Maybe Iran will start the next world war, or maybe North Korea will. They are both looking for a good fight, but they are minor players in a situation that could develop into World War 3. World Wars do not just happen. They occur in baby steps with one minor offence leading to another. Here are the factors that are building towards World War 3. In a few years, our battle-hardened grandchildren will look back at the factors leading up to WW3 with the same incredulous, “How did we not see it coming?” that we have now about WW2.
1. Russia Wants the Ukraine
On February 27, 2014, over 6000 Russian troops invaded Crimea and took control of government buildings, airports, military bases and communication centers and may have started the world on the first steps to World War 3. They now have a stranglehold over the Crimea and have removed it from the Ukraine.
The trouble is that Russian hackers and communication experts are pushing the invasion as a liberation and making westerners believe they are helping the Crimean people, when in fact there have been beatings, torture, rape and numerous murders by pro-Russian supporters. The Crimea is running short of food and has rolling blackouts, and nobody is able to use their Visa or debit cards in shops, which has pushed up muggings and cash-theft crimes too.
The Ukrainian government is in tatters and is in no position to resist the Russians, so the US and Europe sprung into action with sanctions. They are no longer allowed to trade with Russia, which hasn’t had the desired effect of stopping Russia, but has hurt the Russian economy by around 10-15%.
Most people in the world call the annexing of Crimea an act of war against the Ukraine, and yet Russian spin doctors are making it seem legal and “an act of salvation.” Their point is that they only want the Crimea and are not invading the entire country. Riots are flaring up all over the Ukraine and the government is in tatters. This is the same as the lead up to world war when the Russians sent a pro-Russian mob into Kharkiv, and that could be where Putin’s army is headed next.
2. If Russia Starts Expanding, Their Neighbors Will Make Alliances with Anybody!
World wars do not start for no reason, nor do they start suddenly. They start with a number of small factors that build into bigger problems. There are plenty of factors involved here, such as global depression, low oil prices thanks to Middle Eastern providers maintaining output, and shaky alliances between superpowers.
One of the smaller, yet no less worrying, factors is just whom each country will make alliances with. The countries near the Ukraine and Russia are becoming increasingly worried about Russian invasions. If the Russians are allowed to get away with taking the Crimea and take the Ukraine, then what stops them from taking surrounding countries too? Few (if any) have the ability to fight Russia, so they will have to make alliances.
The trouble is that they will want to make alliances with dangerous countries and countries with nuclear weapons. Threats from one country will evoke responses in other alliances. What will start happening is that alliances will have to synchronize to form two large alliances on opposite sides of any argument or issue. Sound familiar? This is just what happened to create the conditions for World War One.
3. The World Threatens Russia but Nobody Stops Them
Russia attacked Georgia in 2008 and a few sanctions were issued. The Russians tested the water to see if the rest of the world would fight back and nobody did. Now they are doing it again with the Ukraine, and yet again the UN, USA, NATO and EU have issued sanctions but nobody has stopped them.
Russia is simply testing the water again to see how far they can go, and yet again, they are getting away with it. The next occasion will include a larger attack, no doubt of a whole country, and if Russia has learnt anything, it is that they will get away with it.
Even if the Ukrainian invasion doesn’t spark World War 3, it still stands as proof to Russia that they may do as they wish. There is nothing stopping them from taking bolder and bolder moves in the future.
4. Tempting the West into the Ukraine to Cement a Power-alliance
Germany and the USSR had a 2-year non-aggression pact before it was broken by the Germans during WW2. A similar thing is happening with China and the Ukraine, as they have a nuclear security pact they signed in 2013. China agreed not to use nuclear force against the Ukraine, and China has to come to the Ukraine’s aid if threatened by aggression.
China and Russia are currently in a very profitable relationship. China is buying $270 billion worth of oil from Russia, and Russia is selling advanced weaponry to China. Should not China be coming to the rescue of the Ukraine?
China seems to be waiting to see who owns the Ukraine before coming to its rescue. If there is a conflict between the West and Russia in the Ukraine, there is a good chance the Chinese will side with the Russians in the name of the Ukrainian pact by claiming Russia are the rightful owners of the Ukraine and that the West is making aggressive moves. In essence, the Chinese are saying they will honor the pact they made with the Ukraine, but it looks as if they are going to wait until the Ukraine is owned by Russia before they “come to its rescue.”
5. China and Japan Want the Same Islands
Russia and China are setting the stage for the next world war, and China is causing trouble with the Japanese too. Why would China need advanced weapons from the Russians if they are looking for a peaceful existence? They could be looking for a little hardware before moving into World War 3, or they may be gearing up to annex the Senkaku islands.
The islands have fishing waters, profitable shipping lanes and potential oil fields. Both China and Japan consider them to be tactically advantageous and potentially profitable and they both want them.
6. Japan, China and South Korea Are Fighting over Airspace
China announced that they are changing their air-defense zone by increasing what they consider to be their airspace and taking space from Taiwan, South Korea and Japan. Just like the Russians, the Chinese are pushing to see if others will push back, and yet again nobody is.
China now claims the airspace above the Senkaku islands too and are threatening to push Japan out. South Korea fought back by changing its air-defense zone and taking part of Chinese airspace. The Philippines have also had some of their airspace taken by China, and if the Chinese defend that airspace with terminal force, then the US army is contractually obliged to help thanks to a 1951 pact still being in place.
Add to this the fact that Japan, China and South Korea have been re-arming over the last few years, and you get the recipe for war. Fights over air space and strategic islands are all that is needed to start another war.
7. US Military Has to Protect South Pacific Countries against China
The White House has frequently said it would back Japan if any acts of aggression were commited by China. This is probably because 50% of the US Navy is based in the Pacific. If China presses southward, then the US will also have to protect the Philippines because of the 1951 Mutual Defense Treaty.
There is Russian expansion to worry about and the mix of China, the US, Philippines, Japan, North and South Korea in the South Pacific to worry about. And still bubbling along is the issue of Islamic terrorism, the Israel/Palestine issue, and extreme regimes in Africa.
Is World War 3 on the horizon or do you believe we are reminded often enough of the terror of war that remains out greatest deterrent?
Update from author:
Previous readers have criticized this article as US propaganda. Let me state for the record: I am a British citizen. I was born and live in England. This is not propaganda. It is purely my opinion and view of world events. I do not prescribe to the US/UK having a special relationship and wish Britain was not part of the EU!
Thank you for reading and forming your own opinion. I'd love to hear them.