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Nuclear War Survival Skills (1987) [pdf] (oism.org)
334 points by Tomte on Sept 21, 2017 | hide | past | web | favorite | 213 comments



I appreciate the way the book teaches the realities of nuclear war. Some interesting things I picked up from the myth/fact section:

-Food & water isn't contaminated unless fallout particles enter into it. Thus any food/water stored in airtight containers is safe to consume.

-The US & Russia likely don't have enough nuclear firepower to kill every human being on earth (a commonly cited "fact"). This is based off of misleading calculations.

-Within a couple of weeks, fallout radiation would be reduced to the point that most people could leave their shelters.

-A bomb said to be 1,000x more powerful than the one used on Hiroshima is not 1,000x more deadly or destructive (16x more deadly is apparently more accurate)

-"Nuclear winter" is a discredited myth propagated by de-nuclearization supporters.

-Airburst nuclear weapons produce basically 0 fallout. The bomb has to burst on the surface to pick up particles of earth and debris to create fallout.

Nuclear war doesn't seem so bad now! :D


Nuclear winter is not a discredited myth. Alan Robock at Rutgers has been conducting climate simulations using a 100 Hiroshimas (~20kT) standard. This is supposedly similar to what an India-Pakistan conflict might produce.

The results are something more akin to nuclear autumn, but it results in decreased agricultural production between 5-20% in year 5 after the war. The decrease is due primarily to soot in the atmosphere. Recall that nuclear weapons are hot and this causes air to rise. There is a suction effect immediately after the blast and firestorms can form.

Here's a link to a summary of results: http://ippnw.org/nuclear-famine.html

Simulations of a US-Russian war are more dire, and recent simulations are more in line with TAPPS. TAPPS was never discredited, its results were only somewhat moderated.


How does this square with the global effects of large volcanic eruptions? The largest eruption in the 20th century exceeded the yield of the combined Soviet and US nuclear arsenals at their Cold War peak by an order of magnitude, yet the global effects were mild.

Interesting trivia: the largest volcanic explosion of the 20th century is a volcano in the US that most people have never heard of, Novarupta in 1912.


Volcanic eruption energy is partitioned between thermal and mechanical energy. The mechanical energy is distributed between translation (ejecta) and vibrational (tremors). These proportions vary significantly between volcanoes and eruptions. So, perhaps little of the energy is imparted to bring cooling aerosols and particles into the high atmosphere.

A limited nuclear exchange between RF/USA could extend to all large munitions stores, rocket stores, and petrochemical stores. All stores of nuclear launchers, warheads, and supplies intended for strategic war could be targeted.

Imagine all significant above-ground petroleum storage in RF/USA - large petroleum producers - is ignited. All counterforce sorties against targets near wooded areas will result in large forest fires.


"Imagine all significant above-ground petroleum storage in RF/USA - large petroleum producers - is ignited."

During the First Gulf War, the uncontrolled oil fires in Kuwait were burning at a rate equivalent to 30% of all US consumption. Nothing remotely resembling a climate apocalypse occurred; major volcanic eruptions have far greater effects. Empirically, it seems highly improbable that repeating that experiment on modestly larger scale will unleash a global apocalypse. It isn't a convincing argument based on the evidence.

The above-ground petroleum storage facilities only hold days worth of oil that we are going to burn anyway.


When modeling was done for the Kuwait oil fires, there were two opposing expectations. One was that the fires would cause a kind of "year without a summer" similar to the Tambora eruption in 1815. The other was that the smoke would affect local weather conditions and be rained out within a week. In retrospect, we know that the latter proved most accurate.

But from what I understand, the crucial difference between the two models was how high the smoke would go, and as such the gap between the two models is actually a lot closer than the outcomes would imply. Had the conditions (weather, geography, etc) been ripe for more "self-lofting" of particulates, far more of them may have made it as far as the stratosphere, at which point they would stay in the atmosphere for far longer and would spread much further, without any weather patterns at that altitude to accelerate their return to the surface.


Wouldn't we be burning that oil anyways? I'm sure it burns less 'clean' in a particulate sense, but orders of magnitude worse?

Seems from the petroleum front it's likely to actually reduce particulate matter over the course of months due to the lack of human industrial activity on the planet.


For particulate emissions I would imagine uncontrolled burning in the atmosphere is orders of magnitude worse than the very carefully controlled combustion in an engine with catalytic converters and particle screens. In the US anyway.



Hmm, I imagine nuclear winter scenarios widely depend on how much is actually deployed.

In one article in the New York Times from the 1980s (http://www.nytimes.com/1984/12/14/opinion/in-the-nation-tamb...) the estimate used for exploding half of the world's nuclear arsenals is equivalent to 6,500 megatons of TNT.

Mount Tambora, in contrast, a much more powerful explosion than any 20th century eruption, is widely quoted from various sources as being equivalent to 800 megatons of TNT (example: https://books.google.com/books?id=NuFfCgAAQBAJ&pg=PA15&lpg=P...). And Mount Tambora definitely had climate effects (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Year_Without_a_Summer).

Climate cause and effect is difficult to nail down, but it seems with that much firepower back then a "nuclear winter" scenario was much more plausible. We have dismantled a lot of the nuclear arsenal since the 1980s these days -- estimates I see of current firepower vary by quite a bit, but I'm not even sure there's 6,500 megatons of nuclear weapon firepower in service globally anymore.


volcanic winter caused by the 1815 eruption https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Year_Without_a_Summer


Well, to be fair, Novarupta is on the Alaskan Penninsula, away from anything possibly resembling a major population center - and even Alaska itself wasn't a State when this Volcano erupted in 1912.


Volcanic eruptions have caused global mini-ice ages, widespread famine, and revolutions before.


How could this possibly be true given the fact that there have been >1,000 nuclear tests performed, including devices with orders of magnitude higher yield than in Hiroshima?


Most tests have been performed underground. And for an above-ground test to cause anything close to a nuclear winter, you need a lot more material than the bomb itself and the soil beneath it. Tons and tons of debris would need to be shot up into the atmosphere.

So, the theory of nuclear winter depends on bombs detonating over cities and forests, causing massive amounts of debris, and also inducing firestorms that would act as chimneys for even more smoke and particles to be funneled up into the troposphere and stratosphere.


Because those were most all carefully controlled to prevent such damage. Top of the list: those that were above ground were tested above empty terrain. The bomb doesn't create most of the ash. The burning city under the bomb is where the bulk of sun-blocking ash comes from. No city, no ash, no nuclear winter issues.


I would expect that some of the predicted effects of a "nuclear winter" would start to appear after a series of forest fires--albeit smaller in scope and intensity--but AFAIK this is not the case. What gives?


They aren't usually big enough to get the particulates high enough. But big events can do it:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Year_Without_a_Summer


Most forest fires don't create strong enough firestorms (if they do at all) to funnel material high enough to have an effect -- most of the ash falls back down in a matter of weeks (even sooner if it gets rained out of the atmosphere). I'd compare nuclear blast firestorms with volcanic eruptions -- we do have a record of eruptions funneling material high enough into the troposphere and stratosphere to have a noticeable, longer-term effect on the climate (over the subsequent months and years).


There have been "volcanic winter" events. Or at least, reduced insolation for a year or more.


> Nuclear winter is not a discredited myth.

It has been discredited. Even Sagan admitted as much. The idea that all humanity/life would end has been discredited.

Billions would surely die, but millions of humans would survive.


> Airburst nuclear weapons produce basically 0 fallout. The bomb has to burst on the surface to pick up particles of earth and debris to create fallout.

Air bursts produce minimal localized fallout, but they have long-term global consequences, especially detonating many powerful fusion bombs. The fallout produces atmospheric carbon-14 and strontium-90, among other dangerous isotopes, that can have consequences for many future generations. This is part of the reason why the nuclear test ban treaty was created.


One interesting thing I learned recently is that pre-1945 steel[1] sells at a high premium because all modern steel has been noticeably contaminated by atomic testing. This has lead to large-scale illegal salvaging of old warship wrecks[2].

1: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Low-background_steel 2: https://www.outsideonline.com/2168646/how-does-entire-shipwr...


Yup. LBS is useful in detectors and such.


This fallout remained in the atmosphere at such significant concentrations that it intermittently interfered with terrestrial radiological contamination measurement for decades after above-ground testing was banned.


OK, but if you go high enough, you just get effects from radiation and EMP. With large enough devices, you can destroy electronics and kill animals.


Nitpick, but those are the result of fission not fusion.


Calling H-bombs "fusion" bombs is perhaps a bit of a misnomer in that while fusion is they key component of H-bomb designs most of the energy of these weapons actually comes from fission - the fusion in the secondary produces a large amount of neutrons and these then cause the fission of a uranium tamper around the secondary which is the main energy source.


"fusion" bombs require a fission trigger.


Strontium-90 is, but carbon-14 is formed when nitrogen in the air absorbs a neutron, which could be from either fission or fusion.


AFAIK Nuclear Winter isn't discredited, it's just been called into question and challenged. The question isn't settled one way or the other.


It has not been discredited. Ultimately it is unknown what would happen since atmospheric testing was banned over half a century ago. However, I find it hard to believe that a thermonuclear war would not produce a very significant amount of atmospheric particles. The amount of cooling may be over- or under-stated, we really don't know, but there is probably some effect.


Which has constantly made me wonder why we haven't experimented with it as a means of cooling the average global temperature.


We need a staging/QA Earth so we can run these kinds of experiments.


Selenium isn't the best fissile material :p


Because it doesn't cool the global temperatures by virtue of being itself. Nuclear winter is caused when massive amounts of debris and other particles (like smoke) are shot up into the air, blocking some of the sunlight, resulting in cooler temperatures. This also has the affect of less crop yields due to reductions in sunlight, less electricity generated from solar panels, and other consequences. So unless we want to voluntarily eat significantly less and use less energy in the name of cooling Earth's temp for 5 years, it's not a very viable alternative.

Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nuclear_winter#Mechanism


Filling the sky with radioactive particles to combat global warming is an end I hope we never reach.


Assuming low-radiation devices can be used, if things get dire then it certainly beats the alternatives.


It one of those things we don't want to experiment with to find out. Interestingly, the burning of fossil fuels is arguably an uncontrolled climate change experiment that might lead to thermohaline disturbances, an Ice Age and/or hypercanes.


I have a feeling its the same as pouring a few bottles of poison in a swimming pool. We just have so much atmosphere.. sure, there will be a minimal but significant drop in temperature and some plants may not grow as abundantly as normal, but globally, the consequences are not (as) cataclysmic.

Edit: apparently people do not know how vast the amount of water that goes in a typical swimming pool is..


People at HN are typically analytical thinkers who appreciate fact over conjecture. Your post starts with “I have a feeling.”


And any analytical mind can take some educated guesses and say 'well, if I pour 6L of a poison in an average public swimming pool of 30x2x10m, that's 1 part poison per 100.000 parts water, or 0,00001% poison. Same goes for the atmosphere and blasted up particles. Aside from that, most people would read'I feel like' ~= 'I guesstimate', but it seems these days some of us need explicitness past the normal verbal conventions.


Duck and Cover was widely derided, but it would have saved countless lives in the event of a nuclear attack.

We learned from Hiroshima and Nagasaki that a very large proportion of deaths and the majority of injuries in a nuclear attack are caused by flying glass fragments and flash burns. The effects of both injuries are greatly exacerbated by the relative paucity of medical care - an injury that might be completely survivable in peacetime could prove fatal if medical care is unavailable.

People at the hypocenter would be killed instantly, but a far greater number of people at the edge of the blast radius could be protected by remarkably simple means. Covering yourself with coat or blanket could be the difference between being completely incinerated and surviving unharmed. Crouching under a desk offers remarkably good protection from falling and flying debris.


We saw a vivid example of this with the 2013 Chelyabinsk meteor.

Many people were injured when they were standing next to windows watching the spectacle, not realizing the shock wave was on its way.

> ...about 1,500 people were injured seriously enough to seek medical treatment. All of the injuries were due to indirect effects rather than the meteor itself, mainly from broken glass from windows that were blown in when the shock wave arrived, minutes after the superbolide's flash.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chelyabinsk_meteor


>Covering yourself with coat or blanket could be the difference between being completely incinerated and surviving unharmed

I don't think this can be right. Surely it takes far less energy to vaporise a blanket than a whole person.

It might protect you from surface burns caused by the infrared pulse, though. And flying shards of glass.


"Incinerated" may be a slightly strong word, but "fatally injured by burns" is entirely accurate. Most of the fatal and life-altering burns suffered in Hiroshima and Nagasaki were effectively extreme sunburn. Most of the burns victims were burnt only on one side of their body - the side facing towards the blast. It doesn't take a lot of material to protect you from that flash. Many people suffered burns only to their face and hands, while the parts of their body covered by clothing was uninjured. Some people had the pattern of their clothing burned into their skin; the darker colors of the pattern acted as a photomask. Eye injuries were very common, because many people heard the bombers flying overhead and went out to look.


I am aware of this, which is why I said it could protect you from surface burns. The parent didn't just say "incinerated" - it said "completely incinerated". I don't think there's any scenario involving "complete incineration" where a blanket will help.


The thermal radiation pulse is very short, on the order of seconds and it may arrive faster than the air blast. If you are close enough to the blast for your blanket to be vaporized and moved away from your body that quickly, you are likely being concurrently killed by the fireball, ionizing radiation, and overpressure.


Something that was recommended in UK civil defence material from the Cold War was painting windows white - this sounds silly (and was often derided) but is actually a pretty good mechanism for keeping thermal radiation out of the inside of buildings.


Of course the outside would still be on fire. Most of the UK has either wooden or plastic window frames.

The absolute best outcome would be lower burn rates in the outer rings of the heat zone.

But in a full exchange fallout levels would kill those people regardless, and even if fallout didn't, they'd still starve.

I've seen maps from the 1950s - before the huge warhead build-up - which showed most of the UK being reduced to desert by fallout.

In reality, in a full exchange the larger cities would be hit multiple times, so the short-term odds of survival for anyone within 10-15 miles of a large city would be essentially zero.


Almost all of these points are based on cherry picked models. These models are very likely wrong. Models for something that has never happened are notoriously incorrect.

I'd rather not find out how inaccurate these models are. I also find your expressions of joy about this quite troublesome.

Why can't we just all agree to ban nuclear weapons? https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/International_Campaign_to_Abol...


Actually, all large nuclear weapons states have agreed to do that, they just ignore their treaty obligations in perpetuity.

NPT:

"Article VI

Each of the Parties to the Treaty undertakes to pursue negotiations in good faith on effective measures relating to cessation of the nuclear arms race at an early date and to nuclear disarmament, and on a treaty on general and complete disarmament under strict and effective international control."


"Models for something that has never happened are notoriously incorrect."

I agree. But make the same point about the effects of AGW and people lose their cool.


AGW is happening now, so unfortunately we're getting the opportunity to test the models. And carbon levels, and climate, have both varied in the past, albeit a lot more slowly. Those variations can be used to tune some aspects of our current models.

It's a valid point of discussion, but unfortunately almost everyone opposed to climate action is anti-scientific and political in their motivations, and usually duplicitous about it. Which causes people to lose their cool.

Most actual climate scientists, on the other hand, are more than happy to entertain honest skepticism. It's integral to science.


> ... almost everyone opposed to climate action is anti-scientific and political in their motivations ...

I'd say that motivations are economic. And skeptical scientists and politicians are bought. It's the same strategy that tobacco firms used. Including the astroturfing.


My own objections to (some) climate change mitigations are philosophical.

In summary - models of the effects of AGW have proved largely useless in terms of predicting the impact of same, or even the existence of net negative impact.

So why are we proposing to spend vast sums of money, not to mention increasing the price of energy, to address this issue?


I second this. To your question, I believe it's because the notion is multifaceted, and there are many reasonable answers. The most common being that we need nuclear weapons for deterrence (defensive) reasons, same as the reason for having a war machine or military alliances at all. A reason less touted is that we need it for offensive reasons, but then again, the best defense is offence so the two are difficult to clearly distinguish. Another reasonable argument against a ban regards enforcement: how to you enforce something from a position of weakness (having vowed not to use nuclear against a ban-breaker)? I could go on but the point is not that these reasonable objections are insurmountable obstacles, but rather that there are real difficulties that need to be addressed in order to avoid the nuclear havoc that otherwise seems a probable end result some time this century.


I don't think a world without nuclear weapons is actually safer.


Moreover, we seen/remember the world before nuclear weapons. Nowadays though, modern protection systems negate the effect. If something should be banned, it is "total nuclear umbrellas", so pushed by military countries.


A 20MT weapon detonation could result in disabling the global electrical production and distribution system, as well as permanently disabling the electronics necessary to move food, water, and medical supplies.

Your thesis is that an instant global economic collapse, destruction of all advanced agricultural systems, transportation systems, waste management systems, water purification systems, etc. won't result in >= 20M deaths.

You really have no idea what the effects of a significant nuclear exchange would be.


> A 20MT weapon detonation could result in disabling the global electrical production and distribution system, as well as permanently disabling the electronics necessary to move food, water, and medical supplies.

The Tsar Bomba was a 50MT detonation and no such thing happened.

There certainly are more electronics around today, but the EMP from a 20MT blasts, or even many 20MT blasts, would not be global, and even many electronics in range would be fine.


You completely neglect to mention the massive EMP effects which would, in effect, eliminate electricity globally and cause the instant collapse of society completely apart from any of the kinetic damage and fallout.


Loss of utilities does not result in instant collapse of society.


It absolutely does. Most US cities only have enough total food for three days, regardless of size. There are case studies of cities in China that run out of food. The first thing that happens is the annihilation of local animal populations, then starvation. When you're starving, you either die and fight, and most people would do both.


Does anyone know the ideal crop for sustenance in the case of a nuclear/volcanic winter.

Rhubarb springs to mind, grows well in cool climates and denying sunlight produces a better crop.

Any others?

Edit: the book recommends stocking up on rice, beans & grains.


No lights. No refrigeration. No gas pumps. No communication. No vehicles.

The collapse would not only be instant, but within days there would be mass starvation and chaos.


People underestimate just how fragile civilisation actually is.

From the description at the top of the thread it's as if we'll just come out of our shelters after a week and everything will go back to normal, we'll just drive down to Arby's for dinner, maybe catch a movie.

More people need to watch Threads.


Do EMP's affect generators that are not running during the blast?


No, but they will affect most of the equipment connected to those generators.


Heh. Of course, you'll emerge in a world run either by survivalists or the most well organized churches.


Also police departments, National Guard units and military.


Right. Loads of Americans don't realize that a lot of people in their communities are members of some kind of emergency reserve component. And a lot of this sort of "hidden infrastructure" would mobilize relatively very quickly (on the scale of hours). In addition to slogging through tours overseas in shithole countries, I spent twelve years of my life preparing for large-scale natural or man-made disasters. People just don't realize how much of the community would mobilize in the event of an emergency.


I'm not sure how you mean "mobilize". If things weren't too bad, that would be a good thing. But if things got really bad, at least some of them would go feral. Trained and armed. Or just be looking for work and food.


This scenario is a fun thought experiment in science fiction stories, but this is so astronomically unlikely, you can plan around it. It is fairly stupid to make plans for this kind of scenario, because you will probably die before it gets that bad. You live in a city? You will be dead long before "things got really bad". The worst case scenario worth planning for is a totalitarian government. Martial law that gets extended indefinitely, and a general that becomes "President". There would be famine generally, and loads of people will starve to death. But independent roving warlord raiding bandit tribes ("feral" authorities) like in Mad Max? Not happening.


With a sufficiently loose definition of "church" is that so different from today?


As US citizen, the Christian version of sharia law would be worse than what I have today, yes.


Just look at what Christian groups are doing in disaster zones this very minute: feeding, sheltering and clothing the needy. Terrible!


That's not "the christian version of sharia law". Think instead of something like the Spanish Inquisition.

Also, it's not like the christians have a monopoly on disaster relief, nor is it like christians are always helpful in a disaster. Remember the megachurch that had to be socially shamed into opening its doors for victims of Harvey?


My point is that Christian people catch a lot of undeserved grief on HN for really no reason. I see a lot of people doing decent things in the name of Christianity, I don't see a push for "Christian Sharia Law" anywhere at all.

And Joel Osteen is a tool and a fraud.

I don't remember saying that Christians have a monopoly on disaster relief either.


I see milder forms of Christian Sharia all over the place. Just off the top of my head, birth control, abortion, drugs, assisted suicide, alcohol, and marriage are legally regulated based on Christian morality (not necessarily what the Bible says, but what self-professed Christians claim their religion to say) to various degrees.

Christians in general are fine, but a certain subset of American Christians is hell-bent on forcing their religion on the rest of us, and they have a lot of power.


Don't forget widespread genital mutiliation of men in the US that's accepted as the most normal thing in the world - circumcision is straight from Abrahamic religions.


There are very real and very significant health benefits to circumcision. Educate yourself about it. [0]

http://www.webmd.com/sexual-conditions/guide/circumcision


I am fully aware of those. Despite all of them, cutting a part of a child's penis is barbaric and once again - I'm shocked that it's treated as this completely normal thing in the US.


One could say the same thing about injecting chemical and biological agents into newborn children. Circumcision is no less a lifesaving health issue than vaccination. Are you also shocked that people kill and eat animals? Are you also shocked about the biology of sex? Maybe you should examine what makes you "shocked" about medical treatments that bolster the health and wellness of human beings.


I'm a bit confused (honestly). Your link shows benefits, but nothing involving life and death. Or rather: if that's all, and religious reasons are not considered, circumcision is not at all a 'proportionate response'.

To be clear, my perspective is from a society where circumcision is not the norm. I'd say the norm here is not to remove parts of the body unless there's very good reason to do so. Wisdom death probably come closest. But circumcision for health reasons would be akin to removing the appendix in every newborn.

Again, I'm honestly curious. I assumed circumcision (for reasons other than religion) was a fringe position in these circles.


It's not a fringe position. There's plenty of research out there, you can do the footwork yourself [0]. It's not "akin to removing the appendix in every newborn" because it's a minor procedure. Certainly less invasive and dangerous than removing an appendix or wisdom teeth. The research just doesn't support the pearl-clutching that goes on about circumcision. If you want to expose your children to that kind of risk, then don't have your boys circumcised.

[0] https://www.elsevier.com/connect/circumcision-benefits-far-o...


If the procedure had never been heard of before and we were deciding today whether it would be a good idea to do this at birth, we probably wouldn’t even consider it.


> And Joel Osteen is a tool and a fraud.

And this makes him "not a christian"? This is a 'no true Scotsman' argument. If you're going to provide a litany of 'good things', then you shouldn't gloss over the 'bad things' either. Osteen isn't the only minister out there that's fleecing his flock.

And what about the largest christian denomination, a powerful organisation which has a long history of covering up pedophiles in its ranks? Using its political clout to prevent government investigations? And even ignoring the pedophile issue, the standard doctrine of that denomination is making people feel guilty about their actions. 'Original Sin' is one of the most disgusting core components of any major religion; that you owe an unpayable debt from even before you take your first breath, and that you are sinful and should feel guilty about it if you don't constantly try to absolve that debt throughout your life.

And as mikeash says, there's plenty of christian morality forced into our laws. Here in Australia, we've just wasted $120M on a stupid national plebiscite on same-sex marriage (that's non-binding!) because it was forced through by conservative christian powerbrokers - despite long and consistent public support around 70% on the issue. There have only been two plebiscites before here, once for conscription in WWI, and once for the national anthem in the 70s, both of which were nation-defining things. The only reason why this is happening for same-sex marriage is christian morality trying to further force its way into our laws.

Yes, christians do good. Good christians do good. Good people do good. Bad christians do bad. The mafia is a classic example; plenty religious, plenty bad. Fact of the matter is that the proportion of christians helping out in those disaster zones is a miniscule proportion of total christians - if you're going to dismiss the Osteens of the world as being non-representative, why should we also not dismiss christian efforts in disaster zones?


If a minister teaches practices and beliefs that are in opposition to the scripture that defines Christianity, is he Christian? This is clearly not a True Scotsman scenario. I can't call myself Catholic if I don't follow the pope. I can't call myself Muslim if I don't respect the prophet - and so forth. Joel Osteen teaches a philosophy that is far outside of the mainstream of Christianity.

Clearly there are people of all groups who are good/bad etc. The reason I entered into the conversation was to address the bigoted nature of above poster's assessment of what Christian people would do in a hypothetical nuclear war scenario. I suggest that you look at what Christian groups are doing in Texas right now as an example.


Before repeating the myth of the Spanish inquisition, you should look to the English, German and French inquisitions. They was far worse!

And, there is many sects with very hard and strict interpretations of the biblie, so yes... there is many christian versions of sharia law. If, tell to any one that live on Switzerland when John Calvin grab the power. Tell it to Michael Servetus...


Yeah, that "love your neighbor as yourself" would be brutal.


The most vocal, notice I don't say majority, only seem to pay that ideal the barest minimum of lip service. The most vocal only want to love thy neighbor if the neighbor is Christian, heterosexual, and maybe even only if they are the same race.

Those appear to be the most vocal. You and I know they aren't the majority, but perception matters a lot. I have absolutely no problem with Christians, though I don't share their faith. I'm just aware that the most vocal people professing to be Christians are everything from White Nationalists to the Westboro Baptist Church.

We can probably agree that they aren't the best Christians to represent the faith, but they certainly are the most vocal and are the public face that many people see. For better or worse, you end up with virtual caricatures being the representatives.


"Love your enemies. Do good to those who hate you." Even more brutal.


The most vocal, notice I don't say majority, only seem to pay that ideal the barest minimum of lip service. The most vocal only want to help the worker if the worker is Unionized, woke, and maybe even only if they are the right minority.

Those appear to be the most vocal. You and I know they aren't the majority, but perception matters a lot. I have absolutely no problem with democrats/labor, though I don't share their politics. I'm just aware that the most vocal people professing to be on the left are everything from Antifa to Black Lives Matter.

We can probably agree that they aren't the best people to represent the left, but they certainly are the most vocal and are the public face that many people see. For better or worse, you end up with virtual caricatures being the representatives.

Do you see how that passage totally misrepresents the whole left and casts it in a bad light? It borders on concern trolling. Can somebody come up with a better name for this than 'the bigotry of hand wringing?' If not, that's what I'm going with.

You only see Antifa or Westboro as representative of the groups they pervert if you only consume news from people who want to make you emotional and then show you ads.


I don't see this as concern trolling when these sort of negative issues are widely cited in surveys on un-churched Americans. If I were a pastor wanting to reach out to future generations, I'd see this sort of thing as a problem.

Example from Barna, an evangelical survey and research group: https://www.barna.com/research/five-trends-among-the-unchurc...

"Unchurched Americans" have been a growing trend for quite some time. Nearly half of millenials are "post-Christian" in this survey from a few years back.

In this study, half of the post-Christians could not identify a single favorable impact of the Christian community.

The top things people complained about regarding American churches were violence in the name of Christ, the position on gay marriage, sexual abuse scandals, and involvement in politics.

Perhaps more tellingly, in another survey (http://www.christianpost.com/news/how-do-unchurched-american...), a full 72 percent of the people interviewed said they think the church is full of hypocrites.

Note that "unchurched" does not mean "not Christian", but I think there is plenty of evidence though that says a large portion of Americans believe, at minimum, that the institution of American Christianity is fundamentally broken.

I don't think the clickbait-ization of news is the entire story here either. "Nones" have been growing rapidly since the 1990s.


No, I see more than that but that's because I take the time to seek it out. It's not up to me to determine public perception, I am - quite literally - only making the observation.

In fact, I'm not sure why you'd think I'm trolling? I live in a very rural area where attending church is mostly the default, and not the exception. I know the majority of Christians aren't like WBC and that they aren't White Nationalists. However, it's the WBC and White Nationalists that people see assembling in public and standing behind the banner of the cross.

I'm not sure how you'd think I see only that when I was really careful to point out that I see much more than that. I see the lady pastor who comes by with a pan of lasagna whenever she hears of trouble. I see people who make sure not one person here is hungry, homeless, or more alone than they want to be. I see them stop to shovel the snow of a grumpy old man who is distinctly not very Christian in his behavior. I see them practicing what they preach.

At the same time, I see the online comments from the people who believe the WBC actually represents all Christians, or at least the majority. I see a sibling comment who pointed out just that, a comment about them needing to actually adhere to their professed doctrine.

I'm not sure why you'd attack me, the messenger. It's not like I control public perception. It's not like I made the sibling comment. Perhaps you're reading things into my comment that weren't stated or intended? Perhaps you're making broad assumptions about me that aren't based on anything I said but are based on your own biases?

As I said, I see the Christians and they are usually wonderful people. Unfortunately, many people don't and you end up with the loudest being considered representatives of the whole. You end up with things like the sibling comment. The sibling comment is a fine example of exactly what I mean, and is wonderfully timely.

You can feel free to attack me, or you can acknowledge that there is a PR problem and try to resolve it. You can acknowledge that someone already even likened it to Sharia law and wonder why that is. Or, of course, you can attack the guy who points it out and accuse them of trolling. That's fine, I don't mind, but it's not very productive or helpful.

Edit: Sorry you're being downvoted, but I had nothing to do with that either. Maybe they are as baffled as I am as to why you'd attack me when I did nothing more than make an observation - an observation handily backed up by some of the comments in this very thread.


If only that were the actual dogma they followed.


They do, problem is they're masochists.


This was more of a commentary on the political polarization we face where belief in the message of a chosen political party is accepted in the same way as a religious belief. Essentially there are people who worship their political affiliation. In the way religious beliefs are not often questioned neither are political beliefs. This is why we call them beliefs.


The book is propaganda intended to draw support for ideas of the era like SDI. You need to read it in context with the era and how people like Teller felt.


Worth noting that Teller was one of the inspirations for Dr. Strangelove.


That's an interesting fact about power. Is this due to the inverse square law?

I was recently reading about Russia's new ICBM, RS-28 Sarmat 2 (Satan 2). It is said that one could wipe out Texas or France. [1] I'm not as optimistic about our prospects.

[1] http://www.cnn.com/2016/10/26/europe/russia-nuclear-missile-...


I don't know if something was lost in translation or if this ridiculous claim is straight from the Russian government. There is no way that a missile carrying a 100 tonne payload can "wipe out" 700,000 km^2. It wouldn't even be able to break every window in Texas. Not even with very high yield-to-mass ratio warheads and MIRVing.

(OTOH, just hitting the top population centers of Texas or France would be devastating enough, so nuclear war is terrifying even after discarding the hyperbole.)

EDIT: and the warhead mass is 10 tons, not 100. 100 tons is the mass of the whole vehicle. That makes a lot more sense, given that this is not a Saturn V-sized launch vehicle. It can carry up to 24 MIRVed warheads: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/RS-28_Sarmat


The MIRV part is the reason they are saying "Texas".

It's plausible a single rocket could launch warheads at multiple Texas cities all at once. So most of the population vs most of the landmass.

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Multiple_independently_targe...

Image: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Multiple_independently_targe...


Half of the population of Texas lives in just 10 cities. A single MIRV can kill most of the people in them.

So no, one rocket won't reduce Texas to a smoking crater, but will have a 50/50 chance of killing you in the explosions and subsequent firestorms.


>That's an interesting fact about power. Is this due to the inverse square law?

Yeah, but not in the way you think. Cities are densest in the center; as blast radius grows, the amount of things inside it does not grow at the same rate.


Somewhere I saw "theories" that Russia can simply aim several of those at Yellowstone and then let nature take care of the rest. Or just off East Coast and let tsunamis do the rest. Not sure how credible those are.


That sounds pretty dicey to me, and there are no do-overs in global thermonuclear war.

Even the largest tsunami ever wouldn't make it past the Appalacan Mountains, so I really don't know what they are thinking about there. My guess is that even our biggest nuclear weapons are puny compared to a modest earthquake, so the Taunami plan probably won't work very well.


"Even the largest tsunami ever wouldn't make it past the Appalacan Mountains"

I've read that the impactor that created the Chicxulub caused a megatsunami that washed over the Rocky Mountains, although I can't find the article now. Instead, I found one that talked about a tsunami 305 meters tall, and a wiki page about megatsunamis that talks about it being just 100 meters tall.

Interestingly, further down it claims that, had the impactor struck deep ocean, the tsunami would have been 4600 meters tall. That's about the straight-line distance from my home to my work.

Neat, and utterly horrifying: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Megatsunami#List_of_megatsunam...


Neat, but most of those required dinosaur killer sized asteroid impacts. Mere hydrogen bombs aren't going to cut it.


Those ICBMs can hold 10-15 warheads, but each warhead only destroys 10-15 sq miles. You'd need at least 5-10 just to mostly destroy the Dallas metro area.


The Dallas metro area holds 7 million people - that's a third of the population of Texas.

A 500 KT air burst will kill probably half of the people in Dallas proper. Three will kill most of them. Ten will kill most of those 7 million people.

[1] http://nuclearsecrecy.com/nukemap/?&kt=500&lat=32.7766642&ln...


If they're all outside...if they're in shelters etc you'd be lucky to get 1/30th of them


Are there nuclear shelters for seven million people in Dallas?


"It can't happen here!" is going to the epitaph of the USA.


How is this suppose to be able to wipe out Texas or France?


Take out the transport infrastructure and you've basically done the job and can dust of your hands and go home. Good luck keeping a megacity (or nation) fed when you destroy its ports and interchanges, polluting them with radiation such that they can't be put back into some form of action.


They are quoting Sputnik there.

It would be able to do enormous damage to 10 or 20 population centers.


I had the impression the book was painting a slightly less grim picture of nuclear war to prevent people from getting discouraged and not even trying to follow the advice.

While I agree that people have overstated the effects of nuclear war, he was IMHO excessively dismissive of the long term exposure risks from even low level fallout.


>-Nuclear winter" is a discredited myth propagated by de-nuclearization supporters.

That it's been discredited is the myth actually. Most models indicate some level of global environmental impact. And a large scale exchange of thermo nuclear weapons (hydrogen bombs, not just atomic) would be pretty severe, probably leading to large scale global starvation.

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nuclear_winter#Recent_modeli...


> Food & water isn't contaminated unless fallout particles enter into it

Is that right? I had always thought objects absorb radiation, so it's actually inside the thing.

Does this really mean If I have a bunch of apples in air tight plastic bags and plastic water bottles and things like that, I can just leave them outside during a nuclear blast and then eat them later?

(Assume the plastic remains air-tight?)

That... sits badly with me.

Does that mean I can put an apple in am air-tight plastic container into an x-ray for a year then take it out and eat it... ?


That is my understanding: yes, it would be safe to eat those apples. Also, yes, it would be perfectly safe to eat apples that were exposed to x-rays for one year. X-rays are not powerful enough to split atoms, so if the apple started out by not having unstable (i.e. radioactive) atoms, it will end up the same. Some molecules in the apple will split, but not the atoms themselves.

The story would be different if you exposed the apple to neutron bombardment. During a nuclear explosion, a lot of neutrons are released, but the intensity of the neutron bombardment decreases with the square of the radius, so if you are far enough for the apples to not be physically destroyed, they'll most likely be safe to eat.


Oh wow, thanks very much for explaining that to me!


It's possible to irradiate food at such high levels so as to degrade the nutritional value but it will never become radioactive itself. Over 60 countries use low level radiation to sterilize food.


Airburst nuclear weapons would be deployed against dispersed soft targets prone to firestorms - firestorms large enough to elevate soot into the region where it can mix with ionized fission products and weapon debris.


I'd take some of their claims with a grain of salt. The OISM appears to have many crackpot types associated with it.


Let's develop radio sensitive panels and enjoy the free radioactive energy everywhere.


Citation on that “mythbusting” by any chance?

Or on zero fallout from airbursts?


Another Book, but from 2003, which is good to have in printed format when the internets stops working locally: U.S. Armed Forces Nuclear, Biological And Chemical Survival Manual -- http://a.co/0nKTR76

And, a good item not generally available locally - but is a simple, inexpensive and important remedy after an attack (keep in mind fallout may travel by wind hundreds of miles) is having some potassium iodide pills. Edit: get one pack per person you're trying to protect - each person needs 10 pills (1 per 24 hours for 10 days) -- http://a.co/eOmNJ8Z

"Iosat Potassium Iodide has been FDA approved since 1982. Stockpiling of potassium iodide (KI) is highly recommended by health officials worldwide to prevent thyroid cancer of those exposed to radioactive iodine following a nuclear reactor accident or detonation of a nuclear weapon. Radioactive iodine can travel hundreds of miles downwind, such as it did after the Chernobyl and Fukushima disasters. The thyroid is the only part of the body that absorbs and stores iodine. By taking FDA approved potassium iodide prior to exposure of radioactive iodine, your thyroid will become saturated with safe, stable iodine. This will prevent your thyroid's absorption of any additional iodine (radioactive or not) long enough for the radioactive iodine inhaled or ingested to be safely dispersed through the kidneys."

(Amazon links above are NOT affiliate links, but please sign up for Amazon Smile so Amazon will donate a portion of your product purchases to a charity that you choose!)


In Switzerland every 10 years the government sends residents within a 50 km radius (previously it was 20 km) from nuclear power plants a pack of iodine pills (https://www.naz.ch/en/themen/jod_tabletten.html)


I worked in nuclear plant operations for over 25 years and have never seen an iodine pill.


Perfect for those who are terrified of facing the possibility of needing to survive the nuclear holocaust, but not terrified enough to pay the $3.99 for the updated 2001 edition.


What's new in the 2001 edition?


How to build an amateur radio from all your now useless IoT devices.


They are mostly useless already. No need for war.


Yeah I downloaded it last time I got paranoid about nuclear equipped super-powers falling out with each other.

(In case of real emergency, maybe the paper version :- https://www.amazon.co.uk/Nuclear-War-Survival-Skills-Instruc...)

If you can put aside my prepper-paranoia then I suggest it's a good practical and insightful read. There are many tips in there that would serve you well during any disaster, man made or otherwise.

Don't forget to buy your geiger counter while stocks last :-)

Oh and get your copy of SAS Survival Handbook, a timeless read :- https://www.amazon.co.uk/SAS-Survival-Handbook-Definitive-Gu...


remains relevant in the dangerous age in which we now live (Amazon description)

Put that next to the convincing arguments Steven Pinker makes in 'The Better Angels of Our Nature' about this being the safest times ever. Makes it sound a bit cheap.


Pinker has explicitly said that is a misinterpretation of his book:

> The upshot is that each of the following two assertions can be true: (1) the chances of war are lower than they were before, and (2) the damage caused by the most severe imaginable war is greater than it was before. That makes it meaningless—an issue of semantics—to speculate about whether the world is “safer” overall; in one sense it may be safer, in another sense, less safe. That is exactly why Better Angels does not claim, contra Taleb, that the world is “safer” across the board.

https://stevenpinker.com/files/comments_on_taleb_by_s_pinker...


The nice thing about betting against the end of the world is that if you lose it doesn't matter.


You can structure bets to make it matter. Example contract:

Optimist: pays 20 bucks to pessimist now.

Pessimist: pays 40 bucks to pessimist, if world hasn't ended in 2020.


Whenever someone tells me that they believe the world is going to end on a specific date, or during a specific period of time, I offer them this bet:

I will bet you my house and land against your car. If I'm right, and the world doesn't end, you owe me your car. If I'm wrong, you can have my house and land.


You've missed eru's point.


Yes, unless KGIII hands over their house now, and only gets it back plus car the day after the predicted date of the apocalypse.


You want the official paper version because it has nomograms in there, and the PDF version may not print accurately for your paper size.


I'll highly recommend reading this, if just for being good conversation at your average dinner party


I'd hate to attend a dinner party with your standards of conversation. Sounds terrifying.


I find this topic more interesting than whatever Kim Kardashian has been up to ever.


Is that really your only alternative?


Don't make me pull out the Dreyfus affair


Protip: Julia Loiuse Dreyfus is related to THAT Dreyfus, just in case you ever need help segueing into late 19th century French history at a dinner party


source?


just wikipedia


Of course it isn't.


Wow, you must be really really smart.


Haha, sounds lovely.


username checks out.


The website seems to be under load, the file is 70MB! Luckily the Internet Archive has a recent copy mirrored here: https://web.archive.org/web/20170903204630/http://oism.org/n...


A site dedicated to this kind of thing (to save archive.org some bandwidth) - http://gen.lib.rus.ec/search.php?req=nuclear+war+survival+sk...


Thanks for the link.

I had a book once that seemed very nice. I had it as a kid and would thumb through it. Good to know about wind patterns, how to build emergency shelters, and such.

One emergency shelter type seemed a good plan. Did a trench 3 or four feet wide, and so deep. Then drive a vehicle over the trench for a roof to protect against radiation and fallout.


Seems a lot slower and less effective than getting into a basement. I guess it would help if you were somehow being nuked in the wilderness.


We don't have basements in Texas. Which has always seemed like a bummer to me because they sound useful, even aside from nuclear war.


I would think you'd still be better off just staying in the house, especially if you can use your garage as a decontamination zone / airlock to avoid bringing a bunch of alpha emitters into the house.

Edit: assuming you're talking about fallout protection rather than the initial gamma burst. For that, yeah, get as many feet of earth between you and the source as possible; a trench will do that even without a vehicle over top.


If there's substantial fallout around you, being indoors won't save you. You need substantial shielding or distance between it and you for several days until it decays enough to not pose an immediate threat.

The "distance" part is interesting. Being in the middle of a tall building can work, because you're far enough from both the ground and the roof.


In much of TX you won't be able to dig a three to four foot deep trench due to limestone. It's one of the reasons we don't have basements.


Are there other reasons why basement-prevalence is so regional?


The water table. In some areas (like where I lived in Florida) your basement would flood. You'd have to have a pump working constantly.


In CA we don't have basements usually.


TED talk: How to survive a nuclear attack by Irwin Redlener.

https://www.ted.com/talks/irwin_redlener_warns_of_nuclear_te...


Since it's mentioned in the first sentence before the contents of the book, and this is HN, here are some instructions for the DIY Kearny Fallout Meter[0].

[0]http://www.abomb1.org/pdf/kfm_inst.pdf

Apologies if this isn't the most recent version.


My plan for a total exchange is to be under the hypocenter of the first blast. I don’t even want to be aware that humanity is finished, never mind try to scrape by with Mad Max.


Completely agree. Survival past that point would probably be a worse outcome. Just imagine the long tail of life when fully aware of humanity's self immolation. Combine that with the fact that most of the people likely to survive are the most paranoid of today's preppers, one shudders at the thought of plodding through an existence trapped in the most neurotic subreddits come to life.


I'm not convinced that peppers are as prepared as they think they are. Post-annihilation we need people who build civilization, not that hide in holes. Good luck living in a shipping container surrounded by a few inches of Quickrete from Home Depot while a hungry mob led by the most charismatic survivor looks for a way in.


You are seriously underestimating the paranoia in parts of the prepper community if you think they don't have contingencies for that exact situation.


There will be more hungry humans than they have bullets.

Also, hungry humans will have bullets. It's America.


I mean, this topic is pretty far from any reasonable assumptions, so if you want to base your doomsday survival plan on charging into the killings fields of a crazy dude with pallets of ammo and AR-15s be my guest.

I was just highlighting the point that some people are exceptionally over prepared for just about any scenario, not trying to argue the merits or morality of it.


None of them seem to account for human spite. After a certain point survivors might just try and seal up the bunker entrances or cave in a bunker entirely, or at least use the possibility as a bluff.


That seems like a perfectly reasonable angle of attack, but the number of assumptions in play make the whole thing meaningless.

My original point was only to highlight that certain people really are almost hilariously over prepared for just about any eventuality, and any assumptions made should probably take this into account. I wasn't suggesting they were right, or wrong.


And thus "civilization" re-emerges from the ashes. [/s]


I'm sure they have thought about it, I just don't think they have a workable solution.


I think churches are more likely to emerge as the new government. Arguably worse.


I think Babylon 5 got that right, in the aftermath of, “The Great Burn,” although we’d be in it without outside help. Religion would emerge, but it might get a lot more primitive, and we not might bounce back in a meaningful way.


At an old job my boss was excited to have paid off his RV trailer. By owning it outright he was free to paint it in his favorite camouflage scheme. He said his plan was to go live in the woods "when the bombs drop".

I told him my plan was to go in the flash.

I have no desire to die, certainly not in nuclear holocaust. I also don't think anyone really knows how best to survive or even prepare for such a world. "I'll go in the flash" is really just my way of saying that doesn't enter into my decision to live in a populated area or own an RV.

We don't really know what the world would look like if the bombs did drop so I don't go out of my way to avoid such a world by not surviving the first moments. I would rather avoid it by stabilizing the geopolitical landscape. That's probably going to take more than a Thursday though.

Having said all this just prepare like you would for anything else. We're much more likely to face hurricanes, earthquakes or volcanic eruptions anyway. If we look at those environments the world post-WWIII may not be so bad actually. Sure our iPhones probably wont work and the cancer rate will be high but that doesn't mean it will go full mad-max either. We have human civilization because that's our natural state, I think there is reason to be optimistic even in the face of nuclear annihilation.


It is possible to plan for survival in the aftermath of a limited nuclear exchange (and other non-Earth-destroying disasters).

One's life could still be made quite miserable by even a mid-size disaster, yet so many people are unprepared, sometimes even proudly and deliberately so.


"Humanity does not ask you to be happy, it asks you to be brilliant on it's behalf."


If we nuke ourselves, I posit that humanity is a failure to be abandoned, maybe even a contagion to be contained.


There is a kind of beauty in the blast, so if I knew it was going to happen I wouldn't mind being perched on a good viewpoint beyond the blast radius. I'd then jump straight on my motorbike and have a first ride sans helmet (compulsory here), then slam the bike into a tree at 200kph.


Tensions were so high in the 80s, I remember me and a few other kids discussing that very thing with a teacher in 3rd grade on the playground. (back when kids actually had daily recess plus P.E.)


My kids still have daily recess and PE.


Mine have no daily recess and PE once a week. :(


The mid-80's were actually the peak of cold war TNW preparation.

NATO's provocation: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Able_Archer_83

Soviet response: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/RYAN


This is literally the decade and context in which I had the same discussions!


Me too. We're either all 43, or there's something about that third grade recess.


Pretty close. How did that happen!? I feel like I was 23 just a few weeks ago!


Did they still make you do the drill where they'd set off the fire alarm and you'd have to crawl under your desks? I'm a bit older and that was mandatory at my school. I am not sure why they felt a desk was good protection from a nuclear blast. Considering that my school was usually right next to a base, it probably would have been a fairly direct blast.

We were rather morbid kids and I think our leading child-theory was that they made us do that so that it would be easier to count the bodies.

This would have been in the sixties. I'd later go to a boarding school that was really remote, and they didn't make us do the exercise. In hindsight, getting under the desk while being that far from any likely blast might actually have afforded us some protection from falling debris.


In most any kind of disaster, secondary effects kill way more people than primary effects. Even if it seems silly, taking effective measures against the secondary effects is very worth doing.

(Also, for nuclear bombs specifically, hiding under the desks keeps kids out of view of windows, and hence not vulnerable to being blinded/burned by a flash.)


For example, one school was maybe a mile outside the front gates in Quantico. No desk is going to help us there. We were going out in the very first volley, regardless of furniture.


How long ago was this? Soviet missiles were extremely inaccurate for a long time, so there's the definite possibility of a near miss at a range where the building collapsing on top of everybody would be the biggest danger.


I would imagine at the time, the first strike would be in the hundreds, of not thousands of warheads. Coupled with the blast radius, missing doesn't seem relevant in that scenario.

Like the saying goes, "almost doesn't count except horseshoes, hand grenades and nuclear warheads."


During the era of "duck and cover," the Soviets had an extremely limited ability to strike the US. They had a mediocre bomber fleet which would probably have been torn to pieces by North American air defense. They had ICBMs from the late 50s, but not in significant numbers until well into the 60s. The popular idea of nuclear war starting with thousands of warheads coming in over the pole all at once wasn't really a possibility until the 70s or so.


Fair.

But most schools aren't, and they aren't going to roll out those procedures unevenly.


You may be right, though things were far less standardized back then. When I went to boarding school, they had no such drills. I'm not sure if that compares, as it was also in a different State. So, you may be right. I dunno, really.


No they stopped that by the time I was in elementary in the 80s. I lived in a large military town as well. We'd be a first target too. I've always thought the desk thing was funny though. When you're a first target, that desk will be atomized, just like we would have been.

Growing up through the Cold War was definitely interesting. It's probably a hell of a thing growing up under the constant reminder that, at any second, we'd be gone and probably wouldn't even know it. I don't know any different though. It certainly puts the small stuff into perspective. Thankfully the Cold War was anticlimactic!


Even we children knew that we'd be atomized quickly, should the Cold War turn hot and go nuclear. We would sometimes discuss it and, being so tied to the military, we were pretty acutely aware of those periods where the level of tension changed.

Yet, I don't think it really bothered us. I'm not a psychologist but I know that children still laugh, play, and sing while they are in a war zone. We were not in a war zone, obviously. But, we were pretty normal children and did pretty normal children things. We were just aware that we'd all die if they dropped bombs or missiles on us.

There's probably an actual psychological term for it, but I don't know it. Children are remarkably resilient. Other than the drills, the PSAs, and the silly educational videos they made us watch, we weren't that concerned. We were kids, it's not like we had the power to change anything.

I'm pretty sure there's a psych term for it.


Yes, children are incredibly resilient. We just assumed it was a normal part of life. Now that I think about it, the end of the Cold War might be one of the causes of the great crime wave drop in the early 90s. Maybe when you don't think you're going to die randomly at any second, statically, society makes better decisions.


Interesting, I'd never considered that. I have read that the drop in crime was partially attributed to removal of the lead in gasoline. I expect there are many factors.


Yes, that is a highly probably one. Also I've read the legalization of abortion in the early 70s as well. All the unwanted and uncared for babies would be teens and young adults (highest crime age) by the 90s didn't exist.


It really does all speed up the older we get.


It is the worst.


For a view of what it's like to be a survivor, I'd suggest reading this excerpt from Hiroshima Diary (1945) by Michihiko Hachiya

https://ay12-14.moodle.wisc.edu/prod/pluginfile.php/204528/m...


"The Atom Soldier" from US Army film archives https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C5NNjzhn__w

Atomic explosions filmed at 3000 frames/sec, https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLvGO_dWo8VfcmG166wKRy..., collected by Greg Spriggs, a weapons physicist at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory http://www.sfchronicle.com/bayarea/article/A-YouTube-playlis...


This guy on page 174 doesn't look like he's having too bad of a time https://imgur.com/gallery/ASVWM


Ps. I would like the internet to know that despite my set backs, I'm not giving up, and I'm not afraid to fail.


nuclear war, aka the apocalypse for the religiously unaligned.




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