How Do You Defeat Superior Technology?
By: Tom Chatham
A recent article by Dave Hodges shines a light on a little thought of situation that many people may find themselves in during some future war or civil disturbance. That situation is you coming up against superior technology that you have no defense against. So, how do you deal with this threat?
Lets get right to the chase. Every weapons system is designed to operate in a certain environment and do a certain task within that environment. Because of that, every weapons system has weak points that it cannot hide from once you change that environment.
In WWII Sherman tanks were outmatched by German Tiger tanks. They were able to overcome this disadvantage by superior numbers and by putting the Tigers in situations that gave the Sherman the advantage. The Shermans were smaller and more maneuverable so they would try to engage tigers in dense areas where they could not maneuver and turn their guns because of obstacles. This allowed the Shermans to get behind the tigers and shoot them in their only weak point, their ass. The Tiger might get three Shermans but there was usually a fourth one that managed to get the Tiger.
When radar began to be used in WWII the RAF soon came up against German flak batteries that had radar. To get past this threat they came up with a simple solution. They deployed strips of aluminum foil, code named windows, that confused the radars and allowed the planes to get through. The Germans soon figured out how to deal with this but for a time it made their systems almost useless.
When you are faced with superior weapons you need to do two things.
Determine what its limitations are.
Determine how to attack it in that weak spot.
Those two things are the basis of counter weapons development for centuries. Not long after we got the tank we then developed anti-tank weapons. It’s the same with any new weapons system. Sometimes you need to develop your own superior technology to use against it and sometimes you need to resort to caveman technology.
Killer robots may come after us one day and be able to outrun us but how well do they rappel down a mountain or swim? They may be impervious to rifle bullets but what happens when they are hit by a 6 lb. steel ball from a cannon? A solid object traveling at high speed can do a lot of damage when it hits something. Just look at the DUC rounds the M1 Abrams fires or when a large meteor hits Earth. How do robots handle the bumper of a large truck traveling at high speeds? I have two words for the backyard inventors out there, rail gun.
New optical systems may be able to scan our retinas a mile away and tell who we are but how well do those optical systems work in fog, smoke or covered with mud or paint?
Those new MRAPs may be hard but how well do they operate in woods that have no roads? How well can they drive when all of the windows are covered with paint or other materials that blind them? How fast can they go when they are laying on their side or sitting in three feet of mud? The people in that vehicle must get in at some point and get out at some time. That is a weak point. That vehicle must be refueled at some time. That is a weak point. Are you getting the picture?
How well does any weapons system work when it is hosed down with fuel and ignited? How well does it work without fuel? How well does it work without ammo? How well does it work without repair parts or human operators? How well does it work when it cannot “see”? How well can it operate when it has no traction? How well can it operate in bad weather? What does it take to disable its electronics? What does it take to put a hole in it? What happens to an attack helicopter when a steel cable is suddenly propelled up into its rotors? How well can the operators function when they have no air to breathe?
Every system has a certain environment it works well in. Your job is to get it into a situation that is outside of its operating box so you have the advantage. That is the advantage that humans have over technology. We have the ability to adapt to new situations and learn new tricks. Most weapons systems cannot do that. Even if they can adapt they do not have our imagination. How many weapons systems would think of giving a group of enemy fighters diarrhea to reduce their combat effectiveness?
Our ability to think outside of the box is our greatest advantage. That is what we need to depend on in the days to come. Having weapon systems to fight back with will be important but the most destructive thing we have is our mind. Remember, it was a human that made that new weapon and it will be a human that designs the countermeasure to it.