Nuclear weapons are designed to cause mass-destruction They are indiscriminate destroyers of life both human and animal ; of buildings, bridges, reservoirs and other human constructions ; of forests and vegetation and the interwoven parts of the earth’s biosphere upon which life on this planet depends.
What happens when a nuclear weapon is detonated ?
A nuclear detonation releases energy causing
first ; – a searingly hot, blindingly white flash and temperatures as within the sun (vaporising exposed humans and animals, incineration of all that can burn) ;
second ; – a rolling blast wave which destroys all in its path (buildings, bridges, power plants and lines) ;
third ; – immediate damage by irradiation to the DNA and RNA of living cells ;
fourth ; – a complex deposit of radio-active isotopes spread into the atmosphere to be distributed by the winds world-wide as they fall back to earth over the next days/months/years randomly interfering with cellular reproduction worldwide.
Have nuclear weapons ever actually been used in war ?
Yes, only twice. On both occasions one free-fall bomb was dropped by the USA airforce without warning on each of two undefended Japanese cities, Hiroshima (yield 15 kT 6th August 1945) and Nagasaki (yield 20kT 9th Aug). The (approximate) minimum immediate death toll was 150,000 people). At least twice as many more people were damaged and died prematurely. Birth deformations amongst the children of those who were exposed and survived are significantly higher that the norm.
These were small yield weapons by today’s standards.
How many states have nukes ?
There are now still only nine states possessing deliverable nuclear bombs or missiles. They are USA ; Russia ; China ; France ; UK ; India ; Pakistan ; Israel ; North Korea. each state says it fears attacks so it has nukes to keep it safe, -it is the ultimate deterrent for them. Possession is said to be for defence not for attack. Yet the USA, Russia and China have between them over fourteen thousand nuclear weapons. Inconceivable simply as a defensive force. Over 180 states do not have their own nukes for offensive or defensive use.
The dilemma : Unilateral or multilateral nuclear disarmament.
Socialists are not alone in having to face this dilemma. “I am prepared to defend democracy by killing two million people, ravaging their homeland and further irradiating the earth.” That is not socialism – it is barbarity.
This will not do.
The obsession with world domination, rife in many states and within many religions, can be met only by reductions in rhetoric, by acceptance of others “as they are” while we work as never before to negotiate, negotiate, negotiate and work to end policies based on domination whether by military or by trade or by beliefs that “we are the chosen race or people”.
Such weapons have no place in any genuine civilisation.
As a deterrent they rely on an ever decreasing react-to-launch time so that a surprise attack cannot destroy the other’s defences. It is now calculated in minutes, soon in seconds. Errors or madness can not then be corrected in time to avoid a catastrophe of apocalyptic proportions unfolding in minutes creating the conditions for the “sixth extinction” of life on our planet.
This is not fantasy,- it is simply the truth about where we are now as humans on this planet. Wars cannot prevent it.
Socialism might be our best route but capitalism, corporatism, kings, queens, presidents, priests, mullahs, rabbis, bankers, captains of industry and so on cannot prevent nuclear war because their roles are part of the problem driving it. The people must do it themselves by discussion, sharing, restraint, negotiation and acceptance of the non-dominating ideas of others. We must make a start,- there is little time left.
John Hubble, 14/09/17