Will artificial intelligence revolutionize humanity? Will it end humanity as we know it? Computing power has advanced rapidly throughout our lifetimes, but today it is blazing almost past belief. Supercomputers can process 1 quintillion calculations per second. Scientists have invented artificial neurons that operate 1 million times faster than the estimated capacity of natural neurons. Stanford University scientists estimate that the performance of artificial intelligence software has been doubling every three months. This means a supercomputer could be built within our lifetimes that will perform more calculations than all human brains combined.
Drawing on vast amounts of information, computers are producing quality illustrations, edited photos, realistic video, original music, detailed transcriptions, accurate translations, spoken words, robotic movements, medical diagnostics, advanced searching, precise mapping and more to such a high level that their outputs appear as if they are coming from superhuman minds—hence the phrase “artificial intelligence.”
Soon we will see what happens when humans apply these tools to a field in which they have always employed cutting-edge technology: warfare.
Battlefield of the Future
Developed by or equipped with extremely advanced computers, soldiers, targeting systems, vehicles, communications, tactics and strategies, fighters on tomorrow’s battlegrounds will likely experience a much faster-paced, much deadlier combat environment.
Imagine numerous autonomous armed vehicles rolling rapidly toward you, with zero gaps in their fields of fire. The matte-black cloud in the distance storming in is a squadron containing thousands of drones, from large to tiny. Above them and out of view are reconnaissance craft watching your movements, almost down to the foot, and calculating your next move. Armed satellites and electronic warfare systems have already destroyed what few communications systems you had left after your main systems were hacked and neutralized. Autonomous and manned ships and maritime drones have cut off your supplies and reinforcements. On standby are AI-guided nuclear weapons, hypersonic missiles, chemical weapons and biological weapons that kill only people with certain genetics. Hundreds of thousands of cameras and other sensors on these and other assets are pumping millions of exabytes of visual, range, temperature, chemical and other telemetry into an artificial intelligence system coordinating thousands and millions of pieces of equipment to move and act almost as if one organism.
In the distance, soldiers in heavily protected vehicles with deadly accurate weapons are drawn up in formation, ready to finish off, at long range, the survivors of the first few salvos. Should they need to engage in old-fashioned close combat, they have extra-human abilities, developed with the help of artificial intelligence.
All these fantastical technologies, and more, already exist.
Laboratories of Today
The above scenario most certainly doesn’t describe current conflicts, such as Russia’s war on Ukraine. A very limited amount of high-tech weaponry has been deployed there thus far. But future wars may surprise us.
And who will be deploying such fearsome systems? You might think the United States, with its $1 trillion military budget, will continue leading the way with its future combat systems. But the Trumpet is keeping its eye on a nation that has fielded fearsome forces throughout history: Germany.
Germany possesses a strong economy and an advanced technology sector. Its military currently lags well behind what it was in previous generations and what its current potential could be. But with war raging in Eastern Europe and the United States declining, unwilling and unable to help its allies, the Germans have drastically increased military spending. And as Winston Churchill warned, Germany is a nation historically “fertile in military surprises.”
The German government has shown interest in developing drone swarms controlled by artificial intelligence. It has spent millions to quietly collect experience with such systems, to be used—for now—in search-and-rescue operations. The German military is also working with France’s Atos Information Technology and Israel’s Rafael Advanced Defense Systems to create a so-called glass battlefield, a real-time three-
dimensional mapping of the combat space designed to enable unmanned systems in the air, in the water and on the ground to act as one swarm, overwhelming their targets like a pack of wolves, school of piranhas or swarm of hornets.
In December, a Luftwaffe Airbus A400M transport airdropped an Airbus Do-DT25 drone and then remotely controlled its flight. The German Air Force plans next to test-drop 12 large drones or 50 smaller ones.
The German weapons manufacturing industry is one of the greatest in the world. Rheinmetall is a top manufacturer of unmanned vehicles. For ground combat, it has developed Wisel, an “autonomous combat warrior” that uses state-of-the-art technology.
Like military planners in other countries, the Europeans are also looking to enhance the people on the battlefield. Augmented soldiers are coming.
France, which is cooperating with Germany on a European military, has already established legal approval for medical treatments, prosthetics and implants that improve “physical, cognitive, perceptive and psychological capacities.”
Radioprotector agents are designed to help protect soldiers on the nuclear battlefield; the use of AI promises to advance their efficacy. Similar developments could occur in the field of bioweapons and vaccines. Anthrax, botulism and variola already exist, with the potential to kill millions. But increasing computing power could help develop the next generation of biological weapons.
In a 2019 report, Cambridge University stated that future bioweapons empowered by AI could be activated based on specific sequences of dna, killing certain races while leaving others unharmed. Adolf Hitler’s scientists worked on creating bioweapons and vaccines through human experiments—today we have the addition of astonishing computing power that can help stimulate the human immune system. Biological weapons that won’t kill the soldiers who deploy them are a much more appealing option.
Germany was the first to use bioweapons in World War i and conducted the most advanced research in the field during World War ii. Today, Germany is home to the largest chemical company in the world and the second- and third-largest pesticide producers. Through international cooperation, it also has a trove of physical data on people living in potentially adversarial nations, including unsuspecting America, Britain, Israel and related nations.
The recent coronavirus outbreak started in a biology lab and killed millions. So too did the correspondent vaccine. Germany’s BioNTech cooperated with Pfizer, a U.S. company founded by German immigrants, to create one of the vaccines. The data from this horrible mass experiment is now being analyzed and could serve as a tool to create powerful, precise bioweapons in the near future.
Prophesied Military Advances
Churchill also said, “The future, though imminent, is obscure.” We do not know what technologies have been or soon will be developed—but there is a source that gives us special insight: Bible prophecy.
The Bible reveals that the military ability of one particular nation will be totally outdone by another. “They have blown the trumpet, even to make all ready; but none goeth to the battle …” (Ezekiel 7:14). In the January 1995 Trumpet, editor in chief Gerald Flurry explained this verse: “The trumpet of war was blown in Israel—mainly America and Britain. It seems everybody was expecting our people to go into battle. But the greatest tragedy imaginable occurred! Nobody went to battle—even though the trumpet was blown!”
Bible prophecy indicates that the attacker will be Germany. The Bible prophesies that in a future conflict, despite its apparent lead in the field of computer technology, not to mention its trillion-dollar military, the United States will not have high-tech advantages, but high-tech vulnerabilities. The Americans—and the world—will again be stunned by German military surprises.
Today, Germany cooperates closely with the United States. But this means it has greater insight into its vulnerabilities. We know that Germany will leap ahead in the use of its military. One way this could occur is by a giant leap in the field of artificial intelligence.
Revelation 9:3-11 describe the European army and its military equipment as devouring “locusts.” This could describe the vast array of manned and unmanned aircraft, coordinated by controllers using artificial intelligence. Later in the chapter, this army is confronted by a 200 million-man army, which can come only from an Asian alliance. This vast number will likely be necessary in order to confront a technologically superior European army—and its leader.
‘Understanding Dark Sentences’
Antiochus iv Epiphanes of the Seleucid Empire had an abnormal interest in technology. Most Bible commentaries agree that the prophecy in Daniel 8 refers to him. Yet the book of Daniel is for the “time of the end” (Daniel 12:4, 9). Another such king will rise in our time.
For more than 15 years, Mr. Flurry has pointed to one man as a possible strongman to fulfill this prophecy: former German Defense Minister Karl-Theodor zu Guttenberg. In his article “Is KT zu Guttenberg About to Come to Power?” Mr. Flurry specifically connected the understanding of emerging technologies with Daniel’s prophecy of “understanding dark sentences.” Polybius’s Histories relates that Antiochus often wandered in the city streets, “holding forth at length and discussing technical matters with the molders and other craftsmen.” The man who might be a modern Antiochus has a similar interest in much more modern technologies.
Guttenberg, who was economic affairs and technology minister prior to becoming defense minister, currently leads Spitzberg Partners, a New York consulting and investment firm he founded, and is a member of the Center for Strategic and International Studies, a foreign-policy consultancy in Washington, D.C. He is also involved in the Human Vaccines Project, which uses artificial intelligence to decode the human immune system.
Guttenberg knows the people developing the drone swarms, knows the people pushing for human augmentation, knows the people developing mrna vaccines, knows business leaders interested in cryptocurrencies and other blockchain technologies. He is even a member of Germany’s literal nobility. And he is a man of vision. “In the field of artificial intelligence,” Guttenberg claimed in 2019, “Europe is in a position to play a major global role.”
A new era of cyberattacks, drone swarms, robotics and cyborgs may be upon us before we know it. Most of us will have no idea how these technologies work. Yet the Bible indicates that the man who rises to dominate Europe could wield them to great effect.
Whoever this king will be, his trust in warfare and his instigation of unprecedented destruction and death will ultimately bring him and his empire to a point where they are “broken without hand” (Daniel 8:25). Your Bible says that the militaries of the future will ultimately be crushed, not by opposing militaries or by more advanced technology, but by the very power of God! As you watch the development of emerging technologies, watch Germany, watch Guttenberg, and watch Bible prophecy.