If ever there was a time to get rid of nuclear weapons it surely is now. The man who is about to become the President of the United States is inconsistent, unpredictable and emotionally unstable. And he will be in a position to launch his country’s nuclear weapons, wiping out vast numbers of people — in their hundreds of millions at the very least — condemning many many more to a slow and painful death, and rendering the world largely uninhabitable for the ‘survivors’.
Why am I even having to say this?
Why isn’t it absolutely glaringly obvious?
Come on, don’t tell me Donald J Trump ‘probably’ won’t do it — ‘probably’ isn’t good enough! If there was one chance in a hundred that an asteroid was about to hit the earth vast resources would be deployed to head it off — no expense spared. But we have become so numbed, so inured to the possibility of a nuclear holocaust that we just bury our heads in the proverbial sand and hope it will go away.
This has always been the biggest flaw in the argument for nuclear weapons. People. Not everyone is rational. A great many people are irrational, and some are not even stable. And our institutional structures are such that irrationality and instability are no bars to someone gaining access to far more power than any human being should ever be trusted with.
Until I read this article I thought we would be protected by the famous ‘checks and balances’ of the American Constitution. That if Mr Trump got out of the wrong side of the bed one morning and decided to get rid of the human race he would be prevented from doing anything quite so rash by his aides and advisors and a chain of command. Not so — read the article.
The Cuban missile crisis was a close call (I’m old enough to remember it!) and there have been several largely unreported close calls since. But whether the human race can survive is now purely a matter of statistical probability — unless we get rid of nuclear weapons.
Think about it! Lose sleep about it! Have nightmares about it!
And by all means feel grateful that there’s a good chance you, along with most of the rest of the human race who are fortunate enough not to live in Syria, will wake up tomorrow. But if the colossal sword of Damocles that’s hanging over us it is to be removed it will require the total removal of these absurd obscenities that we call nuclear weapons.