Greater strength and endurance. Enhanced thinking. Better teamwork. New classes of genetic weaponry, able to subvert DNA. Not long from now, the technology could exist to routinely enhance — and undermine — people’s minds and bodies using a wide range of chemical, neurological, genetic and behavioral techniques.
It’s warfare waged at the evolutionary level. And it’s coming sooner than many people think. According to the futurists at the U.S. National Intelligence Council, by 2030, “neuro-enhancements could provide superior memory recall or speed of thought. Brain-machine interfaces could provide ‘superhuman‘ abilities, enhancing strength and speed, as well as providing functions not previously available.”
Qualities that today must be honed by years of training and education could be installed in a relative instant by, say, an injection or a targeted burst of electricity to the brain. Rapid advancements in neurology, pharmacology and genetics could soon make such installations fairly easy.
These modifications could give rise to new breeds of biologically enhanced troops possessing what one expert in the field calls “mutant powers.”
Ten years ago, there were all sorts of biomods enthusiasts roaming the halls of the Pentagon’s premiere science division. In 2002 the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency launched an ambitious effort aimed at tweaking troops’ physiology to reduce their susceptibility to stress, sleep deprivation, fatigue, pain and blood loss while enhancing their memory and learning. The idea was to help soldiers “perform at their peak, stay at their peak,” one former Darpa official told Wired.
The program was called Metabolic Dominance. It promised to produce America’s first mutant warriors
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