IT SHOULD be a potentially life-saving event when nations large and small alike come together in Glasgow in an attempt to slow the march towards mass extinction, by intervening against the senseless abuse of nature and the resulting climate crisis. There is a twin joined at the extinction hip of evil that threatens us with a more abrupt end. The threat of mass annihilation with nuclear weapons has rarely been discussed by the powers that possess them and also threaten to use them.
Absurdly enough, nations brag about their nuclear status and reward those who helped them get there by portraying this or that scientist as the father of the nation’s bomb. Albert Einstein said that if he had known that his theories would lead to the making of the terrifying bomb, he would have been a locksmith.
For this reason and more, it seemed encouraging to the world at large that the British Prime Minister had pushed for urgent action to end global warming. On the other hand, unfortunately, he denied the promise by needling China and Russia – sometimes with the help of a lone warship or others by urging the North Atlantic Treaty Organization to to draw menacingly closer to the borders of Russia. Doesn’t he know that this makes the world vulnerable to a tragic possibility? Remember the meteor blow that abruptly ended the era of dinosaurs on earth? Life then had to crawl through the fungus that alone survived the meteor strike, rather reminiscent of the black fungus that recently defied treatment in Indian hospitals. Do we want the earth to return to the mushroom age?
With these questions in mind, Boris Johnson’s call to save the world while unwittingly preparing it for another route of mass extinction sounds like the tragic story of a Gulzar movie. A soldier faces the death penalty for killing his wife in rage and is shot at while trying to escape arrest. A team of medics brings him back to life, but they must hand him over to the prison authorities for imminent execution. Save the world from global warming to destroy it with a nuclear winter?
Will there be the dreaded destructive war in the future is an absurd question to ask. We are assured that nuclear wars will never happen because of the inherent fear of self-harm on top of that. But we are also menacingly told how the world ended in the Kennedy-Khrushchev feud, and how such and such a serving Soviet officer luckily guessed a false nuclear alert about an American missile attack, and it saved the world. In South Asia, embassies and UN offices evacuated their non-essential personnel with their families from Delhi during the Indo-Pakistani clash of May 2002. The bellicose rhetoric and military movements observed from a distance had raised fears. that a nuclear conflict does not break out at any time. Indian and Pakistani officials have since denied the existence of such a danger, but have not provided convincing evidence that it is.
The idolization of nuclear weapons in some countries seems to be a piece of arrogance that comes with ignorance. Deniers of the mask to tackle the Covid-19 epidemic or those who deny climate change are more likely to be oblivious to the nuclear threat we all face. It is a hypothesis worth testing that those who refuse to wear the mask are probably people who care little about the nuclear debate. The Johnson-Biden genus is in all likelihood a rarity that strives to save the earth but can be seen as unwittingly ready to destroy it. They are not alone in this absurd annoyance.
There is good news gradually, as Alice Slater, a highly regarded anti-nuclear activist, reminded us during an online discussion about the fate of the Nuclear Weapons Ban Treaty, the first International legally binding pact signed by 86 countries, entered into force in January this year.
“Even though 60% of the world’s population live in countries that have not welcomed the new law that made nuclear weapons illegal, the majority of citizens in most countries that have not signed the TPNW or polls have been carried out, support the negotiated abolition of nuclear weapons. The new treaty is therefore popular in many of these countries.
Slater thinks canvassing helps. “The more we can remind people that nuclear weapons are now illegal in all respects, the better our chances of creating a growing wave of revulsion at current nuclear policies, spending and proliferation and of creating a growing public demand for negotiations. to abolish them. ‘
When it comes to nuclear nationalism, a hallmark of recent entrants into weapon status (albeit illegally acquired), a blunt insight presented by a former Israeli intelligence analyst dealing with Iran should deflate egos. Danny Citrinowicz said President Biden has only one option on the Iran nuclear deal and that Israel should learn to live with it – an unconditional deal for Iran. An Israeli attempt to militarily destroy the facilities would be unsuccessful, as Iran would rebuild everything, and perhaps at double the speed. The message was that you can’t destroy nuclear weapon knowledge even if you assassinate a few top scientists. Knowledge is universally spread. What Citrinowicz’s remarks imply is that after Oppenheimer’s original work, the “father of the bomb” of all other nations probably only copied the original work to flaunt their abilities. adored. India and Pakistan have their nuclear heroes, for example, but is there also a hero among them who invented a new plane or a new ship? One flexes its nerves with Chinese and American planes, and the other proclaims national triumph with French and Russian planes. It’s time to invent an original plan to save the world.
Dawn.com, November 9. Jawed Naqvi is Dawn’s correspondent in Delhi.