There are several articles and researchers who believe that asymetric warfare will become dominant in the future. This is usually based on advanced tiny drones, cheap bioweapons, dirty nukes or massive nuclear proliferation and molecular nanotechnology.
Eric Drexler has talked about unconstrained access to an unconstrained range of [nanotech]-level technologies would place unpredictable capabilities in the hands of hostile non-state actors, leading to unacceptable and unpredictable risks.
These forecasts of asymetric warfare becoming triumphant assume that there is unconstrained action or access to anything.
It seems likely that the US will adapt to becoming more efficient at constantly attacking terrorists / opponent in all countries.
* Super high resolution drone mounted cameras
* Laser armed drones
* 150 kilowatt or more powerful lasers
* An open ended legal policy for the use of drones for targeted killing
There will also be a network of trillions of sensors.
As we know there is extensive cyber-monitoring.
From an altitude of 17,500 feet a drone with a 1.8 gigapixel video camera can monitor half of Manhattan and they can zoom in and see a person waving or a bird flying. The interface shows the wide field of view all at once but 65 windows can be opened up showing zoom in views of different spots. They can see things as small as 6 inches like birds. They can make out people waving from the ground and what they are wearing. The software analyzes and tracks everything that is moving.
All of the images is archived from every UAV. The persistent monitoring means that any past time can be selected for a monitored area and what happened at that time can be played as if you were watching it live. The current system has 1.8 gigapixel video but DARPA has another project that will soon have 50 gigapixels of resolution and mass production will drive the cost to about $1000. 50 gigapixels would mean increasing resolution to make out 1 inch objects from 17500 feet or viewing a larger area at the 6 inch resolution. A live and historical feed of everything in Manhattan down to 1 inch resolution from one drone.
The United States has been willing to spends massive amounts of money to develop detection and MRAP vehicles and is developing flying hummers to get around the problem of improvised explosive devices.
Genetic and nanomedicine breakthroughs that could immunize against bioweapons
It is not clear that impoverished nations or hunted non-state actors could efficiently mount asymetric warfare
SOURCES – USA Today, World Futurist Society, Overcoming Bias