Doomsday Clock: It’s Now 100 Seconds to Midnight.
The international security situation is now more dangerous than it has ever been, even at the height of the Cold War. The iconic Doomsday Clock symbolizing the gravest perils facing humankind is now closer to midnight than at any point since its creation in 1947. To underscore the need for action, the time on the Doomsday Clock is now being expressed in seconds, rather than minutes. In 2020, the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists moved the Doomsday Clock from two minutes to midnight to just 100 seconds to midnight and explained: “Humanity continues to face two simultaneous existential dangers—nuclear war and climate change—that are compounded by a threat multiplier, cyber-enabled information warfare, that undercuts society’s ability to respond. The international security situation is dire, not just because these threats exist, but because world leaders have allowed the international political infrastructure for managing them to erode.”
The US government’s secret plan to save itself – while the rest of us die. So reads the subtitle of the recent book, Raven Rock, by Garrett Graff. This in-depth study reveals that the American government continues to spend tremendous sums preparing for nuclear war – not just for new and improved nuclear weapons, but also for the planning and infrastructure to ensure that top government and military leaders survive any nuclear attack. Civil defence plans to protect the general American population from a full-scale nuclear war may be a thing of the past, but out of sight, the government’s own “Doomsday Prepping” continues full-speed ahead. As Graff puts it, “Its entire shadow government is, in many ways, bigger, stronger, and more robust than it ever was during the cold war.” These mutli-billion dollar plans and programs are buried inside innocuous-sounding entities like the Pentagon’s Center for National and Nuclear Leadership Command Capability, FEMA’s Special Programs Division, the Defense Threat Reduction Agency’s Balanced Sustainability Assessment branch, or the Joint System Engineering and Integration Office (JSEIO at the Defence Information Systems Agency (DISA).
Common Misconceptions About Nuclear Fallout
The immediate effects of a nuclear detonation – tremendous heat, blast force and initial radiation – are relatively localized and limited in area. The bigger concern for most of Canada’s population is the fallout which can be blown many hundreds of miles to fall to the earth as radioactive dust particles.
When we have a nuclear incident like Chernobyl or Fukushima and a nuclear reactor leaks radioactive materials, these can remain highly dangerous for extended periods of time.
However, the fallout dust from a nuclear detonation generally follows the 7/10 Rule: Fallout loses roughly 90% of its radioactivity in the first 7 hours after detonation and an additional 90% for every 7-fold increase in time: 90% in the first seven hours; 99% in 49 hours (two days) and 99.9% in two weeks. Read more
“Cities have emergency preparedness plans, but they are scoped for natural disasters like hurricanes or earthquakes, or man-made ones like chemical spills… The US Departments of Defense and Homeland Security have examined the consequences of a terrorist nuclear attack, but these have focused on the ground-level explosion of a crude, improvised bomb. None are adequate to deal with an event like a nuclear attack of the kind and scale now in prospect… The first step would be to make planners at the local, state and federal levels aware of what the effects of such an attack would likely be. While there are volumes of accumulated knowledge regarding the effects of nuclear weapons, that knowledge has largely faded from the awareness of officials even within the Department of Defense, let alone the other, largely civilian, decisionmakers responsible for urban disaster preparedness.” – RAND Corp. Blog
March 1st, 2018