Proliferation: Doomsday or Politics?
Issue: We know that the major nuclear countries have very large stockpiles of strategic and tactical nuclear weapons and that other nations, primarily North Korea and Iran, want to acquire such weapons too. We know as well that weapons tend to be used and that there is no shortage of possible flash points and confrontations among nuclear powers in the near future. President Trump has warned North Korea in terms rarely heard in international discourse that “fire and fury and frankly power” would be unleashed by the USA if North Korea does not stop threatening the USA with the possibility of a nuclear ballistic missile attack. People of good will everywhere would de-escalate if they could, but we have not found a way to take us back to a less threatening world. So we hand to our successors a problem we have not been able to solve, a counterfactual situation with many branch points carried into the future for later resolution. Will we blow ourselves up? Can we yet save ourselves?
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