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Doomsday Clock Reveals How Nuclear War Would Decimate Civilization

NewsWeek BY ARISTOS GEORGIOU ON 11/4/22 The organization behind the Doomsday Clock has published a guide that details the potentially catastrophic consequences of a global nuclear war—which could kill hundreds of millions in hours—in what is a “wake-up call” for people around the world, the author told Newsweek.

………….. The Doomsday Clock is a symbolic device designed to warn the public about how close humanity is to destroying itself with “dangerous technologies of our own making,” such as nuclear weapons as well as those that are contributing to climate change.

The clock, which was created in 1947 and is maintained by the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists magazine, has been reset 24 times, most recently in 2020 when the minute hand moved from two minutes to midnight to 100 seconds to midnight.

In January 2022, the Science and Security Board of the Bulletin, which decides the clock’s time, announced that the minute hand was staying at 100 seconds to midnight. The board said that Ukraine was a potential flashpoint in an “increasingly tense International security landscape.” After Russia invaded the country in late February, the board condemned its actions.

On October 20, the Bulletin published an article titled “Nowhere to Hide: How a Nuclear War Would Kill You and Almost Everyone Else,” which was authored by François Diaz-Maurin, the magazine’s associate editor for nuclear affairs.

“Clearly, with the war in Ukraine, we were—and still are—concerned that the world could be sleepwalking into nuclear war,” Diaz-Maurin told Newsweek. “As a magazine covering those risks since pretty much when nuclear weapons were created, we had a responsibility to do something. This article is a wake-up call from the Bulletin.”……………………….

By detailing the potentially devastating consequences for humanity, the article was published to try to minimize the threat of such a war breaking out.

“If you are better informed about…the consequences of using nuclear weapons in a war, you are more likely not to go down that path,” Diaz-Maurin said. “There is no small or acceptable use of a nuclear weapon. Any use would put the world into uncharted territory.”

In the article, Diaz-Maurin wrote that hundreds or thousands of detonations would occur within minutes of each other in a nuclear war.

Given the destructive power of nuclear weapons, even a “limited” regional exchange between India and Pakistan—involving 100 15-kiloton warheads launched at urban areas—would result in 27 million direct deaths.

A global, all-out nuclear war between the United States and Russia, based on a scenario involving 4,400 100-kiloton weapons, would very quickly result in a minimum of 360 million deaths around the world from the direct effects alone.

Even though these figures are staggering, the article notes that these deaths would be only the beginning of a massive catastrophe that would affect not only the warring parties and their allies but the entire world…………………..

November 3, 2022 - Posted by | 2 WORLD, weapons and war

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