Where are the world's nuclear weapons, and how likely is it they will be used?
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The world is closer to nuclear war than it has been in decades, and few people are paying attention. The Bulletin of Atomic Scientists have advanced their Doomsday Clock by a symbolic 30 seconds and setting it to just two-and-a-half minutes from midnight.
Pakistan launches a missile capable of carrying a nuclear weapon. What is the likelihood of one of these weapons being used in the next few decades? And answer above zero is unacceptable.
LOS ANGELES, CA (California Network) -- The Bulletin of Atomic Scientists is made of professional scientists and experts who believe the greatest threat to the world is nuclear proliferation. Nuclear weapons are incredibly destructive and deadly and can spread poisonous radiation around the globe. If enough weapons are detonated, potentially all like on Earth could be destroyed by radioactivity, or by the nuclear winter that would follow.
Because of this danger, scientists have urged politicians to reduce nuclear stockpiles for years and to halt the spread of these weapons. However, few leaders have heeded these calls and cutbacks have been rare. At the same time major powers like the USA and Russia have cut back on weapons, other nations such as India, Pakistan and North Korea have developed their nuclear weapons. Other nations, such as Iran are suspected of having nuclear aspirations.
A major concern is the natural instability in governments around the world. Nations tend to rise and fall and suffer revolutions. It is possible that one or more of the world's nuclear-armed nations will undergo such a transition within the next few decades or so. When that happens, what will become of their nuclear weapons? Will they be used?
Will we even see it coming? With the world's arsenals set to hair-trigger alert, we might not. Even an accident or a natural event could be misinterpreted and result in disaster.
The world is awash in nuclear weapons, and the use of just one, by any nation, could trigger a global disaster.
We don't know whether or not these weapons will ever be used, but "maybe" is a reasonable response. But nuclear weapons are so dangerous and deadly that "maybe" is still too much risk.
As a nation, we must send word to our leaders that nuclear weapons pose an unacceptable, existential threat to the globe, and they should be eradicated along with the knowledge to build them.
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