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What follows is obviously pure speculation and also includes ironic levels of sensationalism

It may not seem apparent (it is) but the world is gearing up for World War 3.

Recent events have made the global situation even more tense. Namely, the NSA's global monitoring program and Snowden's extended accommodation in Russia. Most surprising of all is the US of A's announcement that they're going to arm and fund the Syrian rebels - when Russia has been public about their support of Syrian government for quite a while now. This is the most blatant proxy war since the Cold War.

The majority of developed countries (and a few developing countries, the country I live in not included) have been stockpiling armaments and putting more and more funding into weapons research and development ever since the end of WW2.

Who do you think will be the instigators?
What do you think will be the pretext of the war?
Which countries do you think would be the first to join the conflict?
Do you think it's likely that it will into a threeway war?
Do you think that the country you live in will directly contribute to the war?
Do you think it's possible that the majority of countries will choose remain neutral?
Where do you think the main areas of conflict will be (countries or continents)?
Where do you think the majority of the conflict will be fought (air, sea, land or even space)?
Do you think that countries will get desperate enough to resort to nuclear weapons?
Are you resigned to the fact that there will most likely be a WW3 in your lifetime?
 

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Who do you think will be the instigators?
If history taught us anything, the crazy Germans!

What do you think will be the pretext of the war?
Perhaps terrorism, directly or indirectly.

Which countries do you think would be the first to join the conflict?
USA.

Do you think it's likely that it will into a threeway war?
If not more than that.

Do you think that the country you live in will directly contribute to the war?
Unfortunately, yes.

Do you think it's possible that the majority of countries will choose remain neutral?
Very yes, realistically, no.

Where do you think the main areas of conflict will be (countries or continents)?
Probably not America.

Where do you think the majority of the conflict will be fought (air, sea, land or even space)?
I consider them dumb enough to just drop 'em A-bombs all over place making everything else rather obsolete as it were.

Do you think that countries will get desperate enough to resort to nuclear weapons?
Most certainly. Broken egos and national pride is all that'd take, at best anyway. At worst they'll just nuke each other balls to the wall from the get go.

Are you resigned to the fact that there will most likely be a WW3 in your lifetime?
Yup, just gotta see how to get out of it when the time comes.
 

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Who do you think will be the instigators?

Nuclear powers, since they have *weight* to push around. Namely Russia and USA.
What do you think will be the pretext of the war?

No clue. The real reason will probably be money.
Which countries do you think would be the first to join the conflict?

If the US does not immediately get drawn (through its own or others actions.) into the fight (as happened in WW1/WW2) then it will most likely sit back and reap rewards like it did in the last two, only stepping in in the end. If it is drawn in then I don't see this not drawing all nuclear powers into the equation, because if any side starts losing they are most likely going to resort to those. Unless the people revolt.
Do you think it's likely that it will into a threeway war?

I actually kinda see this as maybe a way to wake the sheeple up and realize that M.A.D is a horrible idea. Possibly when countries start wanting to use nukes it might end in civil riots/civil wars.
Do you think that the country you live in will directly contribute to the war?

Since I live in the US presently.. I plan to find a way out of the US if it indeed happens.
Do you think it's possible that the majority of countries will choose remain neutral?

I think it would be a tricky situation.. I feel like it is going to be very tense and have a lot of neutrals. I also feel that after one side uses Nukes that people will be more inclined to join the opposite side. Since the only real reason I see to not join is to avoid getting targeted, and nuke usage is just plain dumb.
Where do you think the main areas of conflict will be (countries or continents)?

Stand to reason that the US and Russia will be doing a proxy war in the beginning. In the end.. Probably somewhere in Euro-Asia.
Where do you think the majority of the conflict will be fought (air, sea, land or even space)?
Air and Sea.
Do you think that countries will get desperate enough to resort to nuclear weapons?
In a full out war, those in charge will probably resort to nukes if they start losing. The people might be stirred up enough at that to revolt though.
Are you resigned to the fact that there will most likely be a WW3 in your lifetime?
There are a plethora of ways to die.. War only adds a few more.

I think it is obvious that I count Russia and the US as opposite sides, and deciding factors. That is purely if you are considering nuclear war though.
 

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Who do you think will be the instigators?
USA or China, depending on how you view it.
Quite possibly North-Korea.

What do you think will be the pretext of the war?
Alliances, like WW I.

Which countries do you think would be the first to join the conflict?
US and China.

Do you think it's likely that it will into a threeway war?
No. But the middle-east will probably be a clusterfuck.

Do you think that the country you live in will directly contribute to the war?
Not greatly.

Do you think it's possible that the majority of countries will choose remain neutral?
No.

Where do you think the main areas of conflict will be (countries or continents)?
The Koreas, and Asia.

Where do you think the majority of the conflict will be fought (air, sea, land or even space)?
Air.

Do you think that countries will get desperate enough to resort to nuclear weapons?
Yes.

Are you resigned to the fact that there will most likely be a WW3 in your lifetime?
Yes.
 

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War is bullshit, yet it is perfect way to control people, unless we are mature enough to disobey authorities and simply refuse to take part in war as individuals, the systems are going to start wars... If you see the dumb smiling soldier joining army to fight for *insert bullshit here* or against *insert excuse here* it will be the endless circle... I seriously dont get how the technical development goes that fast, yet leaving the masses dumb as shit... Well brainwashed masses are good masses...
 
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Who do you think will be the instigators?
USA, indirectly or directly. China. Probably not Russia, they seem to be less willing to get into a major fight.

What do you think will be the pretext of the war?
Economic meltdown. No money and starvation is a powerful motivator.

Which countries do you think would be the first to join the conflict?
USA, definitely. China would probably jump in quickly, possibly North Korea.

Do you think it's likely that it will into a threeway war?
I'd see it as more of a protracted fight between two major players with a number of smaller countries fighting their own ancillary wars. The traditional big-group vs big-group model will likely never happen again. IE, us vs China. North Korea uses their ties with China to invade South Korea. Japan allies with the USA and uses our war as an opportunity to steal territory from China.

Do you think that the country you live in will directly contribute to the war?
Of course.

Do you think it's possible that the majority of countries will choose remain neutral?
Doubtful. History shows that anyone trying to stay neutral just ends up getting invaded by one side or the other. Except South America, because so far nobody's really given a fuck about them :)

Where do you think the main areas of conflict will be (countries or continents)?
Europe and/or Asia are the obvious choices.

Where do you think the majority of the conflict will be fought (air, sea, land or even space)?
Early on is mostly air warfare. Once one side controls the airspace, ground troops move in force. How much ground fighting depends on how willing the major players are to just bomb the opposing cities into oblivion. Less bombing means more block-by-block fighting.

Do you think that countries will get desperate enough to resort to nuclear weapons?
Doubtful. Every country with a sufficient stockpile of nukes to do serious damage to another country knows full well they'll be dead five minutes after the country they annihilate.

Are you resigned to the fact that there will most likely be a WW3 in your lifetime?
Wars happen. I have no interest in fighting in one (and am old enough to avoid being drafted), but the thought of a war happening doesn't especially bother me. Of course, I'm sitting here about twenty miles from the headquarters for CENTCOM and SOCOM, so I'm probably a dead man if bombers ever make it to the US.
 

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Look @Wolfrahm, you don't need to do this. We know you have your lair, army, arsenal, and master plan ready. Please.

Do.not.press.that.button.

At least not until we finish our escape plan. Give us a head start too before you turn on the doomsday device.
 

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Well I'm doubtful of another world war. The biggest powers are very powerful now, and have very little incentive to conquer. The world is also largely influenced by the Internet, making cultural and psychological domination very difficult.

The highly remote possibilities would probably involve one of these motivators:

- extraordinary cyber attacks which pisses someone off enough to start something
- massive cultural dissonance between Muslims and other cultures (huge spread of Muslim influence going on)
- a world wide disaster allowing an unaffected country to take control of others (in the initial guise of aid)

All of these are incredibly unlikely at this point, mostly because there are so many informed citizens in the world.
 

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Who do you think will be the instigators?
Countries that require resources badly enough, so the superpowers or emerging superpowers, USA, China, Russia, European Union (Assuming that doesn't go down the shitter)

What do you think will be the pretext of the war?
Resources, maybe tinged with ideology, but mostly resources.

Which countries do you think would be the first to join the conflict?
The superpowers and their allies

Do you think it's likely that it will into a threeway war?
Probably not

Do you think that the country you live in will directly contribute to the war?
Probably

Do you think it's possible that the majority of countries will choose remain neutral?
Yes, because the majority of countries are not a part of any particular power bloc, at least at the moment

Where do you think the main areas of conflict will be (countries or continents)?
It will be where the resources are, oceans and foreign countries. I doubt it would escalate to full scale conventional war though, fear of it escalating would be too much. if it did though, nuclear deterrence will preserve us (I hope)

Where do you think the majority of the conflict will be fought (air, sea, land or even space)?
Ocean, if your answer is anything but this you don't what you're talking about. There will be ground and air engagements of course but ultimately the last untapped reserves of oil will be in the world's oceans, that is where the battles will happen. Space isn't even realistic.

Do you think that countries will get desperate enough to resort to nuclear weapons?
No, a nuclear exchange will only ever happen by accident, the policy of deterrence will work, any nuclear exchange would be suicide. Tactical nuclear weapons are constantly being dismantled for this very reason, too dangerous, too high a chance to escalate any conventional war into a nuclear one.

Are you resigned to the fact that there will most likely be a WW3 in your lifetime?
No, I'm absolutely the last person one could accuse of being a pacifist but I'd say the chances of a world war in our lifetime are minimal at best. (If I were to give percentages, under 15% chance)
 

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War is bullshit, yet it is perfect way to control people, unless we are mature enough to disobey authorities and simply refuse to take part in war as individuals, the systems are going to start wars... If you see the dumb smiling soldier joining army to fight for *insert bullshit here* or against *insert excuse here* it will be the endless circle... I seriously dont get how the technical development goes that fast, yet leaving the masses dumb as shit... Well brainwashed masses are good masses...
You will think differently when your family is starving or there is no electricity in your home for more than couple of hours a day.
 

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You will think differently when your family is starving or there is no electricity in your home for more than couple of hours a day.
I dont see its connection to war? Food and electricity provided by war? I dont see it.
 

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I dont see its connection to war? Food and electricity provided by war? I dont see it.
Acquiring limited resources from people unwilling to share or trade them through war. People think only of fueling their cars when they talk of invading foreign countries for oil, but it is much more. They forget that ships and planes are powered by oil, ships are used to move food, coal and other resources from places where they're abundant to places where they are not. Europe is a good example of a place that needs to import a lot of resources in order to keep functioning. Then you have to get the resources from the stations/airports/ports to the places where people can buy them, this requires trucks and oil.

That's not including all the products that require oil to be manufactured, plastic is everywhere and used for everything from helping to preserve food, to transporting goods.

Ultimately my point was merely you would be far less inclined to be all "Fuck the authority" if you're family and your friends were all suffering from crippling food and power shortages that could be alleviated by taking the resources by force.

Also I would argue that war isn't a very good way to control people, war is far too horrible for people to want it to go on for too long. I would argue that abundancy during peace times makes people much more pliable to manipulation, after all people don't care what happens as long as they get their new iPhone and Big Mac whenever they want it.
 

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Who do you think will be the instigators?
Likely, the US and NATO. They'll attack Syria, which Russia and China have warned against. If Russia and China don't respond militarily to that, they will when the US and Israel finally get around to taking out Iran. Iran may attack NATO if they attack Syria since they have a mutual defense agreement.
What do you think will be the pretext of the war?
"Humanitarian Crisis" (Syria) and "Weapons of Mass Destruction" (Iran).
The real reason will be about money and maintaining the dominance of the US dollar, as always.
Which countries do you think would be the first to join the conflict?
The first would be the US/NATO, Syria/Iran, then possibly Russia and China.
Do you think it's likely that it will into a threeway war?
Well, maybe. I think it'll be NATO/Commonwealth/Israel vs. the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (Russia, China, 'stans) and some other allies of those countries.
The third party here would be "the People." In this internet age of knowing foreigners and realizing they're people too, along with declining faith in governments, there would probably be massive worldwide political upheaval.
Do you think that the country you live in will directly contribute to the war?
Duh. I live in the US, is that even a question? :rolleyes:
Do you think it's possible that the majority of countries will choose remain neutral?
All the big players will be in it and all NATO nations except maybe the Baltic states. Many smaller countries would be pushed to join a side.
The biggest outliers are India and Brazil. Both of these countries are huge heavyweights. Even though Brazil currently has a crap military, they're located in a very strategic spot to mess things up in big ways. India doesn't like China, but they're not real happy with the US and work on military tech with the Russians. I have no idea what they'd do.
Where do you think the main areas of conflict will be (countries or continents)?
Europe, the middle east, and southeast asia. No country has the force projection capability to have troops actually invade the United States.
Where do you think the majority of the conflict will be fought (air, sea, land or even space)?
There will be shooting down of satellites, for sure. The US and China can both do it, Russia probably can too. If something like that or an EMP happens, the US military is crippled since they rely so heavily on technology.
It'll probably be largely fought on land. Barring some catastrophic destruction of the force, no navy can really compete with the US. There will probably be significant air fighting as well since that's what is logistically most important. Russia and China are working on stealth fighters to compete with the US, so if the war doesn't start until after those are complete (or can be pushed into production) the US won't automatically dominate.
Do you think that countries will get desperate enough to resort to nuclear weapons?
Most people in high office are total sociopaths and don't care about other people. We're dealing with people's egos here. I'm positive that if DC was surrounded by foreign troops, Obama would let the nukes fly; same with all other nuclear powers. Who knows, they might even use nukes towards the beginning of the war.
Are you resigned to the fact that there will most likely be a WW3 in your lifetime?
Not really. It's certainly possible, though. That's why we need to keep growing the global resistance/stoking the public discontent. The only thing that could prevent world annihilation in a nuclear war scenario is global revolution.
 

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I can see totally US (+NATO playmates) vs. Russia hostilities. The people of Finland + current President strongly opposes joining NATO, but many other top politicians have made clear decisions minimizing our our defensive resources and stronger involvement on NATO 'alliance/friend' thingy. Ever since this started, Russia started building their borderline defence/missile system stronger. They also keep constantly violating our air space and waters. Finnish media makes fuss about it but politicians don't. Usually Finland and Russia have been able to discuss pretty much anything trough, but this is apparently very politically taboo topic. I don't know has Russia strengthened their other borders with such extent. Though Moscow is pretty damn close to Finland's east border, so can see also why they're doing that.

I really wish that stupid passive-aggressive play that some top Finnish politicians make, would end. It's just making it worse. Also politicians should fucking never make decisions in regards of the army. International shaming from Finlandization politics also has never been helpful. At the moment, staying away from NATO is best for us.

Anyway, war in Russia will affect Finland majorly. Even when we have no part of it. They're one of our major business partners, and our security and integrity, maybe even our independency might be in risk. To begin with, to have an independency is fucking miracle alone - one of the most coldest winters in our history helped. (Well, we wen't trough Ice Age too, but there was no people around so... :p)

And there's always question what will our official big brother Germany do.

Just a few thoughts about my country, in the end we do share a very long border with Russia.

One of Finland's and Germany's main common foreign policies has been integrate Russia more to rest of Europe. In regards of Russia, Finland and Germany often agree to have similar interests and policies.
 

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1. Who do you think will be the instigators?

North Korea is the best Korea.

2. What do you think will be the pretext of the war?

Kim Jong-un, Supreme Leader of Best Korea will flip shit following his crushing defeat in an online game of Risk by the president of Worst Korea.

3. Which countries do you think would be the first to join the conflict?

France.

4. Do you think it's likely that it will [lead?] into a three-way war?

I don't think Kim's into that kind of thing.

5. Do you think that the country you live in will directly contribute to the war?

I could imagine Quebec joining forces with the invincible French army in order to finally declare themselves a sovereign nation.

6. Do you think it's possible that the majority of countries will choose to remain neutral?

No.

7. Where do you think the main areas of conflict will be (countries or continents)?

Vatican City, Monaco, Nauru, and Tuvalu.

8. Where do you think the majority of the conflict will be fought (air, sea, land or even space)?

Land.

9. Do you think that countries will get desperate enough to resort to nuclear weapons?



10. Are you resigned to the fact that there will most likely be a WW3 in your lifetime?

One can dream.
 

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Who do you think will be the instigators?
Skeletor!

What do you think will be the pretext of the war?
The good, old excuse: Some kind of ridiculous territorial dispute.

Which countries do you think would be the first to join the conflict?
United States, China, France, Germany, United Kingdom =VS= Russia, India, Iran, Brazil

Do you think it's likely that it will into a threeway war?
No.

Do you think that the country you live in will directly contribute to the war?
I don't think so.

Do you think it's possible that the majority of countries will choose remain neutral?
Yes.

Where do you think the main areas of conflict will be (countries or continents)?
Africa and Asia-Pacific.

Where do you think the majority of the conflict will be fought (air, sea, land or even space)?
Air and sea... Ground warfare is meaningless between national armies... Space weapons like EMP warheads are universally impractical.

Do you think that countries will get desperate enough to resort to nuclear weapons?
More than %90 of the nuclear weapons stockpile are probably dummy warheads. Tactical/small yield warheads going to be used for sure.

Are you resigned to the fact that there will most likely be a WW3 in your lifetime?
Most likely? I don't think so... Just maybe.
 

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I boldly and courageously reject the OP's premise. The world is not gearing up for a Third World War, and the possibility of direct conflict between the great powers - though more likely than a world war in the style of the first two - is very remote.

With regards to NATO and Russia, even though the two sides do their share of rhetorical posturing and have various disputes (the Snowden Affair and Syria being the latest), they actually deal quite pragmatically with one another under the surface. A prime example of this is Afghanistan. Most of the NATO troops and materiel traveling to Afghanistan go through the Northern Distribution Network: a supply chain that starts at the Baltic seaports and travels, mostly by train, through large swathes of Russia and Central Asia before being reaching Afghanistan via Uzbekistan. This obviously wouldn't be possible without Russian assent; indicating an accommodative posture on the part of Russia toward NATO's Afghan mission.

Certainly, Russia would like to restore some of the international clout it used to have, but its ability to do this is very limited, as it is severely overmatched by NATO (especially now that NATO has expanded well into what used to be the Soviet Union, reaching the borders of Russia with the inclusion of Estonia and Latvia and carrying on a dialogue with Ukraine for potential future membership), to say nothing of Russia's virtually unsolvable demographic problems. Russia has essentially no program of its own to challenge that of NATO, and this fact is manifested in its rhetorical stances on international issues. They don't advocate much for a Russian-led sphere of influence for the promotion of Russian values. Instead, they dispense with value language altogether, and advocate for the ability of every state to manage its own affairs and govern itself how it sees fit. Since Russia can't impose its values to a great extent, it has to take a reactionary position, trying to impede NATO's efforts to impose its values in the hopes of reaping the rhetorical benefits of any NATO mishaps.

Take the Libyan Civil War, for example. The rebels are held up in Benghazi and it looks like Ghaddafi has the upper hand. NATO countries, France and Britain in particular, want the UN Security Council to approve the establishment of a no-fly zone and air support for the rebels to turn things around. As one of the Big Five, Russia has the option to veto the measure if it chooses. If it votes Yes on the measure, it will be seen as complicit in a western effort to impose a new government on Libya. If it votes No, it will be seen as a show of Russian support for Ghaddafi, an international pariah. So it falls back on a more cautious approach. It abstains from the vote, allowing France, the UK and the USA to pass the measure without Russian support. Then Vladimir Putin, who was then Prime Minister and not formally Russia's head of state, made a highly-publicized criticism of the NATO intervention, calling it a western "crusade". That way if the intervention got bogged down and civil strife in Libya continued or got worse, Russia would reap the rhetorical windfall.

I think the biggest danger area for great power conflict, looking through the 21st century, will be East Asia, or possibly Southeast Asia. The region is full of rising industrial and military powers: China, South Korea, Vietnam, India, Japan (much further along in development than the aforementioned powers, but still one of the world's great powers), the Philippines, Indonesia, etc. When nations grow in military and industrial strength, they tend to define their interests more broadly and try to stretch their legs, so to speak.

Since all of the aforementioned countries are rising powers in close proximity to each other, they are likely to lock horns as they attempt to assert themselves. Growing industry requires more resources as well, particularly oil, and the South China Sea is believed to have huge unexplored oil and gas reserves, making access to it, and the ownership of the small islands in the area a huge point of contention between China and Vietnam, who have had a historically antagonistic relationship anyway. This is all exacerbated by the fact that East Asian nations tend to have a greater nationalistic streak than western nations. The Europeans had nationalism beaten out of them in two world wars. Even though China and Japan both suffered tremendously in the twentieth century, the underlying national tensions that caused the Sino-Japanese wars have not been smoothed over with some cooperative scheme like they were in Europe. Supposed grievances from the war are still sources of tension, and not relics of the past. But this does not necessarily mean there will be another war between great powers, and it certainly doesn't mean that there will inevitably be another World War on the horizon. Interestingly, there has been a lot of interest on the part of East Asian policymakers in studying European politics at the turn of the twentieth century, and particularly how Britain handled Germany's rise. The Asian powers are hoping that they can grow and develop without letting national tensions get out of hand like they did in Europe, which I think is a good sign.

Good God, i've gone on another rant. Sorry.
 
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