HomeArticleErm I Know You’re Busy But Nuclear War Is Getting Increasingly Likely

Erm I Know You’re Busy But Nuclear War Is Getting Increasingly Likely

Listen to a reading of this article:

While mainstream western media have been spending their time concern trolling about a “missing” Chinese tennis player who is not actually missing, hardly any coverage has gone toward NATO’s announcement that if the new German government does not continue to allow US nuclear weapons on its soil those weapons will be relocated to the east of Germany. This would put them closer to Russia’s border, a major provocation of Moscow and yet another step forward in the western empire’s steadily escalating game of nuclear brinkmanship.

“Germany can, of course, decide whether there will be nuclear weapons in (its) country, but the alternative is that we easily end up with nuclear weapons in other countries in Europe, also to the east of Germany,” NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg said last week.

“Should NATO decide to move U.S. nuclear weapons to Poland, for example, that would likely be seen as a step towards angering Moscow by bringing them closer to the Russian border,” Reuters reports.

Meanwhile the US is considering sending more weapons to Ukraine as tensions mount between Moscow and Kiev, and Vladimir Putin is warning that western powers are ignoring Russia’s red lines which are meant to serve as a deterrent to prevent escalation into full-blown nuclear war. The cold war against China has been continually ramping up as well and appears likely to continue to do so for the foreseeable future.

Half of Americans would now reportedly favor going to war against Russia in defense of Ukraine and a majority would now favor going to war with China in defense of Taiwan. These drastic spikes in opinion are not an accident; the consent has been forcefully manufactured by an aggressive propaganda campaign against those two nations. They are not manufacturing that consent for fun; they are doing it for a reason.

And I just keep tripping on how weird it is that so few people see the US empire’s headlong charge into cold war conflict with two separate nuclear-armed nations as the single most urgent concern of our day. It probably doesn’t even make most people’s top ten. Very few people seem to believe the most pressing threat to humanity might be all those armageddon weapons we’ve been stockpiling and how increasingly irresponsibly our leaders are treating them.

I write about this issue a lot because to me it seems obvious that when you really look at the facts of the matter it’s the most worrying thing of all worrying things in this world. It is entirely possible that climate chaos causing heat spikes and flash freezes which destroy plant life could be the thing which sends us the way of the dinosaur, or it could be the reckless development of weaponized artificial intelligence, but those fates are a bit further down the track. There’s only one threat facing us which could technically wipe us all out tomorrow, and it’s the rapidly increasing likelihood of boring old nuclear holocaust.

I write about it a lot, but it’s never shared particularly well. I could get a lot more traction telling people the most urgent threat of the day is government abuses related to Covid, or white supremacists, or one of the two mainstream political factions which so much energy goes into amplifying the enmity between. But when I write about what I see as the actual greatest threat to our world it’s like yelling into the wind. People don’t want to hear it. My words get swallowed up by a big black hole in the ground and their energy just kind of fizzles.

A big part of it is probably due to the fact that this isn’t something which fits neatly into any of the partisan filters we’ve been trained to view the world through. Detente is no longer an issue promoted by the mainstream parties which present themselves as the “left” end of the spectrum; when aggressions against Russia or China come up it’s usually in an argument over which one we should hate more. Nobody’s self-reinforcing ideological social media echo chamber is going to help them amplify the message that we’re getting way too close to nuclear war; it’s even a back burner issue for most socialists and anti-imperialists.

Another reason is that people simply aren’t being told about the rising threat of nuclear war with any regularity. Western mass media exist first and foremost to protect and promote the interests of the US-centralized empire, and it’s in that empire’s interests not to have the public too keenly aware of the fact that it is gambling the life of every terrestrial organism on geostrategic agendas of unipolar global domination.

Another part of it is just garden variety psychological compartmentalization from an uncomfortable idea; nobody likes to think of everyone they know and love being vaporized or dying of nuclear radiation.

Another part might be because people simply cannot wrap their heads around the idea of billions of people dying and what that would mean. It’s been pointed out that most people lack an intuitive understanding of how much more a billion is than a million, which is often cited to highlight the extreme difference between a billionaire and a common millionaire. But it also applies to human lives; we can barely wrap our minds around the idea of a million lives having been snuffed out in the Iraq invasion, much less billions perishing in nuclear war.

Perhaps the biggest part of it, though, is the fact that this threat has been around a long time. I can’t tell you how many older people I’ve had pish-poshing my concerns saying “Bah, I remember doing duck-and-cover drills as a kid! Turned out to be a whole lotta nothing.”

But it was never nothing. We came extremely close to wiping ourselves out multiple times in the cold war between the US and the Soviet Union because nuclear brinkmanship is an inherently unpredictable affair with far too many small moving parts to control, any one of which could set off an apocalyptic chain of events due to something as simple as miscommunication, technical malfunction, or misinterpretation by any of the thousands of individuals involved amid the chaos and confusion of escalating aggressions.

It just doesn’t sit well with people’s understanding of the world that it could all end through the same nuclear armageddon scenario their grandparents used to worry about. If two men were holding guns to each other’s heads it would be experienced as very dangerous at first, but after a while if nobody pulled the trigger the emotional tension would begin to diminish. If years went by and the men got older it would diminish even further. If they got so old they couldn’t hold the guns anymore and had their children take over for them, and then their children’s children years later, the emotional experience of the standoff would be all but forgotten.

But the guns never got any less deadly. And now the grandchildren of those who initiated the standoff are starting to get careless.

I keep having this scene go through my head where something happens and the nukes start flying and everyone’s surprised, because of all the things they’ve been herded into worrying about the idea that actual nuclear war could happen was nowhere near the forefront of their awareness. And someone looks out the window and sees a mushroom cloud growing on the horizon and says “What?? This is how it all ends? With all those weapons we’ve been deliberately building with the full knowledge that they can end it all?”

I mean, how stupid would we feel for having missed that one?

And now there’s a massive push to weaponize space to stay ahead of Russia and China, opening up a whole new dimension of unpredictable moving parts where things can go cataclysmically wrong. You’d think our place on such a precipice would be drawing us all together, but because we’re so manipulated by such deeply malignant forces, we’re instead more divided than ever.

__________________________

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Latest comments

  • For now we can sleep in peace, but it won’t always be like this. In the Book of Revelation we read: “Another came out, a fiery-colored horse, and it was granted to the one seated on it to take peace away from the earth so that they should slaughter one another, and he was given a powerful sword.” (6:4) What does this ‘great power sword’ mean? Jesus characterized him in this way: “A frightening things [φοβητρα (φοβητρον – something which inspires terror, fear)] both [τε] and [και] extraordinary (related to unusual phenomena) [σημεια – unusual occurrences, transcending the common course of nature] from [απ] sky [ουρανου] powerful [μεγαλα] will be [εσται].” (Luke 21:11)
    Some ancient manuscripts contain the words “and frosts” [και χειμωνες].
    The Aramaic Peshitta: “וסתוא רורבא נהוון” – “and will be great frosts”. We call this today “nuclear winter”.
    In Mark 13:8 there are also words of Jesus: “and disorders” [και ταραχαι] (in the sense of confusion and chaos).
    The Aramaic Peshitta: “ושגושיא” – “and confusion” (on the state of public order).
    There will be also significant tremors along the length and breadth of the regions, food shortages and epidemics as a result of using this weapon.
    Jesus stated: “All these are but the beginning of the birth pains.” (Matthew 24:8)

    In the Book of Daniel we read: “At the appointed time (the king of the north) will return back [Russia will regain the influence, which it lost after the break-up of the Soviet Union. It also means the break-up of the EU and NATO], and will enter into the south [the detonator will be the ethnic conflict to the south of Russia’s borders (Matthew 24:7)], but it will not be as the former [Georgia – 2008] or as the latter [Ukraine], for the dwellers of coastlands of Kittim [the distant West, to be precise – Americans] will come against him, and (he) will broke down [mentally], and will go back.” (11:29, 30a)

  • Thank you very much. Giving gratitude today. Let’s keep getting the word out there. For a recent documentary with a bit more inclusive of our community of “color”:

    https://youtu.be/fFtRWCfXyQ8

  • On the Beach foresaw the end of civilisation nearly 65 years ago, or so: https://www.amazon.com/Beach-Nevil-Shute/dp/0307473996

    There was a movie treatment of the book in 1959, also :https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0053137/

    The last humans living out their lives doing their bucket lists as life was wiped out on the earth.

  • “Half of Americans would now reportedly favor going to war against Russia in defense of Ukraine and a majority would now favor going to war with China in defense of Taiwan.”

    And how many would favor going to war with Israel to end the oppression of its Arab citizens and residents?

    • give the news media a year or so, it could make that happen, but we all know it wouldn’t.

      • Those figures on approval are highly suspect. Don’t put it past the warmonger lobbies to have those results fudged in some way.

  • “’Should NATO decide to move U.S. nuclear weapons to Poland, for example, that would likely be seen as a step towards angering Moscow by bringing them closer to the Russian border,’ Reuters reports.”

    That is not a report, that is an opinion about a piece of news. We need news organizations to quit reporting opinion as if it were fact.

  • Great article. How on earth do we beat the propaganda machine, and get important things out there? Would a Facebook type platform, owned by every citizen of the world work? No ads, just a place for ordinary people to post stuff.

    • Now THAT is one hell of an idea!

      • Recommend the UK’s Novara Media, for a start.

  • Now I remember why I like this blog… it’s chiefly because the comments are so very amusing. Thanks guys!

  • Namaste Caitlin!

    The anti-nuke movement has the same obstacles you have encountered in your article. That is why I have developed a plan for a new global peace movement, a people movement to create TRUST and RESPECT among nations and people. The plan is a Gandhi / King-like Global Movement of Nonviolence, For the Children (GMofNV) and it is one step away from beginning!

    UN Sec-General Guterres set the stage when he called for a Global Cease-Fire. This is PROFOUND becasue stopping war affects all issues and all the world’s crises are getting worse. Nuclear Disarmament is a top demand, but nothing will happen without TRUST AND RESPECT.

    This is a request for you to write about it. Your directness and writing expertise can illustrate the power behind the psychology and practicality of the strategy.

    Please contact me to discuss the details and the strategy being presented to Guterres.

    Thank you. Peace and Love, Andre Sheldon
    Andre (at) GlobalStrategyofNonviolence.org – (The website is going under construction for updating)

  • Well,
    Ma’am,
    Germany has happily been occupied by nato and us forces for what, seventy years or so…
    Ukraine is a failed state whose main contribution to society is a steady supply of prostitutes to Germany (and destinations beyond),
    And ‘nato’ is very much like a corporate conglomerate which is controlled by the ‘Church of Rome’ (please take the time to refference all of the military installations present upon the territory of the nation referred to as Italy).
    The ‘Pentagon’ is basically a privately owned corporation which specializes in mercenary military and espionage operations for whoever happens to be paying the most.
    So, yeah, Russia (and everybody else) has every right in the world to be really pissed off about it.

  • It has become fashionable to denigrate Noam Chomsky these days, but he has said for years that nuclear war and global warming are the things we should above all be conscious of and working against. His work explaining propaganda is also of high importance. His writings are as important as ever.

  • Testing for comments being blocked….

  • It will probably look something like this, only with a nukish flavor. It does for now anyway :o)

  • I am glad that you are on top of this because far too few people are aware of any of this.

    Russia former President Dmitry Medvedev warned June this year that in some aspects, relations between Russia and the West are now worse than during the Cuban missile crisis.

    The NATO forces outspent Russia by at least 15 to 1 but because of budget restraints, eh I mean corrupt incompetence, they are not able to confront Russia on its own turf in any conventional war.

    The neocons in Washington believe that a nuclear war in Eastern Europe can be contained, despite repeated Russian warnings that any nuclear war will escalate quickly to a global war.

  • At this point I’m beyond fear!

    And frankly, at the rate we’re going, we won’t even be able to live w/o becoming a permanent pin-cushion for Big-Pharma, which ain’t happening with me on my watch. They can kill me, but it’s going to have to be the old fashioned way, and they can count on “kicking and screaming.”

    The absolute last thing I’m worried about is nuclear war. In fact, that may even end up being the more merciful fate at this point.

    As a world, we need to COMPLETELY ditch the globalized central banking system. That won’t happen though because far too many people will opt for their pensions, social security, investments, savings, 401Ks, etc., you know, mammon, over liberty, and despite the fact that they’ll never see those things anyway after their liberty is entirely gone. That’s a bit of a reach in the thought department for the vast majority of people however.

  • I, too, am old enough to remember “duck and cover” drills in elementary school. Unlike the people you say are saying it was “nothing”, I have never thought that nuclear war was “nothing”. The majority of people, I bet, who shrug nuclear war off are only fooling themselves, as you say. It is so fearsome to contemplate that there are people interested in risking all life on the planet so they can claim they “win” something. People need to stop and think about this. A nuclear holocaust will not have any “winners”. Everything and everyone will be toast. This fact is so monstrous that people find the distraction of identity politics a nice comfy hiding place. If you think that the millions of dead due to Covid-19 is horrible (and due to the machinations of capitalism), it is harder to get your head around billions of dead and the surface of the earth turned to lava.

  • Never mind the fear porn. Cailtin publicly acknowledges their are instances women must cede sovereignty of their body. A Republican by any other name is just as sweet.

    • Gawd, Dunning-Kruger Syndrome really exists.

  • You’re not kidding that “Western mass media exist first and foremost to protect and promote the interests of the US-centralized empire, and it’s in that empire’s interests not to have the public too keenly aware”, Caitlin. And for a deeper of to just what degree, I highly recommend watching “Monopoly – Who Owns the World?” It goes way beyond the US. Everyone should see this. It gives sources you can pause on and note to check yourself: https://holding-the-line.com/censored-covid-related-documentaries/

    • Marx and Lenin explained all of this to us a long time ago.

  • Science was the Pandora’s box we opened too soon. Societies with the most science are the greatest danger to humanity and our global life support system.
    Societies with the least science are the least danger.
    17,500 Generations without science, 16 generations with science.
    Our world wide experiment with science will not end well.

    We have spent our lives warning the herd to stay well back from the abyss.
    A species with all those weapons aimed right back at ourselves.
    Each year more existential risk invented by us, against us.
    Popcorn time.
    Sit back, embrace and enjoy the insanity.
    Where else would you rather be?
    Could there be a better time in which to live?
    The greatest show in the universe is just about to kick off.

    • This is a foul, anti-enlightenment comment, in my opinion. Science is the reason you are able to post this nonsense. Medical science is the reason you and I avoided diseases that up until only about 100 years ago, killed children before they reached the age of 5. Science brought most of us out of the dark ages. Are there uses to which science is put that are inimical to life? Yes. Does that mean we should abandon science and go back to primitive shamanism and superstition? NO.

      • Carolyn L Zaremba, with respect, I disagree. If humanity survived 17,500 generations without science then obviously they were not hanging on by their fingernails, always on the edge of extinction.

        If as is speculated in this article we go extinct, or almost so through nuclear war or loss of biodiversity then who will champion science?
        If this be enlightenment, then I would chose endarkenment.

      • Science?
        Let’s see:
        Nuclear weapons, missiles, cluster bombs, napalm, land mines, depleted uranium weapons, Agent Orange, Mustard gas, chlorine gas, machine guns, aircraft carriers, jet fighters, laser weapons, subsonic weapons, DDT, Glyphosate, Benzedrine, Thalidomide and on and on and on.
        Oh yeah, the newest ADDICTION on the planet, smart phones.
        More lives have been saved by simple hygiene, access to clean drinking water and sewage systems. Millions more lives.
        As for Marx and Lenin, they were addicted to more of the same: Top down rule from hierarchies.
        Kropotkin, on the other hand_ _ _

      • Sie haben Recht, aber auch die Wissenschaft neigt dazu, das Leben sehr abträglich zu machen. Das ist wie mit der Waffe in der Hand, man kann sie human verwenden oder andere vernichten.

        Zur medizinischen Wissenschaft ein Standardwerk Wolfgang Eggert
        Die geplanten Seuchen AIDS-SARS und die militärische Genforschung.
        Also gelegentlich gruselt schon einem vor der Wissenschaft, am meisten natürlich vor der Atomphysik

  • Keep the reminders coming, Caitlin. The hate-Russia, hate-China propaganda machine is constantly being ramped up.

  • Maybe it’s a death wish of the (mainly male) ruling psychopaths.
    They’ve made or stolen their fortunes.
    They’ve bought and played with all their mansions and toys.
    They’ve raped and pillaged the third world.
    They’ve had their way with any females (or males) they chose.
    They’ve scared the shit out of sane people.
    They despise their spoilt, pampered and self entitled children.
    They’re getting old and have lost their libido.
    They are pathetic excuses for humans.
    They wanna die and leave nothing for anyone.
    A collective DEATH WISH.
    Yep, sounds logical to me.
    The great psychologist, Erich Fromm, wrote a book called ‘To Have Or To Be’
    If the psychos can’t ‘have it’ they don’t want anyone to ‘be’

    • Nihilists.

    • You may be on to something, Johnny. Will the survival instinct, the second strongest driving force of life (the maternal instinct alone being able on occasion to override it) ultimately reassert itself, or has Thanatos now taken control of our destiny?

  • GERMANY IS NOT A SOVERIGN COUNTRY SO IT CANNOT DESIDE FOR ITS SELF .

  • First class analysis.
    Declan McKenna Dublin

  • one last thought…..neutron weapons are expensive to produce….but worth the price…they kill all life, leave the landscape intact, and radiation dissipates…..nothing left to divide…. just conquer……and consume….

  • …..never mind…the shelves will be bare by the time you there…..the souls of the consumate are clogged with the pollution of bullshit….slowly choking away the humanity…..the bullshit also produced trash/pollution that is choking everything else….it’s gonna be a slower “the end” than that wonderfully sudden scamper we’ll be taking through the glowing enchanted forest of magic mushroom clouds…a quick “the end”……..hmmm…”the end”….the real and only mandate……

  • Thanks Caitlin, always clear and to the point. My guess is that people can’t believe that anyone would be that stupid. Certainly Putin and Xi would not be that stupid. If a Morrison comes to power in Russia or China we would be in desperate shit.

  • “Half of Americans would now reportedly favor going to war against Russia in defense of Ukraine…”
    Ironically, a hefty slice of those North Americans would struggle to even find Ukraine on a map! My point is that not only are they force-fed a dangerous narrative but they have been carefully cultivated to be as ignorant as possible as a precursor to a new caste system going under the name of The Great Reset that has been long in the making.
    It is the Hidden Hand of High Finance that directs all this. Those high-ups that are involved are not particularly clever but they are awesomely greedy and are blinded to the possibilities and consequences of their actions. After all, central banks fund all wars and they have never lost yet. My real point is that we should marginalise the banksters power by starting to use money that we ourselves as a society have created without usurious interest being involved. That is not rocket science. There are many pathways open. We could start with complementary currencies https://www.complementarycurrency.org/ or open up a [global] Peoples’ Bank https://twitter.com/DomeLord/status/705772854630084608?s=20 or get a decent politician to begin issuing the nation’s currency interest-free instead of borrowing it at interest from the banksters. However, Corbyn was so very brutally attacked by the whole of the usurers army because of his stance on this very subject – https://edm.parliament.uk/early-day-motion/46238

    • You’re not wrong.

  • To give a taste of what it’s really like to get in the way of a nuclear bomb (but exclude Japan and the effected Pacific Islanders who already know) we need our nerdy friends to develop a system that the bomb when sent is a BOOM-arang and returns to blow up its sender!

  • I wonder how many of these Americans who are so enthusiastic about attacking Russia and China actually understand that both of these nations could and would retaliate against the continental United States? Killing and maiming hundreds of millions of ‘them’ seems to be okay but is it just as acceptable for millions, yes, millions of Americans to die?

    • they think it’s an effing reality tv show where america always wins easily, even though that almost never happens in real life. idiots.

    • This is what is wrong with nationalism. It convinces people that only the citizens of the country they live in are worthy of survival and all other humans from other countries are expendable.

  • Thank You, Caitlin !
    Love from Denmark

  • How do you know nuclear bombs actually work?
    Big ‘conventional’ bombs make mushroom clouds, and can be dusted with some nuclear material for a bit of fallout.
    The big three players may just all have the same puppet masters. Divide and rule works at every level.

  • I stopped reading when I saw “ERM” in the title…

    • Well, that was stupid.

  • Yes, a lot of space research has been towards blinding each other – destroying satellite oversight of land, shipping lanes, port arrivals and departures, and possible missile launches. And the first move of all protagonists will be to knock out geostationary or otherwise transponders that allow pinpoint navigation of ships, aircraft and strategic missiles to their destinations, which ratchets up the old ‘use it or lose it argument.’
    Recalling the fifties and early sixties it seemed like an exchange then would have been the worst of all possible events. Duck, cover under the table, put your head between your knees and kiss your arse goodbye. But looking back it wouldn’t have been so bad, the world would already be in recovery mode, like at Chernobyl where deer, wolves and old babushkas peacefully tend their respective gardens. Small neutron capture geometry animals like mice and rabbits, fast reproducers like pigs would all be co-existing without us somehow. Some birdsmight have survived and certainly fish and amphibians. And the world would probably have avoided tipping into the greenhouse nightmare of melted icecaps and seven dead oceans belching H2S and re-sequestering all our CO2 via softly falling algae into the depths. Unless there were human survivors too with an extra millenium or so up their sleeves.

  • While our governments publish the propaganda that global nuclear war is “unthinkable” and will never happen, the military leaders continue to research and develop plans and scenarios for this so-called “unthinkable” war.
    Caitlin is right. Our greatest danger is the weapons that we in the USA have invented, and God will not save us from them. In fact, the disaster of global nuclear war is predicted by the Jewish prophets which say that the dead will be scattered across the world from end to end and no one will bury them.

  • I think you should continue with the ww3 stuff, Caitlin. I will be writing something, too. But not just now.

    I wrote something for remembrance day but it didn’t get many views. It touched on the WW3 issue. I could put a link to it here but maybe I’m doing that too much. If somebody wants to read it go to my blog. Google Yaxls.

    My theme is that the danger of ww3 is actually declining. It was at its peak about 2017. Now, the targets of the USA have it so boxed in they have difficulty causing any trouble. It would be a “they called a war but nobody came” kind of thing.

    Now, again convince captcha that I am not a robot. tr

  • Don’t mean to monopolize the board, but folks we need to put our heads together. Or is this just part of the tragic play. Caitlin writes an article, we all go oh, she’s right, so right. We get somber, scared. Then tomorrow is just another day, back to whatever. Then maybe in a year or so if all the little things that make this all possible are still in place we can do it again.
    We need to think differently. We the people need to take this bull by the horns. The Politicians are NEVER, NEVER, EVER, EVER, NEVER, EVER going to fix this and if you believe they are then, well.
    If we just go on tomorrow with the new drama we are no better than those who could care less and are binging on T.V.
    We need a permanent debate board just to understand and work this out. A permanent platform where we approach it like we would a science.
    Maybe I’m sounding a little maniacal, maybe since I’ve never actually seen a submarine with nuclear warheads I should just chill a little,
    Or maybe there will be a day when I wished I had done more.
    What do we do?

    • I have seen one submarine-in Lisbon. I have no idea if it was armed with nukes.

  • I was 13 years old when we were all sent home from school on the day of the Cuba missile crisis and have lived with M.A.D. Mutually Assured Destruction, ever since. Watched “The Day After”, “On The Beach”, “Dr Strangelove” when they were fresh and new.

    At the same time we revelled at school/uni in Greek history, Shakespeare, a world of literature, science and art in a post WWII peace the world had never known. Science and the technological glory blossomed – radio, tv, moon landing, polio gone…

    Then slowly the doubts came stronger, still have my first copies on the shelf of “Brave New World” and “1984” … the year of the first Mac with it’s beautiful little screen full of promise and magic Superbowl advert.

    But it all turned – as did the life of Carl Sagan – from the hope of SETI to “Science: a candle in the dark”, the alternate path of ignorance, horoscopes and witch burning.

    Well Sagan was right. We got here. And faster than expected.

    Now we can see the world of M.A.D. is truly mad, exposed by the wreckage of everything you’ve ever posted about, the wars the climate the too-many-people.

    Watching The News every day, the call to be true to one another in Dover Beach is a daily crueller irony

    Ah, love, let us be true
    To one another! for the world, which seems
    To lie before us like a land of dreams,
    So various, so beautiful, so new,
    Hath really neither joy, nor love, nor light,
    Nor certitude, nor peace, nor help for pain;
    And we are here as on a darkling plain
    Swept with confused alarms of struggle and flight,
    Where ignorant armies clash by night.

    Perhaps the ending of man in a nuclear winter might be the cleanest future!

    It’s very hard to see that there is a place on this planet for humans.

    • Had a USAF brat girlfriend who’d hastily been flown outa Turkey, and as we’d both admitted decades later; we’d had similar reminiscences with friends and partners: a heated argument among three scared guys on a sub, under depth charge attack. Now, we’d doubtless seen WWll, Enemy Below type movies. But, these guys were speaking Russian & one guy was clearly NOT backing down? Wonder if millennial kids went through this, those times when Reagan almost got us vaporized? When Israel tried to shoot down a SR-71, Nixon & Kosigin allowed LRBMs to be deployed. I was stoned, we were screwing to some Captain Beefheart or Domenico Scarlatti record?

  • Agree with your prioritization. So should everyone else. Existential threats like nuclear war seem less important to Americans than the peccadilloes of minor politicians. Very strange.

    • Great comment, but why is that? I honestly feel if we could vaguely understand that aspect we would have a much better handle on what to do.
      I was just sitting here thinking of all the people out there watching Netflix, taking selfies, BBQ, sports and on and on. What is it about losing everything all at once people don’t understand? or do they? What is going on?

      • The age of television was also the beginning of diagnosis of ADD and ADHD. It has only gotten worse with the increased absorption of people into their screens. “Amusing Ourselves to Death” by Neil Postman is a “must read” to understand today’s society.

  • Once in a great while you are still useful. Thank you for today’s essay

    • you have any substantive criticisms in addition to this drive by attack?

  • In the 1980’s a sailor read the novel The Third World War, by Sir John Hackett. It scared him so much, that he’s worked against letting WW III start ever since then.

    A new book, 2034 by ELLIOT ACKERMAN and ADMIRAL JAMES STAVRIDIS portrays just how easily WW III could start today. The authors hope readers will have their complacency shattered and work intensely against starting a war.

    I recommend the book (very well written) to everyone. And hope many many people become intense against these weapons.

    • Andria, I really appreciate your post and I am grateful that this book is written. I would hope it would be read. That being said. personally I believe it is going to take something else to overcome the forces at play leading to our destruction. I don’t believe ‘books’ will ever be that. The stakes are so high. We really need to debate what will or what would not work or create the outcome we desire. Books are not the answer in my mind. Open to comments for or against books and why or why not they might succeed or fail.

  • “You’d think our place on such a precipice would be drawing us all together, but because we’re so manipulated by such deeply malignant forces, we’re instead more divided than ever.” But why, in the first place, are we so manipulatable? How long can be continue to blame “malignant forces” for our weakness, ignorance, and acrimony? There’s this popular chant at leftwing rallies in The States: “The People, united, can never be defeated!” Should it perhaps now be turned around: “The People, defeated, can never be united?”

  • Caitlin I agree with you and somehow I feel like you are one of the only people who verbalize how seriously I feel about this. Sometimes I think that there are Galactic rule on killing native populations. So the Lizard people have disguised themselves as Humans and are going to blame the wipeout on us. That seems more plausible sometimes than the galactic stupidity of the Human race.
    So my question is, “What do we do”? I want a brainstorm session. I don’t want to let it go until we come up with something tangible, fundamental and workable. This is not a “news cycle” subject. What do we do?

    • revolt

      • We’re too far gone for that, I fear–too divided and embittered against each other to even begin to pose a revolutionary threat. Perhaps all we can do at this point is live our lives as well as possible, think and feel and act with what Schweitzer called “reverence for life.” The rest, it seems, is now out of our hands.

  • Half of Americans would now reportedly favor going to war against Russia in defense of Ukraine ?????????

    I followed your link. Please don’t be so taken in. Catlin I am sorry to have to tell it like it is. Most Americans do NOT know the difference between Ukraine and Russia. They do not know that Ukraine was part of the Russian Empire for a century before the Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic became one of the founding republics of the Soviet Union in 1922..

    Half of all Americans believe Noah’s ark actually existed. So what does your slick right wing propaganda source want you to believe.

    Americans are not so willing to send American Troops anywhere. You mistake us for our leaders which we can agree are overlords.

  • “I agree with some of what she is saying.”
    – Last Of The Mohicans movie, 1992.
    Here’s one point. After five decades of living in the Midwestern USA, I MYSELF do the “pish posh.” I mean about nuclear attacks and air raid sirens & duck & cover. At some point, my nerves’ dread circuits overload. The Twin Midwest Terrors – – world war and tornadoes – – have overloaded all my dread circuits.

    Plus?

    Somehow my nuclear attack comments

    Have ended up getting tied to Johnstone’s Saudi essay

    • Can we order our nuclear apocalypse with extra cheese?

      • do it

      • we can get fried with that.

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