World War III is already here. It takes place between the West and other states on one hand and terrorist groups and IS on the other hand - and it will only escalate, says peace and conflict researcher and professor of intelligence analysis, Wilhelm Agrell, to the Swedish newspaper Aftonbladet.
- We are in something that can best be understood as a world war.
"When will World War III start"? "Was the question in the P1 radio program "Philosophical room" a few weeks ago.
Both Wilhelm Agrell, Professor of intelligence analysis and Kristian Gerner, a history professor, in the program agreed that the conflicts we now see in the Middle East, North Africa and terrorism in Europe should be designated as a world war.
"Some kind of global war is going on, but no declarations of war between the great powers," said Kristian Gerner to P1.
To Aftonbladet, Wilhelm Agrell explains his reasoning.
- We are in something that can best be understood as a world war, but we avoid the designation.
- We have a notion that history will repeat itself - that it will be obvious to everyone that the war has begun. But this is another type of conflict than we know. What we know from other historical events is that gradual processes are difficult to detect, they come creeping bit by bit.
Wilhelm Agrell says that we are in the early stages of the conflict process, which will escalate and spread geographically.
- The conflicts we see, will deepen, spread and change, in ways that are impossible to predict.
A part of the spread has to do with America's role as world police, which is severely weakened, he says.
The potential in the coming conflicts, Agrell describes as "explosive".
- Previously, it was focused on geographically limited conflicts that the West did not need have an interest in, such as Rwanda for instance. But now we have incoming problems, among others.
- We speak of terror, but it may also ultimately be about internal instability in European countries that we perceive as stable and secure. If the Islamic state would take root in Western countries, it would create conflicts that are of a different nature than individual terrorist acts.
Can one assume that the war - although it started nontraditional - will develop as a regular war?
- Yes, there is a significant risk. This type of fragmented conflicts triggers at a certain point the underlying conflicts between states. Iran is an example - an Iranian-Arab war is just a few steps away in an ongoing conflict process.
Will more states be drawn in one by one?
- Most likely, yes. It would be unlikely if that did not happen.
Wilhelm Agrell believes that the Middle East situation will look dramatically different ten years into the future.
- We can not imagine what will happen. There are too many steps, where a number of steps now would appear unimaginable.
- But we can predict the magnitude. The magnitude will be strong, it is difficult to see anything else. And this is increasing rather than decreasing.
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