Humanity at a Crossroads: Cooperation or Extinction, by Matthew Ehret

It appears that some people have chosen the latter option. From Matthew Ehret at

If humanity is morally fit to survive the current storm, it will be due to the rectification of the fallacious rules underlying today’s geopolitics.

We hold in our hands vast power to both create and destroy the likes of which has never been seen in history.

Up until the turn of the 20th century, the only forces capable of wrecking extinction-level havoc onto the biosphere remained comets and asteroids travelling 18 km/second which periodically slammed into the earth every few million years. But with the discovery of atomic decay in the form of fission and also the associated processes of fusion (where lighter isotopes were found to fuse together forming heavier atoms holding masses that were slightly less than the total of the fused atoms), suddenly a new force of destruction was added to the list.

After the death of Franklin Roosevelt, the top secret Manhattan Project with its three nuclear bombs was revealed to a confused Harry Truman who was quick to dump two of them onto a defeated Japan in 1945 establishing a new set of geopolitical rules that would profoundly misshape the 20th century.

The 14 kiloton bomb “Little Boy” which erupted over Hiroshima killed 140 thousand people instantly, with countless tens of thousands more who died in agony during the weeks and months following the explosion. The bomb that destroyed Nagasaki days later was 23 kilotons.

To put this into perspective, one modern U.S. Ohio Class Submarine travelling in the waters of China’s back yard carries 24 Trident missiles.

Each Trident missile can carry up to 8 nuclear warheads and each warhead utilizing thermonuclear technology packs the equivalent of 475 kilotons of TNT. When all warheads contained on one Trident II missile are added together, a force 253 times more powerful than the bomb that annihilated Hiroshima is unleashed. Although nuclear reduction treaties established since 1991 have reduced the global nuclear stockpiles from 64,000 warheads in 1986 to approximately 20,000 today, the fact Is that over 5000 megatons of nuclear bombs ready to be unleashed still litter the face of the earth.

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