Einstein’s warning – and why even a small nuclear war could destroy humanity

Reblogged without comment from Matthew Wright except to say that Matthew’s article is consistent in spirit and content to the several articles on this topic I’ve published in this space.

Matthew Wright

Albert Einstein once explained that nuclear weapons changed everything – except the way we think. He was right, of course. That worries me. There’s been a lot of talk about rogue-state nuclear weapons of late. A war using such appalling devices seems a real possibility – more so than during the dark days of the Cold War.

A beautiful picture of Earth from 1.6 million km sunwards. It is our only planet. Let’s not break it. NASA, public domain.

That is extremely scary. I am well aware of the theory of international rational operators; such logic on all sides was why the Cold War didn’t get too hot. But that doesn’t preclude accident, or idiots, or international game-playing around a system where the apparent cost of nuclear war isn’t total human armageddon – where ‘rational’ planners make ruthless and cynical calculations about acceptable casualties, or where specific military plans take…

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