March 25, 2014 at 7:27 pm #2979
This article is intense and informative about the potential dangerous areas of a civil war. It is based on USA, but relevant anywhere. Selco has covered a lot of the aspects on this in SHTF SCHOOL and I find the article adds some complimentary issues and calculations. Not a light read and thought provoking. Hope this helps you in measuring your risk factors of your present and bug out locations planning.
Be happy and watch your 6 O’clock.
Friday, July 30, 2010
Bracken: The CW2 Cube — Mapping The Meta-Terrain Of Civil War Two
From Matthew Bracken, author of Enemies Foreign And Domestic, Domestic Enemies – The Reconquista, and Foreign Enemies And Traitors:
The CW2 Cube — Mapping the Meta-Terrain Of Civil War Two
by Matthew Bracken
A second civil war in the United States would be an unparalleled disaster. Nobody who is sane and who has studied modern civil wars from Spain to Lebanon to the Balkans and beyond would ever wish to see one occur. But if political, cultural and demographic trends are sweeping us toward that unhappy destiny, it would be wise to at least cast a weather eye over the possible terrain.
First, a caveat. I am not going to waste our time making politically-correct genuflections after every controversial sentence, because this essay is intended to be read by mature and rational adults.
Before we move on to the cube, let’s begin with the CW2 Square. The cube is best tackled in another step. Draw the square and label one axis Poorer to Richer. Label the other axis Darker to Lighter. Darker, for brevity, includes African-Americans, Hispanics and so on. Lighter refers to those of European ancestry. The two opposed meta-groups are the poorer and darker versus the richer and lighter, or whiter if you wish to be blunt. The richer/whiter have the power of their wealth, but counterbalancing that advantage is the fact that the poorer/darker have succeeded in wresting control of much of government power. This is so, even if most of their elected leaders are anything but poor or dark.
Now, before you scream out your exceptions, yes, there are rich black cattle ranchers and poor whites living in blighted urban areas and so on. However, to focus on them is to miss the critical centers of gravity of Civil War Two for the over-study of interesting but insignificant outliers. Filling one corner of the CW2 Square will be the poorer and darker, who primarily are liberal and progressive Democrats who believe in a malleable “living Constitution.” And in the other corner will be the richer and whiter, who mainly are conservative or libertarian Republicans who believe in the original intent of the written Constitution. Again, keep your eyes on the two meta-cores, not the exceptions.
Now, let’s add the third dimension and shoot another axis out from the square to form the CW2 Cube. Label the third axis Urban versus Rural, or City versus Country if you prefer. This axis gives a geographical dimension to the meta-terrain, but there will be no convenient dividing line between the opposed sides as there was during the first civil war. It has frequently been observed that today’s red-blue political map is better understood at the county than at the state level. Even blue states like Illinois, California and New York are rural-red outside of their blue urban cores. Obviously, these urban cores are heavily populated but geographically small, with all that means to the electoral process today and to a possible civil war later.
So the opposing corners of the CW2 Cube can be seen as the poorer, darker cities versus the richer, whiter rural areas. Again, don’t quibble about outliers. Yes, there are a few rich, conservative African-Americans living in Wyoming, many poor white liberal Democrats in rural West Virginia, some rich conservatives in San Francisco and every other exceptional case imaginable.
Most of us live in the mushy, mongrel middle, far from the tips of the two opposite corners. But the centers of gravity of Civil War Two shall be as I have described: the relatively richer, whiter and more rural against the poorer, darker and urban. One can also propose many more axes of conflict than can fit on a cube, such as the religious versus the non-believers, socialists versus capitalists, statists versus individualists and so on. However, after you reflect upon the CW2 Cube, I think you will find that most of these extra axes can be overlaid parallel to one of the three already posited.
(click to enlarge)
So, of what use is the CW2 Cube, other than in providing a conceptual map for Civil War Two? In my research as a novelist who attempts to write realistic fiction about the coming years, I have long been a student of modern civil wars. One repeated lesson of modern civil war is that there is inherently dangerous, even fatal terrain. Some of this predictably-dangerous terrain is often highly desirable and even advantageous before the outbreak of civil war.
To begin: you do not want to live as a trapped and cut-off minority in what might become “enemy territory.” If you live amidst your civil war enemies, as defined and located within the CW2 Cube, you will be in mortal danger even if your immediate neighbors know, love and respect you. Those persons who have a stake in fanning the flames of CW2 (and their number shall be legion), will intentionally target those remaining “holdouts” who may be respected minority neighbors. (In this essay, minority means “the minority within a given group or area.” Blacks are the majority in some areas, and whites are the minorities in others, and so on.)
Frequently in modern civil wars, roaming armed groups (in or out of uniform) will even force people to kill their own beloved and respected minority neighbors as an ultimate loyalty test. If they refuse, they may themselves be killed as “traitors.” Besides pre-conflict racists and radicals, there will be an ever-increasing pool of persons attempting to expel minorities from their homes. Those embittered unfortunates who have already been ethnically cleansed will be seeking new living quarters, and the homes and property of “enemy” minorities still living in majority territory will be the first on the chopping block. (Not the auction block, because payment of any kind is rarely offered.) This process of minority eviction becomes self-perpetuating.
Often, those members of minorities who escape as refugees are the lucky ones who do not lose their lives during the back-and-forth of escalating violence. The fact that they may have been loved, admired and respected for many years by their majority-population neighbors will not protect them. This is a clear lesson of modern civil war. Another is that while the rich or the well-to-do can sometimes hide their wealth and pass as proles, the same cannot be said about concealing one’s racial or ethnic identity. Religious affiliation and political leanings can also be hidden, but outward appearance cannot. Civil War Two may begin on purely political grounds, but it will devolve into something worse.
Does this mean that all white city-dwellers should head for the hinterland, or that dark-skinned folks living in the country should move to the city? It’s not for me to say. We all hope and pray that there will never be a second “hot civil war” in America, instead of merely the “cold civil war” we are engaged in today. But the lessons of modern civil wars should not be ignored. Another lesson is that it will take tremendous moral courage to defy the hot-heads and radicals, and shield your minority neighbors from harm. Think of Anne Frank. Think of those indescribably brave inhabitants of the former Yugoslavia who hid their minority neighbors, when the discovery of that fact could and often did lead to their own deaths.
While Civil War Two is on the table for discussion, allow me to introduce two aggravating factors that don’t fit neatly on the cube. The first is the concept of multiple embedded minorities. Picture the old cartoon mainstay showing a line of fish getting ready to gobble another fish, from the leviathan down to the small fry. You might live in a neighborhood where you are in the majority, but the neighborhood is in a town where you are in the minority. And the town is surrounded by a larger area where your own kind once again predominates.
Or you might fit into the picture as the smallest of all fish, living in the only minority household within a majority neighborhood. From street to neighborhood to city to state to region can easily place you in the middle of several levels of embedded minorities-within-majorities. This formulation might work for many decades during times of relative prosperity and well-being, but during a civil war it is a recipe for disaster, as unstable as nitroglycerin-filled bowling pins. It’s all cool just as long as the pins are standing still and calmly hanging out together, but look out when the Black Swan bowling ball comes rolling in! An unstoppable chain reaction ensues, as each new act of violence is avenged up and down the line.
Remember that funny line-of-fish cartoon, and imagine it a few seconds later when the biting begins. It’s not so funny then — especially for the smaller fish.
The second aggravating factor is the unstable triangle of the three-sided civil war. The Bosnian Serbs, Croats and Muslims provide a classic example. Each side of the unstable triangle will backstab yesterday’s ally at the moment they perceive themselves to be at a local disadvantage, or when they see an opportunity to wipe out an historic enemy with a new Final Solution. The unstable ethnic triangle in the United States will in many places be composed of black, white and Hispanic sides. By comparison, the old black and white social dichotomy was inherently stable, even when it might have been rife with injustice.
In some areas, Asians, Middle-easterners, Native Americans and other groups will contribute to the formation of regional social geometries that are even more unstable than the unstable triangle. Study modern civil wars and you will cringe at the implications. A steel roller-coaster overloaded with old dynamite and electric blasting caps during a lightning storm comes to my mind.
And finally, some urban settings are just disastrous during a modern civil war, even if they might offer a terrific quality of life during peacetime. Perhaps the top of the list of danger areas are high-rise buildings located near potential civil war flashpoints or fault lines. Living in a cluster of high-rises divided by a “green line” during a guerrilla sniper war is a worst-case horror show. Not to mention the misery attendant to life in a tall building without running water, electricity, sewage service, working elevators, heating or air-conditioning. While under intermittent sniper fire. For months.
So should you stay or should you go? If you don’t believe that another civil war in America is possible, then simply disregard this column. But if you think that a second civil war could happen then picture the CW2 Cube and map your location within it. If you think that you live near a possible civil war fault line, especially as a local minority, consider relocating.
After the fact, a common sentiment heard from urbane, secular Bosnians living in the Olympic City of Sarajevo expressed complete disbelief that a brutal, bloody civil war could have come to their modern European city and tear their lives apart.
But it did.
A parting suggestion to students of modern civil war is to read “Seasons in Hell: Understanding Bosnia’s War” by the British journalist Ed Vulliamy. It’s currently collecting dust at your local public library, waiting only to be read.
Forewarned is forearmed.
Matthew Bracken is the author of the “Enemies” trilogy, beginning with 2003’s “Enemies Foreign And Domestic”. For more information, go to http://www.EnemiesForeignAndDomestic.com/
See also Misha Glenny’s The Third Balkan War for his account of what happens when a society commits autogenocide.
posted by Concerned American | 5:59 AM
Attachments:You must be logged in to view attached files.March 25, 2014 at 7:31 pm #2984
I would be interested in this, Red – got a link? (I think it didn’t come through maybe.) Thank you!March 25, 2014 at 7:37 pm #2988
I’d like to read that as well, please. Especially if there is an analysis of the geographic breakup–that has always been fascinating to me.March 25, 2014 at 7:46 pm #2996
Sorry about that. tried to attach from my files. I hope this way I did will serve its duty.March 25, 2014 at 8:56 pm #3069
Bracken is a good man. If he has an opinion on something, I tend to listen.
When TSHTF finally gets here, it’s gonna be ugly. People will be looking for payback for every hurt, real or imagined. Like it or not, agree with it or not, it’s going to be a game of Shirts vs Skins (or use whatever euphemism you want – Black vs White, Red vs Blue, etc), and your skin color will be your uniform. Much easier to tell an enemy at a distance. And all this ‘diversity is our strength’ nonsense will come to a screeching halt.
The only way to avoid conflict is to perhaps just shake hands, agree that it was all a colossal waste of time, money and effort, and just go our separate ways… but the odds of a peaceful breakup are so low they might as well be zero.
The wicked flee when none pursueth..." - Proverbs 28:1March 25, 2014 at 11:00 pm #3173
I think diversity is not a bad thing within a tribe. It is when the people of a community divide into the same type only tribes is where things get squirrely. I divide people into 3 categories; The very good ( true Saintly people). The very bad (pure evil). And the rest of us, somewhere in-between good and bad.
However, most humans have not evolved enough to see others beyond superficial differences.
The article brings attention to human weakness that has devastating results to those caught somewhere in-between battle lines/grounds. The CWII Cube allows you to chart where you are in the cube of potential mayhem. The other consideration not covered in the CWII Cube is other factors and divisions that can place you in the way of harm. But using the Cube as the blueprint for other calculations is possible.
Drug addicts(street and pharmaceuticals) / Alcoholics /. Tobacco smokers / Sex Trade
LEOs/ Gangs/ Law breakers/ Rambo warriors/ gun ownership/ lack of gun ownership all are sub-division concerns beyond race and statues conflicts of an area.
My location is safe and manageable within the community. And troublemakers will be wise to behave. We have rare LEO presence here and trouble is dealt with within the community usually. However, if outsiders come to cause hell here ? I can see/ have seen a fast response to the threat. How well will we do in an all out SHTF ? Only afterwards, will tell the outcome. I choose this community to re-establish in, 20 years ago for its positive aspects and low negative aspects.March 26, 2014 at 6:10 pm #3628
An absolutely brilliant analysis. For me it quantifies things in a unique way. My wife and I live in a diverse college town, surrounded by rural conservative counties. On my quiet street I am the only military veteran, the only conservative/libertarian, and the only household that owns firearms. I am very circumspect about my political beliefs, my moral beliefs, and my preparedness. All very nice neighbors, but in time of turmoil, I have to wonder who could be counted on if anyone.March 27, 2014 at 3:54 am #3912
Another good analysis by Matt Bracken. Thanks for posting it.March 27, 2014 at 4:32 am #3938
Gypsy Wanderer HuskySurvivalist
Great read, thanks for posting it!!
Prepare for the unknown by studying how others in the past have coped with the unforeseeable and the unpredictable.
George S. PattonMarch 27, 2014 at 4:51 am #3945
All very nice neighbors, but in time of turmoil, I have to wonder who could be counted on if anyone. – Road
I would bet that the only thing you can count on them doing is banging on your front door wanting you to protect them…
Think triage. You can’t save everyone. Save who and what you can, while you can. If you’re really lucky, one of your neighbors will be a bonafied M.D. I’d go out of my way to hook that guy up, no matter what his politics were or what kind of baggage he had..
The wicked flee when none pursueth..." - Proverbs 28:1March 27, 2014 at 7:10 am #3949
Interesting analysis of the situation. Look forward to reading more on this. I do believe that whatever crises befalls us, it will ignite a CW II. Because people will see it as an opportunity to “right” perceived wrongs, whether cultural or economic. And it will be bloody because mob rule will take effect. We not only have the examples from other countries, but on a smaller scale we have seen it here in the U.S. when the computer showed a high limit available on EBT cards, a riot over some perceived injustice by police, or a natural disaster such as Katrina. In each case, the “normal” rules of behavior went right out the window in a very short time period and grew exponentially over the area impacted. A crisis came bring out the best in people, or the worst in people; a time when a person’s true personality and integrity make itself known. We should be praying this will never happen here, because it will not be pretty. Thank you for this discussion. Hopefully, this will lead to better decisions on how best to prepare for the future ahead of us.March 27, 2014 at 2:32 pm #4027
Unfortunately no MD’s or nurses. As a former USAF AirEvac Medic I’m as good as it gets. Have thought long and hard about this over the last several days. Have identified two people that have potential to face adversity well. Plan to gradually and gently feel them out on their thinking and past history. One was raised on a farm, so I suspect some dormant skills will come back if pressed into service.March 27, 2014 at 4:02 pm #4040
Here is the url for the Matthew Bracken article. There are other articles highlighted, with urls, in the article.
RobinMarch 27, 2014 at 5:42 pm #4074
Ain’t doubting your skill set brother… seen you guys work before. The important question is: “Where do y’all keep your helicopter”? Kidding.. Sort of jealous actually. Most I know how to do is plug a bullet hole, throw a suture or two and maybe, if I had to, set a broken bone. Folks near us, the wife works for a veterinarian as a nurse… I’m hoping her skills will translate okay..
The wicked flee when none pursueth..." - Proverbs 28:1March 27, 2014 at 7:36 pm #4087
I learned few things from my civil war experience.
- When things go (or about to go) wrong, some powers (government, authorities etc) want to bring confusion in.
- Easiest way to bring confusion is trough the fear
- Easiest way to bring fear to the masses is to convince that people “different” from you (different race, nationality, politic option etc.) wants to harm you (your race, politic option, nationality etc.)
- When there is atmosphere of “everybody fear everybody” then incidents starts
- When SHTF people “different” then you are “quilty” and open season is here, in the name of your group, everything is allowed.
So being minority (in any term) when SHTF is bad from my experience.
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