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"Is WW3 inevitable?" Topic


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06 Dec 2021 11:28 a.m. PST
by Editor in Chief Bill

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27 Aug 2022 6:51 p.m. PST
by Editor in Chief Bill

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Personal logo SBminisguy Supporting Member of TMP06 Dec 2021 10:42 a.m. PST

An internally weak China is going full steam ahead on its continued massive arms build-up and "Belt & Road" program. It seems hell-bent on following in Imperial Japan's footsteps to create it's own version of the Greater East Asian Co-Prosperity Sphere backed up by force of arms.

Will the rest of the non-China aligned world be able to stall China's global military ambitions, or is WW3 inevitable as the Xi-regime blunders along in Imperial Japan's path by believing their own propaganda and certitude in their own superiority, and that they know how to defeat "the West" in a time and manner of their choosing?

Report: China Military Spending Surge Now 50% Larger than India, Japan, Taiwan, South-East Asia Combined

China is determined to match its aggressive military talk in South-East Asia with spending. A report by the Lowy Institute in Australia shows in 2021 it achieved just that as other reports indicate Beijing is looking to establish its first permanent military presence on the Atlantic Ocean in the tiny Central African country of Equatorial Guinea.

According to the latest Asia Power Index, China's military financial outlay is now 50 per cent larger than India, Japan, Taiwan, and all 10 members of the Association of South-East Asian Nations (ASEAN) combined.


link

power.lowyinstitute.org

Personal logo Legion 4 Supporting Member of TMP06 Dec 2021 10:45 a.m. PST

Unlikely IMO … Nukes make WWIII a distant possibility …

Personal logo SBminisguy Supporting Member of TMP06 Dec 2021 11:26 a.m. PST

Unlikely IMO … Nukes make WWIII a distant possibility …

See, now you're thinking rationally. You have to think more like a paranoid totalitarian who is balancing survival needs against internal forces who will latch onto any sign of weakness to bring you down against the global ambitions of your massive ego!

Then you may just think you're strong enough and clever enough to land a KO blow in one shot against your top adversary (the US) with means short of a WMD response and get away with it, and that your adversary will be so damaged or cowed by your bold boldness that it will be unable to effectively respond.

So by the time you've taken the Phillipines and SE Asia they won't be able to respond…er, I meant, by the time you have captured the South Korean peninsula they won't be able to respond….that is, I meant to say, by the time you you've taken Kuwait they won't be able to respond. Oh shut up, I'm smarter and better than those other loser dictators!

Tortorella Supporting Member of TMP06 Dec 2021 11:34 a.m. PST

I see the threat, but agree that it unlikely for now. It's a greedy world. Too much money at stake. We need each other to keep it flowing.

Gear Pilot06 Dec 2021 11:56 a.m. PST

"It's a greedy world. Too much money at stake. We need each other to keep it flowing."

Isn't that what people thought before WWI – that our economies were too interdependent for war to break out?


"…you may just think you're strong enough and clever enough to land a KO blow in one shot against your top adversary…"

Like Pearl Harbor.


Never underestimate the ability of someone to do something stupid.

Personal logo The Virtual Armchair General Sponsoring Member of TMP06 Dec 2021 12:20 p.m. PST

While the love of money may indeed be the root of all evil,
there's still a lot to be said for hubris and a cold indifference to the suffering of others.

SBminisguy beat me to the punch, and says it very well.

If they expect any large war to go straight to nuclear, most totalitarians would seek a better way to achieve their plans. But if such a leader BELIEVES he can grab the cake, icing, candles, and presents in one fell swoop, he will fix on the expectation that no one will nuke him after a fait accompli.

Consider, if Taiwan falls in, say, a week or ten days, that is mostly occupied and clearly defeated, does anyone really think that the present administration is going to start pushing red buttons?

If the realization is "No," you're not alone.

And while the total Chinese population is falling, perhaps even at an accelerating rate, a universally population reducing holocaust still leaves them with more than their first line of enemies combined.

While the prospect of Nuclear Winter scares the hell out of me, why should I assume Xi feels the same? HE will survive whatever happens (unless some warhead gets lucky, but that's not really a source of comfort, either).

And, just to continue what I hope is only alarmist thinking, any attack on Taiwan will occur within days, if not hours, of a Russian attack on Ukraine, or vice versa. The Russians and the Chinese don't have to be bosom buddies to cooperate, but each would be mad not to take full advantage of the opportunity to topple the US from its starting-to-look-shaky position as the top Super Power.

Since there's no way on God's potentially asphalt surfaced earth the US can actively fight a two front war simultaneously with equal effect (as was largely true even in WW II), even concentrating any genuine military reply against the one pretty much guarantees success of the other.

But even that calculation is only a "worst case" for Xi and Putin. The most likely result of moving in conjunction (if not coordination) will be nothing more than token resistance and a lot of bold-but-empty words from DC.

By failing our treaty commitments and our own best interests, and the rest of the world seeing we have given up the ghost, they will begin to make their own best accommodations with the new Super Power (more China than Russia, of course).

Do I think victory by the Chinese and Russians is inevitable? No. Each has serious issues, particularly for the Chinese in the way of practical experience, and if Ukraine can just hold long enough to bog down a Russian advance, then Poland and other "next in line" states may engage out of sheer necessity. I'm not sure the Russian economy or people would sustain a six months or longer full blown war.

So, the original question merits, if not a flat "Yes," then at least a very strong "Probably, yes."

And sooner rather than later.

Merry Christmas.

TVAG

mjkerner Supporting Member of TMP06 Dec 2021 1:19 p.m. PST

"Then you may just think you're strong enough and clever enough to land a KO blow in one shot against your top adversary (the US) with means short of a WMD response…"

Like unleashing some brand new virus, perhaps?

ChrisBrantley06 Dec 2021 2:11 p.m. PST

"So by the time you've taken the Philipines and SE Asia they won't be able to respond…er, I meant, by the time you have captured the South Korean peninsula they won't be able to respond….that is, I meant to say, by the time you you've taken Kuwait they won't be able to respond. Oh shut up, I'm smarter and better than those other loser dictators!"

Good point, but worth pointing out that South Korea, Kuwait, Iraq, Syria, Ukraine, etc. didn't escalate into a full World War between the "superpowers" as implied in the original question about WW3. Just more cold warrish regional conflict. Another way to ask the question is what allied country or piece of ground would cause the U.S. to engage Russia or China in all-out conventional or nuclear war over to prevent them from taking it? (and vice versa).

Personally, I think the higher risk for WW3 comes not from calculated war planning, but from the submarine captain or general with access to a nuclear trigger who is cut off from command and control and thinks there is a world war on or has lost a screw. Or because of an AI or early warning system that tells us we're under nuclear attack because of sun spots or some other anomaly.

Zyphyr06 Dec 2021 2:12 p.m. PST

Incursions into Ukraine and Taiwan will be preceeded by the Norks striking the South. Unlike the other two, we actually have treaty obligations there. We are likely to spend a day or two dithering over what level of response we will actually take there. The speed and degree of our response there will tell Xi and Putin whether or not the time is actually right to move.

Personal logo SBminisguy Supporting Member of TMP06 Dec 2021 2:29 p.m. PST

Good point, but worth pointing out that South Korea, Kuwait, Iraq, Syria, Ukraine, etc. didn't escalate into a full World War between the "superpowers" as implied in the original question about WW3.

My main point is that totalitarian/authoritarian regimes tend to buy into their own propaganda.

*Japan truly believed that it could deliver a KO blow to the US and grab what it wanted before the US could respond, after which time the US would be presented with a fait accompli an established Greater East Asian Co-Prosperity Sphere. The morally weak US would not go to war, but would suck it up and sue for peace.

* North Korea truly believed that it could deliver a KO blow to the US & South Korea and grab what it wanted before the US could respond, after which time the US would be presented with a fait accompli a unified Korea under communist rule. The morally weak US would not go to war, but would suck it up and sue for peace.

*Saddam Hussein truly believed that he could deliver a KO blow to Kuwait and Saudi Arabia and grab what it wanted before the US could respond, after which time the US would be presented with a fait accompli a Greater Iraq that had absorbed Kuwait as a new province. The morally weak US would not go to war, but would suck it up and sue for peace.

See my point? I would hope that the Marble Mansions faction within the CCP (the ones who like all the cash and perks that come with controlling a huge economy) would counterbalance Xi's vision -- but then Xi's been offing those guys lately…

Tortorella Supporting Member of TMP06 Dec 2021 3:35 p.m. PST

We are badly divided, distracted, have bought into conspiracy theories, believe shifty media sources, politicized every facet of American life. We could not look more gullible and badly led at many levels than we have looked in recent years. We talk openly of civil war.

Surely this must look like a great time to challenge us. We are weak from within, do not appear to have the common sense or courage to unite in the face of tough situations. We have no politician who could turn this around.

How do we make our own show of strength in the face of this?

vagamer63 Supporting Member of TMP06 Dec 2021 3:56 p.m. PST

18 – 24 months, and the clock is ticking.

Mister Tibbles06 Dec 2021 5:06 p.m. PST

+100 SBminisguy!

"18 24 months, and the clock is ticking."
They say the same thing about Global Warming destroying the planet, so whoever wants in on WWIII better hustle!

"Like unleashing some brand new virus, perhaps?"
This was just the practice run… They are cooking up some really nasty stuff over there.

I do believe Taiwan is the key to everything, but IMO Xi will create a situation where they must go into Taiwan in order to "save" a perceived doomed Taiwan--could be all sorts of possibilities why they must save it. My best guess is biological. Such fodder for thriller novels!

Personal logo Legion 4 Supporting Member of TMP06 Dec 2021 6:48 p.m. PST

See, now you're thinking rationally. You have to think more like a paranoid totalitarian who is balancing survival needs against internal forces who will latch onto any sign of weakness to bring you down against the global ambitions of your massive ego!
IMO the irrational players are religiously inspired fanatics. There is a number of state sponsored jihadis still out there. We know the KSA, Iran,
etc., and some of the smaller Mid-East denizens are backing those types.

But even the Iranian leadership wants to stay alive. Even if they say they want to destroy Israel. Its good for local consumption.

As does Un. He is a gangster living the good life. Why risk losing all that ?

Putin & Xi … they are like Un. They will saber rattle, posture, etc. But in the end I don't think either will be launching and WMDs any time soon.

No doubt I could wrong. But IMO only jihadi terrorist types, who think they go to paradise for kill infidels if they got a nuke would use it.

Everyone knows the USA WMD retaliation or just conventional HE, etc., would be a game ender/changer. Unless you are Putin & Xi. But they see no good reason to die and go to paradise. They pretty much are living in it now. And again you can add Un to that short list too.

Dn Jackson Supporting Member of TMP07 Dec 2021 3:11 a.m. PST

"if Ukraine can just hold long enough to bog down a Russian advance,"

That's a big 'if'. Ukraine is almost all steppe and very difficult to defend. Look what happened in the 1920s against the Soviets.

mildbill07 Dec 2021 5:53 a.m. PST

And then there is the French with their clever plans for world domination. (lighthearted satire)

Porthos07 Dec 2021 6:10 a.m. PST

How about this scenario ?

1. Russian troops occupy the Donbass (the two provinces that are in rebellion against the Ukrainian government in Kiev).

2. Putin removes Loekachenkov in Belarus and accepts Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya as temporary president. She then organizes free elections.

If Putin assures the occupation of the Donbass is only temporarely who will do more than perhaps another symbolic economic sanction ?

Personal logo Parzival Supporting Member of TMP07 Dec 2021 8:12 a.m. PST

Never mind. Got too political.

I fear the answer is "yes," and the "when" is "within the next year."

Personal logo Legion 4 Supporting Member of TMP07 Dec 2021 8:22 a.m. PST

Putin wants to keep Ukraine out of NATO.

And NATO is not really happy with the Ukraine's corruption predilection, etc.,.

Putin wants NATO to fall apart, and no longer be a threat(?) to his Russia [and former USSR]. He is still fighting the Cold War. Once KGB … always KGB …

However, any "bold" moves by Putin may embolden Xi. But, Xi won't do anything until after the Winter Olympics. Does not want to lose the $ and propaganda value of "the big show" … Demonstrating how great, etc., the PRC/CCP is regardless of all the flaws everybody worldwide knows. E.g. genocide …

But as we see few care … $ talks …

Will Un see Putin & Xi sabre rattling, posturing, etc., and he hates to not get attention. So he may do something just to add to the confusion/party.

And Iran continues to work on getting Nukes. Again, the talks are a waste of time. But looks good in the media, etc.,. Who knows, someone may get a Nobel Peace Prise out of it ? Even if it is not deserved … It's happened before.

All our enemies' sense weak leadership, poor decisions being a norm, etc.


Even with all this going on … Again … IMO WWIII is more of a good wargame scenario than a high possibility.

Tortorella Supporting Member of TMP07 Dec 2021 8:26 a.m. PST

Parzival, that's okay. I feel the same way, but it won't matter who we elect, there is almost no activity in Congress anymore and a change will not make one bit of difference. The institution is crippled by selfish factions on all sides.

But we do fund our military in a bipartisan way. We are a powerful force in being despite the politicians, and I hope China and Russia will not risk taking us and NATO on.

Martin Rapier07 Dec 2021 10:52 a.m. PST

We are already at war with Russia and China, in cyberspace, social media, subversion and global trade. But war, war? There may be some Russian and Chinese land grabs but both are canny enough to avoid places the West really cares about.

This is the Chinese century, we are just going to have to get used to China flexing its muscles and hope no-one with access to nuclear launch codes makes a horrible miscalculation.

Sadly for Ukraine, they look an awful lot like Czechoslovakia in 1938.

Uesugi Kenshin Supporting Member of TMP07 Dec 2021 11:10 a.m. PST

Nuke War, no.

Low grade conventional war amongst Leading Powers…inevitable.

Striker07 Dec 2021 11:15 p.m. PST

Yes. No way to know when.

Personal logo Editor in Chief Bill The Editor of TMP Fezian07 Dec 2021 11:26 p.m. PST

Unlikely IMO … Nukes make WWIII a distant possibility …

They said that the global economy made WWI impossible…

Personal logo etotheipi Sponsoring Member of TMP18 Dec 2021 12:04 p.m. PST

"I know not with what weapons World War III will be fought, but World War IV will be fought with sticks and stones."

― Albert Einstein

Personal logo Legion 4 Supporting Member of TMP18 Dec 2021 12:23 p.m. PST

They said that the global economy made WWI impossible…
As we see they have been wrong on a lot of things …

billclo28 Aug 2022 4:21 a.m. PST

We are already in WWIII with China. It just isn't the traditional type of war.

They have a long range plan; they've already said out in public that war with the US is inevitable. Our tech is being copied by them, I'm sure they have our infrastructure targeted for a takedown blow, many in our leadership are outright Chinese puppets (military included).

Even if it only consists of massive cyberattacks and degradation of our infrastructure, and a complicit leadership hamstringing recovery efforts, its going to be rough. All they need to do is have us be preoccupied with "recovery" while they go steamroller all of Asia, Siberia, etc.

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