Intermediate Form

Two Readings

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Today I came across two web pages that I want to point out the (at this point, mostly hypothetical) readers of this blog.


The first is an editorial by Norman Borlaug condemning European fears of genetically modified food. He points out that the EU's fear of GM food has lead to African nations (like Zambia) rejecting food aid from the US.

Privileged societies have the luxury of adopting a very low-risk position on the issue of genetically modified crops, even if this action later turns out to be unnecessary. But the vast majority of humankind does not have such a luxury, and certainly not the hungry victims of wars, natural disasters, and economic crises.


The second was published by the DoD, and gives an outline of a new US strategy of rapid dominance. It's a guideline for exploiting US technological and training advantages to overwhelm and induce shock and awe in the opposing force. At least some of the writers were high-level commanders in Desert Storm, so I won't be surprised if at least some of this strategy is used in the upcoming conflict with Iraq (assuming it happens, etc, etc.)

Total mastery achieved at extraordinary speed and across tactical, strategic, and political levels will destroy the will to resist. With Rapid Dominance, the goal is to use our power with such compellance that even the strongest of wills will be awed. Rapid Dominance will strive to achieve a dominance that is so complete and victory is so swift, that an adversary's losses in both manpower and material could be relatively light, and yet the message is so unmistakable that resistance would be seen as futile.

(Now that I write this, I wonder if that last line is some sort of Star Trek reference. But unlike the Borg, Rapid Dominance demands that decision making authority be pushed down the chain of command.)

- Tom | permalink | changelog | Last updated: 2003-01-25 15:35

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