 event (curiously, Friday, April 13th of that year)... and a return engagement (?) in 2036.

In Egyptian myth, Apophis was the ancient spirit of evil and destruction, a demon that was determined to plunge the world into eternal darkness. [See, for example, Egypt Tours for some graphic graphics... e.g.,]

a

Okay... they've got MY attention. [Who names these asteroids, anyway?]

In the case of the Apophis asteroid, it has an inclination ~40 (evil) degrees, is 400 meters wide (four football field lengths)... and an impact -- were it to hit the Earth -- that would result in a release of energy roughly 100,000 times the Hiroshima bomb. Can you imagine giving your all in a war, only to have much of your success nullified by just such an asteroid?

"The analysis of Apophis previews situations likely to be encountered with NEAs yet to be discovered: a close approach that is not dangerous [?]; nonetheless close enough to obscure the proximity and the danger of a later approach (like Apophis in 2036).” In fact, the first fly by might amplify the trajectory prediction uncertainties caused by difficult-to-observe physical characteristics interacting with solar radiation as well as other factors.

Right now, Apophis is expected to approach within 15,000 miles from the Earth’s surface... or about 6% of the distance to the Moon.

And if that don’t get you, then the Neptune-Saturn transit of 5-29-2061... should pretty much do... something! It is, after all, just prior to the Eris disruption, circa 2075.

 

Elenin, 2005 YU55, and 11/11/11

Eris, Strife and Discord

Forward to:

What's the Point?

The Fifth Amendment

The Gang in Blue

Long Range Planning

 

               

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