We haven’t mentioned drones in Beyond Enkription as they didn’t exist in the seventies but they may feature in our fifth novel or even your life. How the Burlingtons would have responded to a drone attack in the Cold War is anyone’s guess but it might be wise to read Beyond Enkription before you face a drone attack in the near future if only to enhance your lateral thinking capabilities. That way you might survive an attack.
As drones have been reported flying all over Paris in the last 48 hours or so we are possibly witnessing the beginning of the fastest and most furious change in the balance of power on our planet since time began. Little wonder many stock market indices along with house prices in prestigious parts of cities around the world are bouncing around all time highs: stockbrokers and estate agents always get it wrong!
Why aren’t our politicians being pressed to answer what they are doing about such threats? What is NATO’s strategy to deal with them? Citizens don’t need to know any details that might aid an aggressor but they should feel safe in their own homes and at present that can’t be said for the Obama family in the White House, the Camerons in No. 10 Downing Street or whoever’s apartment François Hollande is staying at tonight.
The might of the Goliaths from Beijing to Moscow, Washington to Westminster and Paris to Tokyo is about to be challenged in an unconventional way by thousands of Davids. What’s more, to make matters worse, the Goliaths may use the Davids as proxies or fronts while simultaneously initiating anonymous cyber attacks from the darker recesses of cyberspace.
In fact being a Goliath with nuclear power plants or nuclear weaponry is fast becoming a weakness as François Hollande will tell you from the Elysee Palace in Paris where drone flypasts appear to be coming recurring events. From November 2014 the French governmental apparatus has already clocked up over two dozen sightings of drones flying over their nuclear power plants and naval bases housing nuclear submarines. Are these really sightseeing excursions?
The impact of all this on a worldwide basis is difficult to foresee but as Faire Sans Dire has pointed out in other articles any such drone or cyber attacks will eventually render Article Five (“all for one and one for all”) of the North Atlantic Treaty redundant. Two outcomes are assured – chaos will ensue sporadically and odds will lengthen on all bets from sporting events to forex movements.
Laws may deter but they can’t detect or disrupt determined anarchists or terrorists from reaping havoc and destruction using drones at night (or day if they don’t mind losing a few). Soon we may even witness robberies of armoured cars and the like by armed drones using loud speakers to communicate with those they attack.
In the meantime the more obvious attacks on vital infrastructure such as dams, bridges, tunnels, power plants, water supplies and communication hubs like airports, docks and railway stations as well as civil aircraft, passenger liners and high speed trains will probably begin this year. Embassies, monuments, politicians’ homes, royal palaces, places of worship, other landmarks, sports stadia, historical sites, shipyards, factories, police stations, military bases and commemorative or other crowd drawing events will probably all be targeted.
If you think the lists above are too long then please note that unexplained flypasts of drones have been recorded in the last three months over all such places all over the world but mainly in France and they weren’t just in cartoons. What is frightening is that there is little anyone can do yet to stop drone attacks as no one is geared up to defend against such.
If you think this is scaremongering we suggest you make an entry in your diary to read this article five years from now and keep praying you can do so. Fiction is becoming fact faster than anyone thought possible.
From the West’s perspective there are estimated to be well over 250,000 mainly Islamic “terrorists” in the Middle East, North Africa and Afghanistan/Pakistan together. To make matters worse, as noted in recent polls, the number of their supporters and potential activists across the globe is growing exponentially every time a religious cartoon is published or a careless politically or religiously indiscreet statement is made by some president, prime minister or well known politician.
In addition, if you think the use of drones is limited to the “terrorists” in these areas think again. There are many other terrorist organisations all over the world. Whilst you are working out what the mayhem you are about to live in will look and feel like in central London, Manhattan or around the Champs-Élysées don’t forget the other threats. You have to add in organised criminal organisations, rogue states like North Korea and areas larger than most countries which are not subject to the rule of law.
This time it’s not only the stockbrokers and estate agents that have got it wrong. Isn’t it about time someone worked out what to do rather than pass laws?
The technology won’t stop now and drones, still in their technological infancy, will become increasingly sophisticated and capable of inflicting an ever greater amount of damage from longer distances with improved accuracy. What’s more this technology will gather momentum at an exponential rate in conjunction with cyber warfare, cyber crime and, worst of all, in conjunction with other scientific advances.
This article was first published on 26th February 2015.