Last night on CBS’ 60 Minutes Pulitzer Prize winning reporter Bob Woodward cryptically let it be known that much of the recent U.S. success, or lack of failure, in Iraq should be attributed to a “new operational capability” that enables the identification and monitoring of enemy leaders of various ranks and affiliations. Woodward likened this breakthrough to the advent of the tank, which transformed war as it was deployed.
Check out the video for yourself, and please pardon the ad:
As one of the guys who broke Watergate, Woodward’s credibility is impeccable. He cites conversations with members of the Joint Chiefs and President George Bush himself as sources, but does not describe further what this new operational capacity might be.
So, if indeed this is not disinformation, what might this futuristic technology consist of? Super-fine satellite imaging? Microscopic aerial “bugs”? Micro-seismic audio sensing? An aerial drone sensor net? A new laser array?
Let’s hear your best guesses futurists. That is, unless you are actually in the loop, in which case please don’t spill the beans here…
The WoodwardGate super-secret-weapon saga continues and the blogosphere is “abuzz”, pardon the pun – couldn’t resist, with speculation about what the “secret operational capabilities that have been developed by the military to locate, target and kill leaders of al-Qaida in Iraq, insurgent leaders, renegade militia leaders” may consist of.
Fortunately, we’ve got a bunch of brainiacs here at Future Blogger that have helped us separate the more plausible wheat from the ultra-theoretical chaff. Some of their best guesses include:
Tiny Unmanned Aerial Drones: tk421 and a few other contributors have ventured that small, or even microscopic, automated drones or insects could contribute to the secret program. After all, the American govt has been hard at work figuring out how to either build microdrones or embed chips directly into actual insects.
Smart Dust the Size of Pepper Grains: According to commenter CheechWizard (gotta love the handle): It’s smart dust: RFID tags the size of small pepper grains, packaged in grenades, mortar rounds, artillery shells. Their cases are modeled after seeds and pollen that sticks effectively to animals & such, colored to match local dirt and grime. How it works:
Your unit is taking fire, so you call in a couple of rounds of artillery that cover the enemy position in tags. As your guys advance, the attackers fade away as usual. That night, helicopters scan the town, and within a couple of hours, the door kicker squads are rounding up your attackers and their friends at home.