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War & Money

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1936 German counterfeit British 20 pound

History repeats all the time. With digital currencies, the next war may not be counterfeiting the paper currency of an opponent. This time, they will have to hack the banks and wipe out people’s savings to economically undermine their economy. This means that every bank will become a target to hackers, whereas traditionally in war you simply attack the currency of the sovereign.

10c EncasedPostage1920 France Postage Currency

There was such a shortage of coinage during the American Civil War that private companies devised postage currency, encasing a postage stamp in a lessor metal that was typically not suited for war and turned that into advertising. Here we see the very same practice that emerged in France following World War I when coins were once again in short supply.

Athens Emergency SIlver Tetradrachms 404BC

Even going back to the Peloponnesian War between Sparta and Athens we see that Athens itself debased its coinage and silver-plated bronze coins using the techniques of counterfeiters.

Lydia Debasement

Lydia, located in modern-day Turkey, is where coins were invented. The war with Cyrus the Great of Persia, who defeated Lydia, compelled the first debasement in recorded history because of war. The gold stater was reduced in weight from 10.75 grams to 8.08 grams.


What Will the Next War Bring?