Elon Musk Worried World War III Could Interfere With His Colonizing Mars

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Elon Musk reminds me of Hank Scorpio. You know, that one supervillain boss from that one episode of The Simpsons? Yeah. Anyway. This latest interview he had with GQ is pretty light on the Scorpio-ness, but he did share some sentiments that ring–at least somewhat–true.

Musk mentioned that he’s afraid a potential World War III would get in the way of his colonizing Mars. He brings up an interesting parallel, comparing the world as it was pre-World War I to now, and essentially suggests that the climate is ripe for a potential world war. He said:

I mean, I don’t think we can discount the possibility of a third World War. You know, in 1912 they were proclaiming a new age of peace and prosperity, saying that it was a golden age, war was over.

And then you had World War I followed by World War II followed by the Cold War. So I think we need to acknowledge that there’s certainly a possibility of a third World War, and if that does occur it could be far worse than anything that’s happened before.

He brings this up because, as stated earlier, a global catastrophe like a world war would get in the way of space exploration and the development of technology. Musk is one of many, many, many people who believe the future of humanity lies in the stars, and his work on SpaceX and similar programs stands as undeniable proof. His answer in this interview lends voice to a worry that surely lurks in the back of everyone’s mind these days.

We make plenty of jokes about how Musk might sound like a bit of a supervillain, but he just might have a point on this one. Just maybe let’s think real hard before we take his suggestion to nuke Mars.

Oh, there’s that supervillain stuff.

(via Gizmodo, image via Flickr/Thomas Hawk)

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Jessica Lachenal
Jessica Lachenal is a writer who doesn’t talk about herself a lot, so she isn’t quite sure how biographical info panels should work. But here we go anyway. She's the Weekend Editor for The Mary Sue, a Contributing Writer for The Bold Italic (thebolditalic.com), and a Staff Writer for Spinning Platters (spinningplatters.com). She's also been featured in Model View Culture and Frontiers LA magazine, and on Autostraddle. She hopes this has been as awkward for you as it has been for her.