you are seriously blind, deaf and stupid if you deny the existence of mindcontrol and target individuals- CHINA
In late 2021, the US government sanctioned several Chinese entities for their involvement in the creation of biotechnology that includes “purported brain-control weaponry.”
As an aspiring superpower, the Chinese Communist Party has doggedly pursued economic, technological, and military supremacy, often through illegal or questionable means.
The US Commerce Department’s Bureau of Industry and Security now says the Chinese Academy of Military Medical Sciences and 11 of its research institutions have been involved in the research and support of biotechnology, including brain-control weaponry, that the Chinese military intends to use to gain a battlefield advantage.
Human-rights abuses and national security
In a notice to the Federal Register published in December, the Commerce Department added 34 China-based entities to its blacklist, accusing them of “acting contrary to the foreign policy or national security interests of the United States.”
“The scientific pursuit of biotechnology and medical innovation can save lives. Unfortunately, the PRC is choosing to use these technologies to pursue control over its people and its repression of members of ethnic and religious minority groups,” Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo said in a press release.
The US Commerce Department put the Chinese firms, laboratories, research centers, and academic institutions on the Entity List, which is designed to sanction individuals, organizations, and companies that pose or might pose a risk to US national security or foreign policy.
In addition to the Chinese entities, the department sanctioned entities in Turkey, Malaysia, and Georgia for “diverting or attempting to divert” US material to Iranian military programs.
The department sanctioned five Chinese medical and technology companies and institutions for their support of China’s military modernization efforts and five others for acquiring or trying to acquire US-made items that would reinforce the People’s Liberation Army.
The decision to sanction the Chinese entities follows evidence that their research, products, or services have a military application and are being used or will be used to support the Chinese Communist Party’s human-rights abuses.
The international community has repeatedly criticized Beijing for its genocidal policies against the Uighurs in Xinjiang. The US has accused the Chinese Communist Party of crimes against humanity for its targeting and prosecuting the Uighur minority.
“We cannot allow US commodities, technologies, and software that support medical science and biotechnical innovation to be diverted toward uses contrary to US national security,” Raimondo said, adding that the US “will continue to stand strong” against efforts “to turn tools that can help humanity prosper into implements that threaten global security and stability.”
At the heart of the sanctions is the Chinese Communist Party’s ongoing attempt to create weapons that would facilitate “cognitive control operations.”
The Chinese military correctly asserts that advancing technologies are rapidly changing the nature of warfare. Beijing wants to have a modern mechanized military that is interconnected and can share information rapidly and smoothly, while integrating advanced capabilities to analyze vast troves of data and offer its forces a cognitive advantage.
As a result, Beijing has adjusted its military modernization priorities to include “intelligentized” capabilities alongside the mechanization and informatization of its forces.
According to the Pentagon’s most recent report on the Chinese military, Beijing has been exploring “next-generation operational concepts for intelligentized warfare, such as attrition warfare by intelligent swarms, cross-domain mobile warfare, AI-based space confrontation, and cognitive control operations.”
Cognitive control operations, using so-called brain-control weapons, would suit an autocratic regime that seeks physical and digital oversight of populations under its control, and they would have domestic and foreign applications.
Translated Chinese military reports obtained by The Washington Times suggest Beijing is looking to create weapons that could subdue enemy forces and reduce the amount of force needed to defeat them. Such weapons would disorient or confuse enemy forces, making them easy game for Chinese troops.
The Pentagon’s report said that the Chinese military has continued its campaign to become a global innovation power by mastering advanced technologies, which aligns with previous Chinese Communist Party statements about the “intelligentization” of future warfare by using emerging and disruptive technologies, including artificial intelligence, quantum, biomedical, autonomous systems, and cloud computing.
“These sectors produce technologies that may determine whether America remains the world’s leading superpower or is eclipsed by strategic competitors in the next few years,” the agency said.
Stavros Atlamazoglou is a defense journalist specializing in special operations, a Hellenic Army veteran (national service with the 575th Marine Battalion and Army HQ), and a Johns Hopkins University graduate.
Executive Summary ……………………………………………………………………………………4 Introduction ……………………………………………………………………………………………….5 The advent of Cognitive Warfare ……………………………………………………………….6 From Information Warfare to Cognitive Warfare …………………………………………….6 Hacking the individual ………………………………………………………………………………………….7 Trust is the target …………………………………………………………………………………………………..8 Cognitive Warfare, a participatory propaganda ………………………………………………8 Behavioural economy ……………………………………………………………………………………………9 Cyber psychology …………………………………………………………………………………………………11 The centrality of the human brain ……………………………………………………………..12 Understanding the brain is a key challenge for the future …………………………..12 The vulnerabilities of the human brain ……………………………………………………………..13 The role of emotions …………………………………………………………………………………………….15 The battle for attention ………………………………………………………………………………………..15 Long-term impacts of technology on the brain ………………………………………………16 The promises of neurosciences…………………………………………………………………………. 17 The militarisation of brain science …………………………………………………………….19 Progress and Viability of Neuroscience and Technology (NeuroS/T) …………19 Military and Intelligence Use of NeuroS/T ……………………………………………………….20 Direct Weaponisation of NeuroS/T ……………………………………………………………………21 Neurodata ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………22 The neurobioeconomy …………………………………………………………………………………………23 Towards a new operational domain …………………………………………………………..25 Russian and Chinese Cognitive Warfare Definition……………………………………….. 26 It’s about Humans …………………………………………………………………………………………………28 Recommendations for NATO ………………………………………………………………………………32 Definition of the Human Domain ………………………………………………………………………32 Impact on Warfare Development ……………………………………………………………………….34 Conclusion ………………………………………………………………………………………………….36 Bibliography and Sources …………………………………………………………………………..37 Annex 1 ………………………………………………………………………………………………………38 Nation State Case Study 1: The weaponisation of neurosciences in China …38 Annex 2 ………………………………………………………………………………………………………41 Nation State Case Study 2: The Russian National Technology Initiative ………41
As written in the Warfighting 2040 Paper, the nature of warfare has changed. The majority of current conflicts remain below the threshold of the traditionally accepted definition of warfare, but new forms of warfare have emerged such as Cognitive Warfare (CW), while the human mind is now being considered as a new domain of war. With the increasing role of technology and information overload, individual cognitive abilities will no longer be sufficient to ensure an informed and timely decision-making, leading to the new concept of Cognitive Warfare, which has become a recurring term in military termi- nology in recent years. Cognitive Warfare causes an insidious challenge. It disrupts the ordinary understandings and reactions to events in a gradual and subtle way, but with significant harmful effects over time. Cognitive warfare has universal reach, from the individual to states and multinational organi-sations. It feeds on the techniques of disinformation and propaganda aimed at psychologically exhausting the receptors of information. Everyone contributes to it, to varying degrees, consciously or sub consciously and it provides invaluable knowledge on society, especially open societies, such as those in the West. This knowledge can then be easily weaponised. It offers NATO’s adversaries a means of bypassing the traditional battlefield with significant strategic results, which may be utilised to radically transform Western societies. The instruments of information warfare, along with the addition of “neuro-weapons” adds to future technological perspectives, suggesting that the cognitive field will be one of tomorrow’s battlefields. This perspective is further strengthened in by the rapid advances of NBICs (Nanotechnology, Biotechnology, Information Technology and Cognitive Sciences) and the understanding of the brain. NATO’s adversaries are already investing heavily in these new technologies. NATO needs to anticipate advances in these technologies by raising the awareness on the true potential of CW. Whatever the nature and object of warfare, it always comes down to a clash of human wills, and therefore what defines victory will be the ability to impose a desired behaviour on a chosen audience. Actions undertaken in the five domains – air, land, sea, space and cyber – are all executed in order to have an effect on the human domain. It is therefore time for NATO to recognise the renewed importance of the sixth operational domain, namely the Human Domain. Innovation Hub – Nov 2020 Page 4 of 45 Introduction Individual and organisational cognitive capabilities will be of paramount importance because of the speed and volume of information available in the modern battlespace. If modern technology holds the promise of improving human cognitive performance, it also holds the seeds of serious threats for military organisations. Because organisations are made up of human beings, human limitations and preferences ultimately affect organisational behaviour and decision-making processes. Military organisations are subject to the problem of limited rationality, but this constraint is often overlooked in practice .
1 In an environment permeated with technology and overloaded with information, managing the cognitive abilities within military organisations will be key, while developing capabilities to harm the cognitive abilities of opponents will be a necessity. In other words, NATO will need to get the ability to safeguard her decision-making process and disrupt the adversary’s one. This study intends to respond to the three following questions: • Improve awareness on Cognitive Warfare, including a better understanding of the risks and opportunities of new Cognitive / Human Mind technologies; • Provide ‘out-of-the-box’ insight on Cognitive Warfare; • And to provide strategic level arguments to SACT as to recommend, or not, Cognitive / Human Mind as an Operational Domain. Innovation Hub – Nov 2020 Page 5 of 45 The advent of Cognitive Warfare From Information Warfare to Cognitive Warfare Information warfare (IW) is the most related, and, thus, the most easily conflated, type of warfare with regards to cognitive warfare. However, there are key distinctions that make cognitive warfare unique enough to be addressed under its own jurisdiction. As a concept, IW was first coined and developed under US Military doctrine, and has subsequently been adopted in different forms by several nations. As former US Navy Commander Stuart Green described it as, “Information operations, the closest
2 existing American doctrinal concept for cognitive warfare, consists of five ‘core capabilities’, or elements. These include electronic warfare, computer network operations, PsyOps, military deception, and operational security.” Succinctly, Information Warfare aims at controlling the flow of information. Information warfare has been designed primarily to support objectives defined by the traditional mission of military organisations – namely, to produce lethal kinetic effects on the battlefield. It was not designed to achieve lasting political successes. As defined by Clint Watts, cognitive Warfare opposes the capacities to know and to produce, it actively thwarts knowledge. Cognitive sciences cover all the sciences that concern knowledge and its processes (psychology, linguistics, neurobiology, logic and more).
3 Cognitive Warfare degrades the capacity to know, produce or thwart knowledge. Cognitive sciences cover all the sciences that concern knowledge and its processes (psychology, linguistics, neurobiology, logic and more). Cognitive Warfare is therefore the way of using knowledge for a conflicting purpose. In its broadest sense, cognitive warfare is not limited to the military or institutional world. Since the early 1990s, this capability has tended to be applied to the political, economic, cultural and societal fields. Any user of modern information technologies is a potential target. It targets the whole of a nation’s human capital. Innovation Hub – Nov 2020 Page 6 of 45 “Conflicts will increasingly depend on/and revolve around, information and communications— (…) Indeed, both cyberwar and netwar are modes of conflict that are largely about “knowledge”—about who knows what, when, where, and why, and about how secure a society” John Arquilla and David Ronfeldt The Advent of Netwar, RAND, 1996
“Big Data allows us to develop fabulous calculation and analysis performances, but what makes it possible to respond to a situation is reason and reason is what enables to take a decision in what is not calculable, otherwise we only confirm the state of affairs.” Bernard Stiegler The most striking shift of this practice from the military, to the civilian, world is the perva siveness of CW activities across everyday life that sit outside the normal peace-crisis-conflict construct (with harmful effects). Even if a cognitive war could be conducted to complement to a military conflict, it can also be conducted alone, without any link to an engagement of the armed forces. Moreover, cognitive warfare is potentially endless since there can be no peace treaty or surrender for this type of conflict. Evidence now exists that shows new CW tools & techniques target military personnel directly , not only with classical information weapons but also with a constantly growing and rapidly evolving arsenal of neuro-weapons, targeting the brain. It is important to recognise various nations’ dedicated endeavours to develop non-kinetic operations, that target the Human with effects at every level – from the individual level, up to the socio-political level. Hacking the individual The revolution in information technology has enabled cognitive manipulations of a new kind, on an unprecedented and highly elaborate scale. All this happens at much lower cost than in the past, when it was necessary to create effects and impact through non-virtual actions in the physical realm. Thus, in a continuous process, classical military capabilities do not counter cognitive warfare. Despite the military having difficulty in recognising the reality and effectiveness of the phenomena associated with cognitive warfare, the relevance of kinetic and resource-intensive means of warfare is nonetheless diminishing. Social engineering always starts with a deep dive into the human environment of the target. The goal is to understand the psychology of the targeted people. This phase is more important than any other as it allows not only the precise targeting of the right people but also to anticipate reactions, and to develop empathy. Understanding the human environment is the key to building the trust that will ultimately lead to the desired results. Humans are an easy target since theyall contribute by providing information on themselves, making the adversaries’ sockpuppets more powerful.
4 In any case NATO’s adversaries focus on identifying the Alliance’s centres of gravity and vulnerabilities. They have long identified that the main vulnerability is the human. It is easy to find these centres of gravity in open societies because they are reflected in the study of human and social sciences such as political science, history, geography, biology, philosophy, voting systems, public administration, international politics, international relations, religious studies, education, sociology, arts and culture… Cognitive Warfare is a war of ideologies that strives to erode the trust that underpins every society. Innovation Hub – Nov 2020 Page 7 of 45 “Social engineering is the art and science of getting people to comply to your wishes. It is not a way of mind control, it will not allow you to get people to perform tasks wildly outside of their normal behaviour and it isfar from foolproof” Harl, People Hacking, 1997 Trust is the target Cognitive warfare pursues the objective of undermining trust (public trust in electoral processes, trust in institutions, allies, politicians…). , therefore the individual becomes the
5 weapon, while the goal is not to attack what individuals think but rather the way they think .
6 It has the potential to unravel the entire social contract that underpins societies. It is natural to trust the senses, to believe what is seen and read. But the democratisation of automated tools and techniques using AI, no longer requiring a technological background, enables anyone to distort information and to further undermine trust in open societies. The use of fake news, deep fakes, Trojan horses, and digital avatars will create new suspicions which anyone can exploit. It is easier and cheaper for adversaries to undermine trust in our own systems than to attack our power grids, factories or military compounds. Hence, it is likely that in the near future there will be more attacks, from a growing and much more diverse number of potential players with a greater risk for escalation or miscalculation. The characteristics of cyberspace (lack of regulation, difficulties and associated risks of attribution of attacks in particular) mean that new actors, either state or non-state, are to be expected .
7 As the example of COVID-19 shows, the massive amount of texts on the subject, including deliberately biased texts (example is the Lancet study on chloroquine) created an information and knowledge overload which, in turn, generates both a loss of credibility and a need for closure. Therefore the ability for humans to question, normally, any data/information presented is hampered, with a tendency to fall back on biases to the detriment of unfettered decision making. It applies to trust among individuals as well as groups, political alliances and societies. “Trust, in particular among allies, is a targeted vulnerability. As any international institution does, NATO relies on trust between its partners. Trust is based not only on respecting some explicit and tangible agreements, but also on ‘invisible contracts,’ on sharing values, which is not easy when such a proportion of allied nations have been fighting each other for centuries. This has left wounds and scars creating a cognitive/information landscape that our adversaries study with great care. Their objective is to identify the ‘Cognitive Centers of Gravity’ of the Alliance, which they will target with ‘info-weapons’.”
8 Cognitive Warfare, a participatory propaganda
9 In many ways, cognitive warfare can be compared to propaganda, which can be defined as “a set of methods employed by an organised group that wants to bring about the active or passive participation in its actions of a mass of individuals, psychologically unified through psychological manipulations and incorporated in an organisation.”
10 Innovation Hub – Nov 2020 Page 8 of 45 The purpose of propaganda is not to “program” minds, but to influence attitudes and behaviours by getting people to adopt the right attitude, which may consist of doing certain things or, often, stopping doing them. Cognitive Warfare is methodically exploited as a component of a global strategy by adversaries aimed at weakening, interfering and destabilising targeted populations, institutions and states, in order to influence their choices, to undermine the autonomy of their decisions and the sovereignty of their institutions. Such campaigns combine both real and distorted information (misinformation), exaggerated facts and fabricated news (disinformation). Disinformation preys on the cognitive vulnerabilities of its targets by taking advantage of pre-existing anxieties or beliefs that predispose them to accept false information. This requires the aggressor to have an acute understanding of the socio-political dynamics at play and to know exactly when and how to penetrate to best exploit these vulnerabilities. Cognitive Warfare exploits the innate vulnerabilities of the human mind because of the way it is designed to process information, which have always been exploited in warfare, of course. However, due to the speed and pervasiveness of technology and information, the human mind is no longer able to process the flow of information. Where CW differs from propaganda is in the fact that everyone participates, mostly inadvertently, to information processing and knowledge formation in an unprecedented way. This is a subtle but significant change. While individuals were passively submitted to propaganda, they now actively contribute to it. The exploitation of human cognition has become a massive industry. And it is expected that emerging artificial intelligence (AI) tools will soon provide propagandists radically enhanced capabilities to manipulate human minds and change human behaviour .
11 Behavioural economy “Capitalism is undergoing a radical mutation. What many describe as the ‘data economy’ is in fact better understood as a ‘behavioural economics’”. Innovation Hub – Nov 2020 Page 9 of 45 “New tools and techniques, combined with the changing technological and information foundations of modern societies, are creating an unprecedented capacity to conduct virtual societal warfare.” Michael J. Mazarr “Modern propaganda is based on scientific analyses of psychology and sociology. Step by step, the propagandist builds his techniques on the basis of his knowledge of man, his tendencies, his desires, his needs, his psychic mechanisms, his conditioning — and as much on social psychology as on depth psychology.” Jacques Ellul, Propaganda, 1962 Behavioural economics (BE) is defined as a method of economic analysis that applies psychological insights into human behaviour to explain economic decision-making. As research into decision-making shows, behaviour becomes increasingly computational, BE is at the crossroad between hard science and soft science .
12 Operationally, this means massive and methodical use of behavioural data and the development of methods to aggressively seek out new data sources. With the vast amount of (behavioural) data that everyone generates mostly without our consent and awareness, further manipulation is easily achievable. The large digital economy companies have developed new data capture methods, allowing the inference of personal information that users may not necessarily intend to disclose. The excess data has become the basis for new prediction markets called targeted advertising. “Here is the origin of surveillance capitalism in an unprecedented and lucrative brew: behavioural surplus, data science, material infrastructure, computational power, algorithmic systems, and automated platforms”, claims Soshanna Zuboff .
13 In democratic societies, advertising has quickly become as important as research. It has finally become the cornerstone of a new type of business that depends on large-scale online monitoring. The target is the human being in the broadest sense and it is easy to divert the data obtained from just commercial purposes, as the Cambridge Analytica (CA) scandal demonstrated. Thus, the lack of regulation of the digital space – the so-called “data swamp”- does not only benefit the digital-age regimes, which “can exert remarkable control over not just computer networks and human bodies, but the minds of their citizens as well” .
14 It can also be utilised for malign purposes as the example of the CA scandal has shown. CA digital model outlined how to combine personal data with machine learning for political ends by profiling individual voters in order to target them with personalised political advertisements. Using the most advanced survey and psychometrics techniques, Cambridge Analytica was actually able to collect a vast amount of individuals’ data that helped them understand through economics, demographics, social and behavioural information what each of them thought. It literally provided the company a window into the minds of people. The gigantic collection of data organised via digital technologies is today primarily used to define and anticipate human behaviour. Behavioural knowledge is a strategic asset. “Behavioural economics adapts psychology research to economic models, thus creating more accurate representations of human interactions.”
15 “Cambridge Analytica has demonstrated how it’s possible […] to leverage tools to build a scaled-down version of the massive surveillance and manipulation machines”
16 Innovation Hub – Nov 2020 Page 10 of 45 “Technology is going on unabatedand will continue to go on unabated. […] Because technology is going so fast and because people don’t understand it, there was always going to be a Cambridge Analytica.” Julian Wheatland Ex-Chief Operating Officer of Cambridge Analytica As shown by the example of Cambridge Analytica, one can weaponise such knowledge and develop appropriate offensive and defensive capabilities, paving the way for virtual societal warfare. A systematic use of BE methods applied to the military could lead to better under
17 – standing of how individuals and groups behave and think, eventually leading to a wider understanding of the decision-making environment of adversaries. There is a real risk that access to behavioural data utilising the tools and techniques of BE, as shown by the example of Cambridge Analytica, could allow any malicious actor- whether state or non-state- to strategically harm open societies and their instruments of power. Cyberpsychology Assuming that technology affects everyone, studying and understanding human behaviour in relation to technology is vital as the line between cyberspace and the real world is becoming blurry. The exponentially increasing impact of cybernetics, digital technologies, and virtuality can only be gauged when considered through their effects on societies, humans, and their respective behaviours. Cyberpsychology is at the crossroads of two main fields: psychology and cybernetics. All this is relevant to defense and security, and to all areas that matter to NATO as it prepares for transformation. Centered on the clarification of the mechanisms of thought and on the conceptions, uses and limits of cybernetic systems, cyberpsychology is a key issue in the vast field of Cognitive Sciences. The evolution of AI introduces new words, new concepts, but also new theories that encompass a study of the natural functioning of humans and of the machines they have built and which, today, are fully integrated in their natural environment (anthropo-technical). Tomorrow’s human beings will have to invent a psychology of their relation to machines. But the challenge is to develop also a psychology of machines, artificial intelligent software or hybrid robots. Cyber psychology is a complex scientific field that encompasses all psychological phenomena associated with, or affected by relevant evolving technologies. Cyber psychology examines the way humans and machines impact each other, and explores how the relationship between humans and AI will change human interactions and inter-machine communication .
Paradoxically, the development of information technology and its use for manipulative purposes in particular highlights the increasingly predominant role of the brain. The brain is the most complex part of the human body. This organ is the seat of intelligence, the interpreter of the senses, the initiator of body movements, the controller of behaviour and the centre of decisions. Innovation Hub – Nov 2020 Page 11 of 45 The centrality of the human brain . For centuries, scientists and philosophers have been fascinated by the brain, but until recently they considered the brain to be almost incomprehensible. Today, however, the brain is beginning to reveal its secrets. Scientists have learned more about the brain in the past decade than in any previous century, thanks to the accelerating pace of research in the neurological and behavioural sciences and the development of new research techniques. For the military, it represents the last frontier in science, in that it could bring a decisive advantage in tomorrow’s wars. Understanding the brain is a key challenge for the future Substantial advances have been made in recent decades in understanding how the brain functions. While our decisionmaking processes remain centered on Human in particular with its capacity to orient (OODA loop), fed by data, analysis and visualisations, the inability of human to process, fuse and analyse the profusion of data in a timely manner calls for humans to team with AI machines to compete with AI machines. In order to keep a balance between the human and the machine in the decision-making process, it becomes necessary to be aware of human limitations and vulnerabilities. It all starts with understanding our cognition processes and the way our brain’s function. Over the past two decades, cognitive science and neuroscience have taken a new step in the analysis and understanding of the human brain, and have opened up new perspectives in terms of brain research, if not indeed of a hybridisation, then of human and artificial intelligence. They have mainly made a major contribution to the study of the diversity of neuro-psychic mechanisms facilitating learning and, as a result, have, for example, challenged the intuition of “multiple intelligences”. No one today can any longer ignore the fact that the brain is both the seat of emotions the interactive mechanisms of memorisation, information processing, problem solving and decision-making. Innovation Hub – Nov 2020 Page 12 of 45 Cognitive Science Discipline associating psychology, sociology, linguistics, artificial intelligence and neurosciences, and having for object the explicitation of the mechanisms of thought and information processing mobilised for the acquisition, conservation, use and transmission of knowledge. Neuroscience Trans-disciplinary scientific discipline associating biology, mathematics, computer science, etc., with the aim of studying the organisation and functioning of the nervous system, from the point of view of both its structure and its functioning, from the molecular scale down to the level of the organs. The vulnerabilities of the human brain “In the cognitive war, it’s more important than ever to know thyself.”
19 Humans have developed adaptations to cope with cognitive limitations allowing more effcient processing of information. Unfortunately, these same shortcuts introduce distortions in our thinking and communication, making communication efforts ineffective and subject to manipulation by adversaries seeking to mislead or confuse. These cognitive biases can lead to inaccurate judgments and poor decision making that could trigger an unintended escalation or prevent the timely identification of threats. Understanding the sources and types of cognitive biases can help reduce misunderstandings and inform the development of better strategies to respond to opponents’ attempts to use these biases to their advantage.
In particular, the brain:
is unable to distinct whether particular information is right or wrong;
Is led to take shortcuts in determining the trustworthiness of messages in case of information overload;
is led to believe statements or messages that its already heard as true, even though these may be false;
accepts statements as true, if backed by evidence, with no regards to the authenticity of the that evidence. Innovation Hub – Nov 2020 Page 13 of 45 Those are, among many others, the cognitive bias, defined as a systematic pattern of deviation from norm or rationality in judgment.
20 There are many different cognitive biases inherently stemming from the human brain. Most
21 of them are relevant to the information environment. Probably the most common and most damaging cognitive bias is the confirmation bias. This is the effect that leads people to look for evidence that confirms what they already think or suspect, to regard facts and ideas they encounter as further confirmation, and to dismiss or ignore any evidence that seems to support another point of view. In other words, “people see what they want to see” .
22 Cognitive biases effect everyone, from soldiers on the ground to staff officers, and to a greater extent than everyone admits. It is not only important to recognise it in ourselves, but to study the biases of adversaries to understand how they behave and interact. As stated by Robert P. Kozloski, “The importance of truly “knowing yourself” cannot be understated. Advances in computing technology, particularly machine learning, provide the military with the opportunity to know itself like never before. Collecting and analysing the data Innovation Hub – Nov 2020 Page 14 of 45 generated in virtual environments will enable military organisations to understand the cognitive performance of individuals.”
23 Ultimately, operational advantages in cognitive warfare will first come from the improvement of understanding of military cognitive abilities and limitations. The role of emotions In the digital realm, what allows the digital industries and their customers (and notably advertisers) to distinguish individuals in the crowd, to refine personalisation and behavioural analysis, are emotions. Every social media platform, every website is designed to be addictive and to trigger some emotional bursts, trapping the brain in a cycle of posts. The speed, emotional intensity, and echo-chamber qualities of social media content cause those exposed to it to experience more extreme reactions. Social media is particularly well suited to worsening political and social polarisation because of their ability to disseminate violent images and scary rumours very quickly and intensely. “The more the anger spreads, the more Internet users are susceptible to becoming a troll.”
24 At the political and strategic level, it would be wrong to underestimate the impact of emotions. Dominique Moïsi showed in his book “The Geopolitics of Emotion” , how emotions –
25 hope, fear and humiliation – were shaping the world and international relations with the echo-chamber effect of the social media. For example, it seems important to integrate into theoretical studies on terrorist phenomena the role of emotions leading to a violent and/or a terrorist path. By limiting cognitive abilities, emotions also play a role in decision-making, performance, and overall well-being, and it’s impossible to stop people from experiencing them. “In the face of violence, the very first obstacle you will have to face will not be your abuser, but your own reactions.”
26 The battle for attention Never have knowledge and information been so accessible, so abundant, and so shareable. Gaining attention means not only building a privileged relationship with our interlocutors to better communicate and persuade, but it also means preventing competitors from getting that attention, be it political, economic, social or even in our personal life. This battlefield is global via the internet. With no beginning and no end, this conquest knows no respite, punctuated by notifications from our smartphones, anywhere, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Coined in 1996 by Professor B.J. Fogg from Stanford University, “captology” is defined as the science of using “computers as technologies of persuasion”.
27 Innovation Hub – Nov 2020 Page 15 of 45 “We are competing with sleep” Reed Hastings CEO of Netflix The time has therefore come to adopt the rules of this “attention economy”, to master the technologies related to “captology”, to understand how these challenges are completely new. Indeed, this battle is not limited to screens and design, it also takes place in brains, especially in the way they are misled. It is also a question of understanding why, in the age of social networks, some “fake news”, conspiracy theories or “alternative facts”, seduce and convince, while at the same time rendering their victims inaudible. Attention on the contrary is a limited and increasingly scarce resource. It cannot be shared: it can be conquered and kept. The battle for attention is now at work, involving companies, states and citizens. The issues at stake now go far beyond the framework of pedagogy, ethics and screen addiction. The consumption environment, especially marketing, is leading the way. Marketers have long understood that the seat of attention and decision making is the brain and as such have long sought to understand, anticipate its choices and influence it. This approach naturally applies just as well to military affairs and adversaries have already understood this. Long-term impacts of technology on the brain As Dr. James Giordano claims, “the brain will the battlefield of the 21st century”.
28 And when it comes to shaping the brain, the technological environment plays a key role. The brain has only one chance to develop. Damage to the brain is very often irreversible. Understanding and protecting our brains from external aggression, of all kinds, will be one of the major challenges of the future. According to the neuroscientist Maryanne Wolf, humans were not meant to read and the invention of printing changed the shape of our brains . It took years, if not centuries, to assess
29 the consequences – social, political or sociological for example – of the invention of printing. It will likely take longer before understanding accurately the long-term consequences of the digital age but one thing everyone agrees on is that the human brain is changing today faster than ever before with the pervasiveness of digital technology. There is a growing amount of research that explores how technology affects the brain. Studies show that exposure to technology shapes the cognitive processes and the ability to take in information. One of the major findings is the advent of a society of ‘cognitive offloaders’, meaning that no one memorises important information any longer. Instead, the brain tends to remember the location where they retrieved when it is next required. With information and visual overload, the brain tends to scan information and pick out what appears to be important with no regard to the rest. One of the evolutions already noticed is the loss of critical thinking directly related to screen reading and the increasing inability to read a real book. The way information is processed affects brain development, leading to neglect of the sophisticated thought processes. Brains will thus be different tomorrow. It is therefore highly probable that our brains will be radically Innovation Hub – Nov 2020 Page 16 of 45 transformed in an extremely short period, but it is also likely that this change will come at the expense of more sophisticated, more complex thinking processes necessary for critical analysis. In an era where memory is outsourced to Google, GPS, calendar alerts and calculators, it will necessarily produce a generalised loss of knowledge that is not just memory, but rather motor memory. In other words, a long-term process of disabling connections in your brain
is ongoing. It will present both vulnerabilities and opportunities. However, there is also plenty of research showing the benefits of technology on our cognitive functions. For example, a Princeton University study found that expert video gamers have a
31 higher ability to process data, to make decisions faster or even to achieve simultaneous multitasks in comparison to non-gamers. There is a general consensus among neuroscientists that a reasoned use of information technology (and particularly games) is beneficial to the brain. By further blurring the line between the real and the virtual, the development of technologies such as Virtual Reality (VR), Augmented Reality (AR) or Mixed Reality (MR) has the potential to transform the brain’s abilities even more radically . Behaviours in virtual environments
32 can continue to influence real behaviour long after exiting VR.
33 Yet, virtual environments offer the opportunity to efficiently complement live training since it can provide cognitive experience that a live exercise cannot replicate. While there are concerns and research on how digital media are harming developing minds, it is still difficult to predict how the technology will affect and change the brain, but with the ubiquity of IT, it will become increasingly crucial to carefully detect and anticipate the impacts of information technology on the brain and to adapt the use of information technology. In the long-term, there is little doubt that Information Technologies will transform the brain, thus providing more opportunities to learn and to apprehend the cyber environment but also vulnerabilities that will require closely monitoring in order to counter and defend against them and how to best exploit them. The promises of neurosciences “Social neuroscience holds the promise of understanding people’s thoughts, emotions and intentions through the mere observation of their biology.”
34 Should scientists be able to establish a close and precise correspondence between biological functions on the one hand and social cognitions and behaviours on the other hand, neuroscientific methods could have tremendous applications for many disciplines and for our society in general. It includes decision-making, exchanges, physical and mental health care, prevention, jurisprudence, and more. This highlights how far neurosciences occupies a growing place in medical and scientific research. More than just a discipline, they articulate a set of fields related to the knowledge of the brain and nervous system and question the complex relationships between man and his Innovation Hub – Nov 2020 Page 17 of 45 environment and fellow human beings. From biomedical research to cognitive sciences, the actors, approaches and organisations that structure neuroscience are diverse. Often convergent, they can also be competitive. While the discoveries and challenges of the neurosciences are relatively well known, this field raises both hope and concern. In a disorganised and, at times, ill-informed way, “neuroscience” seems to be everywhere. Integrated, sometimes indiscriminately, in many debates, they are mobilised around the issues of society and public health, education, aging, and nourish the hopes of an augmented man.
Today, the manipulation of our perception, thoughts and behaviours is taking place on previously unimaginable scales of time, space and intentionality. That, precisely, is the source of one of the greatest vulnerabilities that every individual must learn to deal with. Many actors are likely to exploit these vulnerabilities, while the evolution of technology for producing and disseminating information is increasingly fast. At the same time, as the cost of technology steadily drops, more actors enter the scene. As the technology evolves, so do the vulnerabilities. Innovation Hub – Nov 2020 Page 18 of 45 The militarisation of brain science Scientists around the world are asking the question of how to free humanity from the limitations of the body. The line between healing and augmentation becomes blurred. In addition, the logical progression of research is to achieve a perfect human being through new technological standards. In the wake of the U.S. Brain Initiative initiated in 2014, all the major powers (EU/China/ Russia) have launched their own brain research programs with substantial fundings. China sees the brain “as the HQ of the Human body and precisely attacking the HQ is one of the most effective strategies for determining victory or defeat on the battlefield” .
35 The revolution in NBIC (Nanotechnology, biotechnology, information technology, and cognitive science) including advances in genomics, has the potential for dual-use technology development. A wide range of military applications such as improving the performance of soldiers, developing new weapons such as directed energy weapons are already discussed. Progress and Viability of Neuroscience and Technology (NeuroS/T) Neuroscience employs a variety of methods and technologies to evaluate and influence neurologic substrates and processes of cognition, emotion, and behaviour. In general, brain science can be either basic or applied research. Basic research focuses upon obtaining knowledge and furthering understanding of structures and functions of the nervous system on a variety of levels by employing methods of the physical and natural sciences. Applied research seeks to develop translational approaches that can be directly utilised to understand and modify the physiology, psychology, and/or pathology of target organisms, including humans. Neuroscientific methods and technologies (neuroS/T) can be further categorised as those used to assess, and those used to affect the structures and functions of the nervous system, although these categories and actions are not mutually exclusive. For example, the use of certain drugs, toxins, and probes to elucidate functions of various sites of the central and peripheral nervous system can also affect neural activity. NeuroS/T is broadly considered a natural and/or life science and there is implicit and explicit intent, if not expectation to develop and employ tools and outcomes of research in clinical medicine. Neuroscientific techniques, technologies, and information could be used for medical as well as non-medical (educational, occupational, lifestyle, military, etc.) purposes .
36 It is questionable whether the uses, performance enablements, and resulting capabilities could (or should) be used in intelligence and/or diplomatic operations to mitigate and subvert aggression, violence, and conflict. Of more focal concern are uses of research findings and products to directly facilitate the performance of combatants, the integration of human-machine interfaces to optimise combat capabilities of semi-autonomous vehicles (e.g., drones), and development of biological and chemical weapons (i.e., neuroweapons). Innovation Hub – Nov 2020 Page 19 of 45 Some NATO Nations have already acknowledged that neuroscientific techniques and technologies have high potential for operational use in a variety of security, defense and intelligence enterprises, while recognising the need to address the current and short-term ethical, legal and social issues generated by such use .
37 Military and Intelligence Use of NeuroS/T The use of neuroS/T for military and intelligence purposes is realistic, and represents a clear and present concern. In 2014, a US report asserted that neuroscience and technology had matured considerably and were being increasingly considered, and in some cases evaluated for operational use in security, intelligence, and defense operations. More broadly, the iterativerecognition of the viability of neuroscience and technology in these agenda reflects the paceand breadth of developments in the field. Although a number of nations have pursued, andare currently pursuing neuroscientific research and development for military purposes, perhaps the most proactive efforts in this regard have been conducted by the United States Department of Defense; with most notable and rapidly maturing research and development conducted by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) and Intelligence Advanced Research Projects Activity (IARPA). To be sure, many DARPA projects are explicitly directed toward advancing neuropsychiatric treatments and interventions that will improve both military and civilian medicine. Yet, it is important to note the prominent ongoing –and expanding – efforts in this domain by NATO European and trans-Pacific strategic competitor nations. As the 2008 National Research Council report stated, “… for good or for ill, an ability to better
38 – understand the capabilities of the body and brain… could be exploited for gathering intelligence, military operations, information management, public safety and forensics”. To paraphrase Aristotle, every human activity and tool can be regarded as purposed toward somedefinable “good”. However, definitions of “good” may vary, and what is regarded as good for some may present harm to others. The potential for neuroS/T to afford insight, understanding, and capability to affect cognitive, emotional, and behavioural aspects of individuals and groups render the brain sciences particularly attractive for use in security, intelligence, and military/warfare initiatives. To approach this issue, it is important to establish four fundamental premises. • Firstly, neuroS/T is, and will be increasingly and more widely incorporated into approaches to national security, intelligence gathering and analysis, and aspects of military operations; • Secondly, such capabilities afford considerable power; • Thirdly, many countries are actively developing and subsidising neuro S/T research under dual-use agendas or for direct incorporation into military programs; • Fourthly, these international efforts could lead to a “capabilities race” as nations react to new developments by attempting to counter and/or improve upon one another’s discoveries. Innovation Hub – Nov 2020 Page 20 of 45 This type of escalation represents a realistic possibility with potential to affect international security. Such “brinksmanship” must be acknowledged as a potential impediment to attempts to develop analyses and guidelines (that inform or prompt policies) that seek to constrain or restrict these avenues of research and development. Neuroscientific techniques and technologies that are being utilised for military efforts include:
Neural systems modelling and human/brain-machine interactive networks in intelligence, training and operational systems;
Neuroscientific and neurotechnological approaches to optimising performance and resilience in combat and military support personnel;
Direct weaponisation of neuroscience and neurotechnology. Of note is that each and all may contribute to establishing a role for brain science on the 21st century battlescape. Direct Weaponisation of NeuroS/T The formal definition of a weapon as “a means of contending against others” can be extended to include any implement “…used to injure, defeat, or destroy”. Both definitions apply to products of neuroS/T research that can be employed in military/warfare scenarios. The objectives for neuroweapons in warfare may be achieved by augmenting or degrading functions of the nervous system, so as to affect cognitive, emotional and/or motor activity and capability (e.g., perception, judgment, morale, pain tolerance, or physical abilities and stamina) necessary for combat. Many technologies can be used to produce these effects, and there is demonstrated utility for neuroweapons in both conventional and irregular warfare scenarios. At present, outcomes and products of computational neuroscience and neuropharmacologic research could be used for more indirect applications, such as enabling human efforts by simulating, interacting with, and optimising brain functions, and the classification and detection of human cognitive, emotional, and motivational states to augment intelligence or counterintelligence tactics. Human/brain-machine interfacing neurotechnologies capable of optimising data assimilation and interpretation systems by mediating access to – and manipulation of – signal detection, processing, and/or integration are being explored for their potential to delimit “human weak links” in the intelligence chain. The weaponised use of neuroscientific tools and products is not new. Historically, such weapons which include nerve gas and various drugs, pharmacologic stimulants (e.g., amphetamines), sedatives, sensory stimuli, have been applied as neuroweapons to incapacitate the enemy, and even sleep deprivation and distribution of emotionally provocative information in psychological operations (i.e., PSYOPS) could rightly be regarded as forms of weaponised applications of neuroscientific and neurocognitive research. Innovation Hub – Nov 2020 Page 21 of 45 Products of neuroscientific and neurotechnological research can be utilised to affect 1) memory, learning, and cognitive speed; 2) wake-sleep cycles, fatigue and alertness; 3) impulse control; 4) mood, anxiety, and self-perception; 5) decision-making; 6) trust and empathy; 7) and movement and performance (e.g., speed, strength, stamina, motor learning, etc.). In military/warfare settings, modifying these functions can be utilised to mitigate aggression and foster cognitions and emotions of affiliation or passivity; induce morbidity, disability or suffering; and “neutralise” potential opponents or incur mortality. Neurodata The combination of multiple disciplines (e.g., the physical, social, and computational sciences), and intentional “technique and technology sharing” have been critical to rapid and numerous discoveries and developments in the brain sciences. This process, advanced integrative scientific convergence (AISC), can be seen as a paradigm for de-siloing disciplines toward fostering innovative use of diverse and complementary knowledge-, skill-, and tool-sets to both de-limit existing approaches to problem resolution; and to develop novel means ofexploring and furthering the boundaries of understanding and capability. Essential to theAISC approach in neuroscience is the use of computational (i.e., big data) methods and advancements to enable deepened insight and more sophisticated intervention to the structureand function(s) of the brain, and by extension, human cognition, emotion, and behaviour .
39 Such capacities in both computational and brain sciences have implications for biosecurity and defense initiatives. Several neurotechnologies can be employed kinetically (i.e., providing means to injure, defeat, or destroy adversaries) or non-kinetically (i.e., providing “means of contending against others,” especially in disruptive ways) engagements. While many types of neuroS/T have been addressed in and by extant forums, treaties, conventions, and laws, other newer techniques and technologies – inclusive of neurodata – have not. In this context, the term “neurodata” refers to the accumulation of large volumes of information; handling of large scale and often diverse informational sets; and new methods of data visualisation, assimilation, comparison, syntheses, and analyses. Such information can be used to: • more finely elucidate the structure and function of human brain; • and develop data repositories that can serve as descriptive or predictive metrics for neuropsychiatric disorders. Purloining and/or modifying such information could affect military and intelligence readiness, force conservation, and mission capability, and thus national security. Manipulation of both civilian and military neurodata would affect the type of medical care that is (or is not) Innovation Hub – Nov 2020 Page 22 of 45 provided, could influence the ways that individuals are socially regarded and treated, and in these ways disrupt public health and incur socio-economic change. As the current COVID-19 pandemic has revealed, public – and institutional public health – responses to novel pathogens are highly variable at best, chaotic at worst, and indubitablycostly (on many levels) in either case. To be sure, such extant gaps in public health and safetyinfrastructures and functions could be exploited by employing “precision pathologies” (capable of selectively affecting specific targets such as individuals, communities;, domestic animals, livestock, etc.) and an aggressive program of misinformation to incur disruptive effects on social, economic, political, and military scales that would threaten national stability andsecurity. Recent elucidation of the Chinese government’s Overseas Key Individuals Database(OKIDB), which, via collaboration with a corporate entity, Shenzhen Zhenua Data Technology, has amassed data to afford “insights into foreign political, military, and diplomatic figures…containing information on more than 2 million people…and tens of thousands whohold prominent public positions…” that could be engaged by “Beijing’s army of cyberhackers”. Digital biosecurity – a term that describes the intersection of computational systems and biological information and how to effectively prevent or mitigate current and emerging risk arising at this intersection – becomes ever more important and required. The convergence of neurobiology and computational capabilities, while facilitating beneficial advances in brain research and its translational applications, creates a vulnerable strategic asset that will besought by adversaries to advance their own goals for neuroscience. Hacking of biological data within the academic, industry, and the health care systems has already occurred – and neurodata are embedded within all of these domains. Thus, it is likely that there will be more direct attempts at harnessing neurodata to gain leverageable informational, social, legal, and military capability and power advantage(s), as several countries that are currently strategically competitive with the U.S. and its allies invest heavily in both neuro- and cyber-scientific research programs and infrastructure. The growing fortitude of these states’ quantitative and economic presence in these fields can – and is intended to – shift international leadership, hegemony, and influence ethical, technical, commercial and politico-military norms and standards of research and use. For example, Russian leadership has declared interest in the employment of “genetic passports” such that those in the military who display genetic indications of high cognitive performance can be directed to particularmilitary tasks. The neurobioeconomy Advancements in neuroS/T have contributed to much growth in the neuro-bioeconomy. With neurological disorders being the second leading cause of death worldwide (with approximately 9 million deaths; constituting 16.5% of global fatalities), several countries have initiated programs in brain research and innovation. These initiatives aim to: Innovation Hub – Nov 2020 Page 23 of 45 1) advance understanding of substrates and mechanisms of neuropsychiatric disorders; 2) improve knowledge of processes of cognition, emotion, and behaviour; 3) and augment the methods for studying, assessing, and affecting the brain and its functions. New research efforts incorporate best practices for interdisciplinary approaches that can utilise advances in computer science, robotics, and artificial intelligence to fortify the scope and pace of neuroscientific capabilities and products. Such research efforts are strong drivers of innovation and development, both by organising larger research goals, and by shaping neuroS/T research to meet defined economic, public health, and security agendas. Rapid advances in brain science represent an emerging domain that state and non-state actors can leverage in warfare. While not all brain sciences engender security concerns, predominant authority and influence in global biomedical, bioengineering, wellness/lifestyle, and defense markets enable a considerable exercise of power. It is equally important to note that such power can be exercised both non-kinetic and kinetic operational domains, and several countries have identified neuroS/T as viable, of value, and of utility in their warfare programs. While extant treaties (e.g., the BTWC and CWC40) and laws have addressed particular products of the brain sciences (e.g., chemicals, biological agents, and toxins), other forms of neuroS/T, (e.g., neurotechnologies and neuroinformatics) remain outside these conventions’ focus, scope, and governance. Technology can influence, if not shape the norms and conduct of warfare, and the future battlefield will depend not only upon achieving “biological dominance”, but achieving “mental/cognitive dominance” and “intelligence dominance” as well. It will be ever more difficult to regulate and restrict military and security applications of neuroS/T without established standards and proper international oversight of research and potential use-in-practice.
* * *. * In sum, it is not a question of whether neuro S/T will be utilised in military, intelligence, and political operations, but rather when, how, to what extent, and perhaps most importantly, if NATO nations will be prepared to address, meet, counter, or prevent these risks and threats. In this light (and based upon the information presented) it is, and will be increasingly important to address the complex issues generated by the brain sciences’ influence upon global biosecurity and the near-term future scope and conduct of both non-kinetic and kinetic military and intelligence operations.41 Innovation Hub – Nov 2020 Page 24 of 45 Towards a new operational domain The advent of the concept of “cognitive warfare” (CW) brings a third major combat dimension to the modern battlefield: to the physical and informational dimensions is now added a cognitive dimension. It creates a new space of competition, beyond the land, maritime, air, cybernetic and spatial domains, which adversaries have already integrated. In a world permeated with technology, warfare in the cognitive domain mobilises a wider range of battle spaces than the physical and informational dimensions can do. Its very essence is to seize control of human beings (civilian as well as military), organisations, nations, butalso of ideas, psychology, especially behavioural, thoughts, as well as the environment. In addition, rapid advances in brain science, as part of a broadly defined cognitive warfare, have
the potential to greatly expand traditional conflicts and produce effects at lower cost. Through the joint action it exerts on the 3 dimensions (physical, informational and cognitive), cognitive warfare embodies the idea of combat without fighting dear to Sun Tzu (“The supreme art of war is to subdue the enemy without fighting”). It therefore requires the mobilisation of a much broader knowledge. Future conflicts will likely occur amongst the people digitally first and physically thereafter in proximity to hubs of political and economic power.
42 The study of the cognitive domain, thus centred on the human being, constitutes a new major challenge that is indispensable to any strategy relating to the combat power generation of the future. Cognition is our “thinking machine”. The function of cognition is to perceive, to pay attention, to memorise, to reason, to produce movements, to express oneself, to decide. To act on cognition means to act on the human being. Therefore, defining a cognitive domain would be too restrictive; a human domain would therefore be more appropriate. While actions taken in the five domains are executed in order to have an effect on the human domain , cognitive warfare’s objective is to make everyone a weapon.
43 To turn the situation around, NATO must strive to define in a very broad sense and must have a clear awareness of the meanings and advances of international actors providing NATO with specific strategic security and broader challenges in the field of cognitive warfare. Innovation Hub – Nov 2020 Page 25 of 45 Russian and Chinese Cognitive Warfare Definition Russian Reflexive Control In 2012, Vladimir Karyakin added: “The advent of information and network technologies, coupled with advances in psychology regarding the study of human behaviour and the control of people’s motivations, make it possible to exert a specified effect on large social groups but [also] to also reshape the consciousness of entire peoples.”
44 Russian CW falls under the definition of the Reflexive Control Doctrine. It is an integrated operation that compels an adversary decision maker to act in favour of Russia by altering their perception of the world .
45 This goes beyond “pure deception” because it uses multiple inputs to the decision maker using both true and false information, ultimately aiming to make the target feel that the decision to change their behaviour was their own:
The Reflexive Control is ultimately aimed at the target’s decision making.
The information transmitted must be directed towards a decision or position.
The information must be adapted to the logic, culture, psychology and emotions of the target. The reflexive control has been turned into a broader concept taking into account the opportunities offered by new IT technologies called ‘Perception Management’. It is about controlling perception and not managing perception. The Russian CW is based on an in-depth understanding of human targets thanks to the study of sociology, history, psychology, etc. of the target and the extensive use of information technology. As shown in Ukraine, Russia used her in-depth knowledge as a precursor and gained a strategic advantage before the physical conflict. Russia has prioritised Cognitive Warfare as a precursor to the military phase.
Innovation Hub – Nov 2020 Page 26 of 45 China Cognitive Warfare Domain China has adopted an even broader definition of CW that includes the systematic utilisation of cognitive science and biotechnology to achieve the “mind superiority.” China has defined the Cognitive Domain of Operations as the battlefield for conducting ideological penetration (…) aiming at destroying troop morale and cohesion, as well as forming or deconstructing operational capabilities” It encompasses six technologies, divided across two categories (Cognition, which includes technologies that affect someone’s ability to think and function; and subliminal cognition that covers technologies that target a person’s underlying emotions, knowledge, willpower and beliefs). In particular, “Chinese innovation is poised to pursue synergies among brain science, artificial intelligence (AI), and biotechnology that may have far-reaching implications for its future military power and aggregate national competitiveness.”
46 The goal of cognitive operations is to achieve the “mind superiority” by using information to influence an adversary’s cognitive functions, spanning from peacetime public opinion to wartime decision-making.
47 Chinese strategists predict that the pace and complexity of operations will increase dramatically, as the form or character of warfare continues to evolve. As a result, People’s Liberation Army (PLA) strategists are concerned about the intense cognitive challenges that future commanders will face, especially considering the importance of optimising coordination and human-machine fusion or integration. These trends have necessarily increased the PLA’s interest in the military relevance not only of artificial intelligence, but also of brain science and new directions in interdisciplinary biological technologies, ranging from biosensing and biomaterials to human enhancement options. The shift from computerisation to intelligentisation is seen as requiring the improvement of human cognitive performance to keep pace with the complexity of warfare” .
48 As part of its Cognitive Domain of Operations, China has defined “Military Brain Science (MBS) as a cutting-edge innovative science that uses potential military application as the guidance. It can bring a series of fundamental changes to the concept of combat and combat methods, creating a whole new “brain war” combat style and redefining the battlefield.”49 The pursuit of advances in the field of MBS is likely to provide cutting edge advances to China.The development of MBS by China benefits from a multidisciplinary approach between human sciences, medicine, anthropology, psychology etc. and also benefits from “civil” advances in the field, civilian research benefiting military research by design. Innovation Hub – Nov 2020 Page 27 of 45 “The sphere of operations will be expanded from the physical domain and the information domain to the domain of consciousness, the human brain will become a new combat space.” He Fuchu, “The Future Direction of the New Global Revolution in Military Affairs. It’s about Humans A cognitive attack is not a threat that can be countered in the air, on land, at sea, in cyberspace, or in space. Rather, it may well be happening in any or all of these domains, for onesimple reason: humans are the contested domain. As previously demonstrated, the human is very often the main vulnerability and it should be acknowledged in order to protect NATO’s human capital but also to be able to benefit from our adversaries’s vulnerabilities. “Cognition is natively included in the Human Domain, thus a cognitive domain would be too restrictive”, claimed August Cole and Hervé Le Guyader in “NATO’s 6th domain” and: “…the Human Domain is the one defining us as individuals and structuring our societies. It has its own specific complexity compared to other domains, because of the large number of sciences it’s based upon (…) and these are those our adversaries are focusing on to identify our centres of gravity, our vulnerabilities.” .
50 The practice of war shows that although physical domain warfare can weaken the military capabilities of the enemy, it cannot achieve all the purposes of war. In the face of new contradictions and problems in ideology, religious belief and national identity, advanced weapons and technologies may be useless and their effects can even create new enemies. It is therefore difficult if not impossible to solve the problem of the cognitive domain by physical domain warfare alone. The importance of the Human Environment The Human Domain is not solely focusing of the military human capital. It encompasses the human capital of a theatre of operations as a whole (civilian populations, ethnic groups, leaders…), but also the concepts closely related to humans such as leadership, organisation, decision-making processes, perceptions and behaviour. Eventually the desired effect should be defined within the Human Domain (aka the desired behaviour we want to achieve: collaboration/ cooperation, competition, conflict). “To win (the future) war, the military must be culturally knowledgeable enough to thrive in an alien environment” .
51 In the 21st century, strategic advantage will come from how to engage with people, understand them, and access political, economic, cultural and social networks to achieve a position of relative advantage that complements the sole military force. These interactions are not reducible to the physical boundaries of land, air, sea, cyber and space, which tend to focus on geography and terrain characteristics. They represent a network of networks that define power and interests in a connected world. The actor that best understands local contexts and builds a network around relationships that harness local capabilities is more likely to win. Innovation Hub – Nov 2020 Page 28 of 45 “Victory will be defined more in terms of capturing the psycho-cultural rather than the geographical high ground. Understanding and empathy will be important weapons of war.” Maj. Gen. Robert H. Scales For the historian Alan Beyerchen, social sciences will be the amplifier of the 21st century’s wars.
52 In the past wars, the problem was that the human factor could not be a significant amplifier simply because its influence was limited and difficult to exploit; humans were considered more as constants than as variables. Certainly, soldiers could be improved through training, selection, psychological adaptation and, more recently, education. But in the end, the human factor was reduced to numbers. The larger the army, the greater the chance of winning the war, although the action of a great strategist could counterbalance this argument. Tomorrow, to have better soldiers and more effective humans will be key. Last, the recent developments in science, all kinds of science, including science related to the human domain, have empowered anyone, whether individuals or committed minorities, with potential devastating power at their disposal. It has created a situation never seen before in the history of mankind , where individuals or small groups may jeopardise the success of 53 military operations. The crucible of Data Sciences and Human Sciences The combination of Social Sciences and System Engineering will be key in helping military analysts to improve the production of intelligence for the sake of decision-making .
54 The Human Domain of Operations refers to the whole human environment, whether friend of foe. In a digital age it is equally important to understand first NATO’s own human strengths and vulnerabilities before the ones of adversaries. Since everyone is much more vulnerable than before everyone needs to acknowledge that one may endanger the security of the overall. Hence, a deep understanding of the adversary’s human capital (i.e. the human environment of the military operation) will be more crucial than ever. “If kinetic power cannot defeat the enemy, (…) psychology and related behavioural and social sciences stand to fill the void.55” “Achieving the strategic outcomes of war will necessarily go through expanding the dialogue around the social sciences of warfare alongside the “physical sciences” of warfare..(…) it will go through understanding, influence or exercise control within the “human domain”.
56 Leveraging social sciences will be central to the development of the Human Domain Plan of Operations. It will support the combat operations by providing potential courses of action for the whole surrounding Human Environment including enemy forces, but also determining key human elements such as the Cognitive center of gravity, the desired behaviour as the end state. Understanding the target’s goals, strengths, and vulnerabilities is paramount to an operation for enduring strategic outcomes. The deeper the understanding of the human environment, the greater will be the freedom of action and relative advantage. Innovation Hub – Nov 2020 Page 29 of 45 Psychology and social sciences have always been essential to warfare, and while warfare is moving away from kinetic operations, they might be the new game changer. Psychology, for instance, can help to understand the personal motives of terrorist groups and the social dynamics that make them so attractive to the (mostly) young men who join their ranks. As an example, the picture below depicts a methodology (called Weber) applied to the study of terrorist groups in Sahel. It combines Social Sciences and System Engineering in order to help predicting the behaviours of terrorist groups. The tool allows the decision-makers to assess the evolution of actors through behavioural patterns according to several criteria and social science parameters, and ultimately to anticipate courses of action.
57 The analysis, turned towards understanding the other in the broad sense (and often nonWestern), cannot do without anthropology. Social and cultural anthropology is a formidable tool for the analyst, the best way to avoid yielding to one of the most common biases of intelligence, ethnocentrism, i.e. the inability to get rid of mental structures and representations of one’s own cultural environment. Cognitive sciences can be leveraged to enhance training at every level, especially in order to improve the ability to make decisions in complex tactical situations. Cognitive sciences can be employed in the creation of highly efficient and flexible training programs that can respond to fast-changing problems. Innovation Hub – Nov 2020 Page 30 of 45 Legal and ethical aspects Legal aspects The development, production and use of Cognitive Technologies for military purposes raise questions as to whether, and to what extent, existing legal instruments apply. That is, how the relevant provisions are to be interpreted and applied in light of the specific technological characteristics and to what extent international law can sufficiently respond to the legal challenges involved with the advent of such technology. It is essential to ensure that international law and accepted norms will be able to take into account the development of cognitive technologies. Specifically, to ensure that such technologies are capable of being used in accordance with applicable law and accepted international norms. NATO, through its various apparatus, should work at establishing a common understanding of how cognitive weapons might be employed to be compliant with the law and accepted international norms. Equally, NATO should consider how the Law of Armed Conflict (LoAC) would apply to the use of cognitive technologies in any armed conflict in order to ensure that any future development has a framework from which to work within. Full compliance with the rules and principles of LoAC is essential. Given the complexity and contextual nature of the potential legal issues raised by Cognitive technologies and techniques, and the constraints associated with this NATO sponsored study, further work will be required to analyse this issue fully. Therefore, it is recommended that such work be conducted by an appropriate body and that NATO Nations collaborate in establishing a set of norms and expectations about the use and development of Cognitive technologies. The immediate focus being how they might be used within extant legal frameworks and the Law of Armed Conflict. Ethics This area of research – human enhancement and cognitive weapons – is likely to be the subject of major ethical and legal challenges, but we cannot afford to be on the back foot when international actors are already developing strategies and capabilities to employ them. There is a need to consider these challenges as there is not only the possibility that these human enhancement technologies are deliberately used for malicious purposes, but there may be implications for the ability of military personnel to respect the law of armed conflict. It is equally important to recognise the potential side effects (such as speech impairment, memory impairment, increased aggression, depression and suicide) of these technologies. For example, if any cognitive enhancement technology were to undermine the capacity of a subject to comply with the law of armed conflict, it would be a source of very serious concern. The development, and use of, cognitive technologies present numerous ethical challenges as well as ethical benefits, such as recovery from Post traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). Policy makers should take these challenges seriously as they develop policy about Cognitive Technologies, explore issues in greater depth and determine if other ethical issues may arise as this, and other related, technology develops. Innovation Hub – Nov 2020 Page 31 of 45 Recommendations for NATO The need for cooperation.While the objective of Cognitive Warfare is to harm societies and not only the military, this type of warfare resembles to “shadow wars” and requires a whole-of-government approach to warfare. As previously stated, the modern concept of war is not about weapons but about influence. To shape perceptions and control the narrative during this type of war, battle will have to be fought in the cognitive domain with a whole-of-government approach at the national level. This will require improved coordination between the use of force and the other levers of power across government. This could mean changes to how defence is resourced, equipped, and organised in order to offer military options below the threshold of armed conflict and improve the military contribution to resilience. For NATO, the development of actions in the cognitive domain also requires a sustained cooperation between Allies in order to ensure an overall coherence, to build credibility and to allow a concerted defense. Within the military, expertise on anthropology, ethnography, history, psychology among other areas will be more than ever required to cooperate with the military, in order to derive qualitative insights from quantitative data, as an example. In other words, if the declaration of a new field of combat consecrates the new importance of humans, it is more about rethinking the interaction between the hard sciences and the social sciences. The rise of cognitive technologies has endowed human with superior analysis and accuracy. In order to deliver timely and robust decisions, it will not be a question of relying solely on human cognitive capacities but of cross engineering systems with social sciences (sociology, anthropology, criminology, political science…) in order to face complex and multifaceted situations. The modelisation of human dynamics as part of what is known as Computational Social Science will allow the use of knowledge from social sciences and relating to the behaviour of social entities, whether enemies or allies. By mapping the human environment, strategists and key military leaders will be provided reliable information to decide on the right strategy. Definition of the Human Domain Thus defined by NATO’s major adversaries, the mastery of the field of perceptions is an abstract space where understanding of oneself (strengths and weaknesses), of the other (adversary, enemy, human environment), psychological dimension, intelligence collection, search for ascendancy (influence, taking and conservation of the initiative) and capacity to reduce the will of the adversary are mixed. Within the context of multi-domain operations, the human domain is arguably the most important domain, but it is often the most overlooked. Recent wars have shown the inability to achieve the strategic goals (e.g. in Afghanistan) but also to understand foreign and complex human environments. Innovation Hub – Nov 2020 Page 32 of 45 Cognitive warfare was forced upon the Western liberal democracies by challenging international actors who have strategised to avoid the military confrontation, thus blurring the line between peace and war by targeting the weakest element: humans. CW which includes the increasing use of NBICs for military purposes may provide a sure way of military dominance in a near future. “Military power is of course one essential segment of security. But global security refers to a broad range of threats, risks, policy responses that span political, economic, societal, health (including cognitive health!) and environmental dimensions, none of these being covered by your current domains of operations! Some international actors already use weapons that precisely target these dimensions, while keeping their traditional kinetic arsenal in reserve as long as they possibly can. NATO, if it wishes to survive, has to embrace this continuum and claim as its responsibility, together with its allies to, seamlessly, achieve superiority all across it.”58 Raising awareness among Allies While advances in technology have always resulted in changes in military organisations and doctrines, the rapid advancements in technology, in particular in brain science and NBIC, should force NATO to take action and give a greater consideration to the emergence of the threats that represents Cognitive Warfare. Not all NATO nations have recognised this changing character of conflicts. Declaring the Human as sixth domain of operations is a way to raise awareness among the NATO Nations. NATO should consider further integrating Human situational awareness in the traditional situation awareness processes of the Alliance. Anticipating the trends There is evidence that adversaries have already understood the potential of developing human-related technologies. Declaring the Human Domain as a sixth domain of operations has the potential to reveal possible vulnerabilities, which could otherwise amplify rapidly. It is not too late to face the problem and help keep the dominance in the field of cognition. Innovation Hub – Nov 2020 Page 33 of 45 The Human Domain of operations could tentatively be defined as “the sphere of interest in which strategies and operations can be designed and implemented that, by targeting the cognitive capacities of individuals and/or communities with a set of specific tools and techniques, in particular digital ones, will influence their perception and tamper with their reasoning capacities, hence gaining control of their decision making, perception and behaviour levers in order to achieve desired effects.” Delays in declaring the Human Domain as a domain of operations may lead to fight the last war. Given that the process of declaring a new domain of operations is a lengthy process and given the sensitivity of the topic, NATO needs to be fast in focusing on political/military responses while capacity/threats of our opponents are still low. Finally, ethical problems should be raised. Since there is no agreed international legal framework in the field of neurosciences, NATO may play a role in pushing to establish an international legal framework that meets the NATO Nations’ ethical standards. Accelerating information sharing Accelerated information sharing among Alliance members may help faster integration of interoperability, to assure coherence across multi-domain operations. Information sharing may also assist some nations in catching up in this area. In particular, surveillance of ongoing international activities in brain science, and their potential dual-use in military and intelligence operations should be undertaken and shared between Allies along with identification and quantification of current and near-term risks and threats posed by such enterprises. Establishing DOTMLPFI components upstream The first step is to define the “human domain” in military doctrine and use the definition toconduct a full spectrum of capability development analysis, optimising the military for the most likely 21st century contingencies. Since the Human Domain complements the five others, each capability development should include the specificities of modern threats, including those related to cognitive warfare and, more generally, the sixth domain of operations. The Human Domain is not an end in itself but a means to achieve our strategic objectives and to respond to a type of conflict that the military is not accustomed to dealing with. Dedication of resources for developing and sustaining NATO Nations capabilities to prevent escalation of future risk and threat by: 1) continued surveillance; 2) organisational and systemic preparedness; 3) coherence in any/all entities necessary to remain apace with, and/or ahead of tactical and strategic competitors’ and adversary’s capabilities in this space. Impact on Warfare Development By essence, defining a new domain of operations and all the capabilities and concepts that go along with it, is part of ACT’s mission. Innovation Hub – Nov 2020 Page 34 of 45 ACT should lead a further in-depth study with a focus on: • Advancements on brain science initiatives that may be developed and used for nonkinetic and kinetic engagements. • Different ethical systems that govern neuroscientific research and development. This will mandate a rigorous, more granular, and dialectical approach to negotiate and resolve issues and domains of ethical dissonance in multi- and international biosecurity discourses. • Ongoing review and evaluation of national intellectual property laws, both in relation to international law(s), and in scrutiny of potential commercial veiling of dual-use enterprises. • Identification and quantification of current and near-term risks and threats posed by such enterprise(s) • Better recognizing the use of social and human sciences in relation with “hard” sciences to better understand the human environment (internal and external) • Include the cognitive dimension in every NATO exercises by leveraging new tools and techniques such as immersive technologies Along with those studies, anticipating the first response (such as the creation of a new NATO COE or rethink and adapt the structure by strengthening branches as required) and defining a common agreed taxonomy (Cognitive Dominance/Superiority/Cognitive Center of Gravity etc…) will be key tasks for ACT to help NATO keep the military edge. Innovation Hub – Nov 2020 Page 35 of 45 Conclusion Failing to thwart the cognitive efforts of NATO’s opponents would condemn Western liberal societies to lose the next war without a fight. If NATO fails to build a sustainable and proactive basis for progress in the cognitive domain, it may have no other option than kinetic conflict. Kinetic capabilities may dictate a tactical or operational outcome, but victory in the long run will remain solely dependent on the ability to influence, affect, change or impact the cognitive domain. Because the factors that affect the cognitive domain can be involved in all aspects of human society through the areas of will, concept, psychology and thinking among other, so that particular kind of warfare penetrates into all fields of society. It can be foreseen that the future information warfare will start from the cognitive domain first, to seize the political and diplomatic strategic initiative, but it will also end in the cognitive realm. Preparing for high-intensity warfare remains highly relevant, but international actors providing NATO with specific strategic security challenges have strategised to avoid confronting NATO in kinetic conflicts and chose an indirect form of warfare. Information plays a key role in this indirect form of warfare but the advent of cognitive warfare is different from simple Information Warfare: it is a war through information, the real target being the human mind, and beyond the human per se. Moreover, progresses in NBIC make it possible to extend propaganda and influencing strategies. The sophistication of NBIC-fueled hybrid attacks today represent an unprecedented level of threat inasmuch they target the most vital infrastructure everyone relies on: the human mind . 59 Cognitive warfare may well be the missing element that allows the transition from military victory on the battlefield to lasting political success. The human domain might well be the decisive domain, wherein multi-domain operations achieve the commander’s effect. The five first domains can give tactical and operational victories; only the human domain can achieve the final and full victory. “Recognising the human domain and generating concepts and capabilities to gain advantage therein would be a disruptive innovation.”
Innovation Hub – Nov 2020 Page 36 of 45 “Today’s progresses in nanotechnology, biotechnology, information technology and cognitive science (NBIC), boosted by the seemingly unstoppable march of a triumphant troika made of Artificial Intelligence, Big Data and civilisational “digital addiction” have created a much more ominous prospect: an embedded fifth column, where everyone, unbeknownst to him or her, is behaving according to the plans of one of our competitors.” August Cole, Hervé Le Guyader NATO’s 6th Domain Bibliography and Sources Essays August Cole, Hervé Le Guyader, NATO 6th Domain of Operations, September 2020 Dr. James Giordano, Emerging Neuroscience and Technology (NeuroS/T): Current and Near-Term Risks and Threats to NATO Biosecurity, October 2020 Article Nicolas Israël and Sébastien-Yves Laurent, “Analysis Facing Worldwide Jihadist Violence and Conflicts. What to do?” September 2020 Online Collaboration with Johns Hopkins University “Cognitive Biotechnology, Altering the Human Experience”, Sep 2020 “Cognitive Warfare, an attack on truth and thoughts”, Sep 2020 Under the direction of Professor Lawrence Aronhnime Contributors: Alonso Bernal, Cameron Carter, Melanie Kemp, Ujwal Arunkumar Taranath, Klinzman Vaz, Ishpreet Singh, Kathy Cao, Olivia Madreperla Experiments DTEX (Disruptive Technology Experiment) – 7 October 2020 NATO Innovation Hub Disruptive Technology Experiment (DTEX) on disinformation. Under the direction of Girish Sreevatsan Nandakumar (Old Dominion University) Hackathon “Hacking the Mind” Run by Dr. Kristina Soukupova and the Czech Republic Defense and Security Innovation Hub, October 2020. https://www.hackthemind.cz Innovation Hub – Nov 2020 Page 37 of 45 Annex 1 Nation State Case Study 1: The weaponisation of neurosciences in China. As described in the Five-Year Plans (FYPs) and other national strategies, China has identified and acknowledged the technical, economic, medical, military, and political value of the brain sciences, and has initiated efforts to expand its current neuroS/T programs. China utilises broader strategic planning horizons than other nations and attempts to combine efforts from government, academic, and commercial sectors (i.e., the “triple helix”) to accomplish cooperation and centralisation of national agendas. This coordination enables research projects andobjectives to be used for a range of applications and outcomes (e.g., medical, social, military). As noted by Moo Ming Poo, director of China’s Brain Project, China’s growing aging population is contributing to an increasing incidence and prevalence of dementia and other neurological diseases. In their most recent FYP, China addressed economic and productivity concerns fostered by this aging population, with a call to develop medical approaches for neurological disorders and to expand research infrastructure in neuro S/T. This growing academic environment has been leveraged to attract and solicit multi-national collaboration. In this way, China is affecting international neuroS/T through 1) research tourism; 2) control of intellectual property; 3) medical tourism; 4) and influence in global scientific thought. While these strategies are not exclusive to neuroS/T; they may be more opportunistic in the brain sciences because the field isnew, expanding rapidly, and its markets are growing, and being defined by both share- and stake-holder interests. Research tourism involves strategically recruiting renowned, experienced scientists (mostly from Western countries), as well as junior scientists to contribute to and promote the growth, innovation, and prestige of Chinese scientific and technological enterprises. This is apparent by two primary efforts. First, initiatives such as the Thousand Talents Program (launched in 2008) and other programs (e.g., Hundred Person Program, Spring Light Program, Youth Thousand Talents Program, etc.) aim to attract foreign researchers, nurture and sustain domestic talent, and bring back Chinese scientists who have studied or worked abroad. Further, China’s ethical research guidelines are, in some domains, somewhat more permissive than those in the West (e.g., unrestricted human and/or non-human primate experimentation), and the director of China’s Brain Project, Mu-Ming Poo, has stated that this capability to engage research that may not be (ethically) viable elsewhere may (and should) explicitly attract international scientists to conduct research in China. Second, China continues to engage with leading international brain research institutions to foster greater cooperation. These cooperative and collective research efforts enable China to Innovation Hub – Nov 2020 Page 38 of 45 achieve a more even “playing field” in the brain sciences. China leverages intellectual property (IP) policy and law to advance (and veil) neuroS/T and other biotechnologies in several ways. First, via exploitation of their patent process by creating a “patent thicket”. The Chinese patent system focuses on the end-utility of a product (e.g., a specific neurological function in a device), rather than emphasising the initial innovative idea in contrast to the U.S. system. Thisenables Chinese companies and/or institutions to copy or outrightly usurp foreign patents and products. Moreover, Chinese patent laws allow international research products and ideas to be used in China “for the benefit of public health,” or for “a major technological advancement.” Second, the aforementioned coordination of brain science institutions and the corporate sector establishes compulsory licensing under Chinese IP and patent laws. This strategy (i.e., “lawfare”) allows Chinese academic and corporate enterprises to have economic and legal support, while reciprocally enabling China to direct national research agendas and directives through these international neuroS/T collaborations. China enforces its patent and IP rights worldwide, which can create market saturation of significant and innovative products, and could create international dependence upon Chinese neuroS/T. Further, Chinese companies have been heavily investing in knowledge industries, including artificial intelligence enterprises, and academic book and journal partnerships. For example, TenCent established a partnership with Springer Nature to engage in various educational products. This will allow a significant stake in future narratives and dissemination of scientific and technological discoveries. Medical tourism is explicit or implicit attraction and solicitation of international individuals or groups to seek interventions that are either only available, or more affordable in a particular locale. Certainly, China has a presence in this market, and at present, available procedures range from the relatively sublime, such as using deep brain stimulation to treat drug addiction, to the seemingly “science-fictional”, such as the recently proposed body-to-head transplant to be conducted at Harbin Medical University in collaboration with Italian neurosurgeon Sergio Canavero. China can advance and develop areas of neuroS/T in ways that other countries cannot or will not, through homogenising a strong integrated “bench to bedside” capability and use of non-Western ethical guidelines. China may specifically target treatments for diseases that may have a high global impact, and/or could offer procedures that are not available in other countries (for either socio-political or ethical reasons). Such medical tourism could create an international dependence on Chinese markets as individuals become reliant on products and services available only in China, in addition to those that are “made in China” for ubiquitous use elsewhere. China’s growing biomedical industry, ongoing striving for innovation, and expanding manufacturing capabilities have positioned their pharmaceutical and technology companies to prominence in world markets. Such positioning – and the somewhat permissive ethics that enable particular aspects and types of experimentation – may be seductive to international scientists to engage research, and/or commercial biomedical production within China’s sovereign borders. Innovation Hub – Nov 2020 Page 39 of 45 Through these tactics of economic infiltration and saturation, China can create power hierarchies that induce strategically latent “bio-political” effects that influence real and perceived positional dominance of global markets. China is not the only country that has differing ethical codes for governing research. Of note is that Russia has been, and continues to devote resources to neuroS/T, and while not uniformly allied with China, has developed projects and programs that enable the use of neurodata for non-kinetic and/or kinetic applications. Such projects, programs, and operations can be conducted independently and/or collaboratively to exercise purchase over competitors and adversaries so as to achieve greater hegemony and power. Therefore, NATO, and its international allies must 4) recognise the reality of other countries’ science and technological capabilities; 5) evaluate what current and near-term trends portend for global positions, influence, and power; 6) and decide how to address differing ethical and policy views on innovation, research, and product development. Innovation Hub – Nov 2020 Page 40 of 45 Annex 2 Nation State Case Study 2: The Russian National Technology Initiative61 Russian President Vladimir Putin has explicitly stated intent to implement an aggressive modernisation plan via the National Technology Initiative (NTI). Designed to grant an overmatch advantage in both commercial and military domains against Russia’s current and nearterm future key competitors, the NTI has been viewed as somewhat hampered by the nation’s legacy of government control, unchanging economic complexity, bureaucratic inefficiency and overall lack of transparency. However, there are apparent disparities between such assessment of the NTI and its capabilities, and Russia’s continued invention and successful deployment of advanced technologies. Unlike the overt claims and predictions made by China’s scientific and political communities about the development and exercise of neuroS/T to re-balance global power, explication and demonstration(s) of Russian efforts in neuroS/T tend to be subtle, and detailed information about surveillance and extent of such enterprise and activity is, for the most part, restricted to the classified domain. In general, Russian endeavours in this space tend to build upon prior work conducted under the Soviet Union, and while not broad in focus, have gained relative sophistication and capability in particular areas that have high applicability in non-kinetic disruptive engagements. Russia’s employments of weaponised information, and neurotropic agents have remained rather low-key, if not clandestine (and perhaps covert), often entail nation-state or non-state actors as proxies, and are veiled by a successful misinformation campaign to prevent accurate assessment of their existing and developing science and technologies. Military science and technology efforts of the USSR were advanced and sustained primarily due to the extensive military-industrial complex which, by the mid-1970s through 1980s, is estimated to have employed up to twenty percent of the workforce. This enabled the USSR to become a world leader in science and technology, ranked by the U.S. research community as second in the world for clandestine S&T programs (only because the overall Soviet system of research and development (R&D) was exceptionally inefficient, even within the military sector). The collapse of the USSR ended the Soviet military-industrial complex, which resulted in significant decreases in overall spending and state support for R&D programs. Any newly implemented reforms of the post-Soviet state were relatively modest, generating suboptimal R&D results at best. During this time, Russian R&D declined by approximately 60% and aside from the Ministries’ involvement with the military sector, there was a paucity of direct cooperation between Russian R&D institutions and operational S&T enterprises. This limited interaction, was further compounded by a lack of resources, inability to bring new technologyto markets, absent protections for intellectual property, and “brain drain” exodus of talented researchers to nations with more modern, cutting-edged programs with better pay and opportunities for advancement. Innovation Hub – Nov 2020 Page 41 of 45 Recognising the inherent problems with the monoculture of the Russian economic and S&T ecosystems, the Putin government initiated a process of steering Russia toward more lucrative, high-tech enterprises. The NTI is ambitious, with goals to fully realise a series of S&T/ R&D advancements by 2035. The central objective of the NTI is establish “the program for creation of fundamentally new markets and the creation of conditions for global technological leadership of Russia by 2035.” To this end, NTI Experts and the Agency for Strategic Initiatives (ASI) identified nine emerging high-tech markets for prime focus and penetrance, including neuroscience and technology (i.e., what the ASI termed “NeuroNet”). Substantive investment in this market is aimed at overcoming the post-Soviet “resource curse”, by capitalising on the changes in global technology markets – and engagement sectors – to expand both economic and military/intelligence priorities and capabilities. According to the ASI, NeuroNet is focused upon “distributed artificial elements of consciousness and mentality”, withRussia’s prioritisation of neuroS/T being a key factor operative in influence operations directed and global economies and power. Non-kinetic operations represent the most viable intersection and exercise of these commercial, military, and political priorities, capabilities, and foci of global influence and effect(s). Innovation Hub – Nov 2020 Page 42 of 45 Notes Robert P. Kozloski, https://www.realcleardefense.com/articles/2018/02/01/knowing_your 1 – self_is_key_in_cognitive_warfare_112992.html, February 2018 Green, Stuart A. “Cognitive Warfare.” The Augean Stables , Joint Military Intelligence College, July 2008, 2 http://www.theaugeanstables.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/04/Green-Cognitive-Warfare.pdf. Clint Watts, (2018 ) Messing with the Enemy, HarperCollins 3 As defined by Wikipedia, a sock puppet or sockpuppet is an online identity used for purposes of deception. It 4 usually refers to the Russian online activism during the US electoral campaign 2016. https://en.wikipedia.org/ wiki/Sock_puppet_account https://www.belfercenter.org/sites/default/files/2019-11/CognitiveWarfare.pdf 5 Dr Zac Rogers, in Mad Scientist 158, (July 2019), https://madsciblog.tradoc.army.mil/158-in-the-cognitive- 6 war-the-weapon-is-you/ 7 August Cole-Hervé Le Guyader, NATO 6th Domain of Operation, 2020 Ibid. 8 Alicia Wanless, Michael Berk (2017), Participatory Propaganda: The Engagement of Audiences in the Spread of 9 Persuasive Communications: https://www.researchgate.net/publication/329281610_Participatory_Propaganda_The_Engagement_of_Audiences_in_the_Spread_of_Persuasive_Communications 10 Jacques Ellul, (1962) Propaganda, Edition Armand Colin Matt Chessen, The MADCOM Future: How AI will enhance computational propaganda, The Atlantic Council, 11 Sep 2017 https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/al_economics 12 Shoshana Zuboff, (2019) The Age of Surveillance Capitalism, Public Affairs 13 Peter W. Singer, Emerson T. Brooking (2018) LikeWar The Weaponisation of Social Media, HMH Edition page 14 95 Victoria Fineberg, (August 2014 ) Behavioural Economics of Cyberspace Operations, Journal of Cyber Security 15 and Information Systems Volume: 2 Shoshana Zuboff, (2019) The Age of Surveillance Capitalism, Public Affairs 16 17 Michael J Mazarr, (July 2020) Survival: Global Politics and Strategy, Virtual Territorial Integrity: The Next International Norm, in Survival: Global Politics and Strategy, IISS 18 Bernard Claverie and Barbara Kowalczuk, Cyberpsychology, Study for the Innovation Hub, July 2018 Dr Zac Rogers, in Mad Scientist 158, (July 2019), https://madsciblog.tradoc.army.mil/158-in-the-cognitive- 19 war-the-weapon-is-you/ Haselton MG, Nettle D, Andrews PW (2005). “The evolution of cognitive bias.”. In Buss DM (ed.). The Handbook 20 of Evolutionary Psychology Innovation Hub – Nov 2020 Page 43 of 45 Wikipedia lists more than 180 different cognitive biases: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cognitive_bias 21 Lora Pitman (2019)“The Trojan horse in your Head: Cognitive Threats and how to counter them” ODU Digital 22 Commons Robert P. Kozloski, https://www.realcleardefense.com/articles/2018/02/01/knowing_your 23 – self_is_key_in_cognitive_warfare_112992.html, February 2018 Peter W. Singer, Emerson T. Brooking (2018) LikeWar The Weaponisation of Social Media, HMH Edition page 24 165 Dominique Moïsi (2010) The Geopolitics of Emotion, Edition Anchor. 25 26 Christophe Jacquemart (2012), Fusion Froide Edition Fogg, B.J. (2003). Persuasive Technology: Using Computers to Change What We Think and Do. Morgan Kauf 27 – mann Publishers. 28 https://mwi.usma.edu/mwi-video-brain-battlefield-future-dr-james-giordano/ Maryanne Wolf, (2007)“Proust and the Squid: The Story and Science of the Reading Brain” HarperCollins 29 Bernard Stiegler, https://www.observatoireb2vdesmemoires.fr/publications/video-minute-memoire-vers- 30 une-utilisation-raisonnee-du-big-data 2019 31 https://pphr.princeton.edu/2017/04/30/are-video-games-really-mindless/ 32“Never has a medium been so potent for beauty and so vulnerable to creepiness. Virtual reality will test us. It will amplify our character more than other media ever have.” Jaron Lanier, (2018) Dawn of the New Everything: Encounters with Reality and Virtual Reality, Picador Edition Philosopher Thomas Metzinger: https://www.newscientist.com/article/2079601-virtual-reality-could-be-an- 33 ethical-minefield-are-we-ready/ Gayannée Kedia, Lasana Harris, Gert-Jan Lelieveld and Lotte van Dillen, (2017) From the Brain to the Field: 34 The Applications of Social Neuroscience to Economics, Health and Law 35 Pr. Li-Jun Hou, Director of People’s Liberation Army 202nd Hospital, (May 2018), Chinese Journal of Traumatology, 36 For more on the definition of “dual use” in neuro S/T, see Dr. James Giordano’s essay October 2020 National Research Council and National Academy of Engineering. 2014. Emerging and Readily Available 37 Technologies and National Security: A Framework for Addressing Ethical, Legal, and Societal Issues. Ibid. 38 39 Giordano J. (2014). Intersections of “big data”, neuroscience and national security: Technical issues and derivative concerns. In: Cabayan H et al. (eds.) A New Information Paradigm? From Genes to “Big Data”, and Instagrams to Persistent Surveillance: Implications for National Security, p. 46-48. Department of Defense; Strategic Multilayer Assessment Group- Joint Staff/J-3/Pentagon Strategic Studies Group. Biological and Chemical Weapons Conventions 40 DeFranco JP, DiEuliis D, Bremseth LR, Snow JJ. Giordano J. (2019). Emerging technologies for disruptive ef 41 – fects in non-kinetic engagements. HDIAC Currents 6(2): 49-54. Innovation Hub – Nov 2020 Page 44 of 45 Parag Khanna, Connectography: Mapping the Future of Global Civilisation (New York Random House, 2016) 42 43 Megan Bell, An Approachable Look at the Human Domain and why we should care (2019), https://othjournal.com/ 2019/06/17/an-approachable-look-at-the-human-domain-and-why-we-should-care/ Vladimir Vasilyevich Karyakin, (2012) “The Era of a New Generation of Warriors—Information and Strategic 44 Warriors— Has Arrived,” Moscow, Russia, Nezavisimaya Gazeta Online, in Russian, April 22, 2011, FBIS SOV GILES, SHERR et SEABOYER (2018), Russian Reflexive Control, Royal Military College of Canada, Defence 45 Research and Development Canada. 46 Elsa B. Kania, Prism Vol.8, N.3, 2019 Nathan Beauchamp-Mustafaga, China Brief, (Sep 2019) https://jamestown.org/program/cognitive-domain- 47 operations-the-plas-new-holistic-concept-for-influence-operations/ Ibid. 48 Hai Jin, Li-Jun Hou, Zheng-Guo Wang, (May 2018 )Military Brain Science – How to influence future wars, 49 Chinese Journal of Traumatology 50 August Cole, Hervé Le Guyader, NATO ’s 6th Domain, September 2020 51 Maj. Gen. Robert H. Scales, (2006), http://armedforcesjournal.com/clausewitz-and-world-war-iv/ 52 Alan Beyerchen, “Clausewitz, Nonlinearity and the Unpredictability of War,” International Security, 17:3 (Winter, 1992) 53 August Cole, Hervé Le Guyader, NATO ’s 6th Domain, September 2020 “Analysis Facing Worldwide Jihadist Violence and Conflicts. What to do?” Article for the Innovation Hub, 54 Nicolas Israël and Sébastien-Yves LAURENT, September 2020 https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/head-strong/201408/psychology-and-less-lethal-military-strategy
55 – 56 Generals Odierno, Amos and Mc Raven, Strategic Landpower, NPS Publication 2014 “Analysis Facing Worldwide Jihadist Violence and Conflicts. What to do?” Article for the Innovation Hub, 57 Nicolas Israël and Sébastien-Yves LAURENT, September 2020 58 August Cole, Hervé Le Guyader, NATO 6th Domain of Operations, September 2020 59 Hervé Le Guyader, the Weaponisation of Neurosciences, Innovation Hub Warfighting Study February 2020 Ibid. 60 Ibid. 61 Innovation Hub – Nov 2020 Page 45 of 45
With the debut of lethal autonomous weapons systems (LAWS) in combat, opponents of LAWS have called on States to fast-track the creation of international law that either bans the use of these weapons or mandates meaningful human control over them. If LAWS are used more broadly in future combat, then the latter would ensure a check on the autonomous technology’s limitations, such as rigidness (inability to subjectively analyze situations and modify behavior to changing circumstances), non-explainability (inability to understand the machine’s decision-making processes), and potential biases. In addition to mitigating technology-based limitations, opponents argue that meaningful human control would also preserve the possibility for compassionate behavior and emotion in combat.’
This shift to biologically accurate operations is made possible by moving away from the traditional computational architectures found in deep neural networks, generally known as the von Neumann architecture, and towards a neural network that operates similar to the brain. The latter functions through spikes of encoded information, and in simple terms, the brain-like function of these spiking neural networks (SNNs) operate in a manner analogous to a drum. Stated further:
Drums can respond with different and complex vibration states when they are stimulated, and they can be also understood on computational terms: input (hits), rules (physical laws, physical constraints such as material, tension, etc.), and outputs (vibration, sounds, normal modes). Indeed, the brain has many more similarities with a dynamical system as a drum than with digital computers, which are based on discrete states…. In abstract terms, drums are also “computing” and processing information, but this information processing is a dynamical reaction from external/internal stimuli more than a formal calculation process.
Thus, by mimicking the processes of the brain “the various computational elements are mixed together and the system is dynamic, based on a ‘learning’ process by which the various elements of the system change and readjust depending on the type of stimuli they receive.”
By incorporating brain-like capabilities into technology such as LAWS these cognitive LAWS (CLAWS) could, in turn, employ more human-like discretion in targeting decisions. This is especially salient with regard to the law of armed conflict (LOAC) targeting principles of distinction, proportionality, and military necessity, which all require context-specific judgements. For example, the principle of distinction in Article 48 of Additional Protocol I requires that military operations be directed only at military objectives. Such distinctions are especially imperative in today’s urban battlefields where combatants and civilians exist side-by-side. In these circumstances the challenge lies in amending behavior based on the complex possibilities presented. This requires the decision maker to carefully observe conditions and adjust behavior in relation to unfolding information, a task that entails “on-site” learning and flexibility.
In the case of LAWS, which cannot “learn” dynamically, rigid decision-making capabilities may be problematic for a fully autonomous operation in unpredictable conditions. However, with CLAWS’s on-chip learning they could “interpret the features extracted from images, perceive and analyze multi-faceted situations during an attack, and adapt behavior based on the information gathered.”  This brain-like capability highlights CLAWS’s potential for making the context-specific decisions required by the targeting principles of the LOAC for fully autonomous operations.
Additionally, CLAWS could also be capable of probabilistic computing. This is important because the system’s rationale and decision-making processes could be accessible for review, which would allow for analysis regarding the system’s reliability and bias. Thus, CLAWS have the potential to “conduct complex decision making by managing, planning, anticipating, and adapting to unstructured battlefield environments, all with amplified efficiency and in an environment of reduced bias and increased transparency.”
While the future use of CLAWS seems promising, the neuromorphic technology necessary for CLAWS’ success is still in development. Furthermore, novel issues arising from the use of biologically realistic processors are still being addressed, such as an instability that is characteristic of a sleep-deprived state. Nevertheless, based on the mounting success of neuromorphic computing, it is likely that this technology will eventually be incorporated into specialized products, including weapons of future combat. With the prospective introduction of CLAWS, opponents’ technology-based objections to the use of LAWS may be overcome. However, their concerns regarding the preservation of emotion in combat would remain unresolved because CLAWS would be incapable of feeling emotion.
While the lack of emotion may seem trivial, respect and honor have been integral to combat and central to the warrior’s code of conduct. The United States Department of Defense Law of War Manual notes that “the principle of honor draws from warriors’ codes from a variety of cultures and time periods,” and that “[h]onor demands a certain mutual respect between opposing military forces.” Therefore, if respect is a fundamental aspect of war regulations, then ensuring its role in combat is critical. Solutions that account for this element of warfare will be imperative for the successful use of CLAWS.
Ultimately, the future of combat demands innovative proposals, and weapons systems such as CLAWS can provide pertinent solutions to increasingly technical and automatized warfare. By incorporating cognitive processes that mimic biology, not only can CLAWS effect a human-like discretion in targeting decisions, but their technological capabilities can also contribute to more exacting results. This amalgamation of intelligent and functional dexterity may ultimately yield an end result of unmatched performance in future warfare.
Carolyn Sharp is a law student at Brigham Young University. Carolyn focuses her research on the impacts of advanced technology on international law and the law of armed conflict.
 Carolyn Sharp, Status of the Operator: Biologically Inspired Computing as Both a Weapon and an Effector of Laws of War Compliance, 28 Rich. J.L. & Tech., no. 1 (2021).
The views expressed are those of the authors, and do not necessarily reflect the official position of the United States Military Academy, Department of the Army, or Department of Defense.
Articles of War is a forum for professionals to share opinions and cultivate ideas. Articles of War does not screen articles to fit a particular editorial agenda, nor endorse or advocate material that is published.
Violations of Basic Human Rights or International Law…
Curtis Bell, Senior Scientist Emeritus at Oregon Health and Science University, has recently circulated a document which he is promoting as a “Pledge by Neuroscientists to Refuse to Participate in the Application of Neuroscience to Violations of Basic Human Rights or International Law.” The full pledge is reproduced below, and can be accessed here. While individuals may wish to sign the pledge, what we view as most important is to develop a conversation regarding the merits of what Curtis has suggested. Specifically, while many responsible neuroscientists may agree with the overall sentiment, they may not agree with all aspects of the pledge as written. Whether you agree or not, this issue merits feedback from members of the neuroscience community in general and the neuroethics community in particular.
Pledge by Neuroscientists to Refuse to Participate in the Application of Neuroscience to Violations of Basic Human Rights or International Law.
Neuroscientist Dr. James Giordano. Neuro-Weapons. Directed Energy Weapons. Brain Implants.
Electromagnetic and Informational Weapons: The Remote Manipulation of the Human Brain
It should be understood, that Electromagnetic and Informational Weapons are fully operational and could be used by US-NATO in their wars in different parts of the World.
In October 2000, Congressman Denis J. Kucinich introduced in the House of Representatives a bill, which would oblige the American president to engage in negotiations aimed at the ban of space based weapons.
In this bill, the definition of a weapons system included:
“any other unacknowledged or as yet undeveloped means inflicting death or injury on, or damaging or destroying, a person (or the biological life, bodily health, mental health, or physical and economic well-being of a person)… through the use of land-based, sea- based, or space-based systems using radiation, electromagnetic, psychotronic, sonic, laser, or other energies directed at individual persons or targeted populations for the purpose of information war, mood management, or mind control of such persons or populations“(15).
As in all legislative acts quoted in this article, the bill pertains to sound, light or electromagnetic stimulation of the human brain.
Psychotronic weapons belong, at least for a layman uninformed of secret military research, in the sphere of science fiction, since so far none of the published scientific experiments has been presented in a meaningful way to World public opinion.
That it is feasible to manipulate human behavior with the use of subliminal, either by sound or visual messages, is now generally known and acknowledged by the scientific community.
This is why in most countries, the use of such technologies, without the consent of the individual concerned, is in theory banned. Needless to say, the use of these technologies is undertaken covertly, without the knowledge or consent of targeted individuals.
Devices using light for the stimulation of the brain constitute another mechanism whereby light flashing under certain frequencies could be used to manipulate the human psychic.
As for the use of sound, a device transmitting a beam of sound waves, which can be heard only by persons at whom the beam of sound waves is targeted, has been reported in several news media. In this case, the beam is formed by a combination of sound and ultrasound waves which causes the targeted person to hear the sound inside his head. Such a procedure could affect the mental balance of the targeted individual as well as convince him that he is, so to speak, mentally ill.
This article examines the development of technologies and knowledge pertaining to the functioning of the human brain and the way new methods of manipulation of the human mind are being developed.
One of the main methods of manipulation is through electromagnetic energy.
In the declassified scientific literature only some 30 experiments have been published supporting this assumption (1),(2). Already in 1974, in the USSR, after successful testing within a military unit in Novosibirsk, the Radioson (Radiosleep) was registered with the Government Committee on Matters of Inventions and Discoveries of the USSR, described as a method of induction of sleep by means of radio waves (3), (4), (5).
In the scientific literature, technical feasibility of inducing sleep in a human being through the use of radio waves is confirmed in a book by an British scientist involved in research on the biological effects of electromagnetism (6). A report by the World Health Organisation (WHO) on nonionizing radiation published in 1991 confirms that:
“many of biological effects observed in animals exposed to ELF fields appear to be associated, either directly or indirectly, with the nervous system…” (2).
Among the published experiments, there are those where pulsed microwaveshave caused the synchronization of isolated neurons with the frequency of pulsing of microwaves. Ffor example, a neuron firing at a frequency of 0.8 Hz was forced in this way to fire the impulses at a frequency of 1 Hz. Moreover, the pulsed microwaves contributed to changing the concentration of neurotransmitters in the brain (neurotransmitters are a part of the mechanism which causes the firing of neurons in the brain) and reinforcing or attenuating the effects of drugs delivered into the brain (1).
The experiment where the main brain frequencies registered by EEG were synchronized with the frequency of microwave pulsing (1,2) might explain the function of the Russian installation Radioson. Microwaves pulsed in the sleep frequency would cause the synchronization of the brain’s activity with the sleep frequency and in this way produce sleep.
Pulsing of microwaves in frequency predominating in the brain at an awakened state could, by the same procedure, deny sleep to a human being.
“Microwave pulses appear to couple to the central nervous system and produce stimulation similar to electric stimulation unrelated to heat”.
In a many times replicated experiment, microwaves pulsed in an exact frequency caused the efflux of calcium ions from the nerve cells (1,2). Calcium plays a key role in the firing of neurons and Ross Adey, member of the first scientific team which published this experiment, publicly expressed his conviction that this effect of electromagnetic radiation would interfere with concentration on complex tasks (7).
Robert Becker, who had share in the discovery of the effect of pulsed fields at the healing of broken bones, published the excerpts from the report from Walter Reed Army Institute testing program. In the first part “prompt debilitation effects” should have been tested (8). Were not those effects based on the experiment by Ross Adey and others with calcium efflux?
British scientist John Evans, working in the same field, wrote that both Ross Adey and Robert Becker lost their positions and research grants and called them “free-thinking exiles” (6). In 1975, in the USA, a military experiment was published where pulsed microwaves produced, in the brain of a human subject, an audio perception of numbers from 1 to 10 (9). Again the possibility to convince an individual that it is mentally ill is obvious. The testing program of American Walter Read Army Institute of Research, where the experiment took place, counts with “prompt auditory stimulation by means of auditory effects” and finally aims at “behavior controlled by stimulation” (8).
Let us assume that the words delivered into the brain were transcribed into ultrasound frequencies. Would not then the subject perceive those same words as his own thoughts?
And would this not imply that that his behavior was being controlled in this way through the transmission of ultrasound frequencies? In this regard, the American Air Force 1982 “Final Report On Biotechnology Research Requirements For Aeronautical Systems Through the Year 2000” states:
“While initial attention should be toward degradation of human performance through thermal loading and electromagnetic field effects, subsequent work should address the possibilities of directing and interrogating mental functioning, using externally applied fields…” (10).
Several scientists have warned that the latest advances in neurophysiology could be used for the manipulation of the human brain.
In June 1995, Michael Persinger, who worked on the American Navy’s project of Non-lethal electromagnetic weapons, published a scientific article where he states:
“the technical capability to influence directly the major portion of the approximately six billion brains of the human species without mediation through classical sensory modalities by generating neural information within a physical medium within which all members of the species are immersed… is now marginally feasible“ (11).
In 1998, the French National Bioethics Committee warned that “neuroscience is being increasingly recognized as posing a potential threat to human rights“ (12). In May 1999 the neuroscientists conference, sponsored by the UN, took place in Tokyo. Its final declaration formally acknowledges that :
“Today we have intellectual, physical and financial resources to master the power of the brain itself, and to develop devices to touch the mind and even control or erase consciousness…We wish to profess our hope that such pursuit of knowledge serves peace and welfare” (13).
On the international political scene, in the last few years, the concept of remote control of the human brain has become a matter of international and intergovernmental negotiation. In January 1999, the European Parliament passed a resolution where it called “for an international convention introducing a global ban on all developments and deployments of weapons which might enable any form of manipulation of human beings.“ (14)
Already in 1997, nine states of the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) addressed the UN, OBSE and the states of the Interparliamentary Union with the proposal to place at the agenda of the General Assembly of the United Nations, the preparation and adoption of an international convention “On Prevention of Informational Wars and Limitation of Circulation of Informational Weapons” (16), (3).
The initiative was originally proposed, in the Russian State Duma, by Vladimir Lopatin (3). V. Lopatin worked, from 1990 to 1995, in sequence, in the standing committees on Security respectively of the Russian Federation, Russian State Duma and of the Interparliamentary Assembly of the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS), specializing in informational security.(3). The concept of informational weapon or informational war is rather unknown to the world general public. In 1999, V. Lopatin, together with Russian scientist Vladimir Tsygankov, published a book „Psychotronic Weapon and the Security of Russia“ (3). There we find the explanation of this terminology:
“In the report on the research of the American Physical Society for the year 1993 the conclusion is presented that psychophysical weapon systems…can be used… for the construction of a strategic arm of a new type (informational weapon in informational war)…”
Among many references on this subject, we refer to Materials of the Parliament Hearings “Threats and Challenges in the Sphere of Informational Security”, Moscow, July 1996, “Informational Weapon as a Threat to the National Security of the Russian Federation” (analytical report of the Intelligence Service of the Russian Federation), Moscow, 1996 and a material “To Whom Will Belong the Conscientious Weapon in the 21st Century”, Moscow, 1997. (17).
In 2000 V. Lopatin introduced, after two other authors, the third in order bill on the subject of “Informational and Psychological Security of the Russian Federation“. Lopotin’s findings were reviewed by the Russian newspaper Segodnya:
“…Means of informational-psychological influence are capable not only of harming the health of an individual, but, also of causing, according to Lopatin, ‘the blocking of freedom of will of human being on the subliminal level, the loss of the ability of political, cultural and social self identification, the manipulation of societal consciousness, which could lead to the destruction of a sense of collective identify by the Russian people and nation’“ (16).
In the book “Psychotronic Weapons and the Security of Russia”, the authors propose among the basic principles of the Russian concept of defense against the remote control of the human psyche not only the acknowledgement of its existence, but also the fact that the methods of informational and psychotronic war are fully operational (“and are being used without a formal declaration of war”) (18). They also quote the record from the session of the Russian Federation’s Federal Council where V. Lopatin stated that psychotronic weapon can
“cause the blocking of the freedom of will of a human being on a subliminal level” or “instillation into the consciousness or subconsciousness of a human being of information which will trigger a faulty or erroneous perception of reality” (19).
In that regard, they proposed the preparation of national legislation as well as the establishment of legal international norms “aimed at the defense of human psyche against subliminal, destructive and informational manipulations” (20).
Moreover, they also propose the declassification of all analytical studies and research on the various technologies. They warned that, because this research has remained classified and removed from the public eye, it has allowed the arms race to proceed unabated. It has thereby contributed to increasing the possibility of psychotronic war.
Among the possible sources of remote influence on human psyche, the authors list the “generators of physical fields“ of “known as well as unknown nature” (21). In 1999 the STOA (Scientific and Technological Options Assessment), part of the Directorate General for Research of the European Parliament published the report on Crowd Control Technologies, ordered by them with the OMEGA foundation in Manchester (UK) (22, http://www.europarl.eu.int/stoa/publi/pdf/99-14-01-a_en.pdf ).
One of four major subjects of the study pertained to the so-called “Second Generation“ or “non lethal” technologies:
“This report evaluates the second generation of ‘non-lethal’ weapons which are emerging from national military and nuclear weapons laboratories in the United States as part of the Clinton Administration’s ‘non-lethal’ warfare doctrine now adopted in turn by NATO. These devices include weapons using… directed energy beam,…radio frequency, laser and acoustic mechanisms to incapacitate human targets” (23) The report states that „the most controversial ‚non-lethal‘ crowd control … technology proposed by the U.S., are so called Radio Frequency or Directed Energy Weapons that can allegedly manipulate human behavior… the greatest concern is with systems which can directly interact with the human nervous system“ (24). The report also states that „perhaps the most powerful developments remain shrouded in secrecy“ (25).
The unavailability of official documents confirming the existence of this technology may be the reason why the OMEGA report is referencing, with respect to mind control technology, the internet publication of the author of this article (26 http://www.europarl.eu.int/stoa/publi/pdf/99-14-01-a_en.pdf ).
Similarly, the internet publication of the director of the American Human Rights and Anti-mind Control Organization (CAHRA), Cheryl Welsh, is referenced by the joint initiative of the Quaker United Nations Office, United Nations Institute for Disarmament Research, and Programme for Strategic and International Security Studies, with respect to non-lethal weapons (27).
On September 25th, 2000, the Committee on Security of the Russian State Duma discussed the addendum to the article 6 of the Federal law On Weapons. In the resolution we read:
“The achievements of contemporary science… allow for creation of measured methods of secret, remote influencing on the psyches and physiology of a person or a group of people“ (28). The committee recommended that the addendum be approved. The addendum to the article 6 of the Russian Federation law “On Weapons“ was approved on July 26, 2001. It states:
“within the territory of the Russian Federation is prohibited the circulation of weapons and other objects… the effects of the operation of which are based on the use of electromagnetic, light, thermal, infra-sonic or ultra-sonic radiations…“ (29).
In this way, the Russian government made a first step to stand up to its dedication to the ban of mind control technology.
In the Doctrine of Informational Security of the Russian Federation, signed by president Putin in September 2000, among the dangers threatening the informational security of Russian Federation, is listed
“the threat to the constitutional rights and freedoms of people and citizens in the sphere of spiritual life… individual, group and societal consciousness“ and “illegal use of special means affecting individual, group and societal consciousness” (30). Among the major directions of the international cooperation toward the guaranteeing of the informational security is listed „the ban of production, dissemination and use of ‘informational weapon‘ “ (31).
The foregoing statement should be interpreted as the continuing Russian commitment to the international ban of the means of remote influencing of the activity of the human brain.
Similarly, in the above mentioned report, published by the STOA, the originally proposed version of the resolution of the European Parliament calls for:
“an international convention for a global ban on all research and development… which seeks to apply knowledge of the chemical, electrical, sound vibration or other functioning of the human brain to the development of weapons which might enable the manipulation of human beings, including a ban of any actual or possible deployment of such systems.“(32)
Here the term “actual” might easily mean that such weapons are already deployed.
Among the countries with the most advanced military technologies is the USA which did not present any international initiative demanding the ban of technologies enabling the remote control of human mind. (The original version of the bill by Denis J. Kucinich was changed.)
All the same, according to the study published by STOA, the US is the major promoter of the use of those weapons. Non lethal technology was included into NATO military doctrine due to their effort: “At the initiative of the USA, within the framework of NATO, a special group was formed, for the perspective use of devices of non-lethal effects” states the record from the session of the Committee on Security of the Russian State Duma (28).
The report published by STOA states: “In October 1999 NATO announced a new policy on non-lethal weapons and their place in allied arsenals” (33). “In 1996 non-lethal tools identified by the U.S. Army included… directed energy systems” and “radio frequency weapons” (34) – those weapons, as was suggested in the STOA report as well, are being associated with the effects on the human nervous system.
According to the Russian government informational agency FAPSI, in the last 15 years,U.S. expenditures on the development and acquisition of the means of informational war has increased fourfold, and at present they occupy the first place among all military programs (17),(3).
Though there are possible uses of informational war, which do not imply mind control, the US Administration has been unwilling to engage in negotiations on the ban on all forms of manipulation of the human brain. This unwillingness might indeed suggest that the US administration intends to use mind control technologies both within the US as well as internationally as an instrument of warfare.
One clear consequence of the continuation of the apparent politics of secrecy surrounding technologies enabling remote control of the human brain is that the governments, who own such technologies, could use them without having to consult public opinion. Needless to say, any meaningful democracy in today’s world could be disrupted, through secret and covert operations. It is not inconceivable that in the future, entire population groups subjected to mind control technologies, could be living in a “fake democracy” where their own government or a foreign power could broadly shape their political opinions by means of mind control technologies.
Mojmir Babacek is the founder of the International Movement for the Ban of the Manipulation of the Human Nervous System by Technical Means, He is the author of numerous articles on the issue of mind manipulation.
1) Handbook of Biological Effects of Electromagnetic Fields, 1996, CRC Press Inc., 0-8493-0641-8/96, – pg. 117, 119, 474- 485, 542-551, 565 at the top and third and last paragraph
2) World Health Organization report on non-ionizing radiation from 1991, pg. 143 and 207-208
3) V. Lopatin, V Cygankov: „Psichotronnoje oružie i bezopasnost Rossii“, SINTEG, Russian Federation, Moscow, ISBN 5-89638-006-2-A5-2000-30, list of the publications of the publishing house you will find at the addresshttp://www.sinteg.ru/cataloghead.htm
4) G. Gurtovoj, I. Vinokurov: „Psychotronnaja vojna, ot mytov k realijam“, Russsian Federation, Moscow, „Mysteries“, 1993, ISBN 5-86422-098-1
5) With greatest likelihood as well the Russian daily TRUD, which has organized the search for the documents, Moscow, between August 1991 and end of 1992 6) John Evans: Mind, Body and Electromagnetism, the Burlington Press, Cambridge, 1992, ISBN 1874498008, str.139
7) Robert Becker: “Body Electric: Electromagnetism and the Foundation of Life”, William Morrow and comp., New York, 1985, pg. 287
8) Robert Becker: “Cross Currents, teh Startling Effects of Electromagnetic Radiation on your Health”, 1991, Bloomsburry Publishing, London, Great Brittain, ISBN 0- 7475-0761-9, pg. 304, Robert Becker refers to Bioelectromagnetics Society Newsletter, January and February 1989
9) Don R. Justesen, 1975, Microwaves and Behavior, American Psychologist, March 1975, pg. 391 – 401
10) Dr. Nick Begich and Jeane Maning: “Angels Don’t Play This HAARP, Advances in Tesla Technology”, Earthpulse Press, 1995, ISBN 0-9648812–0-9, pg. 169
11) M. A. Persinger: „On the Possibility of Directly Lacessing Every Human Brain by Electromagnetic Induction of Fundamental Algorythms“, Perception and Motor Skills, June1995,, sv. 80, str. 791-799
12) Nature, vol.391, 22.1.1998,str.316, „Advances in Neurosciences May Threaten Human Rights“
13) Internet reference at the site of the United Nations University and Institute of Advanced Studies in Tokyo does not work any more, to verify the information it is necessary to find the document from the 1999 UN sponsored conference of neuroscientists in Tokyo, you may inquire at the address firstname.lastname@example.org 14)http://www.europarl.eu.int/home/default_en.htm?redirected=1 . click at Plenary sessions, scroll down to Reports by A4 number –click, choose 1999 and fill in 005 to A4 or search for Resolution on the environment, security and foreign policy from January 28, 1999
28) Document sent by Moscow Committee of Ecology of Dwellings. Telephone: Russian Federation, Zelenograd, 531-6411, Emilia Tschirkova, directrice
29) Search www.rambler.ru , there “poisk” (search) and search for “gosudarstvennaja duma” (State Duma) (it is necessary to type in Russian alphabet), at the page which appears choose “informacionnyj kanal gosudarstvennoj dumy” (Informational Channel of the Russian State Duma), there “federalnyje zakony podpisanyje prezidentom RF” (Federal laws signed by president of the Russian Federation), choose year 2001 and search 26 ijulja, è. N 103-F3 (July 26, 2001, number N 103- F3) , “O vnesenii dopolnenija v statju 6 federalnogo zakona ob oružii” (addendum to the article 6 of the Federal law on weapons)
30) Search www.rambler.ru and then (type in Russian alphabet) “gosudarstvennaja duma”, next “informacionnyj kanal gosudarstvennoj dumy” (informational channel of the State Duma), next search by use of “poisk” (search) Doktrina informacionnoj bezopasnosti Rossii” “Doctrine of the Informational Security of the Russian Federation) there see pg. 3 “Vidy informacionnych ugroz bezopasnosti Rossijskkoj federacii” (Types of Threats to the Informational Security of the Russian Federation)
31) See ref. 30, pg. 19, “Mìždunarodnoje sotrudnièestvo Rossijskoj Federacii v oblasti obespeèenija informacionnoj bezopasnoti” (International Cooperation of the Russian Federation in Assuring the Informational Security”
While MKULTRA is infamous for its attempts to control the mind through hypnosis and phenomena, its researchers primarily concentrated on the use of pharmaceuticals and mind-bending drugs such as hallucinogenic mushrooms, marijuana, heroin, LSD, and truth serums to make intelligence targets more cooperative in questioning and more willing to act as agents of the United States. Ultimately, the project failed because of a lack of scientific understanding of the inner workings of the brain and how to manipulate it.
But today, neuroscience appears to be breaking down previous technical barriers to the exogenous control of emotion, behavior, and ultimately the mind.
Scientific breakthroughs in the understanding of the biological basis of behavior and cognition have given rise to numerous treatments for neurological and psychiatric disorders. These treatments have improved the quality of life for many people all over the world. But these technologies have dual-use potential.
Psychiatric drugs and brain stimulation stand out as neurotechnologies of particular concern. But what are the on-the-ground realities of these technologies—what is the potential for converting clinical uses of behavioral neuroscience to the battlefield? Is it technically possible to alter brain chemistry in order to introduce novel emotions, cause cognitive shifts, and affect behavior? YES…
Dr. James Giordano, Chief of the Neuroethics Studies Program and Scholar-in-Residence in the Pellegrino Center for Clinical Bioethics at Georgetown University, speaks to cadets and faculty about how advancements in neuroscience and neurotechnology will impact the future of war. This event was hosted by the Modern War Institute at West Point.
If mass-produced, weaponized, and spread further afield, the same drugs that show promise as substitutes for psychological torture could be used as neurochemical weapons that alter the emotions of a nation’s armed forces, or that quickly change hearts and minds within a civilian population by influencing the visceral reaction to a military campaign. The most threatening neurochemical weapons—and the most likely to be used—are hypnotic drugs that reduce alertness, sedate, and anaesthetize. Psychedelic drugs, however, which alter cognition, emotion, and behavior, also have potential for battlefield deployment because of their ability to disorient and simulate psychosis. Numerous microbes and toxins that target the nervous system also have potential to affect decisions about whether to fight or surrender and could significantly impede adversarial soldiers.
Mind control back in vogue!
Make no mistake, neuroscience can be misused to alter emotions or memories, covertly implant ideas, or cause cognitive shifts. However, significant technical challenges remain—again, operationalizing neuroweapons is extremely difficult. Yet while it is unlikely that promises of mind control will be realized by neuroweapons, it would be naïve to assume that approaches to behavioral control will not become more refined over time. Obstacles to behavioral control also present themselves to psychiatrists treating disease and, as better psychiatric treatments continue to be pursued, barriers to the malignant use of neuroscience will lower. Neuroscience can be weaponized and deployed by actors willing to expend the time, money, and resources necessary.
International humanitarian and armament law represent crucially important components in governing the development and use of neuroweapons. On the surface, these legal standards prohibit neuroweapons. Their strength, however, has been weakened by ambiguities and by the defiance of state actors. For instance, because international bodies had failed to provide guidance about which specific actions constituted torture, the Bush administration was able to argue that its “enhanced interrogations” of Guantánamo Bay prisoners did not meet the severity threshold of pain or mental injury required by international law—and thus could not be considered torture under existing treaties. In the context of state attempts at behavioral control, arguments similar to those of the Bush administration could be used to explain away the use of pharmaceuticals or neurotechnology that malevolently altered the inner workings of the brain. The prohibition of neurochemical weapons under armament law is much stronger, but here too, loopholes and ambiguities exist. Chemical weapons intended for riot control are not prohibited under the Chemical Weapons Convention, for instance; this provides space for states to legally develop incapacitating weapons under the guise of developing a domestic riot control agent, and then rapidly convert neurochemical weapons for use in conflict.
Another challenge to the governance framework is the possibility that, as the technologies described here become more developed, perceptions of their utility may shift—just as barriers to the development and use of biological weapons are decreasing. For example, some observers argue that not only are drugs permissible if (by simulating a state of euphoria and positive emotions) they make a person talk, but that they are a morally superior substitute for torture and “enhanced interrogation.” The allure of behavioral-control capability could change nations’ existing sociopolitical calculations about the utility of neuroscience-based weapons and drive further military and intelligence development of neuroweapons. Troublingly, these shifting perceptions—matched with increasing geopolitical turbulence and a shift away from state-centric conflict—could make behavioral control seem ever more tempting.
An increasingly multipolar world is emerging—one in which rising powers view human rights, justice, transparency, and the use of force differently. Therefore, challenges to humanitarian and armament law will only increase. To monitor the conversion of behavioral neuroscience from benign medical treatments into malignant weapons, and to shape how neuroweapons may be perceived and used, the international community must attach the utmost importance to strengthening the normative and legal framework that is embodied in multilateral treaties and national laws and regulations. The medical standards that doctors and scientists are obliged to uphold, as well as codes of practice and research ethics, must also be strengthened in view of the potential misuse of behavioral neuroscience. The containment of neuroweapons relies on the strength of norms—from the top down and from the bottom up—against the use of torture, unconventional weapons, and the militant use of neuroscience. Both scientists and the international community must remain vigilant about preventing behavioral neuroscience from leaking into the security realm.
In March 2012, Russia’s defense minister Anatoli Serdjukov said at a meeting with Prime Minister Vladimir Putin: “The development of weaponry based on new physics principles; direct-energy weapons, geophysical weapons, wave-energy weapons, genetic weapons, psychotronic weapons, etc., is part of the state arms procurement program for 2011-2020.”
The world media reacted to his hinting about the open use of psychotronic weapons by publishing scientific experiments from the 1960s in which electromagnetic waves were used to transmit simple sounds into the human brain. However, most of them avoided saying that extensive scientific research has been carried out in this area throughout the world since then. Colombian newspaper El Espectador was only one of a few to publish an article covering the full scale of the achievements of this research. [Read the English version here ]
UK-based newspaper Daily Mail wrote that research in electromagnetic weapons had been secretly carried out in the United States and Russia since the 1950s and that “previous research has shown that low-frequency waves or beams can affect brain cells, alter psychological states and make it possible to transmit suggestions and commands directly into someone’s thought processes. High doses of microwaves can damage the functioning of internal organs, control behaviour or even drive victims to suicide.”
In 1975, neuropsychologist Don R. Justesen, director of Laboratories of Experimental Neuropsychology at Veterans Administration Hospital in Kansas City, Mo., unwittingly leaked national security information. He published an article in American Psychologist about the influence of microwaves on living creatures’ behavior. In the article, he quoted the results of an experiment described to him over a phone conversation by colleague Joseph C. Sharp, who was working on Pandora, a secret project of the U.S. Navy. Justesen wrote : “By radiating themselves with these “voice modulated’ microwaves, Sharp and Grove were readily able to hear, identify, and distinguish among the 9 words. The sounds heard were not unlike those emitted by persons with artificial larynxes.”
That this system was later brought to perfection is proved by the document which appeared on the website of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency in 1997, where its Office of Research and Development presented the Department of Defense’s project, Communicating Via the Microwave Auditory Effect. The office offered the following description : “An innovative and revolutionary technology is described that offers a low-probability-of-intercept radiofrequency (RF) communications. The feasibility of the concept has been established using both a low intensity laboratory system and a high power RF transmitter. Numerous military applications exist in areas of search and rescue, security and special operations.”
In January 2007, the Washington Post wrote on the same subject: “In 2002, the Air Force Research Laboratory patented precisely such a technology: using microwaves to send words into someone’s head. That work is frequently cited on mind-control Web sites. Rich Garcia, a spokesman for the research laboratory’s directed energy directorate, declined to discuss that patent or current or related research in the field, citing the lab’s policy not to comment on its microwave work. In response to a Freedom of Information Act request filed for this article, the Air Force released unclassified documents surrounding that 2002 patent — records that note that the patent was based on human experimentation in October 1994 at the Air Force lab, where scientists were able to transmit phrases into the heads of human subjects, albeit with marginal intelligibility. Research appeared to continue at least through 2002. Where this work has gone since is unclear — the research laboratory, citing classification, refused to discuss it or release other materials.”
We can only stress again that the world media avoided publishing the full scale of the progress of this research. Dr. Robert Becker, who was nominated twice for a Nobel Prize for his share in the discovery of the effects of pulsed fields at the healing of broken bones, wrote in his book, titled Body Electric, about the 1974 experiment by J. F. Schapitz, released due to the Freedom of Information Act request. Schapitz stated: “In this investigation, it will be shown that the spoken word of hypnotist may also be conveyed by modulated electromagnetic energy directly into the subconscious parts of the human brain – i.e. without employing any technical devices for receiving or transcoding the messages and without the person exposed to such influence having a chance to control the information input consciously.” In one of the four experiments, subjects were given a 100-question test, ranging from easy questions to technical ones. Later, not knowing they were being irradiated, they would be subjected to information beams suggesting the answers to the questions they had left blank, amnesia for some of their correct answers, and memory falsification for other correct answers. After two weeks, they had to pass the test again (Dr. Robert Becker: Body Electric: Electromagnetism and the Foundation of
Life, William Morrow and comp., New York, 1985, http://www.amazon.com/Body-Electric-Electromagnetism-Foundation-Life/dp/0688069711 ). The results of the second test were never published. It is rather evident that in those experiments the messages were sent into the human brain in ultrasound frequencies in which the human brain perceives but of which the subject is unaware. Becker, due to those publications and his refusal to support the building of the antennae for the communication with submarines in brain frequencies, lost financial support for his research, thereby putting an end to his scientific career.
Transmitting human speech into the human brain by means of electromagnetic waves is for researchers one of the most difficult tasks. It must be much easier to control human emotions that motivate human thinking, decision making and actions. People who claim to be victims of experiments with those devices complain, aside of hearing voices, of false feelings (including orgasms) and aches of internal organs, a condition physicians are unable to diagnose.
In November 2000, the Committee on Security of the Russian state Duma stated that capabilities enabling remote control of the human nervous system or the remote infliction of health impairment are available to many modern governments. It is evident that those technologies are used, in conflict with the Nuremberg code, for experiments on unwitting human subjects. In 2001, the newspaper of the U.S. Army wrote that Israel was experimenting with those weapons on Palestinians. Ousted Honduran president Manuel Zelaya, while under siege at the Brazilian embassy in Honduras, complained that he had been subjected to an “electron bombardment with microwaves” which produces “headache and organic destabilization.” When asked by Democracy Now’s Amy Goodman if he knew about this in the Honduran arsenal, he replied: “Yes, of course.”
The use of those weapons is reemerging in times of political crisis. According to Russian daily newspapers, during the failed putsch against Mikhail Gorbachov in 1991, General Kobets warned the defenders of the Russian White House that mind control technology could be used against them. After the putsch, the vice president of the League of Independent Scientists of the USSR, Victor Sedlecki, published a declaration in the Russian daily Komsomolskaya Pravda where he stated: “As an expert and a legal entity I declare that mass production … of psychotronic biogenerators was launched in Kiev (this is indeed a very serious issue). I cannot assert for sure that that were exactly Kiev generators that were used during the putsch… However, the fact that they were used is obvious to me. What are psychotronic generators? It is an electronic equipment producing the effect of guided control in human organism. It especially affects the left and right hemisphere of the cortex. This is also the technology of the U.S. Project Zombie 5.“He further stated that due to the inexperience of the personnel who operated them, the attempt to use the generators failed (Komsomolskaya Pravda, August 27,1991, “Avtory programy Zombi obnaruzheny v Kieve”, http://web.iol.cz/mhzzrz/img/Authors_of_project_zombie.gif ).
Presently in the U.S., several hundred people are complaining of the remote manipulation of their nervous system and are preparing a class action lawsuit against the FBI, the Department of Defense and other agencies, requesting that they release files pertaining to their persons, detect the harmful radiations aimed at their bodies, and sources of the radiation. Also, over 2,000 people are complaining in Russia, over 200 in Europe, over 300 in Japan and several people in China and India. Russian politician Vladimir Lopatin, who was working on the Committee on Security of the Russian state Duma and who introduced a bill banning the use of those technologies, admitted in his book, titled Psychotronic Weapon and Security of Russia, that in Russia, experiments on unwitting citizens are carried out. “Compensation of damages and losses connected with social rehabilitation of persons suffering from destructive informational influence must be realized in legal trial,” he wrote .
It should be understood that most of those people pass through mental hospitals. Lopatin visited the U.S. in 1999 to meet with Richard Cheney. At that time he was described as the “leader of a new breed of Soviet dissidents.” Then, he disappeared from top ranks of Russian politicians.
Why has this research remained classified until now? There are two explanations: First, there is a secret arms race in progress in the world where the superpowers compete to gain decisive supremacy in this area, and, in this way, master the control of the whole world. Second, the governments keep those technologies in store in case they would not be able to control, by democratic means, the crises that may arise as a result of their poor decisions. In both cases, the era of democracy and human freedom will come to an end. According to the declaration of Serdjukov, there are, at the most, eight years left within which those weapons will officially become a part of the Russian military arsenal. For democracy, this would mean the beginning of the end.
In the past, Russians were not resolved to put those means to work. When the construction of the American system HAARP was launched, with the system supposedly being able to target large regions of the planet by vibrating the ionosphere in brain frequencies http://nova.stanford.edu/~vlf/publications/2007-13.pdf , Russia declared its willingness to ban mind control technologies. The Russian state Duma, and, consequently, the Interparliamentary Assembly of the Union of Independent States, addressed the United Nations, OBSE and the European Council with a proposal for an international convention banning the development and use of informational weapons. According to the Russian newspaper Segodnya in March 1998, the matter was discussed with U.N. Secretary General Kofi Anan and included on the agenda of the General Assembly of the U.N. It is most likely that the U.S. refused to negotiate this convention, and, in consequence, the ban of informational weapons was not discussed by the U.N. General Assembly. Even in the U.S., Congress approved a bill proposing the ban of mind control technologies http://thomas.loc.gov/cgi-bin/query/r?c107:chemtrails . But this was only for a very short period of time. The bill was then changed, and the ban of those technologies was left out of the Space Preservation Bill. Neither Congress nor the president made ever an effort to ban mind control weapons. The European Parliament reacted as well to the launch of the HAARP system construction, calling for a ban on the manipulation of human beings. The resolution was passed after the testimony of the Nick Begich, author of the book Angels Don’t Play this HAARP. His testimony convinced the European Parliament of the possible use of this system to manipulate the minds of whole populations. In the European Parliament’s STOA (Science and Technological Options Assessment) panel report, titled Crowd Control Technologies, the European Parliament calls “for an international convention and global ban on all research and development, whether civilian or military, which seeks to apply knowledge of the chemical, electrical, sound vibration or other functioning of the human brain to the development of weapons which might enable any form of manipulation of human beings, including a ban on any actual or possible deployment (stressed by the author of the article) of such systems.” At the same time, the European countries resigned on this intention when accepting the NATO politics of non-lethal weapons. The same STOA report claims that the U.S. is a major promoter of the use of those arms and that: “In October 1999 NATO announced a new policy on non-lethal weapons and their place in allied arsenals ” In 1996 non-lethal tools identified by the U.S. Army included directed energy systems and radio frequency weapons.” Directed energy system is further defined by the STOA document: “Directed energy weapon system designed to match radio frequency source to interfere with human brain activity at synapse level.” Since 1999, those weapons have been upgraded for another 13 years.
In 1976, Zbygniew Brzezinski, the future National Security advisor to President Carter, wrote a book titled Between Two Ages, America’s Role in the Technetronic Era (Penguin Books, 1976, Massachusetts). In the book, he predicted a “more controlled and directed society” based on the development of technology, where an elite group will play a leading role, taking advantage of persisting social crises to use “the latest modern techniques for influencing public behavior and keeping society under close surveillance and control.”
The use of mind control technologies was predicted as well in the 1994 publication of Strategic Studies Institute of the U.S. Army War College. The prediction for the year 2000 was the growth of terrorism, drug trafficking and criminality. This conclusion was drawn: “The president was thus amenable to the use of the sort of psychotechnology which formed the core of the RMA (revolution in military affairs) … it was necessary to rethink our ethical prohibitions on manipulating the minds of enemies (and potential enemies) both international and domestic … Through persistent efforts and very sophisticated domestic “consciousness raising,” old-fashioned notions of personal privacy and national sovereignty changed. As technology changed the way force was applied, things such as personal courage, face-to-face leadership, and the “war fighter” mentality became irrelevant.” Potential or possible supporters of the insurgency around the world were identified using the comprehensive Interagency Integrated Database. These were categorized as “potential” or “active,” with sophisticated personality simulations used to develop, tailor and focus psychological campaigns for each.” So, the Institute of Strategic Studies predicted that in the year 2000 those technologies would be so advanced that it would be possible to deprive a human being of his freedom and adjust his personality to the needs of ruling elite. Most probably those technologies were at this level already in 1994.
Attempts to make the general public acquainted with the existence of those weapons are, with respect to the fact that it is evident that democratic public would require an immediate ban of those technologies, systematically suppressed. Lopatin wrote: “The arms race is speeding up as a consequence of classification. Secrecy is the way to secure cruel control over the people, the way to curtail their creativity, turn them into biorobots.” Psychotronic war “is already taking place without declaration of war, secretly ” Only if the work on the mind control problem is no more covered by the screen of secrecy, extraordinariness, mysteriousness; if complex, open scientific research with international participation, is carried out, the psychotronic war including the use of psychotronic weapon can be prevented.”
The article, titled Informacni zbrane ohrozuji demokracii a lidstvo, was deleted from the website of the Czech internet newspaper Britske Listy ( www.blisty.cz ). The sharing of the original URL of the English version of the same article (Means of Information War Threaten Democracy and Mankind) is blocked on Facebook, and a similar article was deleted from the website of Australian magazine New Dawn. This proves that the governments keep open the option to use this technology against their uninformed citizens. This is as well confirmed by the fact that there exists no legislations punishing the use of those technologies by governments. Only in Russia and some of the states in the U.S. are there legislations punishing the ownership or trading with those technologies by nongovernmental entities. In the state of Michigan , for example, the sentence for this crime is equal to the sentence for ownership or trading with weapons of mass destruction.
Technology Uses Lasers to Transmit Audible Messages to Specific People
Photoacoustic communication approach could send warning messages through the air without requiring a receiving device
WASHINGTON — Researchers have demonstrated that a laser can transmit an audible message to a person without any type of receiver equipment. The ability to send highly targeted audio signals over the air could be used to communicate across noisy rooms or warn individuals of a dangerous situation such as an active shooter.
MIT Used a Laser to Transmit Audio Directly Into a Person’s Ear
Caption: Ryan M. Sullenberger and Charles M. Wynn developed a way to use eye- and skin-safe laser light to transmit a highly targeted audible message to a person without any type of receiver equipment.
Image Credit: Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Lincoln Laboratory
“Our system can be used from some distance away to beam information directly to someone’s ear,” said research team leader Charles M. Wynn. “It is the first system that uses lasers that are fully safe for the eyes and skin to localize an audible signal to a particular person in any setting.”
Creating sound from air
The new approaches are based on the photoacoustic effect, which occurs when a material forms sound waves after absorbing light. In this case, the researchers used water vapor in the air to absorb light and create sound.
“This can work even in relatively dry conditions because there is almost always a little water in the air, especially around people,” said Wynn. “We found that we don’t need a lot of water if we use a laser wavelength that is very strongly absorbed by water. This was key because the stronger absorption leads to more sound.”
One of the new sound transmission methods grew from a technique called dynamic photoacoustic spectroscopy (DPAS), which the researchers previously developed for chemical detection. In the earlier work, they discovered that scanning, or sweeping, a laser beam at the speed of sound could improve chemical detection.
“The speed of sound is a very special speed at which to work,” said Ryan M. Sullenberger, first author of the paper. “In this new paper, we show that sweeping a laser beam at the speed of sound at a wavelength absorbed by water can be used as an efficient way to create sound.”
Caption: The researchers use water vapor in the air to absorb light and create sound. By sweeping the laser they can create an audio signal that can only be heard at a certain distance from the transmitter, allowing it to be localized to one person.
Image Credit: Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Lincoln Laboratory
For the DPAS-related approach, the researchers change the length of the laser sweeps to encode different frequencies, or audible pitches, in the light. One unique aspect of this laser sweeping technique is that the signal can only be heard at a certain distance from the transmitter. This means that a message could be sent to an individual, rather than everyone who crosses the beam of light. It also opens the possibility of targeting a message to multiple individuals.
In the lab, the researchers showed that commercially available equipment could transmit sound to a person more than 2.5 meters away at 60 decibels using the laser sweeping technique. They believe that the system could be easily scaled up to longer distances. They also tested a traditional photoacoustic method that doesn’t require sweeping the laser and encodes the audio message by modulating the power of the laser beam.
“There are tradeoffs between the two techniques,” said Sullenberger. “The traditional photoacoustics method provides sound with higher fidelity, whereas the laser sweeping provides sound with louder audio.”
Next, the researchers plan to demonstrate the methods outdoors at longer ranges. “We hope that this will eventually become a commercial technology,” said Sullenberger. “There are a lot of exciting possibilities, and we want to develop the communication technology in ways that are useful.”
Paper: R. M. Sullenberger, S. Kaushik, C. M. Wynn. “Photoacoustic communications: delivering audible signals via absorption of light by atmospheric H2O,” Opt. Lett., 44, 3, 622-625 (2019).
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Magnus Olsson: Nano-Brain-Implant Technologies and Artificial Intelligence
Magnus begins his speech telling the audience “Welcome to the Future” and it’s a very good way to start what he’s going to say next. He also chooses to quote Gerald McGuire and Ellen McGee that several times published scientific papers requiring some type of regulation of implantable devices. Even though they’re been developed since the 1940s-1960s, and even though they’re such a huge area of research right now, as we speak, if you ever mention them in health care, the staff will claim that they don’t even exist. No physical examination is usually made, and there is no explanation to why victims are in so much pain in very specific areas of their bodies and more.
Magnus has researched all aspects of the supercomputer systems based on transmissions from implants in the human body. He elaborates on the Artificial Intelligence research done today and what it’ll mean for humanity in the future. He understands that this technology can be used in good ways but unfortunately, if unregulated, it can lead to the real Orwellian “thought police” state.
He explores the possibility of using different avatars or agents, to assist people in their daily life and the developments of virtual worlds where people can enter as a third type of reality, apart from awaken state and the dream state. He talks about the NSAs supercomputer called “Mr. Computer” that has the ability to make its own decisions and the development of the new quantum computer, which is supposed to “marry” the old-fashioned Mr. Computer.
As interesting and fascinated his speech is, it’s easy to get lost in the new emerging world view that Magnus creates for a while. It’s tempered by the experiences he has, the immense 24/7 torture, the lack of privacy, the lost freedom of the mind and the necessity to cope with something that no human being should have to cope with: the most grotesques aspects of life.
Magnus Olsson used to be a very successful businessman. Not only is Magnus highly educated, but he also had a very successful career: as an entrepreneur, stockbroker and businessman.
Mind Control – Remote Neural Monitoring: Daniel Estulin and Magnus Olsson on Russia Today
This show, with the original title “Control mental. El sueño dorado de los dueños del mundo” (Mind control. The golden dream of the world’s masters) — broadcasted to some 34 million people — was one of the biggest victories for victims of implant technologies so far. Thanks to Magnus Olsson, who, despite being victimized himself, worked hard for several years to expose one the biggest human rights abuses of our times – connecting people against their will and knowledge to computers via implants of the size of a few nanometers – leading to a complete destruction of not only their lives and health, but also personalities and identities.
Very few people are aware of the actual link between neuroscience, cybernetics, artificial intelligence, neuro-chips, transhumanism, the science cyborg, robotics, somatic surveillance, behavior control, the thought police and human enhancement.
They all go hand in hand, and never in our history before, has this issue been as important as it is now.
One reason is that this technology, that begun to develop in the early 1950s is by now very advanced but the public is unaware of it and it goes completely unregulated. There is also a complete amnesia about its early development, as Lars Drudgaard of ICAACT, mentioned in one of his interviews last year. The CIA funded experiments on people without consent through leading universities and by hiring prominent neuroscientists of that time. These experiments have since the 50s been brutal, destroying every aspect of a person’s life, while hiding behind curtains of National Security and secrecy but also behind psychiatry diagnosis.
The second is that its backside –mind reading, thought police, surveillance, pre-crime, behavior modification, control of citizen’s behavior; tastes, dreams, feelings and wishes; identities; personalities and not to mention the ability to torture and kill anyone from a distance — is completely ignored. All the important ethical issues dealing with the most special aspects of being a free human being living a full human life are completely dismissed. The praise of the machine in these discourses dealing with not only transhumanism ideals but also neuroscience today has a cost and that is complete disrespect, despise and underestimation of human beings, at least when it comes to their bodies, abilities and biological functions. The brain is though seen as the only valuable thing; not just because of its complexity and mysteries, but also because it can create consciousness and awareness. We’re prone to diseases, we die, we make irrational decisions, we’re inconsistent, and we need someone to look up to. In a radio interview on Swedish “Filosofiska rummet” entitled “Me and my new brain” (Jag och min nya hjärna), neuroscientist Martin Ingvar referred to the human body as a “bad frame for the brain”. Questions about individual free will and personal identity were discussed and the point of view of Martin Ingvar was very much in line with José Delgado’s some 60 years ago, and its buried history of mind control: we don’t really have any choice, we’re not really having a free will or for that matter any consistent personality. This would be enough reason to change humans to whatever someone else wishes. For example, an elite.
Another reason for why this issue dealing with brain implants is important of course is the fact that both the US and the EU pour billions of dollars and euros in brain research every single year, a brain research very focused on not only understanding the brain, but also highly focused on merging human beings with machines; using neuro-implants to correct behavior and enhance intelligence; creating robots and other machines that think and make autonomous intelligent decisions — just like humans do.
Ray Kurzweil, who’s predictions about future technological developments have been correct at least until now, claims that in 20 years, implant-technology has advanced that far that humanity has been completely transformed by it. We cannot know right now whether he’s prediction is right or wrong, but we have the right to decide on the kind of future we want. I do not know if eradicating humanity as we know it is the best future or the only alternative. Today, we might still have a choice.
Something to think about: Can you research the depths of the human brain on mice?
And a interface based on this information for speaking with the assistant:
The Audeo is a sensor/device which detects activity in the larynx (aka. voice box) through EEG (Electroencephalography). The Audeo is unique in it’s use of EEG in that it is detecting & analyzing signals outside the brain on their path to the larynx.1 The neurological signals/data are then encrypted and then transmitted to a computer to be processed using their software (which can be seen being used in Kimberly Beals’ video).2 Once it is analyzed and processed the data can then be represented using a computer speech generator.
The results shed light on the distinct mechanisms associated with production of vowels and consonants, and could provide the basis for brain-based communication using imagined speech. https://books.google.se/books…
Soon afterwards, the serial entrepreneur created Neuralink, with the intention of connecting computers directly to human brains. He wants to do this using “neural lace” technology – implanting tiny electrodes into the brain for direct computing capabilities.
Brain-computer interfaces (BCI) aren’t a new idea. Various forms of BCI are already available, from ones that sit on top of your head and measure brain signals to devices that are implanted into your brain tissue.
They are mainly one-directional, with the most common uses enabling motor control and communication tools for people with brain injuries. In March, a man who was paralysed from below the neck moved his hand using the power of concentration.
But Musk’s plans go beyond this: he wants to use BCIs in a bi-directional capacity, so that plugging in could make us smarter, improve our memory, help with decision-making and eventually provide an extension of the human mind.
“Musk’s goals of cognitive enhancement relate to healthy or able-bodied subjects, because he is afraid of AI and that computers will ultimately become more intelligent than the humans who made the computers,” explains BCI expert Professor Pedram Mohseni of Case Western Reserve University, Ohio, who sold the rights to the name Neuralink to Musk.
“He wants to directly tap into the brain to read out thoughts, effectively bypassing low-bandwidth mechanisms such as speaking or texting to convey the thoughts. This is pie-in-the-sky stuff, but Musk has the credibility to talk about these things,” he adds.
Musk is not alone in believing that “neurotechnology” could be the next big thing. Silicon Valley is abuzz with similar projects. Bryan Johnson, for example, has also been testing “neural lace”. He founded Kernel, a startup to enhance human intelligence by developing brain implants linking people’s thoughts to computers.
In 2015, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg said that people will one day be able to share “full sensory and emotional experiences” online – not just photos and videos. Facebook has been hiring neuroscientists for an undisclosed project at its secretive hardware division, Building 8.
However, it is unlikely this technology will be available anytime soon, and some of the more ambitious projects may be unrealistic, according to Mohseni.
“In my opinion, we are at least 10 to 15 years away from the cognitive enhancement goals in healthy, able-bodied subjects. It certainly appears to be, from the more immediate goals of Neuralink, that the neurotechnology focus will continue to be on patients with various neurological injuries or diseases,” he says.
Mohseni says one of the best current examples of cognitive enhancement is the work of Professor Ted Berger, of the University of Southern California, who has been working on a memory prosthesis to replace the damaged parts of the hippocampus in patients who have lost their memory due to, for example, Alzheimer’s disease.
“In this case, a computer is to be implanted in the brain that acts similaly to the biological hippocampus from an input and output perspective,” he says. “Berger has results from both rodents and non-human primate models, as well as preliminary results in several human subjects.”
Mohseni adds: “The [US government’s] Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) currently has a programme that aims to do cognitive enhancement in their soldiers – ie enhance learning of a wide range of cognitive skills, through various mechanisms of peripheral nerve stimulation that facilitate and encourage neural plasticity in the brain. This would be another example of cognitive enhancement in able-bodied subjects, but it is quite pie-in-the-sky, which is exactly how DARPA operates.”
Understanding the brain
In the UK, research is ongoing. Davide Valeriani, senior research officer at University of Essex’s BCI-NE Lab, is using an electroencephalogram (EEG)-based BCI to tap into the unconscious minds of people as they make decisions.
“Everyone who makes decisions wears the EEG cap, which is part of a BCI, a tool to help measure EEG activity … it measures electrical activity to gather patterns associated with confident or non-confident decisions,” says Valeriani. “We train the BCI – the computer basically – by asking people to make decisions without knowing the answer and then tell the machine, ‘Look, in this case we know the decision made by the user is correct, so associate those patterns to confident decisions’ – as we know that confidence is related to probability of being correct. So during training the machine knows which answers were correct and which one were not. The user doesn’t know all the time.”
Valeriani adds: “I hope more resources will be put into supporting this very promising area of research. BCIs are not only an invaluable tool for people with disabilities, but they could be a fundamental tool for going beyond human limits, hence improving everyone’s life.”
He notes, however, that one of the biggest challenges with this technology is that first we need to better understand how the human brain works before deciding where and how to apply BCI. “This is why many agencies have been investing in basic neuroscience research – for example, the Brain initiative in the US and the Human Brain Project in the EU.”
Whenever there is talk of enhancing humans, moral questions remain – particularly around where the human ends and the machine begins. “In my opinion, one way to overcome these ethical concerns is to let humans decide whether they want to use a BCI to augment their capabilities,” Valeriani says.
“Neuroethicists are working to give advice to policymakers about what should be regulated. I am quite confident that, in the future, we will be more open to the possibility of using BCIs if such systems provide a clear and tangible advantage to our lives.”
Facebook is building brain-computer interfaces
Facebook is improving the 360 video experience by predicting where you will look
The plan is to eventually build non-implanted devices that can ship at scale. And to tamp down on the inevitable fear this research will inspire, Facebook tells me “This isn’t about decoding random thoughts. This is about decoding the words you’ve already decided to share by sending them to the speech center of your brain.” Facebook likened it to how you take lots of photos but only share some of them. Even with its device, Facebook says you’ll be able to think freely but only turn some thoughts into text.
Meanwhile, Building 8 is working on a way for humans to hear through their skin. It’s been building prototypes of hardware and software that let your skin mimic the cochlea in your ear that translates sound into specific frequencies for your brain. This technology could let deaf people essentially “hear” by bypassing their ears.
A team of Facebook engineers was shown experimenting with hearing through skin using a system of actuators tuned to 16 frequency bands. A test subject was able to develop a vocabulary of nine words they could hear through their skin.
To underscore the gravity of Building 8s mind-reading technology, Dugan started her talk by saying she’s never seen something as powerful as the smartphone “that didn’t have unintended consequences.” She mentioned that we’d all be better off if we looked up from our phones every so often. But at the same time, she believes technology can foster empathy, education and global community.
Building 8’s Big Reveal
Facebook hired Dugan last year to lead its secretive new Building 8 research lab. She had previously run Google’s Advanced Technology And Products division, and was formerly a head of DARPA.
Facebook built a special Area 404 wing of its Menlo Park headquarters with tons of mechanical engineering equipment to help Dugan’s team quickly prototype new hardware. In December, it signed rapid collaboration deals with Stanford, Harvard, MIT and more to get academia’s assistance.
Yet until now, nobody really knew what Building 8 was…building. Business Insider had reported on Building 8’s job listings and that it might show off news at F8.
According to these job listings, Facebook is looking for a Brain-Computer Interface Engineer “who will be responsible for working on a 2-year B8 project focused on developing advanced BCI technologies.” Responsibilities include “Application of machine learning methods, including encoding and decoding models, to neuroimaging and electrophysiological data.” It’s also looking for a Neural Imaging Engineer who will be “focused on developing novel non-invasive neuroimaging technologies” who will “Design and evaluate novel neural imaging methods based on optical, RF, ultrasound, or other entirely non-invasive approaches.”
Facebook Building 8 R&D division head Regina Dugan
Facebook has built hardware before to mixed success. It made an Android phone with HTC called the First to host its Facebook Home operating system. That flopped. Since then, Facebook proper has turned its attention away from consumer gadgetry and toward connectivity. It’s built the Terragraph Wi-Fi nodes, Project ARIES antenna, Aquila solar-powered drone and its own connectivity-beaming satellite from its internet access initiative — though that blew up on the launch pad when the SpaceX vehicle carrying it exploded.
Facebook’s Area 404 hardware lab contains tons of mechanical engineering and prototyping equipment
But as Facebook grows, it has the resources and talent to try new approaches in hardware. With over 1.8 billion users connected to just its main Facebook app, the company has a massive funnel of potential guinea pigs for its experiments.
Today’s announcements are naturally unsettling. Hearing about a tiny startup developing these advanced technologies might have conjured images of governments or coporate conglomerates one day reading our mind to detect thought crime, like in 1984. Facebook’s scale makes that future feel more plausible, no matter how much Zuckerberg and Dugan try to position the company as benevolent and compassionate. The more Facebook can do to institute safe-guards, independent monitoring, and transparency around how brain-interface technology is built and tested, the more receptive it might find the public.
A week ago Facebook was being criticized as nothing but a Snapchat copycat that had stopped innovating. Today’s demos seemed design to dismantle that argument and keep top engineering talent knocking on its door.
“Do you want to work for the company who pioneered putting augmented reality dog ears on teens, or the one that pioneered typing with telepathy?” You don’t have to say anything. For Facebook, thinking might be enough.
The MOST IMPORTANT QUESTIONS!
There is no established legal protection for the human subject when researchers use Brain Machine Interface (cybernetic technology) to reverse engineer the human brain.
The progressing neuroscience using brain-machine-interface will enable those in power to push the human mind wide open for inspection.
There is call for alarm. What kind of privacy safeguard is needed, computers can read your thoughts!
In recent decades areas of research involving nanotechnology, information technology, biotechnology and neuroscience have emerged, resulting in, products and services.
We are facing an era of synthetic telepathy, with brain-computer-interface and communication technology based on thoughts, not speech.
An appropriate albeit alarming question is: “Do you accept being enmeshed in a computer network and turned into a multimedia module”? authorities will be able to collect information directly from your brain, without your consent.
This kind of research in bioelectronics has been progressing for half a century.
Brain Machine Interface (Cybernetic technology) can be used to read our minds and to manipulate our sensory perception!