For roughly the third time in a year, searches for “World War 3” on Google and other search engines are on the rise according to various reports. While a recent story about a Putin ally suggesting that Donald Trump should be elected to avoid a nuclear war might be responsible, it’s also a possibility that Donald Trump’s nomination is spurring the increase in these dire searches.
Just so many places where “World War 3” could begin
Our fascination with World War 3 is certainly nothing new. Tom Clancy sold millions upon millions of books exploring the idea and possible flash points and scenarios that might spark World War 3 over decades which straddled the Cold War. He was certainly not alone in the genre of military fiction that addressed the possibilities of a confrontation, be it planned or accidental, that could spark a division in the world and place superpowers on either side leading to World War 3. Clancy did it with “Red Storm Rising” , “Debt of Honor” and in other books that became a fixture in airports for well over two decades.
The world is such that it has a number of potential flashpoints. The South China Sea could certainly be a potential flash point that would spark World War 3 with China squaring off with the United States. Additionally, a war with China could occur over North Korea and its growing nuclear weapons program or a hard-line leader could come to power and decide that China needs to take back Taiwan. These are just a few examples of where China and the United States could square off in the future. The Korean Peninsula is equally scary given the United States interest and the fact that the nation shares a border with both Russia and China.
There is also no reason to outright dismiss the possibility of Russia tangling with Japan which the United States is treaty-bound to defend. There are a number of islands that each nation claims and Russia continues to build new military bases on a couple of them. Additionally, Russia and China could get in a border dispute or China, which is largely bereft of natural resources which Russia has in abundance, could make a territorial grab.
All of these could be a problem and we’ve yet to look at potential entanglements between Russia and the United States that could lead to a greater conflict. Syria is an obvious problem with the United States looking to support anti-Assad rebels as well as hunt members of ISIS while Russian troops are in the country doing their damnedest to support the Assad government. The potential for an accident is high if not simply a matter of time.
I’m nearly 500 words into this piece and we’ve yet to even look at the possibilities of a problem between Russia and a NATO ally that the United States is treaty-bound to defend. Additionally, as the ice melts in the Arctic, you have more than a handful of nations who have claims on the region and Russia has been stepping up its military presence there for over a decade.
It’s no wonder that searches for World War 3 are on the rise and we’ve not even mentioned Donald Trump and his stance towards China and the weakening of NATO.
Searches for World War 3 were on the uptick after Turkey shot down a Russian bomber in 2015
After Turkey downed the Russian Su-23 for violating its airspace, Putin quickly stated that the action was and”stab in the back” and warned of “serious consequences.”
This was back in November 2015 and it was tense for a time given Turkey’s NATO membership and Putin’s threats.
Earlier this week I wrote of flamboyant lawmaker, Vladimir Zhirinovsky, who styles himself the Russian Donald Trump, who like Trump, seems to have no problem talking about nuclear weapons inappropriately.
This Putin ally and confidant had some choice words for the United States electorate the same week that Russia “suggested” that Russians living abroad should return with their families to the Fatherland.
“Relations between Russia and the United States can’t get any worse. The only way they can get worse is if a war starts,” said Zhirinovsky from his office in Russia’s State Duma in an interview with Reuters.
“Americans voting for a president on Nov. 8 must realize that they are voting for peace on Planet Earth if they vote for Trump. But if they vote for Hillary it’s war. It will be a short movie. There will be Hiroshimas and Nagasakis everywhere,” he continued.
“He (Trump) won’t care about Syria, Libya, and Iraq and why an earth should America interfere in these countries? And Ukraine. Who needs Ukraine?,” said Zhirinovsky.
And you wonder why people are searching World War 3?