The next World War has started

Mar 22, 2024
WW3 world war 3 concept.

World War Three has already begun, though few have noticed. It is being fought out in parliaments and the press, on social media platforms, in pubs and at family dining tables around the globe. It is an almost silent war that will kill millions, potentially billions and wreck the planet for all.

World War Three is a universal conflict between tested truth – and convenient lies. Between reality and manufactured fantasy. It is a fight for the human soul. It will determine whether our civilisation survives, or goes down in darkness. At stake may even be the survival of our species.

Humanity is presently facing the greatest existential emergency in our million-year history. This comprises ten man-made catastrophic risks: 1. Extinction and ecocide, 2. Resource depletion, 3. Global poisoning, 4. Global overheating, 5. Nuclear arms race, 6. Food insecurity, 7. Overpopulation, 8. Pandemic disease, 9. Dangerous new technologies and 10. Mass delusion.

No Government on Earth has a policy for solving these. There is no plan for human survival.

Potentially, the most deadly of these threats is mass delusion. The uncontrolled spread of lies, misinformation and disinformation in all societies renders it almost impossible for humanity to take concerted action to arrest and roll back the other nine catastrophic risks.

Misinformation paralyses governments and destabilises world politics, it leads to war, rots out the heart of democracy, spreads mistrust, causes widespread death and suffering, destroys public faith in science and nullifies rational decision-making by governments, businesses and individuals.

In The Age of Deceit (Feb 2022) I described the nature of this torrent of fabrication and falsehood, who is behind it and why. It is presently driven chiefly by: 1. The $7tr petro lobby and its ‘lie factories’, 2. corrupt international media, 3. venial politicians, 4.ideological extremists, 5. rabid conspiracists and 6. the simple minded. It is abetted by a 13-point decline in human IQ since 1975, probably caused by neurotoxins in the human living environment. This means that more and more of our brain-damaged citizens cannot tell truth from fiction.

As an example, deliberate misinformation spread about masks and vaccines has added to the 16-28 million estimated death toll from Covid-19, according to the WHO. Even in science, it now appears, there have been efforts to deceive the public over a likely laboratory origin for the virus and downplay the dangers of manipulating deadly viruses. The US Congress Select Subcommittee on the Coronavirus Pandemic has labelled it “the anatomy of a coverup”.

Another is the deliberate takeover of the world conferences (COP27 and COP28) on climate change by the oil industry and its stooges, in order to distort the debate and sabotage the process of saving the planet. Beyond this lies a wholesale campaign to mislead the world.

Deceiving humanity about the dangers of pandemic disease, global heating, extinction and eco-collapse, global poisoning or any of the megarisks will inevitably worsen the toll they take on human lives and a habitable Earth by postponing or blocking the urgent actions needed to mitigate them.

There is now a substantial minority of humans who exist only to spread lies and confusion over what is the truth. They are the employees and lackeys of fossil fuels, cynical politicians who will retail any falsehood to cling to power, media owners and corporate executives driven by greed and cynicism, people who trade in deceit and people without the critical faculty to tell truth from fiction.

Around the world responsible media, scientific and academic organisations and even governments have established more than 420 ‘fact checking’ units to combat the avalanche of lies, to expose and discredit the liars and give truth a chance.

Now, in one of the more ominous developments, the powers of darkness are striking back , defending their ‘right’ to lie, deceive, mislead and confuse. And they are exploiting potent new technologies such as Artificial Intelligence to spread their poison.

In a powerful piece in, Cam Wilson reports how academics defending the truth are being counterattacked by angry liars:“Journalists and researchers currently working in the fact-checking and misinformation industry … relayed their grave concerns about what the increasing politicisation of their field means for their own personal safety, for their organisations and democratic institutions.”

The conflict is depicted as a “culture war” between supporters of truth, science and fact and the allies of business and politics who aim to poison the well of public discourse for their own nefarious purposes.

In reality, it is far more serious than that. By attacking the credibility of climate science, environmental science, medical science and other branches of hard-won human knowledge they aim to disable and discredit the world’s only sources of trusted information. To shroud us all in darkness.

At one level, it is a campaign largely funded by business and industry to undermine democracy and governance in particular countries and transfer more power out of the hands of citizens and into those of super-rich elites. Nowhere is this more evident than in the US, where the presidential race is no longer a political contest between Democrats and Republicans, but an open brawl between truth and deceit, government and anarchy. If the liars win, nothing America ever says again can be believed – a fact with considerable economic and geopolitical ramifications. It is an open question whether the US itself would survive, if its governance and democratic systems are shattered.

The campaign against truth has implications graver still. If all government policymaking, worldwide, becomes contaminated with falsehood there is no possibility of rescuing humanity from the existential crisis now overwhelming us. Nobody will know what to believe, whom to trust – or what to do. Paralysis and inertia will presage the collapse of society foreshadowed in the 2022 UN Report“Our World at Risk” which warned, inter alia, of “a dangerous tendency for the world to move towards a global collapse scenario”.

To take just one example, if the sort of disinformation rampant during the Covid pandemic engulfs the climate discourse, then “business as usual” (ie no significant reduction in carbon emissions) becomes the most likely outcome, leading unavoidably to a +4 degree Hothouse Earth. According to eminent scientists such as Hans-Joachim Schellnhuber, former head of the Potsdam Institute, a 4 degree world would leave fewer than one billion humans alive.

The liars, whether they know it or not, are thus encompassing the deaths of up to 90 per cent of the human population, including their own families. There has never in history been a movement so monstrous, so cold-hearted, so purblind, nihilistic and devoid of moral principle.

Image: Supplied / Credit: Sophie Gabrielle @CodeRedEarth

Around the world, well-meaning governments are fumbling with solutions, such as new laws to prohibit the dissemination of false information via the internet or social media, industry codes of practice and the like. But nothing with real teeth. And very little at the global level.

If the liars are not to triumph and ruin our world and the future of every child in it, then we need:

  • A World Truth Commission: to fact-check claims by globally prominent individuals, groups, governments, corporations
  • A World Integrity Service: to check and validate the truthfulness of websites and media outlets.
  • Citizens and National Fact Checking services to validate local claims and expose misinformation.
  • Laws that prohibit lying in politics (as they do, or should do, in commerce).
  • Laws, national and international, to prosecute corporations and ideological groups that spread disinformation and lies in the International Criminal Court.
  • An Earth System Treaty to focus all of humanity on our many needs for survival.

The war for the truth is global and will have consequences more severe for humanity than any military conflict, past or future. Yet its significance goes largely unrecognised.

We are fighting for the lives of every one of our children and grandchildren. Can we afford to lose?

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