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Enough war

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  • bhvwd
    Herman, Mutual Assured Destruction ,MAD, has always puzzled me. Many think it has worked to reduce conventional war. It is a great risk to take, building the
    Message 1 of 2 , Oct 2, 2007
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      Herman, Mutual Assured Destruction ,MAD, has always puzzled me. Many
      think it has worked to reduce conventional war. It is a great risk to
      take, building the bomb. Oppenheimer had serious doubts and Teller
      later rejected the H bomb as too great a risk . It seems new weapons
      are usually used not just flexed in threat. Take the incendary raids on
      japanese cities as LeMays strategic attacks killed more than the
      nuclear strikes. The competative impetus of our genetic make up seems
      to cause man to invent more and more powerful weapons. I think it
      remarkable that we have not used nuclear bombs in better than half a
      century. Some relatively threatened countries have nuclear capability,
      ie, Pakistan and India. I am suprised they have not used their
      abilities. There seems to be something unnamed that restrains us from
      pushing the button. I cannot think it is any philosophical principles
      that have dissuaded further use . It would seem possible that some set
      of nuclear age rules should limit further blasts but who has the power
      of enforcement? I know some strategists do not think of nukes as
      weapons, just devices. Weapons should not destroy their users, only
      the enemy should suffer annihilation. If our world has become too small
      for our devices why have we restrained ourselves. Who or what is
      governing our better angels? Bill
    • Herman B. Triplegood
      Yeah Bill, maybe it has all been just a matter of sheer luck so far. The MAD idea sounds plausible enough at face value. If you know I can blow you away with a
      Message 2 of 2 , Oct 3, 2007
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        Yeah Bill, maybe it has all been just a matter of sheer luck so far.

        The MAD idea sounds plausible enough at face value. If you know I can
        blow you away with a shot gun you will not try to rob my house while
        I am sleeping there at night.

        But, you could wait until I am at work and go in while I am not
        there. Any deterrent has its limits. Some actions, by some people,
        can never be deterred if they are determined enough to get what they
        want.

        Ideas like MAD assume that everybody is always going to act
        reasonably. This is a huge assumption. It is also a huge assumption
        to think that, into the foreseeable future, only the reasonable
        people will have access to these unreasonable means of destruction.

        The pessimism within me says that it is really only a matter of time
        before somebody knocks over the first domino and the whole thing
        sparks into a huge holocaust.

        If anybody does survive, they will be back in the stone age, and
        there will be a whole lot fewer humans around to do harm to one
        another. So, in the end, perpetual peace and depopulation might very
        well amount to pretty much the same thing.

        Hb3g

        --- In existlist@yahoogroups.com, "bhvwd" <v.valleywestdental@...>
        wrote:
        >
        > Herman, Mutual Assured Destruction ,MAD, has always puzzled me.
        Many
        > think it has worked to reduce conventional war. It is a great risk
        to
        > take, building the bomb. Oppenheimer had serious doubts and Teller
        > later rejected the H bomb as too great a risk . It seems new
        weapons
        > are usually used not just flexed in threat. Take the incendary
        raids on
        > japanese cities as LeMays strategic attacks killed more than the
        > nuclear strikes. The competative impetus of our genetic make up
        seems
        > to cause man to invent more and more powerful weapons. I think it
        > remarkable that we have not used nuclear bombs in better than
        half a
        > century. Some relatively threatened countries have nuclear
        capability,
        > ie, Pakistan and India. I am suprised they have not used their
        > abilities. There seems to be something unnamed that restrains us
        from
        > pushing the button. I cannot think it is any philosophical
        principles
        > that have dissuaded further use . It would seem possible that some
        set
        > of nuclear age rules should limit further blasts but who has the
        power
        > of enforcement? I know some strategists do not think of nukes as
        > weapons, just devices. Weapons should not destroy their users,
        only
        > the enemy should suffer annihilation. If our world has become too
        small
        > for our devices why have we restrained ourselves. Who or what is
        > governing our better angels? Bill
        >
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