War Games

War Games

By Siegrid Raible

On Wednesday, August 9, 2017, on the seventy-second anniversary of the atomic bombing of Nagasaki, Japan, the world held its breath as two leaders of nuclear armed countries hurled threats at one another. The US’s head of state threatened North Korea with a “fire and fury like the world has never seen.” His words eerily echo President Truman’s words of warning to the Japanese in 1945 – “expect a rain of ruin from the air, the like of which has never been seen on this earth.”

On August 9, 1945 that rain of ruin was unleased by the United States when it dropped the second of two atomic bombs. That bomb nick-named Fat Man was dropped on Nagasaki, Japan; the first bomb nick-named Little Boy was dropped on Hiroshima three days earlier on August 6, 1945.  Not armed with nuclear weapons Japan surrendered six days later. The fire and fury unleased by these two atomic bombs resulted in the destruction of two cities, over 200,000 mostly civilian deaths, hundreds of thousands exposed to nuclear radiation resulting in unknown numbers of cancers as well as the on-going unknown long-term effects of radiation, the half-lives of which live on for thousands of years.

It appears to me that our world leaders have forgotten the total destruction these atomic weapons can and will deliver, what scientists call nuclear winter and what military strategists describe as mutual assured destruction (think of the 1984 movie “War Games“). Instead of deterring war, the threats to unleash these hounds of hell might very well lead either state to blunder into a war that will literally be the war to end all wars.

Let us urge our leaders to lower the rhetoric.

Let us urge our leaders to reflect on the devastating effects of nuclear weapons … mutual assured annihilation.

Let us, because we value life, advocate for peace and the end to all war – nuclear, conventional or otherwise.

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