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War seems to progress as follows:

0 - Peace 1 - Trade War 2 - Financial War 3 - Electronic War 4 - Shooting War

Note that 1 & 2 are different types of Economic war, and could be grouped together. The steps occur in order, but steps can be skipped.

From a US-centric point of view, North Korea and Iran seem to be at #3. China & Russia are at a limited version of #2.

Chinese/HK seem to be at #3 with each other.Given how invisible Electronic War can be, it's possible that they are deep in #3. It's also possible that #4 might be initially fought with HK Police forces as a proxy. Think of that as "4a".




I don't know who to attribute this to but I've heard a saying:

"Countries that trade with each other don't make war with each other."

As we isolate countries and disrupt trade we definitely are increasing the risk of conflict.


> "Countries that trade with each other don't make war with each other."

I'm pretty sure this was the prevailing thinking prior to World War 1. A large scale conflict would be so damaging on a human and economic level that most assumed the people in power would find away to stop a massive war from breaking out. Well, they were right about the first assumption, but very wrong about the second.


It's also why the EU was founded, and in that instance it worked great. European powers used to be constantly at war with each other, but in the last 70 years there was no large-scale war within Europe (except for Ukraine/Russia, both not in the EU), and war between EU states has become unthinkable.


This is surely a contributing factor, but being first-class citizens of Pax Americana US hegemony has been a larger one IMO (doubly so during the Cold War, when a common enemy on Western Europe's borders united them).

There's plenty of good things from a moral perspective about power being diffused away from a hyperpower hegemon, but stability and peace have never been among the side effects.


Yes, most famously put forward in Norman Angell's 1909 book The Great Illusion (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Great_Illusion).


Yes, who cares about the forced labor camps and suicide nets around factories. I want my cheap plastic consumer devices!!


> Yes, who cares about the forced labor camps and suicide nets around factories.

Nobody really cares, except for those directly involved. Sad but true, nobody will ever go to war for that, for foreign citizens.

> I want my cheap plastic consumer devices!!

People do actually want that. And their cheap shoes and clothes and...


> suicide nets around factories

Foxconn's suicide rate is lower than China's, along with all 50 US states. They just employ a gargantuan amount of people (400k). I don't know much about the working conditions there, so I don't have a position, but it doesn't look like there's evidence to suggest that the working conditions have anything to do with the fact that some of their employees committed suicide.

To put it another way, there's roughly as much evidence of this as there is that working in a factory in Nigeria causes sickle cell anemia.


A car park in the UK closed off the top storey and it's common to see older MSCPs adding tall fences to the top floor, and for new buildings to have these designed in from the start.

Page 25 (but see also page 23) https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/...

Fencing off tall buildings is a useful short-term suicide prevention measure.


If people cared, there wouldn’t be a prison labor system in the US. Especially one that pays inmates in cents.


You are interpreting a correlation as a causality. More likely (IMO) is a common cause, countries that consider themselves enemies for whatever reason are both unlikely to trade with eachother, and likely to go to war with eachother.


The EU was founded with the explicit goal that increasing trade between European countries would prevent war.

It's impossible to prove causality, but Europe has never seen longer and more widespread peace than the last 70 years.


Europeans tend to credit the EU/EEC for the peace, but as an American, I find that totally implausible. The peace was because Europe was divided into two vassal regions and the actual superpowers decided not to go to war because of MAD. Now that the Cold War is over, we've already had a series of wars in the Balkans and various wars in the Russian periphery. True, France and Germany have taken a break from fighting each other for a long-ish stretch, but I think that trend would continue even with a Frexit because it's mostly built on memories of how bad the last two wars were.


MAD and the cold war prevented war between countries on either side of the iron curtain, sure.

But then you go on to claim that war among countries on the Western side was prevented by memories of war and not the EEC, without any reasoning as to why. I don't buy it. The first World War was already terrible, yet these countries were at each others' throats only a few decades later.


Russia and Ukraine are not EU/ECC members, and neither were the balkan states back when they balkanized. Wars outside the EU don't disprove that the EU plays a major role in bringing pace among its members. I would agree that it didn't necessarily bring peace to all of Europe, but that's a stronger statement than most people intend to make


only if you think that europe is eu, which it is not


China not wanting to mess with the amazing economic success is one of the strongest things pushing back against any military aggression by them.

Tons of CPP members are getting rich off the economy which includes a lot of trade and foreign debt.

There’s plenty of correlation here.


"When goods don’t cross borders, Soldiers will." -unknown (often credited to Frederic Bastiat)

Here's what Otto Mallery said though:

"If soldiers are not to cross international boundaries, goods must do so. Unless the Shackles can be dropped from trade, bombs will be dropped from the sky."

https://fee.org/resources/if-goods-dont-cross-borders/


https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/asia/china/955570...

This was a common argument as to why WWI couldn't happen, countries were far too economically dependent, everyone would be ruined.

Except it did happen, and everyone was ruined.


There were more guns and power mongers than economic ties. Plain and simple. Those arguments should have been qualified a lot more.


At best, that has held in limited places and times since WWII.

At worst, it was an affirmation repeated, as with most affirmations, in the hopes that the repetition would make it true, which it doesn't, and for the usual reason, that it generally wasn't.


So presumably you have evidence of most countries trading with each other while going to war with each other?


The United States and Germany during WWII, as evidenced by Ford, General Motors, IBM, Coca-Cola, Kodak, Chase Bank, Random House, Associated Press, Dow Chemical, Brown Brothers Harriman, Woolworths, Alcoa, AT&T, and others.

https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2001/04/hitlers...

https://www.phactual.com/8-american-companies-that-worked-wi...

https://www.toptenz.net/top-10-american-companies-that-aided...


Doesn't seem to work between Russia and Georgia, Moldova or Ukraine.


I think, the principal argument is by Immanuel Kant in "Zum ewigen Frieden" (Perpetual Peace), 1795.


Sometimes known as the “Golden Arches Theory of Diplomacy”


> 0 - Peace 1 - Trade War 2 - Financial War 3 - Electronic War 4 - Shooting War

How many major wars in the last 100 years were preceded by trade wars or electronic wars (I don't know what a financial war is, trade embargoes? - embargoes are not trade wars)? Perhaps my view is a bit us-centric (there have been many small wars in africa that I don't know the history of), but I don't think that us conflict participation in Iraq, Yemen, Libya, Grenada, Vietnam, Korea, WWII, or WWI were preceded by those sorts of policies. To find a trade war that preceded a war I think you might have to go to the US fighting in central america (banana wars), or maybe the civil war.

Meanwhile the US has engaged in trade wars with plenty of countries it hasn't fought with, dominantly europe (via the banana trade wars, not to be confused with banana wars, e.g.), and Japan.


John Perkins has written extensively on this topic, as he has had a career conducting 2 and 3 for the US. His book Confessions of an Economic Hit Man is instructive.

https://www.amazon.com/New-Confessions-Economic-Hit-Man/dp/1...


Hobbes would say this is backwards, since the state of nature is a state of war.

"Peace" is built from war's stalemates. As the most violent (and therefore effective) means become ineffective, combatants shift towards less effective means, to the point that the war (which is still ongoing) continues through diplomacy and trade.

Hence, "war is diplomacy by other means."

Diplomacy and trade are means of gaining an advantage in the underlying (now "cold") warfare. They're maneuvers to defeat the existing stalemate. If either side is able to obtain an economic (or other advantage) sufficient to defeat their opponent in a more violent form of warfare, then they will return to violence because that is the basal state of nature.

The worst thing you could ever have in trade / diplomacy is a good working relationship that isn't balanced and equal. A trade failure is itself a stalemate which can strengthen peace, so long as it occurs before too great of an advantage is gained any group.


Can you cite examples of when it went from 3 to 4?


(not grandposter)

As the grandparent said - steps can be skipped. Since 3 is a relatively new medium for offensive actions, I suspect there are not a lot of well-known examples around. Would be interesting to see if any currently active conflicts were preceded by DoS (not necessarily Distributed, could be just a "cable cut" from outside), and how long before it escalated to active conflict.


Perhaps 3 could be rephrased as "industrial sabotage"


Pretty sure that this is only recent at most


Except for the great electronic war of 1315




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