THE Doomsday Clock reset will mark a disturbing moment in history with the chilling rise of nuke weapons, a nuclear scientist has warned.
Getty Images – GettyThe Doomsday clock works as a wake-up call to all about global threats such as nuclear war, dangerous technologies and mass health concerns[/caption]
AFPA UN nuclear scientist warned of the dangers of ‘unstable personalities’ like Kim Jong-un and Vladimir Putin being in charge of nuclear arsenals[/caption]
Dr Pavel Podvig, pictured, is an expert on Weapons of Mass Destruction at the United Nations
Pavel also said that unpredictable “accidents” in warzones could lead to uncontrolled escalation and warned of the deaths of billions of people.
He told The Sun: “The number of nuclear weapons that exist, they would have the potential to end the life as we know it, and the numbers are truly terrifying.
“It runs from the tens of millions of people dead in that in the matter of hours. And I’ve seen estimates that suggest that the consequences, like the nuclear winter, would could lead to the death of billions of people.
“I’ve seen the simulations and estimates, and the numbers, and there could be 40 to 50 million people dead in the matter of a couple of hours.
“So it is [a] truly terrifying prospect… That’s something we want to rule out to make sure that this could never happen.”
But Pavel did say that a nuclear war is unlikely to happen – despite Vladimir Putin’s threats.
He told The Sun that it wouldn’t make “any military sense” for Russia to unleash nukes on the battlefield.
“We are not there at the point when the very existence of Russia is in danger. We are not anywhere [near] there.
“If you think about it the only way that nuclear weapons could be used in this kind of war they could be used basically to shock the opponents into surrender.
“And the problem with that is, of course, that this shock would have to be shocking enough, and that would have to involve literally killing tens, and maybe hundreds of thousands of people.”
Although the threshold for making a decision to unleash nuclear weapons is high, they exist and they can be used, Pavel said.
“We can talk about this threshold, and we can talk about the how difficult it would be to cross it,” he said.
“Still, I think the physical reality is that those weapons are there, and [they] can be used. They are there to be used, and the danger, of course, is that there are scenarios of escalation.
“I do believe that the the concern is there, and the clock reflected that concern. We are at a dangerous point.”
Pavel explained how escalation could lead to nuclear war.
“My worst case scenario would be that Russia at some point may decide to escalate the conflict and actually attack native states in one way or another,” he said.
“And then we we may enter into this kind of a cycle of responses that could start.
“And I’m sure that if something like that would happen, it would start with the conventional conflict of national attacks.
“But then again, there are ways for this this kind of exchange to escalate to a nuclear level.”
Other scenarios include the “unstable personalities” in charge of nuclear weapons – including Putin and North Korea’s Kim.
And another is unpredictable “accidents”, particularly in active warzones.
“There has been military activity near a nuclear plant in the Ukraine and there’s been concern that missiles could could hit those plants and trigger some kind of fallout,” he said.
“My impression is that people are concerned about accidents. The nature of accidents is exactly that nobody can predict them.
“And the sometimes events could develop in unpredictable ways, as I said. If it is possible to imagine that at some point some kind of an accident… could lead to this kind of a response that could lead us somewhere in very, very unfortunate directions.”
Pavel painted a chilling picture of Vlad’s access to weapons of mass destruction.
He said: “There is a button on the president’s desk that he could push and everything fly.
“We don’t know exactly how people would behave in these kind of circumstances.
“But it is very difficult to imagine the president summoning his generals and basically telling them, ‘okay, you just go ahead and you just kill tens or hundreds of thousands of people in one go’.”
Pavel Podvig is a senior researcher on weapons of mass destruction at the United Nations Institute for Disarmament Research.
His areas of expertise include nuclear disarmament, arms control, fissile materials, verification, nuclear security.
It comes as Kim Jong-un and Vladimir Putin have sent a chilling warning to the West as they vowed to form a “New World Order”.
Warnings of a potential new world order had already been given by Putin’s warmonger foreign minister Sergei Lavrov, who told the West that their time of “global domination” is over.
Meanwhile, Baltic states are racing to bolster defences on their borders with Russia and Belarus as Europe braces for an all-out war.
Admiral Rob Bauer, chief of NATO‘s military committee, has called on the West to “prepare for an era of war” – adding that the alliance “needs a warfighting transformation”.
What is the Doomsday Clock?
The Doomsday Clock operates as a wake-up call for the world about global threats such as nuclear war, dangerous technologies and mass health concerns.
Used as a metaphor to signal how close the human race is to self-destruction by its distance from midnight, it is reset around the same time in January each year by varying lengths.
In 1953 it was set to just two minutes before midnight after the US and Soviet Union began testing nuclear weapons.
Ever-increasing nuclear threats in 2018 again saw it set to two minutes, one minute and 40 seconds in 2020 and just 100 seconds in 2021 and 2022.
It’s smallest number – one minute and 30 seconds – came last January.
The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists – creators of the clock – formed it in 1947 based on the nuclear threat.
It wasn’t until later that natural risks like climate change were considered as well.
Despite it’s concerning meaning – it is meant to serve as a warning and is not a real clock.
Even if it strikes midnight – all hell will not break loose.
But the scientists who created it and view nuclear war as our biggest threat intend it to be taken seriously as an indicator of how dangerous the world has become.
And in our current climate, amid a backdrop of exploding global conflict, it could well be set closer to midnight in 2024.
Getty Images – GettyThe Doomsday Clock will reflect how the world has reached a dangerous point with the rise of nuclear weapons[/caption]Leave a comment