Introduction 5 nations. As necessary for considering changes that might be required, it also looks at how technology affects society and individuals. This focus seems appropriate as today we are on the cusp of developing foundational tech- nologies that could change the trajectory of humankind. Never has such reach and power been available. And nations—collectively and individually— have the responsibility to “manage” these changes so that the future world is hospitable to humankind. Considering the arguments being offered in this book, a temptation might be to attribute these explanations to being part of an economic com- petition, trade war, or even military confrontation rather than a struggle for technological superiority. Such attributions would be understandable as humankind and technology have co-developed throughout human his- tory. However, attempting to decouple these human events from their technological basis would also be a disservice. In short, addressing tech- nology in isolation from economics, trade, military activities, or any other human endeavors could lead us to false conclusions and not help us under- stand what will be required for continued U.S. science and technology leadership. To address technology more centrally in the book, the arguments and examples focus most directly on the technology development aspects and less on the peripheral issues such as the political decisions that were made surrounding the technologies under discussion. As an example, in consider- ing the development of nuclear weapons, greater attention was paid to the technology development than how these systems have been used, either in World War II, for deterrence during the Cold War, or most recently in con- templating a role for these weapons in future warfi ghting. The fi rst chapter questions “how we got ourselves into a tech war.” It con- siders the conditions that have led us to this point. The second chapter examines the emerging competitive environment and the recent skirmishes that have occurred or are ongoing. The third chapter looks to history to see how tech wars have been waged in the past and what we can learn from these experiences. The next two chapters discuss the relationship between technological development and economic prosperity and consider the special case of technology and warfare. In the sixth chapter, we examine the current U.S. technology development enterprise and consider whether it is appropri- ate for the tech war we face. The seventh chapter outlines the case that a tech war is here now and stresses urgency in confronting these challenges. In the fi nal two chapters, we provide thoughts on what will be important in waging this tech war and how we can win it. As we conclude this introduction, I want to return to the decision to cat- egorize this as a tech war. In doing so, we have borrowed a quote from the military theorist Carl von Clausewitz: “War is the continuation of politics by
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