Visions of the Next War

I have scanned and retouched the following 1974 Newsweek article, which explored some of the excitement, intrigue, and possibility of the revolutionary technology that was emerging out of the Vietnam War. I particularly like the illustrations, by Don Mackay, which foreshadow much of the contemporary “kill chain.” In particular, you’ll notice that the revolution in warfare begins with the U.S. president, who “orders up live television view of pre-selected enemy target.” This was, of course, what happened during the 2011 SEAL raid in Abbottabad, Pakistan. You’ll also notice on the last page drones using laser targeting (although the blimp-carrying ICBM never made it to the future!). We so often think of the “revolution in military affairs” as something that began in the 1990s following the “frictionless” Gulf War. While the rhetoric surely reached new heights in that decade, much of the technology stems back to the “electronic battlefield” of Vietnam.

Visions of the Next War, 1

Visions of the Next War, 2

Visions of the Next War, 3

Visions of the Next War, 4


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