Rockefeller — A mere mention of the name and the accusations of tin foil hat conspiracists are sure to follow shortly thereafter — but is there something to the conspiracies?
Operation Lockstep is one of four “hypothetical” scenarios laid out in the Rockefeller foundations report titled; “Scenarios for the Future of Technology and International Development.” I say “hypothetical” in quotations because the report also says the following in it’s pre-amble “Rather, as you read the scenarios, think of them as a journey—four journeys—into a future that is relevant, thought-provoking, and possible.”
So right from the beginning the Rockefeller foundation is telling you to think of these scenarios as relevant, thought-provoking, and possible. The report then goes on to say “scenarios are a medium through which great change can be not just envisioned but also actualized. The more closely you read them, the more likely it becomes that you will recognize their important but less obvious implications to you, your work, and your community.”
So now the report is telling you not only are the scenarios a medium in which great change can be not just envisioned – but also actualized. Stating the more closely that you read and study them, the more likely it will be that you will recognize their important implications to your work and your community.
It is important at this point to state that the Rockefeller foundation are prominent supporters of United Nations “Agenda For Sustainable Development.” This means that their goals for these scenarios primarily surround the 17 goals of this agenda – which also has its attachment to the Millennium Development Goals.
The reports pre-amble concluded with “we strongly encourage you to share and discuss this report widely, use it as a springboard for further creative thinking about how technology could shape development, and test and adjust your strategies or personal actions accordingly. This doesn’t sound anything like a strictly hypothetical scenario anymore does it?
The report also reminds the reader that “this ability to adapt can mean proactively managing existing systems and structures to ensure their resilience against external forces, as well as the ability to transform those systems and structures when a changed context means they are no longer suitable. Keep in your mind how that reads as you think about “the global need to cooperate” in regards to COVID — onto the report.
Operation Lockstep is described in the report as a scenario where there is “a world of tighter top-down government control and more authoritarian leadership, with limited innovation and growing citizen pushback.”
This is the scenario where many see parallels between what is happening now with COVID, and a “hypothetical” scenario that was written in 2010. So what are the parallels the scenario presents that are similar to the current world?
“China’s investment in Africa expanded as the bargain of new jobs and infrastructure in exchange for access to key minerals or food exports proved agreeable to many governments. Cross-border ties proliferated in the form of official security aid. While the deployment of foreign security teams was welcomed in some of the most dire failed states, one-size-fits-all solutions yielded few positive results.”
Two quick points on the above excerpt from the scenario;
1.) China has dumped significant investment into Africa.
2.) The use of foreign security teams is already being discussed through the Strong Cities Initiative.
“As residents and experts in their communities” doesn’t refer to the police units in the area. It refers to an another type of force being used to enforce the laws in that local region.
The scenario continues bringing into it an eerie thought “Even those who liked the greater stability and predictability of this world began to grow uncomfortable and constrained by so many tight rules and by the strictness of national boundaries. The feeling lingered that sooner or later, something would inevitably upset the neat order that the world’s governments had worked so hard to establish.”
In this above quote, even those who liked the greater stability began to grow uncomfortable and constrained by the strictness of national boundaries.
Points of connection
1.) This scenario admits that the world was constrained by “many tight rules” — COVID has allowed government to institute many new rules such as mandatory face masks, and COVID tests required for admission for hospital procedures.
2.) Strictness of National Boundaries — COVID has brought many new restrictions to travel around the world as well as within countries borders.
Operation Lockstep then goes on to describe the “hypothetical life” of a woman named Manisha. In Manisha’s story, she regales us with how the environment was created to be able to clean the Ganges river in India.
“Manisha had joined the GPI in 2020, in part because she was so impressed by the government’s strong stance on restoring the ecological health of India’s most treasured resource. Many lives in her home city of Jaipur had been saved by the government’s quarantines during the pandemic, and that experience, thought Manisha, had given the government the confidence to be so strict about river usage.”
In this story, Manisha admits that due to the quarantine that occurred during a pandemic, she thought it had given her government the confidence to be “strict about river usage.”
She then goes on in an attempt to justify her governments decisions by saying “how else could they get millions of Indian citizens to completely shift their cultural practices in relationship to a holy site? Discarding ritually burned bodies in the Ganges was now illegal, punishable by years of jail time. Of course, not everyone liked it; protests flared every so often. But no one could deny that the Ganges was looking more beautiful and healthier than ever.”
Keep in mind in this scenario, a “pandemic” has hit the world, and is now being used to implement various initiatives like the ones outlined in Manisha’s story. The report itself as referenced earlier recommends to the reader to use the scenarios as a “springboard” for how technology can influence development, and to “adjust your personal strategies, or personal actions accordingly.”
The goal of the Rockefeller foundation is the UN Sustainable Development goals — they don’t hide their high regard for the United Nations plan. So it is almost as if the report is asking you to consider these scenarios as an aid, to help implement the various sustainable goals outlined in the UN plan.
Philanthropy in Lockstep
The Rockefeller report describes philanthropy in Operation Lockstep as a compromised shell of itself.
“Philanthropic organizations will face hard choices in this world. Given the strong role of governments, doing philanthropy will require heightened diplomacy skills and the ability to operate effectively in extremely divergent environments. Philanthropy grantee and civil society relationships will be strongly moderated by government, and some foundations might choose to align themselves more closely with national official development assistance (ODA) strategies and government objectives.”
Use of Technology in Lockstep
“New diagnostics are developed to detect communicable diseases. The application of health screening also changes; screening becomes a prerequisite for release from a hospital or prison, successfully slowing the spread of many diseases.” This is a process we are seeing occur right now with COVID — where patients are required to test for COVID upon entry and release as a prerequisite to health care.
The report also talks about the fracturing of the world wide web (internet).
“Driven by protectionism and national security concerns, nations create their own independent, regionally defined IT networks, mimicking China’s firewalls. Governments have varying degrees of success in policing internet traffic, but these efforts nevertheless fracture the “World Wide” Web.”
This is important to keep in mind as governments around the world talk about “policing the internet” to keep “false information” out of the hands of their citizens. Most recently, this was mentioned by Julie Payette, Canadas Governor General in the governments throne speech.
In this “hypothetical” scenario, the UN takes on new levels of authority, in addition to many other already existing institutions. This is meant to add an addition layer of “reality” to the scenario – to give it a more authentic feel.
“International oversight entities like the UN took on new levels of authority, as did regional systems like the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), the New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD), and the Asian Development Bank (ADB).”
Later the report goes on to describe how these institutions worked together.
There were “Coordinated efforts to tackle long entrenched problems like hunger, disease, and access to basic needs took hold. New inexpensive technologies like better medical diagnostics and more effective vaccines improved healthcare delivery and health outcomes.”
This quote especially outlines some of the overt parallels between this “scenario”, and the world through the lens of COVID today. Disease is the only priority of the day, with medical diagnostics and vaccines taken precedence of seemingly everything else in the medical industry, and even politics.
We must ask if these “hypothetical” scenarios are really hypothetical or if they’re more reminiscent to a list of guidelines and suggestions that are pre-tensed by the false marker of being a “scenario”. It appears to me that far to many parallels exist between this 10-year-old document and the events unravelling in the world today.
The document ask the readers to use the scenarios to develop and adjust their strategies accordingly. They state that conducting these scenarios will help not just with envisioning these events — but making them into an actuality.
The document describes how wonderful the quarantine measures were, as they allowed Manisha’s government to forcibly remove the cultural practices associated with the Ganges river – and clean it up. With statements like this made in the report, in combination with the recommendation to use it to hone your strategy accordingly — it is clear that these are more than mere scenarios, these are being read as suggestions by those who have signed on to fulfill them.
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