Superhuman Warfighters

U.S. or allied warfighter in Afghanistan during 2013. Photo by Specialist Stephen Cline, U.S. Army.

Superhuman abilities are emerging, and they will become more pronounced and widespread in the future. Advances in research and development are such that civilian and military leaders are now discussing how they will change the world. One of the more interesting aspects to explore is how they will alter national security. And I spoke with intelligence veteran J. F. Cicci about how superhuman abilities will affect the armed forces and wars of the future.

J. F. Cicci (pronounced: chi-chi) is a fellow Loftus Party contributor. But she also previously worked in military intelligence. “I served in the U.S. Army Reserve as an all-source military intelligence (MI) officer from 2009-2013,” she said. She also worked as a defense contractor for the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) from 2012-2013, first as a counterintelligence (CI) assistant and then as a CI analyst. She held a top secret security clearance the entire time she was an MI officer and a DIA contractor.

I started by asking J. F. what role an intelligence analyst plays in forecasting technology, trends, and events that will affect the armed forces, national security, and the world. . . .

Read the entire article at the Loftus Party.

Expect the Opposite of This from Liberate Liberty

If you are new to Liberate Liberty or are still getting accustomed to my fiction, a good way to understand what you can expect from my stories is by reading a Dec. 22 opinion piece at the New York Times. The worldview in my fiction is different from this writer’s worldview.

Chris Suellentrop wrote, “Super Mario Run’s Not-So-Super Gender Politics.” I excerpt a portion of it below and have no further commentary on it other than to say I believe the opposite of what he does.

Unfortunately, despite Nintendo’s history and reputation, Super Mario Run is not a family-friendly game — or at least not one my wife and I will be letting our 6-year-old daughter play. The game is rife with stale, retrograde gender stereotypes — elements that were perhaps expected in 1985, when the first Super Mario Bros. was released in the United States, but that today are just embarrassing.

Super Mario Run begins, as does almost every Super Mario title, with Princess Peach becoming a hostage who must be rescued by Mario. Just before her ritual kidnapping, Peach invites Mario to her castle and pledges to bake him a cake. Upon her rescue, she kisses Mario. The game also includes a second female character, Toadette, whose job is to wave a flag before and after a race, like a character from “Grease.” . . .

This sense of identification gives video games an enormous capacity to create empathy for other people. There are video games in which you play as the parent of a dying child, as a transgender woman beginning hormone replacement therapy, as the son of an alcoholic. But it also presents more conventional game designers with an opportunity to create games in which young girls, and not just young boys, actually become heroes themselves.

The Superhuman Soldier on the Battlefield

Artwork © 2013, Paul Hair. All Rights Reserved.

Editor’s Note: Originally published at The Rebel on Aug. 10, 2015.

Superhuman abilities are associated with comic book superheroes and fantasy, but they likely will become a reality and military-sponsored workshops even foresee them possibly being on the battlefield of the future.

Superheroes fill the big screen and television. Many people like them but others may be tired of them and think they are “childish” or “pure fantasy.” And while superheroes may indeed be both of these, superhumans certainly are not. They might one day become a reality and the U.S. Department of Defense is thinking about how they could affect warfare.

Many news outlets have reported on the U.S. Department of Defense developing a so-called Iron Man-type suit. But the DOD is also aware the future will see advancements beyond this; advancements that might eventually include biological superhuman abilities.

Defense One reported on July 22 that elements of the DOD, national security professionals, scientists and others met earlier in the year and discussed the future of warfare. That meeting produced a report called, “Visualizing the Tactical Ground Battlefield in the Year 2050.”

“Visualizing the Tactical Ground Battlefield in the Year 2050” covered many different things, including the topics of augmented humans and superhumans. Defense One highlighted these topics even as it pointed out the report also explicitly stated it does not reflect any official position of the DOD or those who participated.

‘Mortal Gods: Ignition’ in Top 5 Books of 2016

“Mortal Gods: Ignition” Cover – No Text. Artwork by José Cano and copyright © by Paul Hair. All rights reserved.

Mortal Gods: Ignition was named as one of the top five books of 2016 by author Dave Dubrow.

On Dec. 20 I wrote that I was posting my last post focusing on Mortal Gods: Ignition. I truly meant that. But I had no idea that Dave was going to name it to his top five books of 2016. So I had to post one more time about this collection of short stories featuring superhumans facing real-world challenges and threats.

Dave and I have known one another for about a year now. We met through both of us being creators at Liberty Island Magazine. We also are both now writing for the Loftus Party. Dave reviewed Mortal Gods: Ignition earlier this year and I posted about the good review he gave the book.

But like I said, I had no idea it would make his top 5 books of 2016. You can read his full review of the book at the link I provided above, but he summarizes Mortal Gods: Ignition in his top five post as well.

5. Mortal Gods: Ignition by Paul Hair: A short, punchy anthology of superhero stories that hint at a terrible, dystopian America, and the lengths some superhumans will go to change it, or at least survive. Highlights the ugliness of modern warfare.

Now go read what I wrote on Dec. 20 in, “‘Mortal Gods: Ignition’: One Final Push,” and pay particular attention to my summary for the third and final short story (“Warrior”) of the book.

“Warrior” is a tale of war. War is brutal. And while the actions of the protagonists in the story will horrify many, they are not unprecedented war actions—they are not even unprecedented actions by heroes in war.

Furthermore, it is interesting to consider the brutality of war in comparison to the brutality of the modern, civilized world—and not the brutality that is condemned. Rather, it is interesting to compare the brutality of war with the brutality and horrific acts that civilized society justifiespromotesnormalizes, and celebrates, and even deems human rights.

Mortal Gods: Ignition is intended to be literature and not just fiction. Readers are supposed to think about what happens and analyze it. Dave does just that in his review. I encourage everyone to read all three stories and analyze them as well.

Again, a big thank you to Dave Dubrow for making Mortal Gods: Ignition one of the top five books of 2016!

Superhuman Abilities: They’re Not Fantasy. They’re Fact.

Mortal Gods Concept Art by Scott Blair, 2009. © Paul Hair.

Superhuman abilities have always been a part of mankind. Mankind has not been in regular possession of them. But he has written about them and wished for them, and he has recognized them in the spiritual world.

Modern man has unique views on them, with some people considering them nothing more than childish dreams.

Yet while some people believe the idea of superhuman people is something serious adults don’t consider, serious adults know that superhuman enhancement isn’t fantasy; it’s already fact.

What follows is the latest news on superhuman abilities, along with what the world can expect to happen as they expand and grow in complexity.

Intelligence analysts make sense of current events and trends. But they also produce assessments forecasting what might happen. Science and technology has advanced far enough that intelligence analysts forecasting what the future might look like now regularly talk about the development of superhuman abilities.

In fact, the U.S. National Intelligence Council devoted a subsection of its 2012 strategic report, “Global Trends 2030: Alternative Worlds,” to human augmentation (pp. 96-97) and how such emerging advancements will affect the world.

The National Intelligence Council likely will publish its “Global Trends 2035” report sometime in the next few months (although that could change). Expect human enhancement to again be a part of this report.

Emerging superhuman capabilities are such an important issue that people are even briefing the U.S. Congress on them. The Senate Armed Services Committee held a hearing on the Future of Warfare in November of 2015, and part of the witness statement of Paul Scharre (identified then as the Senior Fellow and Director of the 20YY Warfare Initiative for the Center for a New American Security) included the following comments.

‘Mortal Gods: Ignition’: One Final Push

Original artwork from ‘Mortal Gods: Ignition.’

Christmas is almost here. And Liberate Liberty is making one final push for readers to purchase Mortal Gods: Ignition. After that, with 2017 only days away, we’ll be ready for the first book of Mortal Gods stories to be on its own, and we’ll move onto focusing on new tales. So for the final push, let’s summarize the short stories of MG:I.

“Like Hail and Fire, Mixed with Blood” leads the book. The U.S. has been hit with a massive attack. A foreign intelligence professional for the nation that attacked the U.S. is in America and thinks his country has gotten away with it.

But he suddenly receives a cryptic warning about retribution from a mysterious, beautiful woman. She tells him that while the American government isn’t going to respond to what his nation did, someone else will. He rushes back to his home country to warn it about the possible threat. But his government thinks his warning is insane.

Has he lost his mind or was the woman a harbinger of judgment day?

“The First Transgender Superhuman” is the second story and almost certainly the most relevant one for 2016.

The President of the United States is progressing with turning the nation over to an invading force of foreign people. In a last, desperate attempt to stop him and his supporters, a small group of people develop a plan to counterattack. And their plan involves exploiting the president’s obsession—indeed, the national obsession—with the concept of a “transgender” human being.

But how exactly will that plan exploit the transgender obsession? And does it work?

“Warrior” is a tale of war. War is brutal. And while the actions of the protagonists in the story will horrify many, they are not unprecedented war actions—they are not even unprecedented actions by heroes in war.

Furthermore, it is interesting to consider the brutality of war in comparison to the brutality of the modern, civilized world—and not the brutality that is condemned. Rather, it is interesting to compare the brutality of war with the brutality and horrific acts that civilized society justifies, promotes, normalizes, and celebrates, and even deems human rights.

Thank you to everyone who has already purchased Mortal Gods: Ignition. And if you haven’t bought a copy yet, buying one (or two—one for you, and one as a gift) for Christmas is a great idea.

Stay tuned to Liberate Liberty for more Mortal Gods stories. And stayed tuned to Liberate Liberty for non-Mortal Gods stories as well.

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to everyone!