Continued from Part 1
All the website information cited in this post is accessed January 16, 2022 and current as of that date.
Executive Summary (p. 4) refers to another paper “Warfare 2040” and the new form of warfare, Cognitive Warfare (CW).
It could affect individuals, states or multinational organizations and cause “significant harmful effects.”
It says that with tech and information overload, individual cognition can’t be relied upon. I believe this is implying that human beings relying on technology to make decisions will be more vulnerable.
CW provides knowledge of a society which could be weaponized. “Adversaries” could “radically transform Western societies.”
The document refers to actions in the five domains–air, land, sea, space and cyber–but calls for recognition of the “sixth operational domain,” the “human domain” which is the actual target of all the domains.
Victory will amount to the capacity to “impose a desired behaviour.”
“Neuro-weapons” are added to the techniques of information warfare, including “disinformation and propaganda.” The point is “psychologically exhausting the receptors of information.”
The cognitive field will become a battlefield.
It refers to advances in understanding the brain and in NBICs which stands for Nanotechnology, Biotechnology, Information Technology and Cognitive Sciences.
By the way, “NBIC” is the same terminology used in this 2002 report Converging Technologies for Improving Human Performance: NANOTECHNOLOGY, BIOTECHNOLOGY, INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY AND COGNITIVE SCIENCE sponsored by the National Science Foundation and Department of Commerce. It was edited by Mihail C. Roco and William Sims Bainbridge. This report was based on a workshop held on December 3-4, 2001. One of the many participants was Newt Gingrich of the American Enterprise Institute. One of the more shocking implications was mentioned on page 150: “Hive Mind: If we can easily exchange large chunks of knowledge and are connected by high-bandwidth communication paths, the function and purpose served by individuals becomes unclear. … With knowledge no longer encapsulated in individuals, the distinction between individuals and the entirety of humanity would blur. Think Vulcan mind-meld. We would perhaps become more of a hive mind — an enormous, single, intelligent entity.”
A related report was a 2001 National Science Foundation report “SOCIETAL IMPLICATIONS OF NANOSCIENCE AND NANOTECHNOLOGY” based on a workshop held September 28-29, 2000 which was organized “at the request of the National Science and Technology Council (NSTC), Subcommittee on Nanoscale Science, Engineering, and Technology (NSET)” (the report mentions Loyola College assisting in the workshop). This was also edited by Mihail C. Roco and William Sims Bainbridge, National Science Foundation. Newt Gingrich was one of the many participants (p. 23). The “Age of Transitions” is one of the terms used in both of these two documents.
To be continued: Part 3