George Friedman’s Thoughts: Command of Space, Command of the Sea

In order to begin thinking about space-based warfare, we need to think about sea-based warfare. The best place to do that is in World War II with the U.S.-Japanese war. When the United States forced its way into Japan, Japan lacked any powered instruments of production. It was a muscle-driven society. When they saw American warships, already having intelligence on British operations in China, the Japanese rapidly understood that their country could not be secure without a modern navy and that it could not have a modern navy without modern industrial plants. Japan surged from being a muscle-based economy to being one driven by petrochemical power. It was an enormous achievement. But it also made Japan vulnerable in a way that it had never been before. Because of Japan’s peculiar geography, it lacked almost all industrial minerals. Japan had to import massive amounts of metal ores and, above all, oil. All of those imports had to traverse sea lanes. That meant that Japan’s economic development was vulnerable to foreign, hostile powers interdicting those sea lanes. Japan had to assume that at some point it would face this sort of challenge. So, the first edition Japanese navy, built by the British, […]

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George Friedman

George Friedman is an internationally recognized geopolitical forecaster and strategist on international affairs and the founder and chairman of Geopolitical Futures.

Dr. Friedman is also a New York Times bestselling author. His most recent book, THE STORM BEFORE THE CALM: America’s Discord, the Coming Crisis of the 2020s, and the Triumph Beyond, published February 25, 2020 describes how “the United States periodically reaches a point of crisis in which it appears to be at war with itself, yet after an extended period it reinvents itself, in a form both faithful to its founding and radically different from what it had been.” The decade 2020-2030 is such a period which will bring dramatic upheaval and reshaping of American government, foreign policy, economics, and culture.

His most popular book, The Next 100 Years, is kept alive by the prescience of its predictions. Other best-selling books include Flashpoints: The Emerging Crisis in Europe, The Next Decade, America’s Secret War, The Future of War and The Intelligence Edge. His books have been translated into more than 20 languages.

Dr. Friedman has briefed numerous military and government organizations in the United States and overseas and appears regularly as an expert on international affairs, foreign policy and intelligence in major media. For almost 20 years before resigning in May 2015, Dr. Friedman was CEO and then chairman of Stratfor, a company he founded in 1996. Friedman received his bachelor’s degree from the City College of the City University of New York and holds a doctorate in government from Cornell University.