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Beyond the mushroom cloud: what planners have in mind

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Many of those who are closely following the events in Ukraine have come of late to believe that a nuclear exchange between Russia and the United States is within the realm of possibility. For example, Economist Paul Craig Roberts warns in a recently published column: "Russia has a nuclear arsenal as large as Washington's, and Russia is very much aware that for 13 years Washington's lies and demonizations of countries are the preludes to launching military attacks on the countries."

Hiroshima after the atomic bomb was dropped.
Hiroshima after the atomic bomb was dropped.
(Image by Los Alamos Scientific Laboratory)
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The reasoning behind this train of thought is as follows:

Both nations reserve the right to a first strike.

In order to act on this right, each nation must attempt to anticipate the actions of the other, so it can "beat the other to the punch."

We are thus operating under a hair trigger situation, in which a nuclear conflagration could become a reality at any moment.

It is perfectly clear to astute observers that the United States has virtually declared war on Russia. It wants Russian President Vladimir Putin dead, just as it killed Muammar Gaddafi and destroyed his country. In fact, Libya is a model for what the elite in Washington would like to see happen to Russia.

Russia, however, unlike Libya, is a nuclear-armed nation, and, after the United States, has the greatest stockpile of operative nuclear weapons of any country.

Both nations appear to have eschewed a retaliatory strike as the only nuclear option.

The tensions between both countries, which have been deliberately exacerbated by the United States in recent weeks, are at an all-time high. The United States has shown, through its rhetoric and actions, that it wishes to provoke Russia into war, and has actively demonized Russian President Vladimir Putin as a way to prep Americans so it can assume an aggressive military posture against Russia while minimizing popular domestic resistance to any action it might take.

A nuclear option has been on the table for quite a while.

The Hart-Rudman Commission Report outlined what might occur in the first quarter of the 21 st Century as America developed a more aggressive military and domestic security regime. The report raised quite a few eyebrows at the time of its release (in three parts, 1999-2001). The press reported at the time, if my memory serves me, that millions of body bags were being stored in the mountains to be readied in the event of a natural or man-made disaster. Such a calamity could take the form of a nuclear or chemical/biological weapons attack. A quote from the report itself reads: "The President should develop a comprehensive strategy to heighten America's ability to prevent and protect against all forms of attack on the homeland, and to respond to such attacks if prevention and protection fail" (my emphasis).

Our "Homeland Security" regime, including the name we use for it today, was originally a recommendation from this pre-9-11 report.

Interestingly, I raised some issues covered in the report at a town meeting a number of years ago, and, instead of being shouted down, several people in the audience volunteered pertinent comments.

One county worker said she was told she had to sign a paper saying she would do certain things, which she would not reveal, in the event of a catastrophe. Another volunteered that the state government approached him to do a survey of available burial space, as he was the custodian for a local cemetery. It was later found that this was part of a state-wide survey of cemetery space.

We know that there are comprehensive plans in place for the government to maintain authority in the event that Congress becomes inoperable after a catastrophic act of war against the United States. Such plans and actions are usually described under the heading, "Continuity of Government."

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Born in New York, March 14, 1949. Staff writer for the New York City Tribune, Economic Growth Report, Register-Star. Presently publish on OpEd News. Mr. Duveen heads up a project known as "The Museum of Brooklyn Art and Culture,' which explores (more...)

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