Terrorism: Where will it be in 2030? It’s hard to predict, but we should want it to be dwindling or possibly extinct.
One of the keys to defeating terrorism is vigilance. We must all be vigilant. We must never underestimate the capabilities and intentions of our adversaries.
Our adversaries could be living among us largely unnoticed and they are continually striving to exploit our vulnerabilities. A sophisticated adversary could potentially take advantage of our vulnerabilities if we do not ensure that our missions, programs, projects and activities are safer and more secure. What kind of creative techniques might we anticipate terrorists taking against us in 2030?
The terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001 left deep physical and emotional scars on our entire nation. Al Qaeda was sophisticated, patient, and well-trained. They planned the attack for over 10 years. When they struck, thousands died. Our eyes were opened, but maybe not wide enough, and since that time we have witnessed many other acts of terrorism. How can we best maintain a mindset of vigilance and ensure that we will be a difficult target for any future attacks?
Over the past 20 years terrorists have increasingly committed violent acts with a religious or political motive. While the Middle East has been the nexus for terrorism, hubs of supporters are sprouting up world-wide and in the most unlikely places. What will be the result of political and cultural trends in these areas between now and 2030?
We live in a world where information literally moves at the speed of light. Terrorists often use our own tools to gain knowledge of our capabilities, intentions, limitations, and so on. They find useful information on the internet, through news media, social media, or just plain old human carelessness. The cliché “loose lips sinks ships” comes to mind. The Tsarnaev brothers, who resided in the U.S., were responsible for the Boston Marathon bombing in April 2013. They killed three and injured over 260 with pressure cooker bombs. The brothers learned how to make them from the internet. How can we counter similar threats in the future?
Cyber terrorism, already a real-world threat, will continue to increase with the rising use of computers and technology worldwide. In order to counter cyberterrorism in the future we should not ignore it now, and we must keep in mind that there is a new wave of a more computer-minded terrorists coming that will likely turn more towards unconventional methods like increased cyberterrorism to pursue their goals. What will escalating cyber terrorism look like and how can we counter it?
Our allies have suffered terrorist attacks, too. Over the past three decades, the United Kingdom and other countries have experienced terrorist attacks mainly in the form of bombings or attempted bombings. How can we utilize these threats to help build cooperation around the world in addressing terrorism?
Where is terrorism heading? One direction is evident in the rise of ISIS, also known as “ISIL” and the “Islamic State.” ISIS appears to be sophisticated, calculating, and determined. They have announced that their primary goal is to create an Islamic nation, conquering and destroying anything in their path in order to attain that goal. How can we move forward in our capabilities to thwart them?
Terrorism will likely affect the future of our communications, information, operations, transportation, technological development, and financial systems in our homeland and overseas.
If these questions light your fire, or you have an opinion on the answers, we want your help. Come play the NAWCAD 2030 MMOWGLI during the Terrorism sequence on days 3 and 4 of the game (September 10th and 11th) and help shape the direction that NAWCAD moves over the next 16 years.