Map of Korean States in 108 BCE

Map of Korean States in 108 BCE


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The USA 1789 CE

After the American War of Independence, the USA has established as a new nation.

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What is happening in The USA in 1789CE

The Thirteen Colonies

The full compliment of 13 colonies was attained with the founding of New Jersey (by private endeavour, 1660), Pennsylvania (where Quakers and others could enjoy religious freedom, 1682), the Carolinas (as a royal grant to various English noblemen, 1663 later divided into North and South Carolina, 1712), and Georgia (by the British crown as a buffer against Spanish aggression, 1733). The British also took over New York and Delaware from the Dutch (1664 – Delaware had initially been Swedish).

The American Revolution

The strategic position of the British colonies was transformed with the elimination of the powerful French threat in the French Indian War (Seven Years’ War) of 1754-63. Ironically, this served to increase friction between the colonists and Britain, the mother-country, which tried to make the colonists contribute more towards the costs of their defence (via, most famously, the Stamp Act of 1765).

The resulting protests led in a straight line to the Boston Tea Party of 1773, the American War of Independence (1775-83), the founding of the United States (1776) and its successful emergence as a new country.

In this year, 1789, the USA ratifies its Constitution, enshrining democracy as the ruling principle for the new country. In the same year George Washington was elected as its first president.


The development of ancient states

Apart from Chosŏn, the region of Korea developed into tribal states. To the north, Puyŏ rose in the Sungari River basin of Manchuria (now northeastern China). Qin, which had emerged south of the Han River in the 2nd century bce , was split into three tribal states—Mahan, Chinhan, and Pyŏnhan. These states formed leagues, or tribal federations, centred on a leading state. The tribal leagues stretched across a wide area from the Sungari basin to the southern Korean peninsula. They evolved into three rival kingdoms— Koguryŏ (Goguryeo), Paekche (Baekje), and Silla. According to legends, Koguryŏ was founded by Chu-mong in 37 bce , Paekche by Onjo in 18 bce , and Silla by Pak Hyŏkkŏse in 57 bce . The actual task of state building, however, was begun for Koguryŏ by King T’aejo (reigned 53–146 ce ), for Paekche by King Koi (reigned 234–286), and for Silla by King Naemul (reigned 356–402).


Contents

Gojoseon is the first state in Korean history. It was established in 2333 BCE. Its real name is Joseon, but it is called Gochosun to make it different from other Joseon in Korean history. Go is a Korean prefix meaning 'old'. The founder of Gojoseon is said to be Dangun. The Korean people believe that Dangun established the country on October 3rd, and still celebrate that day. In Korea, October 3rd is a national holiday, which is named Gaecheonjeol (The day heaven opened). It is said to be the day that Dangun's father whose name is Hwan-ung came from the sky on October 3rd 2457 BCE. Gochosun was destroyed by the Chinese Han Dynasty in 108 BCE.

After Gojoseon had been destroyed, there were many confederations in the Korean Peninsula and Manchuria: Mahan, Byeonhan, Jinhan, Buyeo, Dongye, Okjeo, Goguryeo, and so on. The ancient confederation countries later merged into three more powerful kingdoms and an advanced confederation country.

Three Kingdoms Edit

Between 57 BC and the year 668 there were three kingdoms in the Korean Peninsula and Manchuria. The names of the kingdoms were: Silla, Goguryeo and Baekje. In the year 372, the religion Buddhism came from China to Korea. Buddhism was very important in Korea.

In the year 660, the kingdom of Silla invaded the kingdom of Baekje. In the year 668 the kingdom of Silla invaded the kingdom of Goguryeo. The people of Goguryeo ran away and made a new kingdom with the name Barhae. After a little time, the kingdom of Balhae was invaded by Liao Dynasty.

When Silla was the only country, it had the name Unified Silla. In the Silla kingdom Buddhism was very important.

Year Event
57 BCE Silla was established. The first leader is Hyeokgeose.
37 BCE Goguryeo was established as a kingdom. The first leader is King Dongmyeong.
18 BCE Baekje was established. The first leader is Onjo. The age of Three Kingdoms of Korea began.
1st century Gaya was established by some states around Gimhae.
562 CE Gaya was destroyed by and merged into Silla.
660 CE Baekje was destroyed by Tang Dynasty and merged into Silla.
668 CE Goguryeo was destroyed by Silla-Tang Alliance. The age of Three Kingdoms of Korea was finished.
935 CE Silla was destroyed by and merged to Goryeo.

The northern and southern kingdoms Edit

In the year 698, Balhae was founded by allies of Goguryeo. We call the time when united Silla and Balhae were existing together (698∼926) The northern and southern kingdoms period.

Goryeo (Korea) Edit

In the year 918 the kingdom of Goryeo began. The name Korea comes from Goryeo. The kingdom of Goryeo had power until the year 1392.

The kingdom of Goryeo wrote the law in books, and had a big government. Buddhism was very important in the kingdom of Goryeo. Bronze-type printing technology was invented in Goryeo Dynasty. This is known as the world's oldest bronze-type printing technology.

Joseon Edit

In the year 1392 a man from the military of Korea went to China. His name was Yi Seonggye. Yi's job was to attack China. But Yi returned without doing it. When Yi came back to Korea, he changed the kingdom. Yi became king.

The name of the kingdom was Joseon. In the year 1394, the people of Joseon moved the capital to Seoul. The religion of Buddhism was not important. A new religion, Confucianism was important. Confucianism came from China.

In the year 1443 the king Sejong ruled. He invented the Korean alphabet Hangeul.

In the year 1592 and the year 1598 the people from Japan fought Korea. A man from the military made very strong ships, including the famous turtle ship. The name of the man was Yi Sun-sin. With the strong ships, the people of Korea won.

The people of Joseon were friends with the people of China.

Today, North Koreans use the name Joseon (officially Chosŏn) to mean Korea.

19th century Edit

In the 19th century the people of Korea did not want to trade with other people. People called Korea Hermit Kingdom.

The people of the United States and Japan wanted to trade with Korea. Before 1876, people failed when they tried to use force to trade with Korea. In the year 1876 the military of Japan fought Korea. Korea and Japan made a contract to trade.

In 1895 Japan won the First Sino-Japanese War in the Korean peninsula. This ended Chinese influence in Korea. Empress Myeongseong, also called Queen Min, wanted the Russian Empire as a friend, to help Korea against Japan. Agents of the Ambassador of Japan killed her in October 1895.

In 1905 Japan won the Russo-Japanese War. In the year 1910, the emperor of Japan made Korea a colony of Japan.

Colony of Japan to today Edit

Korea was occupied by Japan from 1910 to 1945.

When World War II started, the policy of the Japanese government changed. The government made the religion of Japan (Shinto) the religion of Korea.

In 1945 Japan lost World War II. The United States and Soviet Union made a contract. United States occupied the south of Korea and Soviet Union occupied the north of Korea.

The people of Korea wanted to be independent. The United States and the Soviet Union agreed the people of Korea would be free and independent. But soon the United States and Soviet Union were not friends and the Cold War started. United States and Soviet Union refused to settle a deal. In 1948 the people in the south made an independent country called South Korea (also called the Republic of Korea). The United States helped them. In 1948 the people in the north also made a country North Korea (also called the DPRK or Democratic People's Republic of Korea). The Soviet Union helped North Korea.

In 1950 a war started in Korea. The name of the war was the Korean War. The war ended in 1953, but no peace treaty was signed. The border line between North and South was almost the same in the end as it was before the war.


How America will collapse (by 2025)

By Alfred McCoy
Published December 6, 2010 8:01PM (EST)

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A soft landing for America 40 years from now? Don’t bet on it. The demise of the United States as the global superpower could come far more quickly than anyone imagines. If Washington is dreaming of 2040 or 2050 as the end of the American Century, a more realistic assessment of domestic and global trends suggests that in 2025, just 15 years from now, it could all be over except for the shouting.

Despite the aura of omnipotence most empires project, a look at their history should remind us that they are fragile organisms. So delicate is their ecology of power that, when things start to go truly bad, empires regularly unravel with unholy speed: just a year for Portugal, two years for the Soviet Union, eight years for France, 11 years for the Ottomans, 17 years for Great Britain, and, in all likelihood, 22 years for the United States, counting from the crucial year 2003.

Future historians are likely to identify the Bush administration’s rash invasion of Iraq in that year as the start of America's downfall. However, instead of the bloodshed that marked the end of so many past empires, with cities burning and civilians slaughtered, this twenty-first century imperial collapse could come relatively quietly through the invisible tendrils of economic collapse or cyberwarfare.

But have no doubt: when Washington's global dominion finally ends, there will be painful daily reminders of what such a loss of power means for Americans in every walk of life. As a half-dozen European nations have discovered, imperial decline tends to have a remarkably demoralizing impact on a society, regularly bringing at least a generation of economic privation. As the economy cools, political temperatures rise, often sparking serious domestic unrest.

Available economic, educational, and military data indicate that, when it comes to U.S. global power, negative trends will aggregate rapidly by 2020 and are likely to reach a critical mass no later than 2030. The American Century, proclaimed so triumphantly at the start of World War II, will be tattered and fading by 2025, its eighth decade, and could be history by 2030.

Significantly, in 2008, the U.S. National Intelligence Council admitted for the first time that America's global power was indeed on a declining trajectory. In one of its periodic futuristic reports, Global Trends 2025, the Council cited "the transfer of global wealth and economic power now under way, roughly from West to East" and "without precedent in modern history," as the primary factor in the decline of the "United States' relative strength -- even in the military realm." Like many in Washington, however, the Council’s analysts anticipated a very long, very soft landing for American global preeminence, and harbored the hope that somehow the U.S. would long "retain unique military capabilities… to project military power globally" for decades to come.

No such luck. Under current projections, the United States will find itself in second place behind China (already the world's second largest economy) in economic output around 2026, and behind India by 2050. Similarly, Chinese innovation is on a trajectory toward world leadership in applied science and military technology sometime between 2020 and 2030, just as America's current supply of brilliant scientists and engineers retires, without adequate replacement by an ill-educated younger generation.

By 2020, according to current plans, the Pentagon will throw a military Hail Mary pass for a dying empire. It will launch a lethal triple canopy of advanced aerospace robotics that represents Washington's last best hope of retaining global power despite its waning economic influence. By that year, however, China's global network of communications satellites, backed by the world's most powerful supercomputers, will also be fully operational, providing Beijing with an independent platform for the weaponization of space and a powerful communications system for missile- or cyber-strikes into every quadrant of the globe.

Wrapped in imperial hubris, like Whitehall or Quai d'Orsay before it, the White House still seems to imagine that American decline will be gradual, gentle, and partial. In his State of the Union address last January, President Obama offered the reassurance that "I do not accept second place for the United States of America." A few days later, Vice President Biden ridiculed the very idea that "we are destined to fulfill [historian Paul] Kennedy's prophecy that we are going to be a great nation that has failed because we lost control of our economy and overextended." Similarly, writing in the November issue of the establishment journal Foreign Affairs, neo-liberal foreign policy guru Joseph Nye waved away talk of China's economic and military rise, dismissing "misleading metaphors of organic decline" and denying that any deterioration in U.S. global power was underway.

Ordinary Americans, watching their jobs head overseas, have a more realistic view than their cosseted leaders. An opinion poll in August 2010 found that 65 percent of Americans believed the country was now "in a state of decline."  Already, Australia and Turkey, traditional U.S. military allies, are using their American-manufactured weapons for joint air and naval maneuvers with China. Already, America's closest economic partners are backing away from Washington's opposition to China's rigged currency rates. As the president flew back from his Asian tour last month, a gloomy New York Times headline  summed the moment up this way: "Obama's Economic View Is Rejected on World Stage, China, Britain and Germany Challenge U.S., Trade Talks With Seoul Fail, Too."

Viewed historically, the question is not whether the United States will lose its unchallenged global power, but just how precipitous and wrenching the decline will be. In place of Washington's wishful thinking, let’s use the National Intelligence Council's own futuristic methodology to suggest four realistic scenarios for how, whether with a bang or a whimper, U.S. global power could reach its end in the 2020s (along with four accompanying assessments of just where we are today). The future scenarios include: economic decline, oil shock, military misadventure, and World War III. While these are hardly the only possibilities when it comes to American decline or even collapse, they offer a window into an onrushing future.

Economic Decline: Present Situation

Today, three main threats exist to America’s dominant position in the global economy: loss of economic clout thanks to a shrinking share of world trade, the decline of American technological innovation, and the end of the dollar's privileged status as the global reserve currency.

By 2008, the United States had already fallen to number three in global merchandise exports, with just 11 percent of them compared to 12 percent for China and 16 percent for the European Union. There is no reason to believe that this trend will reverse itself.

Similarly, American leadership in technological innovation is on the wane. In 2008, the U.S. was still number two behind Japan in worldwide patent applications with 232,000, but China was closing fast at 195,000, thanks to a blistering 400 percent increase since 2000. A harbinger of further decline: in 2009 the U.S. hit rock bottom in ranking among the 40 nations surveyed by the Information Technology & Innovation Foundation when it came to "change" in "global innovation-based competitiveness" during the previous decade. Adding substance to these statistics, in October China's Defense Ministry unveiled the world's fastest supercomputer, the Tianhe-1A, so powerful, said one U.S. expert, that it "blows away the existing No. 1 machine" in America.

Add to this clear evidence that the U.S. education system, that source of future scientists and innovators, has been falling behind its competitors. After leading the world for decades in 25- to 34-year-olds with university degrees, the country sank to 12th place in 2010. The World Economic Forum ranked the United States at a mediocre 52nd among 139 nations in the quality of its university math and science instruction in 2010. Nearly half of all graduate students in the sciences in the U.S. are now foreigners, most of whom will be heading home, not staying here as once would have happened. By 2025, in other words, the United States is likely to face a critical shortage of talented scientists.

Such negative trends are encouraging increasingly sharp criticism of the dollar's role as the world’s reserve currency. "Other countries are no longer willing to buy into the idea that the U.S. knows best on economic policy," observed Kenneth S. Rogoff, a former chief economist at the International Monetary Fund. In mid-2009, with the world's central banks holding an astronomical $4 trillion in U.S. Treasury notes, Russian president Dimitri Medvedev insisted that it was time to end "the artificially maintained unipolar system" based on "one formerly strong reserve currency."

Simultaneously, China's central bank governor suggested that the future might lie with a global reserve currency "disconnected from individual nations" (that is, the U.S. dollar). Take these as signposts of a world to come, and of a possible attempt, as economist Michael Hudson has argued, "to hasten the bankruptcy of the U.S. financial-military world order."

Economic Decline: Scenario 2020

After years of swelling deficits fed by incessant warfare in distant lands, in 2020, as long expected, the U.S. dollar finally loses its special status as the world's reserve currency. Suddenly, the cost of imports soars. Unable to pay for swelling deficits by selling now-devalued Treasury notes abroad, Washington is finally forced to slash its bloated military budget. Under pressure at home and abroad, Washington slowly pulls U.S. forces back from hundreds of overseas bases to a continental perimeter. By now, however, it is far too late.

Faced with a fading superpower incapable of paying the bills, China, India, Iran, Russia, and other powers, great and regional, provocatively challenge U.S. dominion over the oceans, space, and cyberspace. Meanwhile, amid soaring prices, ever-rising unemployment, and a continuing decline in real wages, domestic divisions widen into violent clashes and divisive debates, often over remarkably irrelevant issues. Riding a political tide of disillusionment and despair, a far-right patriot captures the presidency with thundering rhetoric, demanding respect for American authority and threatening military retaliation or economic reprisal. The world pays next to no attention as the American Century ends in silence.

Oil Shock: Present Situation

One casualty of America's waning economic power has been its lock on global oil supplies. Speeding by America's gas-guzzling economy in the passing lane, China became the world's number one energy consumer this summer, a position the U.S. had held for over a century. Energy specialist Michael Klare has argued that this change means China will "set the pace in shaping our global future."

By 2025, Iran and Russia will control almost half of the world's natural gas supply, which will potentially give them enormous leverage over energy-starved Europe. Add petroleum reserves to the mix and, as the National Intelligence Council has warned, in just 15 years two countries, Russia and Iran, could "emerge as energy kingpins."

Despite remarkable ingenuity, the major oil powers are now draining the big basins of petroleum reserves that are amenable to easy, cheap extraction. The real lesson of the Deepwater Horizon oil disaster in the Gulf of Mexico was not BP's sloppy safety standards, but the simple fact everyone saw on "spillcam": one of the corporate energy giants had little choice but to search for what Klare calls "tough oil" miles beneath the surface of the ocean to keep its profits up.

Compounding the problem, the Chinese and Indians have suddenly become far heavier energy consumers. Even if fossil fuel supplies were to remain constant (which they won’t), demand, and so costs, are almost certain to rise -- and sharply at that. Other developed nations are meeting this threat aggressively by plunging into experimental programs to develop alternative energy sources. The United States has taken a different path, doing far too little to develop alternative sources while, in the last three decades, doubling its dependence on foreign oil imports. Between 1973 and 2007, oil imports have risen from 36 percent of energy consumed in the U.S. to 66 percent.

Oil Shock: Scenario 2025

The United States remains so dependent upon foreign oil that a few adverse developments in the global energy market in 2025 spark an oil shock. By comparison, it makes the 1973 oil shock (when prices quadrupled in just months) look like the proverbial molehill. Angered at the dollar's plummeting value, OPEC oil ministers, meeting in Riyadh, demand future energy payments in a "basket" of Yen, Yuan, and Euros. That only hikes the cost of U.S. oil imports further. At the same moment, while signing a new series of long-term delivery contracts with China, the Saudis stabilize their own foreign exchange reserves by switching to the Yuan. Meanwhile, China pours countless billions into building a massive trans-Asia pipeline and funding Iran's exploitation of the world largest percent natural gas field at South Pars in the Persian Gulf.

Concerned that the U.S. Navy might no longer be able to protect the oil tankers traveling from the Persian Gulf to fuel East Asia, a coalition of Tehran, Riyadh, and Abu Dhabi form an unexpected new Gulf alliance and affirm that China's new fleet of swift aircraft carriers will henceforth patrol the Persian Gulf from a base on the Gulf of Oman. Under heavy economic pressure, London agrees to cancel the U.S. lease on its Indian Ocean island base of Diego Garcia, while Canberra, pressured by the Chinese, informs Washington that the Seventh Fleet is no longer welcome to use Fremantle as a homeport, effectively evicting the U.S. Navy from the Indian Ocean.

With just a few strokes of the pen and some terse announcements, the "Carter Doctrine," by which U.S. military power was to eternally protect the Persian Gulf, is laid to rest in 2025. All the elements that long assured the United States limitless supplies of low-cost oil from that region -- logistics, exchange rates, and naval power -- evaporate. At this point, the U.S. can still cover only an insignificant 12 percent of its energy needs from its nascent alternative energy industry, and remains dependent on imported oil for half of its energy consumption.

The oil shock that follows hits the country like a hurricane, sending prices to startling heights, making travel a staggeringly expensive proposition, putting real wages (which had long been declining) into freefall, and rendering non-competitive whatever American exports remained. With thermostats dropping, gas prices climbing through the roof, and dollars flowing overseas in return for costly oil, the American economy is paralyzed. With long-fraying alliances at an end and fiscal pressures mounting, U.S. military forces finally begin a staged withdrawal from their overseas bases.

Within a few years, the U.S. is functionally bankrupt and the clock is ticking toward midnight on the American Century.

Military Misadventure: Present Situation

Counterintuitively, as their power wanes, empires often plunge into ill-advised military misadventures. This phenomenon is known among historians of empire as "micro-militarism" and seems to involve psychologically compensatory efforts to salve the sting of retreat or defeat by occupying new territories, however briefly and catastrophically. These operations, irrational even from an imperial point of view, often yield hemorrhaging expenditures or humiliating defeats that only accelerate the loss of power.

Embattled empires through the ages suffer an arrogance that drives them to plunge ever deeper into military misadventures until defeat becomes debacle. In 413 BCE, a weakened Athens sent 200 ships to be slaughtered in Sicily. In 1921, a dying imperial Spain dispatched 20,000 soldiers to be massacred by Berber guerrillas in Morocco. In 1956, a fading British Empire destroyed its prestige by attacking Suez. And in 2001 and 2003, the U.S. occupied Afghanistan and invaded Iraq. With the hubris that marks empires over the millennia, Washington has increased its troops in Afghanistan to 100,000, expanded the war into Pakistan, and extended its commitment to 2014 and beyond, courting disasters large and small in this guerilla-infested, nuclear-armed graveyard of empires.

Military Misadventure: Scenario 2014

So irrational, so unpredictable is "micro-militarism" that seemingly fanciful scenarios are soon outdone by actual events. With the U.S. military stretched thin from Somalia to the Philippines and tensions rising in Israel, Iran, and Korea, possible combinations for a disastrous military crisis abroad are multifold.

It’s mid-summer 2014 and a drawn-down U.S. garrison in embattled Kandahar in southern Afghanistan is suddenly, unexpectedly overrun by Taliban guerrillas, while U.S. aircraft are grounded by a blinding sandstorm. Heavy loses are taken and in retaliation, an embarrassed American war commander looses B-1 bombers and F-16 fighters to demolish whole neighborhoods of the city that are believed to be under Taliban control, while AC-130U "Spooky" gunships rake the rubble with devastating cannon fire.

Soon, mullahs are preaching jihad from mosques throughout the region, and Afghan Army units, long trained by American forces to turn the tide of the war, begin to desert en masse. Taliban fighters then launch a series of remarkably sophisticated strikes aimed at U.S. garrisons across the country, sending American casualties soaring. In scenes reminiscent of Saigon in 1975, U.S. helicopters rescue American soldiers and civilians from rooftops in Kabul and Kandahar.

Meanwhile, angry at the endless, decades-long stalemate over Palestine, OPEC’s leaders impose a new oil embargo on the U.S. to protest its backing of Israel as well as the killing of untold numbers of Muslim civilians in its ongoing wars across the Greater Middle East. With gas prices soaring and refineries running dry, Washington makes its move, sending in Special Operations forces to seize oil ports in the Persian Gulf. This, in turn, sparks a rash of suicide attacks and the sabotage of pipelines and oil wells. As black clouds billow skyward and diplomats rise at the U.N. to bitterly denounce American actions, commentators worldwide reach back into history to brand this "America's Suez," a telling reference to the 1956 debacle that marked the end of the British Empire.

World War III: Present Situation

In the summer of 2010, military tensions between the U.S. and China began to rise in the western Pacific, once considered an American "lake." Even a year earlier no one would have predicted such a development. As Washington played upon its alliance with London to appropriate much of Britain's global power after World War II, so China is now using the profits from its export trade with the U.S. to fund what is likely to become a military challenge to American dominion over the waterways of Asia and the Pacific.

With its growing resources, Beijing is claiming a vast maritime arc from Korea to Indonesia long dominated by the U.S. Navy. In August, after Washington expressed a "national interest" in the South China Sea and conducted naval exercises there to reinforce that claim, Beijing's official Global Times responded angrily, saying, "The U.S.-China wrestling match over the South China Sea issue has raised the stakes in deciding who the real future ruler of the planet will be."

Amid growing tensions, the Pentagon reported that Beijing now holds "the capability to attack… [U.S.] aircraft carriers in the western Pacific Ocean" and target "nuclear forces throughout… the continental United States." By developing "offensive nuclear, space, and cyber warfare capabilities," China seems determined to vie for dominance of what the Pentagon calls "the information spectrum in all dimensions of the modern battlespace." With ongoing development of the powerful Long March V booster rocket, as well as the launch of two satellites in January 2010 and another in July, for a total of five, Beijing signaled that the country was making rapid strides toward an "independent" network of 35 satellites for global positioning, communications, and reconnaissance capabilities by 2020.

To check China and extend its military position globally, Washington is intent on building a new digital network of air and space robotics, advanced cyberwarfare capabilities, and electronic surveillance. Military planners expect this integrated system to envelop the Earth in a cyber-grid capable of blinding entire armies on the battlefield or taking out a single terrorist in field or favela. By 2020, if all goes according to plan, the Pentagon will launch a three-tiered shield of space drones -- reaching from stratosphere to exosphere, armed with agile missiles, linked by a resilient modular satellite system, and operated through total telescopic surveillance.

Last April, the Pentagon made history. It extended drone operations into the exosphere by quietly launching the X-37B unmanned space shuttle into a low orbit 255 miles above the planet.  The X-37B is the first in a new generation of unmanned vehicles that will mark the full weaponization of space, creating an arena for future warfare unlike anything that has gone before.

World War III: Scenario 2025

The technology of space and cyberwarfare is so new and untested that even the most outlandish scenarios may soon be superseded by a reality still hard to conceive. If we simply employ the sort of scenarios that the Air Force itself used in its 2009 Future Capabilities Game, however, we can gain "a better understanding of how air, space and cyberspace overlap in warfare," and so begin to imagine how the next world war might actually be fought.

It’s 11:59 p.m. on Thanksgiving Thursday in 2025. While cyber-shoppers pound the portals of Best Buy for deep discounts on the latest home electronics from China, U.S. Air Force technicians at the Space Surveillance Telescope (SST) on Maui choke on their coffee as their panoramic screens suddenly blip to black. Thousands of miles away at the U.S. CyberCommand's operations center in Texas, cyberwarriors soon detect malicious binaries that, though fired anonymously, show the distinctive digital fingerprints of China's People's Liberation Army.

The first overt strike is one nobody predicted. Chinese "malware" seizes control of the robotics aboard an unmanned solar-powered U.S. "Vulture" drone as it flies at 70,000 feet over the Tsushima Strait between Korea and Japan. It suddenly fires all the rocket pods beneath its enormous 400-foot wingspan, sending dozens of lethal missiles plunging harmlessly into the Yellow Sea, effectively disarming this formidable weapon.

Determined to fight fire with fire, the White House authorizes a retaliatory strike. Confident that its F-6 "Fractionated, Free-Flying" satellite system is impenetrable, Air Force commanders in California transmit robotic codes to the flotilla of X-37B space drones orbiting 250 miles above the Earth, ordering them to launch their "Triple Terminator" missiles at China's 35 satellites. Zero response. In near panic, the Air Force launches its Falcon Hypersonic Cruise Vehicle into an arc 100 miles above the Pacific Ocean and then, just 20 minutes later, sends the computer codes to fire missiles at seven Chinese satellites in nearby orbits. The launch codes are suddenly inoperative.

As the Chinese virus spreads uncontrollably through the F-6 satellite architecture, while those second-rate U.S. supercomputers fail to crack the malware's devilishly complex code, GPS signals crucial to the navigation of U.S. ships and aircraft worldwide are compromised. Carrier fleets begin steaming in circles in the mid-Pacific. Fighter squadrons are grounded. Reaper drones fly aimlessly toward the horizon, crashing when their fuel is exhausted. Suddenly, the United States loses what the U.S. Air Force has long called "the ultimate high ground": space. Within hours, the military power that had dominated the globe for nearly a century has been defeated in World War III without a single human casualty.

A New World Order?

Even if future events prove duller than these four scenarios suggest, every significant trend points toward a far more striking decline in American global power by 2025 than anything Washington now seems to be envisioning.

As allies worldwide begin to realign their policies to take cognizance of rising Asian powers, the cost of maintaining 800 or more overseas military bases will simply become unsustainable, finally forcing a staged withdrawal on a still-unwilling Washington. With both the U.S. and China in a race to weaponize space and cyberspace, tensions between the two powers are bound to rise, making military conflict by 2025 at least feasible, if hardly guaranteed.

Complicating matters even more, the economic, military, and technological trends outlined above will not operate in tidy isolation. As happened to European empires after World War II, such negative forces will undoubtedly prove synergistic. They will combine in thoroughly unexpected ways, create crises for which Americans are remarkably unprepared, and threaten to spin the economy into a sudden downward spiral, consigning this country to a generation or more of economic misery.

As U.S. power recedes, the past offers a spectrum of possibilities for a future world order. At one end of this spectrum, the rise of a new global superpower, however unlikely, cannot be ruled out. Yet both China and Russia evince self-referential cultures, recondite non-roman scripts, regional defense strategies, and underdeveloped legal systems, denying them key instruments for global dominion. At the moment then, no single superpower seems to be on the horizon likely to succeed the U.S.

In a dark, dystopian version of our global future, a coalition of transnational corporations, multilateral forces like NATO, and an international financial elite could conceivably forge a single, possibly unstable, supra-national nexus that would make it no longer meaningful to speak of national empires at all. While denationalized corporations and multinational elites would assumedly rule such a world from secure urban enclaves, the multitudes would be relegated to urban and rural wastelands.

In "Planet of Slums," Mike Davis offers at least a partial vision of such a world from the bottom up. He argues that the billion people already packed into fetid favela-style slums worldwide (rising to two billion by 2030) will make "the 'feral, failed cities' of the Third World… the distinctive battlespace of the twenty-first century." As darkness settles over some future super-favela, "the empire can deploy Orwellian technologies of repression" as "hornet-like helicopter gun-ships stalk enigmatic enemies in the narrow streets of the slum districts… Every morning the slums reply with suicide bombers and eloquent explosions."

At a midpoint on the spectrum of possible futures, a new global oligopoly might emerge between 2020 and 2040, with rising powers China, Russia, India, and Brazil collaborating with receding powers like Britain, Germany, Japan, and the United States to enforce an ad hoc global dominion, akin to the loose alliance of European empires that ruled half of humanity circa 1900.

Another possibility: the rise of regional hegemons in a return to something reminiscent of the international system that operated before modern empires took shape. In this neo-Westphalian world order, with its endless vistas of micro-violence and unchecked exploitation, each hegemon would dominate its immediate region -- Brasilia in South America, Washington in North America, Pretoria in southern Africa, and so on. Space, cyberspace, and the maritime deeps, removed from the control of the former planetary "policeman," the United States, might even become a new global commons, controlled through an expanded U.N. Security Council or some ad hoc body.

All of these scenarios extrapolate existing trends into the future on the assumption that Americans, blinded by the arrogance of decades of historically unparalleled power, cannot or will not take steps to manage the unchecked erosion of their global position.

If America's decline is in fact on a 22-year trajectory from 2003 to 2025, then we have already frittered away most of the first decade of that decline with wars that distracted us from long-term problems and, like water tossed onto desert sands, wasted trillions of desperately needed dollars.

If only 15 years remain, the odds of frittering them all away still remain high. Congress and the president are now in gridlock the American system is flooded with corporate money meant to jam up the works and there is little suggestion that any issues of significance, including our wars, our bloated national security state, our starved education system, and our antiquated energy supplies, will be addressed with sufficient seriousness to assure the sort of soft landing that might maximize our country's role and prosperity in a changing world.

Europe's empires are gone and America's imperium is going. It seems increasingly doubtful that the United States will have anything like Britain's success in shaping a succeeding world order that protects its interests, preserves its prosperity, and bears the imprint of its best values.


  • OFFICIAL NAME: Republic of Korea
  • FORM OF GOVERNMENT: Republic
  • CAPITAL: Seoul
  • POPULATION: 51,418,097
  • OFFICIAL LANGUAGE: Korean
  • MONEY: Won
  • AREA: 37,901 sq mi (98,190 sq km)
  • MAJOR MOUNTAIN RANGES: Taebaek Mountains, Sobaek Mountains
  • MAJOR RIVERS: Han, Kum, Naktong

GEOGRAPHY

Korea is a 750-mile-long (1,200-kilometer-long) peninsula located in the easternmost part of the Asian continent. Today, the country is split into South and North Korea, but in the minds of most of its citizens, it remains a single nation that cannot be divided.

South Korea has many mountains, but they are small compared with others around the world. Over millions of years, their peaks have been worn down by rain and wind. Most summits are below 3,300 feet (1,000 meters).

On South Korea's Jeju Island and along a narrow strip in the south, high humidity and rainfall give rise to tropical evergreen jungles. The peninsula is also surrounded by about 3,000 volcanic islands.

Map created by National Geographic Maps

PEOPLE & CULTURE

South Korea is a crowded country, with 1,294 citizens for every square mile (499 per every square kilometer) of land. Koreans' lives are heavily influenced by Confucianism, a Chinese philosophy that teaches respect and morality.

NATURE

South Korea is a small country with a lot of people, so there is a huge demand for space. As a result, many of the country's natural habitats have been squeezed into smaller areas. There are 21 national parks, but the only areas of true wilderness left are the mountain forests.

Tigers used to roam the Korean peninsula, but today there may be none left at all. Some think a few may live in the dangerous Demilitarized Zone between North and South Korea. Korea's tigers were wiped out by hunters who wanted their bones to use in traditional medicines.

GOVERNMENT & ECONOMY

The official name of South Korea is the Republic of Korea (ROK). That is because its government claims to be in charge of the whole of Korea and does not recognize North Korea as separate. The ROK government is headed by a president, who is elected to a five-year term.

South Korea has one of the strongest economies in Eastern Asia. Most of its wealth comes from manufacturing and service industries, such as banking. It exports ships, cars, computers, and other electronic items.

HISTORY

People have been living in Korea for at least 10,000 years. Archaeologists believe the ancestors of today's Koreans came from Mongolia and Siberia.


Main Article

Rise of Indian Civilization

Timeline of India
3000-2000 BC 2000-1000 BC 1000 BC-0 0-1000 1000-present
1 2 3 4 5 6 7
1 Indus civilization ca. 2500-1500 BC
2 Vedic period ca. 1500-500 BC
3 Indian kingdom period ca. 500 BC-1200 AD
4 early Islamic period ca. 1200-1500
5 Mughal Empire ca. 1500-1800
6 British India ca. 1800-WWII
7 modern India ca. WWII-present
Summary of Indian History
ca. 2500-1500 BC age of Indus civilization
ca. 1500-500 BC Vedic age (formative age of India: Indic people settle northern South Asia and develop Indian culture)
ca. 500 BC-1200 AD Indian kingdom age (age of mature, independent Indian civilization)
ca. 1200-1500 early Islamic period (various Islamic states exert partial rule over South Asia)
ca. 1500-1800 Mughal Empire (exerts strong rule over most of South Asia)
ca. 1800-WWII British India (Britain exerts strong rule over most of South Asia)
ca. WWII-present modern India (independent democracy)

South Asian civilization began with the Indus civilization (2500-1500 BC), which flourished in the region around the Indus River (which runs mainly through Pakistan). It featured two great cities, Mohenjo-Daro and Harappa, along with smaller settlements. These cities, which are laid out in orderly grids, may be the world's first examples of urban planning. 3,4

The age of Indus civilization is typically dated ca. 2500-1500 BC. In the second half of this period, Mohenjo-Daro and Harappa became depopulated, and the Indus culture faded away. 64 Urban life thus disappeared from South Asia. Meanwhile, as the Indus civilization declined, Indic nomads began to arrive from the northwest.

Indic is a branch of the Indo-Iranian language family, which is itself a branch of Indo-European (see Indo-European Languages). The Indo-European family emerged in the western Steppe. During the second millennium BC, great migrations of Indo-Europeans carried the family across much of Europe and Asia. The Indo-Iranian branch spread southward, splitting into speakers of Iranian (who settled Central Asia and Iran) and Indic (who settled northern South Asia). 10

The extent to which the Indic people wrought violence on the Indus civilization is uncertain. Regardless, the two peoples lived side-by-side for a significant period of time, during which the Indic people absorbed much of the Indus civilization's culture (e.g. artistic style, iconography, religious beliefs). 11,13,64

The Indic people arrived via gaps in the northwest mountain ranges that separate South Asia from Central Asia. Indeed, this was the only feasible land route by which South Asia could be invaded. The remainder of South Asia's border is sealed by continuous mountains (including the Himalayas), thus precluding invasion by China or Southeast Asian powers. A61

The age of Indus civilization was followed by the Vedic period (ca. 1500-500 BC). During this period, Indic immigrants poured across northern India, gradually abandoning nomadism for settled agricultural life. Their settlements eventually grew into cities, thus restoring urban life to South Asia. 11

The Vedic period was the formative age of Indian culture by ca. 500 BC, Indian culture had matured. A181 Among the most prominent features of this culture are three religions, all of which emerged toward the end of the Vedic period: Hinduism , Buddhism, and Jainism (see Religion). Another familiar aspect of Indian culture is the caste system, which persists in much of modern-day India under this system, one is born into a specific "caste", which determines one's social position and occupation. A66 The caste system, though embraced by Hinduism, was rejected by Buddhism and Jainism.

The initial development of Indian culture took place in northern India additional centuries were required for this culture to spread across southern India. A66 While northern India was settled by the Indic people, the south remained populated by its original inhabitants, the Dravidians (who spoke Dravidian languages this language family remains predominant in modern-day southern India). Once the Dravidians had embraced Indian culture, they protected it fiercely against subsequent invaders.

Pre-modern Indian Civilization

Timeline of India
3000-2000 BC 2000-1000 BC 1000 BC-0 0-1000 1000-present
1 2 3 4 5 6 7
1 Indus civilization ca. 2500-1500 BC
2 Vedic period ca. 1500-500 BC
3 Indian kingdom period ca. 500 BC-1200 AD
4 early Islamic period ca. 1200-1500
5 Mughal Empire ca. 1500-1800
6 British India ca. 1800-WWII
7 modern India ca. WWII-present
Summary of Indian History
ca. 2500-1500 BC age of Indus civilization
ca. 1500-500 BC Vedic age (formative age of India: Indic people settle northern South Asia and develop Indian culture)
ca. 500 BC-1200 AD Indian kingdom age (age of mature, independent Indian civilization)
ca. 1200-1500 early Islamic period (various Islamic states exert partial rule over South Asia)
ca. 1500-1800 Mughal Empire (exerts strong rule over most of South Asia)
ca. 1800-WWII British India (Britain exerts strong rule over most of South Asia)
ca. WWII-present modern India (independent democracy)

The Vedic period was succeeded by the Indian kingdom age (ca. 500 BC-1200 AD), which was the age of mature, independent Indian civilization. During this period, South Asia was generally covered in a patchwork of kingdoms (hence the name of the period), as opposed to being dominated by a single great empire. Indeed, great empires emerged only twice: the Mauryan Empire (ca. 300-200 BC) and Gupta Empire (ca. 300-500). 7 The former was the largest empire South Asia would ever see prior to the British conquest the latter, which witnessed an exceptional flourishing of arts and scholarship, is often considered India's "golden age" of traditional culture. 3

During the first half of the Indian kingdom age, Buddhism and Hinduism vied for religious dominance of India. During the second half, Buddhism dwindled, leaving Hinduism as the majority faith of the region (which it remains today). L47 By this time, however, Buddhism had been widely dispersed by traders, settlers, and missionaries, notably to Bhutan, Sri Lanka, Indochina, and parts of East Asia (especially Tibet and Mongolia). In all of these regions, Buddhism remains the majority religion.

The Indian kingdom age was followed by the Islamic age of India, which lasted ca. 1200-1800. This age opened with the early Islamic period (ca. 1200-1500), during which northern India was dominated by a patchwork of Islamic states, while southern India featured both Islamic and Hindu states. The early Islamic period began with the rise (ca. 1200) of the Delhi Sultanate, the first Islamic state in South Asia, and the mightiest power of South Asia during the early Islamic period. Though limited to northern India for most of its history, the Delhi Sultanate did briefly swell to encompass most of India. K244-45,13

The Islamic states of South Asia were established by invaders from Central Asia. Ethnically speaking, these invaders came in various blends of Iranian, Turkic, and Mongolic culturally speaking, they belonged to the Persianate branch of the Islamic world (see History of the Islamic Middle East).

While South Asia remained politically fragmented during the early Islamic period, the late Islamic period featured a single great power: the Mughal Empire (ca. 1500-1800), the only Islamic state to achieve lasting control over most of South Asia. 9 Indeed, the strength of the Mughal Empire (aka Mogul Empire) was such that European imperialism was impeded for centuries. Only when civil conflict (caused largely by aggressive Islamic efforts to convert the majority Hindu population) sent the empire into decline did Britain extend its control over India. A277,3

Throughout the long Islamic period, Hinduism stubbornly retained its position as the predominant religion of India. Only two large areas of South Asia became majority Islamic: the far northwest (now Pakistan) and the far northeast (now Bangladesh). 11 Like Buddhism, Islam was carried to neighbouring regions by missionaries and traders, where it met with exceptional success in Indonesia (which remains majority Islamic today).

Modern India

De facto British rule of South Asia lasted ca. 1800-WWII. As the British occupation drew on, vigorous independence movements (both Hindu and Muslim) developed. The best-known figure of these struggles is Mohandas Gandhi , who emerged as a Hindu independence leader during the interwar period. 3

After World War II, the independent nations of India and Pakistan were established (the former chiefly Hindu, the latter chiefly Muslim) Pakistan included the region of Bangladesh, which later seceded. Hundreds of thousands were killed in the course of riots and mass migrations, as many Hindus moved from Pakistan to India, and many Muslims did the opposite. The (chiefly Muslim) region of Kashmir remains disputed by India and Pakistan. K410-11,2

India became a democracy and remained neutral in the Cold War. The nation has experienced vibrant growth since independence, and now stands among the world's top ten economies. 3,7


History of Tobacco

Tobacco and tobacco-related products have a long history that stretches back to 6,000 BC. The plant today known as tobacco, or Nicotiana tabacum, is a member of the nicotiana genus – a close relative to the poisonous nightshade and could previously only be found in the Americas.

In 1492, Columbus was warmly greeted by the Native American tribes he encountered when he first set foot on the new continent. They brought gifts of fruit, food, spears, and more and among those gifts were dried up leaves of the tobacco plant. As they were not edible and had a distinct smell to them, those leaves, which the Native Americans have been smoking for over 2 millennia for medicinal and religious purposes, were thrown overboard.

However, Columbus soon realized that dried tobacco leaves are a prized possession among the natives, as they bartered with them and often bestowed them as a gift.

Rodrigo de Jerez and Luis de Torres are the first Europeans to observe smoking. It was on Cuba and Jerez becomes a staunch smoker, bringing the habit back with him to Spain.

History of Tobacco in Europe

Jerez’s neighbors were so petrified of the smoke coming out of his mouth and nose that he was soon arrested by the Holy Inquisition and held in captivity for nearly 7 years. However, thanks to a lot of seafarers at the time, smoking became an entrenched habit in both Spain and Portugal before long.

In the 15 th century, Portuguese sailors were planting tobacco around nearly all of their trading outposts, enough for personal use and gifts. By mid-century they started growing tobacco commercially in Brazil – it was soon a sought-after commodity and traded across the ports in Europe and the Americas.

By the end of the 16 th century, tobacco plant and use of tobacco were both introduced to virtually every single country in Europe. Tobacco was snuffed or smoked, depending on the preference and doctors claimed that it had medicinal properties. Some, such as Nicolas Monardes in 1571, went as far as to write a book to outline 36 specific ailments that tobacco could supposedly cure.

History of Tobacco in America

Tobacco products gained a strong foothold in the US somewhere around the Revolutionary War. War and tobacco go hand in hand as you will soon see and in 1776 it was used by the revolutionaries as collateral for the loans they were getting from France.

1847 was the year when Philip Morris was established in the UK. They were the first to start selling hand-rolled Turkish cigarettes but the practice was soon picked up by J.E. Liggett and Brother, an American company established in St. Louis in 1849. Even though chewing tobacco was the most popular form of tobacco in the 19 th century (R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company was founded in 1875 and produced chewing tobacco, exclusively) cigarettes were slowly taking sway.

Cigarettes truly came into popularity after the invention of the cigarette-making machine by James Bonsack in 1881. He went into business James ‘Buck’ Duke and the American Tobacco Company was born. The ATC survives today as a part of British American Tobacco, a global company with reported revenues of 13, 104 billion in 2015.

Proliferation of Cigarettes

Cigarettes came to the height of their popularity during the First and the Second World War. Tobacco companies sent millions of packs of cigarettes to soldiers on the front lines, creating hundreds of thousands of faithful and addicted consumers in the process. Cigarettes were even included into soldiers’ C-rations – which contained mostly food and supplements, along with cigarettes.

The 1920s were also the period when tobacco companies started marketing heavily to women, creating brands such as ‘Mild as May’ to try to feminize the habit and make it more appealing to women. The number of female smokers in the United States tripled by 1935.

Smoking Hazards

Dangers associated with nicotine are nothing new. Ever since people started smoking, there were those far-sighted enough to suggest that the habit is dangerous and addictive. In the early 17 th century a Chinese philosopher Fang Yizhi pointed out the dangers of smoking, noting that it caused ‘scorched lungs’. Sir Francis Bacon noticed that there was something very addictive about tobacco way back in 1610, saying that it’s a tough habit to kick – people back then did not know about the addictive nature of nicotine or that nicotine was even a component of tobacco.

In Great Britain, snuff users were warned about dangers of nose cancer as early as 1761 while German doctors started warning pipe smokers about the possibility of developing lip cancer in 1795. In the 1930s, American doctors started linking tobacco use to lung cancer and General Surgeon’s report from 1964 definitely states that smoking causes lung cancer in men.

Tobacco Today

Tobacco and tobacco products are more regulated today. Companies have lost countless lawsuits and are now forced to clearly label their products as having a detrimental effect on the health of a person. Also, tobacco advertising is severely limited and regulated.

Still, tobacco companies make billions of dollars in revenue every year, destroying the health of others. It’s estimated that there are around 1 billion tobacco users in the world today. The damage caused by this addiction and its peddlers numbers in trillions of dollars of health expenses and environmental damages and more effort has to be made to educate people, especially teenagers and young adults, about the dangers of smoking.


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