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TOTAL GLOBAL DESTRUCTIVE POTENTIAL
Since humanity can only destroy itself once, nuclear overkill serves no purpose, wastes billions of dollars in maintenance costs, and increases the possibility of the use of nuclear weapons by terrorists, or by accident, miscalculation, or misunderstanding.
Russia has a nuclear weapons destructive force of 2,900 megatons, which is an ability to destroy humanity 29 times. Russia, which is in terrible financial shape, is wasting vast sums of money to maintain far more strategic nuclear warheads (7,150) than it can use without destroying itself.(15)
The United States has a total nuclear weapons destructive force of 1,800 megatons, which is an ability to destroy humanity 18 times. While struggling mightily to reduce deficit spending, the U.S. is spending some $27 billion annually to maintain far more strategic nuclear warheads (7,250) than it can use without destroying itself.(16)
While the total nuclear destructive power of the United Kingdom, France and China represents only a small part of the world’s nuclear weapons destructive force, it is still enough to destroy the world several times. Each of these countries is struggling with great difficulty to pay for their nuclear weapons.(17)
The destructive power estimates are conservative since they only include the power of strategic nuclear weapons. If tactical nuclear weapons were added, the overkill capability would be even greater.
Israel, India and Pakistan also have the ability to produce and deliver nuclear weapons.(18) As global awareness grows that nuclear weapons use is likely to be massively destructive, including self-destructive, hopefully these states, too, will reevaluate the appropriateness of maintaining nuclear arsenals.
THE VESTED INTEREST OF THE INTERNATIONAL MILITARY / INDUSTRIAL / CONGRESSIONAL COMPLEX IS THE THREAT OF TOTAL GLOBAL DESTRUCTION
Why does humanity waste vast sums maintaining far more nuclear weapons than are needed to destroy itself? In an earlier study we discovered the main reason for such illogical behavior is that there is a worldwide reluctance to think about what the consequences would be if nuclear weapons were used — a mental block. We discovered that virtually nothing is being published anywhere in the world on the self-destructive consequences of the use of nuclear weapons despite the great peril they present to all.(19)
An example of this mental block was recently reported by General Lee Butler (USAF, Ret.). When General Butler became head of the U.S. Strategic Air Command, he went to the Omaha headquarters to inspect the 12,000 targets in the former Soviet Union. He was shocked to find that dozens of warheads were aimed at Moscow (as the Soviets once targeted Washington). General Butler said, “We were totally out of touch with reality.”(20) U.S. planners had no grasp of the destructive power of nuclear weapons. One small nuclear warhead alone could destroy a major city.
While it is understandable that people are reluctant to think about how terrible the consequences of nuclear weapons use could be, this reluctance has allowed humankind to place itself in danger of self-annihilation, and to spend some $8 trillion over the course of the Nuclear Age doing so.”