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## #1 2007-02-23 11:44:02

Toast
Real Member
Registered: 2006-10-08
Posts: 1,321

### Mutually Assured Destruction

I watched a documentary on nuclear weapons yesterday in Physics, and it was all rather interesting. Later I went online to do some further research on nuclear weapons, and found out a lot about Mutually Assured Destruction (MAD). It is basically when two countries have the firepower to kill each other in one blow. If one attacks the other, the other will strike back and both sides will be totally destroyed.
The thing is, with nuclear weapons, not only are both sides destroyed, but the nuclear fallout would induce a worldwide nuclear winter, something which no life can survive.

We have come extremely close to wiping out all humanity in the past, a prime example being Stanislav Petrov. An equipment error with missile detection systems led to the false belief that America had sent a nuke over to Russia. Petrov, a lieutenant colonel at the time, refused to believe that it was true, and hence didn't inform the Russian government to retaliate. It's amazing how one person, who has his finger over the red button, can, in a split second, save the world, or destroy it.

The worrying thing is that with over 25,000 nuclear weapons in the world today, it is still possible that MAD could come into effect at any time. And in the future, even when we expand to other planets, it is worrying how humanity could wipe out thousands of years of humanity, in a single, final decision.

Do you think we will always have to fear MAD?

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## #2 2007-02-23 11:47:41

Zach
Member
Registered: 2005-03-23
Posts: 2,075

### Re: Mutually Assured Destruction

MAD was made apparent to me by Terminator 2, where it was fated that SKYNET would launch nuclear missiles at Russia, causing them to retaliate. The idea is that it wiped out 3 billion humans.

However, I like to feel that MAD will soon shudder and die as an idealology, as peace comes about...

Then again, "If you want Peace, go to War" will always ring true...

Boy let me tell you what:
I bet you didn't know it, but I'm a fiddle player too.
And if you'd care to take a dare, I'll make a bet with you.

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## #3 2007-02-23 12:16:31

Sekky
Member
Registered: 2007-01-12
Posts: 181

### Re: Mutually Assured Destruction

The oil will run out before it happens, and that will destroy the world in a far more frightening manner than nukes.

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## #4 2007-02-23 16:06:55

MathsIsFun
Registered: 2005-01-21
Posts: 7,664

### Re: Mutually Assured Destruction

Nuclear Weapons are still a huge threat, we have just got used to living with them.

Luckily all governments with them are responsible. For example India and Pakistan have disputes, but both know not to involve their nuclear weapons.

Sekky: will the oil "just run out", or will it gradually become more expensive and people will switch to ethanol or electricity, etc?

"The physicists defer only to mathematicians, and the mathematicians defer only to God ..."  - Leon M. Lederman

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## #5 2007-02-24 02:41:29

John E. Franklin
Member
Registered: 2005-08-29
Posts: 3,588

### Re: Mutually Assured Destruction

I've seen Helen Caldicott speak, once when I was a kid, and another time when I was about thirty.
And I've seen, "On the Beach", black and white movie (Nelville Shute), Australia survives nuclear winter...

igloo myrtilles fourmis

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## #6 2007-02-24 02:49:43

power man
Member
Registered: 2006-12-26
Posts: 160