lunes, 22 de junio de 2015

Books - Ghost Fleet is a fictionalized foretelling of World War III fought in the Pacific that's too real for comfort.

Reading War With China


Imagine a near-future scenario in which China and Russia sneak-attack America’s assets in the Pacific, sink its fleet, and occupy Hawaii in order to stage a multi-front war of land, sky, space, and cyber. Meanwhile, U.S. Marines turn into mujahedeen, NATO crumbles like a cookie, and Wall Street plunges into a black shroud of despair.


This may sound like “Red Dawn”, but authors Peter W. Singer and August Cole endeavor to make their new (and first) novel Ghost Fleet a modern cautionary tale more in the mold of World War Z, informed by two writers whose professional métieris the unbounded realm of the U.S. national security establishment, otherwise known as the Military Industrial Complex. As think tank denizens in the belly of the Beltway beast, both Singer and Cole have an inside grasp of how the Washington military culture works, with a particular focus on future war technology and all of the politics, hubris, and unintended consequences that world entails.

On the front end, Ghost Fleet, which hits the bookshelves on June 30, will no doubt cheer critics who see the Pentagon as long overdue for a reality check. On the back end, however, it’s a traditional war novel, sure to excite readers of the genre for illustrating the major conflict Washington really wants to fight—not a conflict against rag-tag religious fundamentalists in the Middle East who never seem to go away, but Great Power against Great Power, in the Pacific. In other words, World War III.

It’s not all wishful thinking—today’s headlines certainly lend themselves to the narrative, with China’s massive island building in the South China Sea, and its suspected super hack of the U.S. government’s most sensitive personnel data. Reportedly Chinese computer spies have routinely breached American weapons projects in order to clone them. Meanwhile, national security experts now openly refer to an “arms race” in the Pacific, egged on in part by Washington’s own public displays, such as the “pivot to Asia,” the Pentagon’s offset strategies, and years of doomsday reports from the U.S. Navy.


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