Unbeknownst to many, 5G/satellites/CubeSats/data/AI/machine learning, and the internet of things are infiltrating and permeating the earth and skies and finding their way into the military as well. How these technologies will be integrated and used on the “battlefield”, in the skies, and in cyber space, is as yet unknown, but what is clear is that the 5G/data/AI juggernaut will provide the backbone for the new 21st century systems warfare and increase the lethality of war.
Against the backdrop of the rollout of 5G on earth and in space, is an increasingly unstable world with nations vying for power, profit, and dominion over earth and space. Dramatic shifts in power are taking place and the threat of war in space has entered the realm of possibility.
“It is no surprise that the corporate media is pushing 5G so widely and eagerly—without the slightest bit of critical thought. The Pentagon knows that faster speeds from 5G will enable greater space surveillance, targeting, and offensive military operations as a result.” Bruce Gagnon, coordinator of the Global Network Against Weapons & Nuclear Power in Space — www.space4peace.org
In What 5G means to the military, author John Keller writes, “5G holds the promise of ubiquitous high-speed data connectivity: vastly improved intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR); fast and secure command and control; more efficient logistics; swarming unmanned vehicles; and wide use of virtual reality and augmented reality for simulation, training, and mission rehearsal. The promise of 5G is for instant situational awareness anywhere on Earth, smart hypersonic weapons with re-targeting on-the-fly, rich access to mission-critical data on the leading edge of the battlefield, and unmanned aircraft that can fly safely alongside passenger aircraft in commercial airspace.”
The US seeks dominion over space.
The US Armed Forces are counting on 5G to modernize the military by providing a vast communication network that will weave together all branches of the military – the Air Force, Army, Marine Corps, Navy, and Space Force. The aim is for the US to gain dominion over space for both commercial and military advantage; for from on high, all can be seen, heard, and targeted, so whoever controls space, controls Earth as well.
In A Joint Warfighting Concept for Systems Warfare, author Robert O. Work elaborates on some of the uses for 5G and satellites. “In the evolving era of systems warfare, global advances in artificial intelligence (AI), big data analytics, advanced computing, quantum science, AI-enabled cloud applications, 5G, and robotic and autonomous systems will provide both the Joint Force and its potential adversaries with the opportunity to enhance their systems of systems in different ways, making future confrontations between them increasingly sophisticated, intense, and lethal.”
Most recently, in 2019, when announcing the formation of Space Force to be the sixth branch of the Armed Forces, former President Trump emphasized repeatedly that it’s not enough to merely have an American presence in space, the US must have dominance.
Nato is pressing for 5G as well.
“At the London Summit, the 29 member countries of NATO agreed to ‘guarantee the security of our communications, including 5G’. Why is this fifth generation of mobile data transmission so important for NATO?
While the earlier technologies were perfected to create ever more advanced smartphones, 5G is designed not only to improve their performance, but mainly to link digital systems which need enormous quantities of data in order to work automatically. The most important 5G applications will not be intended for civil use, but for the military domain.”
Russia and China are also incorporating 5G, but take a more measured approach toward space as a global commons.
In April 2021, marking the 60th anniversary of Yuri Gagarin’s historic flight into space, Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov reminisced about the many times that Russia and the US had collaborated peacefully on the use of space. He urged for international negotiations to further assure the peaceful use of space as a Global Commons.
“We consistently maintain that guaranteed prevention of an arms race in outer space is crucial to its use for constructive purposes, for the benefit of all humankind. We support the launch of negotiations on the development of an international legally binding instrument prohibiting the deployment of any type of weapon there and the use or threat of force.”
China chimed in as well. In April, 2021, a spokesman for Chinese Foreign Ministry stated, “China is calling on the global community to urgently start the negotiations on the space arms control,” adding that the negotiations “should be based on a document proposed by Beijing and Moscow.”
Check out Russia’s Foreign Minister Segey Lavrov’s remarks before the United Nations Security Council on May 7th, 2021
It should be noted there is mutual mistrust between some of the players.
A move toward systems warfare is foundational to the modernization of warfare. Systems warfare relies on a vast infrastructure of cell towers, antennas, sensors, cameras, and satellites that will “vacuum up” as much data as possible. The sheer quantity of data will be more than humans can make sense of and that wireless bandwidth can manage, so the data will be aggregated, sorted and sifted through by Artificial Intelligence (AI) to determine what information is of value, and to whom it should be directed. Command and Control (still predominantly manned by humans but increasingly being outsourced to machines) then sets the parameters for the data it will need for defense or offense in a given operation. And within seconds (“thanks” to 5G and systems warfare) the action is ready for launching.
Robert O. Work explains that data gathered through 5G (as well as from former generations of 3G and 4G), satellites, and AI will provide “the means for a capable commander to take in the entirety of the data and information gleaned by the sensor grid, determine adversary plans and the decisive points in an adversary’s system of systems, and commit their forces against them.”
Mr. Work goes on to say, “Machines will be used to “help humans make decisions faster, better, and with greater precision and persistence” and human insight, creativity, and strategic guidance will be “combined with the tactical acuity of a computer.”
The US Department of Defense dubs this connected system of systems the Joint All Domain Command and Control (JADC2) and “boasts” it will increase the lethality of war by enabling near real time communications and the use of hypersonic weapons and missiles, spy systems, and Facial Recognition Technology for robots and weapons to target specific people in drone attacks.
Better yet (from the military’s perspective), in the US, 5G infrastructure has already been paid for by the public through the commercial use of cellphones, smart cities and satellite internet such as Starlink. So through dual use technology, the military gets bargain prices for much of its infrastructure while the public (unknowingly) subsidizes war.