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paul wheaton
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Bryant RedHawk
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Even though I was born into a military family and continued the tradition, I've always thought it was insane to build nuclear weapons or use nuclear power for that matter.
The mind set of those who are in control of these weapons is that there is a Use it or Loose it moment.
If any two countries should ever engage in this exchange it will be time to bend over and kiss your ass goodbye, if you have enough time to do so.

The cartoon shows the only real solution
 
Casie Becker
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Shows how differently people can see the same thing. I thought with the title "Judgement Day" Paul was suggesting the sun was going to be destroyed (oops) and end the world.

Unintentional consequence
 
Bryant RedHawk
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Hau Casie, with a temperature of 5,778K at the surface and a temperature of 4,400K At the outer edge of the photosphere, any object we could make would be vaporized around 100,000 miles before it could strike the surface of the sun.
This means there would be no explosion or detonation of any war head.
 
John Wolfram
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While it may seem counter-intuitive, there is at least some evidence that nuclear weapons have saved a lot of lives. When both sides realize they will be annihilated if they start a war, they are much less likely to do so. There hasn't been a direct war between two major powers in the last 70 years, and that's pretty freakin' amazing from an historical context.
 
Bryant RedHawk
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hau John, yes it is indeed true, as the computer in the original movie "War Games" noted "what a curious game, the only way to win is not to play". That is the premise of those in favor of nuclear weapons.

The problem comes when you have one nations leader who is willing to push that button.
Once they do, all bets are off because every other nuclear weapon country will push their buttons (The use it or loose it scenario).

It is also important to know that there have been several times that the USA was lifted to Defcon 4 (one step away from launching), in every instance both sides were hovering over the buttons. Sanity did prevail though.
It is also important to know that for many years the pentagon believed you could have "limited nuclear warfare" an idea that is simply ludicrous because of the Use it or Loose it scenario.

As to the notion that there has not been a direct conflict between two major powers, did you forget about the Korean conflict?
The Chinese came into that affair and overran our troops with ease. Yes they then retreated but if they hadn't we would have lost just about everyone on that tour of duty.
 
John Wolfram
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Bryant RedHawk wrote:As to the notion that there has not been a direct conflict between two major powers, did you forget about the Korean conflict?
The Chinese came into that affair and overran our troops with ease. Yes they then retreated but if they hadn't we would have lost just about everyone on that tour of duty.

I did not forget Korea, or Vietnam, but I did choose my words carefully. I wouldn't call that a "direct war" between the US and USSR/China. A proxy war, for sure, but the US wasn't dropping bombs on Beijing or Moscow.
 
Bryant RedHawk
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Lots of lives were indirectly snuffed out during the cold war, all sides.
Mostly from spying activities to find out what the other side was up to and how good their weapons and delivery systems really were.
I know operatives from that era, most are now having or have died from health issues incurred during their active years.

and that's enough on this tangent for me.

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