“Challenge Coin” now available in NATO 2099 anthology

If you told me even just a few years ago that I would someday write a piece of science fiction for NATO, I would not have believed you. But then Russia invaded Ukraine, and suddenly the relevance of NATO as a deterrent against naked Russian aggression in Europe suddenly made a lot of sense again.

So, when the NATO Defence College said that for the 75th anniversary of NATO they wanted me to write a piece of “fictional intelligence” (FICINT) about what NATO might look like in another 75 years, I said yes.

Figuring that a lot of the stories in the anthology might be a bit dystopian in nature, I deliberately injected my story, “Challenge Coin,” with some ‘hopium,’ since I think we could all use a little optimism these days. And if certain things break the right way, some of my forecasts might be less pie-in-the-sky and turn out to be pretty reasonable.

I will say, to their credit, no one at the NATO Defence College flinched or asked me to change anything when I hinted in my story that Donald Trump wins the 2024 election and promptly withdraws the United States from NATO for four years. Definitely an outcome I don’t want to see happen, but one I’m sure someone somewhere in NATO is bracing for and gaming out.

You can download the entire NATO 2099 science fiction anthology for free here.