Thursday the Bulletin of Atomic Scientists announced that the Doomsday Clock now stand two-and-a-half minutes to midnight. This announcement suggests that existential threats now pose a greater threat to humanity than they have since the Cold War.
“This is the closest to midnight the Doomsday Clock has ever been in the lifetime of almost everyone in this room. It’s been 64 years since it was closer,” said Lawrence Krauss, a theoretical physicist at Arizona State University and the chair of the Bulletin’s board of sponsors.
Mikhail Gorbachev, former president of the Soviet Union and author of the New Russia, wrote an article that was published in time magazine entitled “It All Looks as if the World is Preparing for War.”
“Today, however, the nuclear threat once again seems real. Relations between the great powers have been going from bad to worse for several years now. The advocates for arms build-up and the military-industrial complex are rubbing their hands.”
He is not overstating the threat of global warfare. In an interview with Prism magazine, retired Army General Stanley McChrystal issued two warnings that are hair-raising, to say the least.
A European war is not unthinkable,” McChrystal explained. “People who want to believe that a war in Europe is not possible might be in for a surprise. We have to acknowledge great power politics; we can’t pretend that they are gone.”
McChrystal admits the U.S. made vital mistakes in speedily invading Afghanistan and Iraq, as well as “paying a high price” in Syria. As he has observed:
“In the case of Afghanistan, immediately after 9/11, in terms of military action, we should have done nothing initially. I now believe we should have taken the first year after 9/11 and sent 10,000 young Americans—military, civilians, diplomats—to language school; Pashtu, Dari, Arabic. We should have started to build up the capacity we didn’t have. I would have spent that year with diplomats traveling the world as the aggrieved party,” McChrystal stated.
“I urge the members of the United Nations Security Council — the body that bears primary responsibility for international peace and security — to take the first step,” the 1990 Nobel Peace Prize winner wrote in a Time magazine op-ed this week. “Specifically, I propose that a Security Council meeting at the level of heads of state adopt a resolution stating that nuclear war is unacceptable and must never be fought.”
Then taking direct aim at the superpower leaders, he writes, “I think the initiative to adopt such a resolution should come from Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin — the presidents of two nations that hold over 90 percent of the world’s nuclear arsenals and therefore bear a special responsibility.”
A similar agreement was established between the U.S. and the Soviet Union in the 1980s, but has since been eroded along with the relations between the two powers, Gorbachev said.
And now that the world is headed down the path toward a possible world war, McChrystal acknowledges the unthinkable is to follow: the erosion of our civil liberties, which will directly impact on ordinary citizens.
There is no way around this delicate issue other than to completely dismantle the world’s current system of war. As noted by Forbes:
“However, there is more to averting nuclear holocaust than having a robust strategic force. The U.S. needs to avoid getting into non-nuclear conflicts and crises that could escalate to the nuclear level. Eastern Europe is the place where such a scenario is most likely to unfold because since the Cold War ended, the U.S. has extended security guarantees to former Soviet republics and satellites that lie close to the Russian heartland.”
Gorbachev himself has acknowledged this chilling fact and offered his vast experience in this area. The whole world should heed his words:
“In the modern world, wars must be outlawed, because none of the global problems we are facing can be resolved by war — not poverty, nor the environment, migration, population growth, or shortages of resources.”
If such a war were to break out, it would turn into a total catastrophe; people don’t realize how serious the threat is, and when other people point it out they are branded as war-mongers or are told that they are just trying to scare people and that is not it at all. People need to be made aware of the serious threats that are very real in our world, because we all should know that the elites and the mainstream media are not going to tell us.