No one wants to think about what a war between the United States and China might look like — unless somebody can make it fun. A new novel born from real trends in military innovation attempts to capture and imagine exactly that.
Every technology in the book, from rail guns to brain-based memory manipulation, is at least at the prototype stage of development in real life. “Ghost Fleet: A Novel Of the Next World War,” meticulously researched by its authors: Peter W. Singer, strategist and senior fellow at the New America Foundation; and August Cole, a nonresident senior fellow at the Brent Scowcroft Center on International Security at the Atlantic Council, features some 20 manifestations of drone technology alone, as well as nearly 400 endnotes.
So what does the technology of today teach about the wars of the future? Defense One put the question to Singer. Below is an edited version of that exchange.
Defense One: War with China doesn’t seem to be something that many in Washington consider a strong probability right now, unless you’re having dinner with China hawk Michael Pillsbury. Yet it’s the very basis of your book. Is it something that you consider likely?