Saturday, February 21, 2015
INQUISITION 2: National Security
Having grown up in a world where children were directed to hide under a school desk to avoid being incinerated in a nuclear holocaust, I think about National Security, specifically the Economic National Security of the United States of America in the 21st Century.
The question today is stark: What will be the effects on Americans of the coming species extinction?
The Inquisitions here are not intended to be a definitive statement of these issues since the United States has a large bureaucracy devoted to these very problems. This space is simply summarizing some of the more obvious questions.
The foundation of National Security is always based on Economic National Security. True security requires that all the citizens of a country share the values and beliefs which guide the leaders. When that happens, then the leaders are given leeway and can move the country forward.
Such a country has a society where few feel excluded or marginalized. The United States of America enjoyed that shared perception for many years, but is currently losing that perception among many of its citizens. This is a potential security threat. Such a threat cannot be managed with police and security. It requires a feeling of inclusion.
But, when the perception of shared hopes is lost, then the nation's leaders are held to a fine standard and are afraid of the population. We have seen just that in many countries recently. Populations which are abused by the leaders want to kill the leaders in turn. Such a cycle creates increasing violence and death. Such a country is weak.
A secure country allows all its citizens to buy into the country and feel a part of it. Once the feeling of belonging is established, then people unleash their creative powers. Then do material living standards rise.
But, material standards won't rise until and unless citizens have that feeling of belonging.
President Obama was correct when he called for American Muslims to be allowed and encouraged to participate in all aspects of United States society. That is the best way to achieve internal security.
As we approach the extinction event, there will be more pressures on society from more desperate people. If the United States demonstrates the weakness of social and economic exclusion or lack of hope among its citizens, then our internal security will be fragile.
The pressures will come from terror, disease, climate change, military action and despair.
There will always be people who seek to destroy a strong society for any number of reasons. If the society is multi-national, as is ours today, then some terrorists from one country will seek to harm the citizens of another.
If that sort of movement becomes organized, then it may require the US to campaign militarily inside another country in order to secure the homeland.
Applying the concept of internal security described above, it is obvious that some countries are more secure than others. And, it is equally obvious that some citizens from a less secure country may try to harm citizens of a more secure country.
As the extinction event becomes more real to more people, terrorist acts will increase.
This is the justification for much of the security apparatus today.
Anti-biotic resistant bacteria and virulent viruses will overwhelm the medical system of the United States as the event comes closer.
A country which cannot manage the health of all its citizens both armed forces and non-military citizens is a weak country.
The only advantage the United States may have is that it will be even worse in other countries.
The USA may exhaust its supplies through caring for the ill of other places in addition to our own. And, that is an effort we make to ensure our own population's health.
Climate change is occurring and will increase. The underlying dynamic of increased carbon emissions, which is the primary cause of climate change, is well documented and irreversible in the practical world.
The major effects of climate change will be sea level rises and droughts in food producing areas.
The droughts will reduce the ability of our species to produce food at a time when the population is expanding rapidly.
Wars will be fought for water and food.
MILITARY ACTIONS AND DESPAIR
We are seeing wars waged today for religious reasons.
But the underlying causes of these wars may well be the feelings of exclusion and loss of hope on the part of many marginalized people.
As the loss of hope increases we can expect more military and terror actions.