An American spyplane mission goes awry, and a U.S. Marine pilot goes down. Once again, the United States finds itself stumbling into a war with the North Koreans and the Chinese. To make matters worse, the enemy has complete access to the new American MILNET communications network.
The digital system had been sold to Congress as the ultimate “Force Multiplier.” It is a computer network of real-time intelligence reports from airplanes, submarines, and even infantryman all over the globe. Every move that the United States makes is shown on enemy computer screens as the forces are being deployed. Every message and video sent between commanders is listened to and watched.
There is only one bug in the system-one saving grace for the United States. Unknowingly, American and other Coalition forces use the software glitch to pull off a few victories. Repeatedly the Chinese try to outmaneuver or overwhelm the Americans, but as time marches on, more countries join the Coalition. The war draws to a stalemate, and for one side, the nuclear card becomes a realistic option.
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Dare to imagine the unthinkable. There’s only one thing worse than total, global-thermonuclear war: another long, far-flung, drawn-out, conventional world war! It starts by accident at the worst place, the worst time, and with the worst possible enemies. As in WWII, weapons of mass destruction are avoided for fear of retaliation. Eventually, when momentum is lost, one side will have to rub the nuclear genie’s lamp.