The Truth About The Fire (Revelation 15)


World War 3: What would REALLY happen in a nuclear war, by experts

Rob WaughRob Waugh for Metro.co.uk
Wednesday 25 Nov 2015 5:04 pm

The words ‘World War 3’ trended on social media worldwide as tension rose over Turkey shooting down a Russian jet over its airspace.

Just to keep everything calm and civilised, Russian military analyst Pavel Felgenhauer said that nuclear war was now ‘likely’.

There are still a huge number of nuclear weapons in active service – the Arms Control Association estimates that Russia has 7,700 weapons in service, of which 4,500 are stockpiled, and 1548 are deployed on missiles and at air bases.

But what would actually happen?

1) We wouldn’t hear a ‘four-minute warning’

The four minute warning system, a national system of sirens which would have gone off during a nuclear attack was retired in 1992 – one of the reasons being that more people now have double glazing.

2) Instead, you will probably get a text message

An Apple Inc. iPhone 6S smartphone is held for an arranged photograph in Hong Kong, China, on Friday, Sept. 25, 2015. The latest models, following last year’s hugely popular design overhaul that added bigger screens, may not match the success of previous releases, according to analysts.
The government has tested technology which would deliver a text message warning of disasters such as nuclear attacks.

The system, drawn up by the National Security Council, was tested in Glasgow and Yorkshire in 2013.

3) By the time you get the message, there may be little you can do

As yet, there is no technology which can stop an intercontinental ballistic missile – so the most many of us could hope for would be time to get indoors.

Even during the time of the ‘four minute’ warning, the warning would probably have offered just three minutes.

4) If you’re near the bomb, there won’t be much left of you

Witnesses of the Hiroshima attack said that people near the centre of the blast ‘vanished’.
William Burchett said, ‘Of thousands of others, nearer the centre of the explosion, there was no trace. They vanished. The theory in Hiroshima is that the atomic heat was so great that they burned instantly to ashes – except that there were no ashes.’

The bomb dropped on Hiroshima was a fraction of the size of the hydrogen warheads now used by Russia and the U.S.

5) Hydrogen bombs could devastate entire cities

Nearly six million people dead, homes flattened and millions more poisoned by a huge plume of radioactive poison which would spread for 130 miles.

An app by Alex Wellerstein at the Stevens Institute of Technology, Nuke Map, shows what could happen if the largest Soviet hydrogen bomb ever detonated was dropped on London.
Destruction would spread from Horsham in the South to Luton in the north – and casualties would spiral after the initial blast killed and injured nearly 10 million people.

6) Large-scale nuclear war could devastate the entire world

In 1979, the U.S. Congress’s Office of Technology published a report called The Effects of War, which envisaged the impact of an all-out nuclear attack.

The consequences would be disastrous – with hundreds of millions of people dead, and more facing cancer and radiation sickness.

The OTA envisaged up to 80% of the population of the U.S. being killed immediately, with further casualties from radiation.

7) The first impacts wouldn’t be the worst part

A British government broadcast, recorded to be broadcast in the event of nuclear war, said, ‘This is the Wartime Broadcasting Service. This country has been attacked with nuclear weapons… Remember there is nothing to be gained by trying to get away. By leaving your homes you could be exposing yourself to greater danger.If you leave, you may find yourself without food, without water, without accommodation and without protection. Radioactive fall-out, which follows a nuclear explosion, is many times more dangerous if you are directly exposed to it in the open….’
Longstanding advice from various government agencies includes:

Seeking shelter (ideally below ground and surrounded by thick concrete)
Rationing supplies of food, water, fuel, medicine and clothing

Wearing hats and goggles and exposing as little skin to the air as possible
Following the news and evacuating if ordered

8) The environment would be devastated for decades afterwards

‘Doomsday’ predictions of all life on Earth being exterminated are probably over-stating the impact of nuclear weapons – but it would have a huge impact on life on our planet.

A serious nuclear conflict would also leave the world far worse off than depicted in games such as Fallout 4, says science magazine Smithsonian.com.

Carbon thrown into the air would cause a huge drop in worldwide temperature, and could hit global rainfall and the growing seasons for crops.

Israel And Babylon Keep The Fire Of Judgment Alive

 
Israel thanks U.S. for stand on Mideast nuclear arms ban at U.N.

Sat May 23, 2015 8:00pm BST
By Louis Charbonneau

UNITED NATIONS (Reuters) – Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu thanked the United States for blocking an Egyptian-led drive on a possible Middle East nuclear weapons ban at a major United Nations conference, an Israeli official said on Saturday.

It was a rare expression of diplomatic harmony with the United States from Netanyahu, whose relations with President Barack Obama have been strained over U.S.-led nuclear talks with Iran and differences over Israeli-Palestinian diplomacy.

A month-long conference on the 1970 nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) ended in failure on Friday over disagreements on how to achieve a Middle East atomic weapons ban. Washington blamed the failure on Egypt, which in turn blamed the U.S., British and Canadian delegations.

Netanyahu conveyed his gratitude to President Barack Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry in a call to Kerry, said a senior Israeli official, requesting anonymity.

The United States kept its commitment to Israel by preventing a Middle East resolution that would single out Israel and ignore its security interests and the threats posed to it by an increasingly turbulent Middle East,” the official said.

Israel also thanked Britain and Canada for joining the United States in blocking consensus, the official said.

U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon voiced disappointment that NPT parties were “unable to narrow their differences on the future of nuclear disarmament or to arrive at a new collective vision on how to achieve a Middle East zone free of nuclear weapons and all other weapons of mass destruction (WMD).”

Last month, Egypt, backed by other Arab and non-aligned states, proposed that Ban convene a regional conference on banning WMD as called for at the 2010 NPT review meeting. A planned 2012 conference on the issue never took place.

According to Egypt’s proposal, that conference could take place with or without Israel’s participation, and could be held without agreement on an agenda or discussion of regional security issues – two of Israel’s conditions for participating.

Israel neither confirms nor denies the widespread assumption that it controls the Middle East’s only nuclear arsenal. Israel, which has never joined the NPT, agreed to take part in the review meeting as an observer, ending a 20-year absence.

Egypt’s proposals, Western diplomats say, were aimed at pressuring Israel. Washington and Israel say Iran’s nuclear programme is the real regional threat.

Iran says its programme is peaceful. It is negotiating with world powers to curb it in exchange for lifting sanctions.

Israel has said it would consider joining the NPT only once at peace with its Arab neighbors and Iran.
(Reporting by Matt Spetalnick in Washington; Editing by Robin Pomeroy and Dan Grebler)

The End Game: A Sea Of Glass Mixed With Fire (Rev 15:2)

Playing Chicken with Nuclear War

A nuclear test detonation carried out in Nevada on April 18, 1953.

Exclusive: U.S.-Russian tensions keep escalating – now surrounding the murder of Russian opposition figure Boris Nemtsov – yet almost no one on the American side seems to worry about the possibility that the tough-guy rhetoric and proxy war in Ukraine might risk a nuclear conflagration, writes Robert Parry.

By Robert Parry (Updated with Washington Post editorial on March 3.)

The United States and Russia still maintain vast nuclear arsenals of mutual assured destruction, putting the future of humanity in jeopardy every instant. But an unnerving nonchalance has settled over the American side which has become so casual about the risk of cataclysmic war that the West’s propaganda and passions now ignore Russian fears and sensitivities.

A swaggering goofiness has come to dominate how the United States reacts to Russia, with American politicians and journalists dashing off tweets and op-eds, rushing to judgment about the perfidy of Moscow’s leaders, blaming them for almost anything and everything.

These days, playing with nuclear fire is seen as a sign of seriousness and courage. Anyone who urges caution and suggests there might be two sides to the U.S.-Russia story is dismissed as a wimp or a stooge. A what-me-worry “group think” has taken hold across the U.S. ideological spectrum. Fretting about nuclear annihilation is so 1960s.

So, immediately after last Friday night’s murder of Russian opposition figure Boris Nemtsov, the West’s media began insinuating that Russian President Vladimir Putin was somehow responsible even though there was no evidence or logic connecting him to the shooting, just 100 meters from the Kremlin, probably the last place Russian authorities would pick for a hit.

But that didn’t stop the mainstream U.S. news media from casting blame on Putin. For instance, the New York Times published an op-ed by anti-Putin author Martha Gessen saying: “The scariest thing about the murder of Boris Nemtsov is that he himself did not scare anyone,” suggesting that his very irrelevance was part of a sinister political message.

Though no one outside the actual killers seems to know yet why Nemtsov was gunned down, Gessen took the case several steps further explaining how – while Putin probably didn’t finger Nemtsov for death – the Russian president was somehow still responsible. She wrote:

In all likelihood no one in the Kremlin actually ordered the killing — and this is part of the reason Mr. Nemtsov’s murder marks the beginning of yet another new and frightening period in Russian history. The Kremlin has recently created a loose army of avengers who believe they are acting in the country’s best interests, without receiving any explicit instructions. Despite his lack of political clout, Mr. Nemtsov was a logical first target for this menacing force.”

So, rather than wait for actual evidence to emerge, the Times published Gessen’s conclusions and then let her spin off some even more speculative interpretations. Yet, basing speculation upon speculation is almost always a bad idea, assuming you care about fairness and accuracy.

Remember how after the Oklahoma City bombing in 1995, some terrorism “experts” not only jumped to the false conclusion that the attack was a case of Islamic terrorism but that Oklahoma was chosen to send a message to Americans that no part of the country was safe. But the terrorist turned out to be a white right-wing extremist lashing out at the federal government.

While surely hard-line Russian nationalists, who resented Nemtsov’s support for the U.S.-backed Ukrainian regime in Kiev, should be included on a list of early suspects, there are a number of other possibilities that investigators must also consider, including business enemies, jealous rivals and even adversaries within Russia’s splintered opposition – though that last one has become a target of particular ridicule in the West.

Yet, during my years at the Associated Press, one of my articles was about a CIA “psychological operations” manual which an agency contractor prepared for the Nicaraguan Contra rebels noting the value of assassinating someone on your own side to create a “martyr” for the cause. I’m in no way suggesting that such a motive was in play regarding Nemtsov’s slaying but it’s not as if this idea is entirely preposterous either.

My point is that even in this age of Twitter when everyone wants to broadcast his or her personal speculation about whodunit to every mystery, it would be wise for news organizations to resist the temptation. Surely, if parallel circumstances occurred inside the United States, such guess work would be rightly dismissed as “conspiracy theory.”

Nuclear Mischief

Plus, this latest rush to judgment isn’t about some relatively innocuous topic – like, say, how some footballs ended up under-inflated in an NFL game – this situation involves how the United States will deal with Russia, which possesses some 8,000 nuclear warheads — roughly the same size as the U.S. arsenal — while the two countries have around 1,800 missiles on high-alert, i.e., ready to launch at nearly a moment’s notice.

Over the weekend, I participated in a conference on nuclear dangers sponsored by the Helen Caldicott Foundation in New York City. On my Saturday afternoon panel was Seth Baum of the Global Catastrophic Risk Institute who offered a sobering look at how the percentage chances of a nuclear war – though perhaps low at any given moment – add up over time to quite likely if not inevitable. He made the additional observation that those doomsday odds rise at times of high tensions between the United States and Russia.

As Baum noted, at such crisis moments, the people responsible for the U.S. and Russian nuclear weapons are more likely to read a possible computer glitch or some other false alarm as a genuine launch and are thus more likely to push their own nuclear button.

In other words, it makes good sense to avoid a replay of the Cuban Missile Crisis in reverse by edging U.S. nuclear weapons up against Russia’s borders, especially when U.S. politicians and commentators are engaging in Cold War-style Russia-bashing. Baiting the Russian bear may seem like great fun to the tough-talking politicians in Washington or the editors of the New York Times and Washington Post but this hostile rhetoric could be taken more seriously in Moscow.

When I spoke to the nuclear conference, I noted how the U.S. media/political system had helped create just that sort of crisis in Ukraine, with every “important” person jumping in on the side of the Kiev coup-makers in February 2014 when they overthrew elected President Viktor Yanukovych.

Since then, nearly every detail of that conflict has been seen through the prism of “our side good/their side bad.” Facts that put “our side” in a negative light, such as the key role played by neo-Nazis and the Kiev regime’s brutal “anti-terrorism operation,” are downplayed or ignored.

Conversely, anything that makes the Ukrainians who are resisting Kiev’s authority look bad gets hyped and even invented, such as one New York Times’ lead story citing photos that supposedly proved Russian military involvement but quickly turned out to be fraudulent. [See Consortiumnews.com’s “NYT Retracts Russian Photo Scoop.”]

At pivotal moments in the crisis, such as the Feb. 20, 2014 sniper fire that killed both police and protesters and the July 17, 2014 shoot-down of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 killing 298 passengers and crew, the U.S. political/media establishment has immediately pinned the blame on Yanukovych, the ethnic Russian rebels who are resisting his ouster, or Putin.

Then, when evidence emerged going in the opposite direction — toward “our side” — a studied silence followed, allowing the earlier propaganda to stay in place as part of the preferred storyline. [See, for instance, Consortiumnews.com’s “President Gollum’s ‘Precious’ Secrets.”]

A Pedestrian Dispute

One of the points of my talk was that the Ukrainian crisis emerged from a fairly pedestrian dispute, i.e., plans for expanding economic ties with the European Union while not destroying the historic business relationship with Russia. In November 2013, Yanukovych backed away from signing an EU association agreement when experts in Kiev announced that it would blow a $160 billion hole in Ukraine’s economy. He asked for more time.

But Yanukovych’s decision disappointed many western Ukrainians who favored the EU agreement. Tens of thousands poured into Kiev’s Maidan square to protest. The demonstrations then were seized upon by far-right Ukrainian political forces who have long detested the country’s ethnic Russians in the east and began dispatching organized “sotins” of 100 fighters each to begin firebombing police and seizing government buildings.

As the violence grew worse, U.S. neoconservatives also saw an opportunity, including Sen. John McCain, R-Arizona, who told the protesters the United States was on their side, and Assistant Secretary of State for European Affairs Victoria Nuland, who passed out cookies to the protesters and plotted with U.S. Ambassador Geoffrey Pyatt on who would become the new leaders of Ukraine. [See Consortiumnews.com’s “NYT Still Pretends No Coup in Ukraine.“]

Thus, a very manageable political problem in Ukraine was allowed to expand into a proxy war between nuclear-armed United States and Russia. Added to it were intense passions and extensive propaganda. In the West, the Ukraine crisis was presented as a morality play of people who “share our values” pitted against conniving Russians and their Hitler-like president Putin.

In Official Washington, anyone who dared suggest compromise was dismissed as a modern-day Neville Chamberlain practicing “appeasement.” Everyone “serious” was set on stopping Putin now by shipping sophisticated weapons to the Ukrainian government so it could do battle against “Russian aggression.”

The war fever was such that no one raised an eyebrow when Ukraine’s Deputy Foreign Minister Vadym Prystaiko told Canada’s CBC Radio last month that the West should no longer fear fighting nuclear-armed Russia and that Ukraine wanted arms for a “full-scale war” against Moscow.

“Everybody is afraid of fighting with a nuclear state. We are not anymore, in Ukraine,” Prystaiko said. “However dangerous it sounds, we have to stop [Putin] somehow. For the sake of the Russian nation as well, not just for the Ukrainians and Europe. … What we expect from the world is that the world will stiffen up in the spine a little.” [See Consortiumnews.com’s “Ready for Nuclear War over Ukraine?”]

Instead of condemning Prystaiko’s recklessness, more U.S. officials began lining up in support of sending lethal military hardware to Ukraine so it could fight Russia, including Director of National Intelligence James Clapper who said he favored the ideathough it might provoke a “negative reaction” from Moscow.

Russian Regime Change

Even President Barack Obama and other U.S. leaders who have yet to publicly endorse arming the Kiev coup-makers enjoy boasting about how much pain they are inflicting on the Russian economy and its government. In effect, there is a U.S. strategy of making the Russian economy “scream,” a first step toward a larger neocon goal to achieve “regime change” in Moscow.

Another point I made in my talk on Saturday was how the neocons are good at drafting “regime change” plans that sound great when discussed at a think tank or outlined on an op-ed page but often fail to survive in the real world, such as their 2003 plan for a smooth transition in Iraq to replace Saddam Hussein with someone of their choosing – except that it didn’t work out that way.

Perhaps the greatest danger from the new neocon dream for “regime change” in Moscow is that whoever follows Putin might not be the pliable yes man that the neocons envision, but a fierce Russian nationalist who would suddenly have control of their nuclear launch codes and might decide that it’s time for the United States to make concessions or face annihilation.

On March 3, the Washington Post’s neocon editorialists emphasized the need for ousting Putin as they praised Nemtsov and other anti-Putin activists who have urged an escalation of Western pressure on Russia. The Post wrote: “They say he [Putin] can be stopped only by steps that decisively raise the cost of his military aggression and cripple the financial system that sustains his regime.”

The Post then added its own suggestion that Putin was behind Nemtsov’s murder and its own hope that Putin might be soon be removed, saying: “It’s not known who murdered Mr. Nemtsov, and it probably won’t be as long as Mr. Putin remains in power.”

Yet, what I find truly remarkable about the Ukraine crisis is that it was always relatively simple to resolve: Before the coup, Yanukovych agreed to reduced powers and early elections so he could be voted out of office. Then, either he or some new leadership could have crafted an economic arrangement that expanded ties to the EU while not severing them with Russia.

Even after the coup, the new regime could have negotiated a federalized system that granted more independence to the disenfranchised ethnic Russians of eastern Ukraine, rather than launch a brutal “anti-terrorist operation” against those resisting the new authorities. But Official Washington’s “group think” has been single-minded: only bellicose anti-Russian sentiments are permitted and no suggestions of accommodation are allowed.

Still, spending time this weekend with people like Helen Caldicott, an Australian physician who has committed much of her life to campaigning against nuclear weapons, reminded me that this devil-may-care attitude toward a showdown with Russia, which has gripped the U.S. political/media establishment, is not universal. Not everyone agrees with Official Washington’s nonchalance about playing a tough-guy game of nuclear chicken.

As part of the conference, Caldicott asked attendees to stay around for a late-afternoon showing of the 1959 movie, “On the Beach,” which tells the story of the last survivors from a nuclear war as they prepare to die when the radioactive cloud that has eliminated life everywhere else finally reaches Australia. A mystery in the movie is how the final war began, who started it and why – with the best guess being that some radar operator somewhere thought he saw something and someone reacted in haste.

Watching the movie reminded me that there was a time when Americans were serious about the existential threat from U.S.-Russian nuclear weapons, when there were films like “Dr. Strangelove,” “Fail Safe,” and “On the Beach.” Now, there’s a cavalier disinterest in those risks, a self-confidence that one can put his or her political or journalistic career first and just assume that some adult will step in before the worst happens.

Whether some adults show up to resolve the Ukraine crisis remains to be seen. It’s also unclear if U.S. pundits and pols can restrain themselves from more rushes to judgment, as in the case of Boris Nemtsov. But a first step might be for the New York Times and other “serious” news organizations to return to traditional standards of journalism and check out the facts before jumping to a conclusion.

Babylon The Great And Iran Hasten To The Fire (Revelation 15:2)

US, Iran hold ‘important’ talks to hasten nuclear deal

Source: Daily Times

Post Date: Wednesday, January 14, 2015

US Secretary of State John Kerry and his Iranian counterpart Mohammad Javad Zarif huddled in an upscale Geneva hotel, ahead of full negotiations with global powers which resume on Sunday. They are seeking to break a stalemate which has caused them to miss two previous deadlines for a full agreement to rein in Iran’s suspect nuclear programme.

Zarif told reporters Wednesday’s talks were important. “I think it will show the readiness of the two parties to move forward to speed up the process.” But asked if there would be a comprehensive deal by the July 1 deadline, he remained cautious replying: “We’ll see.” Past negotiations have stumbled reportedly over Iran’s insistence that it retain the right to enrich some uranium – which can in some cases be used to make an atomic bomb – for what it says is a peaceful civilian nuclear programme.

There has also been disagreement over global sanctions, with Tehran calling for an end to an iron-fisted regime which has crippled Iran’s economy, while the US has insisted on a temporary, gradual suspension. Negotiators have worked hard to keep details of their differences secret though, and when asked about the thorniest matters still clouding the talks, Zarif would not go into detail.

“All issues are hard until we resolve them and all issues are easy if you resolve them,” he told reporters travelling with Kerry, as he waited to greet the top US diplomat in his hotel. Kerry has said the aim of his talks with Zarif on Wednesday is to take stock and provide guidance for their negotiating teams ahead of fresh discussions by global powers known as the P5+1 here on Sunday.

Iran’s “Ring Of Fire”

Iran’s Plan to Wreak Havoc on Israel With Missiles 162077912
January 5, 2015 8:41 am

Author: Herbert London

The Iranian desire to acquire nuclear weapons involves several political and military scenarios, including the oft repeated desire to “annihilate” the state of Israel. However, Supreme Leader Khamenei has made it clear that even without nuclear weapons, he intends to surround Israel from the north (Hezbollah), the south (Gaza and Hamas), and the east (the West Bank) with an unbroken ring of rocket and missile arsenals.

Since the end of the summer war between Hamas and Israel, Iran has openly supplied advanced missiles to its surrogates in the region without a word of condemnation from the West.

As expressed by Supreme Leader Khamenei during the International Congress on Extremist and Takfiri [apostasy] Orientations, “We have passed through the barrier of denominational discord. We helped Hezbollah (Shia)…in the same way that we helped Sunni groups, Hamas and Islamic Jihad.” Of course, few things unite disparate Muslims more than hatred of Israel.

Ahmad Bakhsharyesh, a member of the Iranian National Security and Foreign Policy Committee, emphasized the belief that in arming the areas contiguous to Israel, a blow has been struck against Israeli security. He also argued that through encirclement, Iran has forestalled any Israeli effort to attack Iranian nuclear facilities. Khamenei has noted that in bolstering the missile arsenals of Hamas and Hezbollah, Israel’s security will be challenged and “the liberation of Jerusalem – which is the duty of every Muslim” will be achievable.

Moreover, the Fateh-110 Missile, developed in Iran, has sufficient range to strike at every target in Israel – from the north to the south. While Iran has been engaging in nuclear negotiations in Geneva and Vienna, its arms industry has been working overtime to develop advanced offensive rocket capability and has made it part of its military planning to place these upgraded weapons in the hands of Hamas and Hezbollah.

With the withdrawal of U.S. forces from the region, the rapprochement towards Iran by the Obama Administration, and the strengthening of Iran’s influence in Syria, Lebanon, Iraq, and the Palestinian territories, Israeli security – to some degree – has been compromised.

Surely Israeli military planners understand the new challenges that have emerged. Terrorist mobilization in the Golan has increased dramatically in the last year. At the moment, Israel is quiescent, but this is likely to be a temporary reprieve from battle.

Each day that passes introduces new complications for Israeli security. Israel won the war against Hamas, and from a tactical point of view, Operation Protective Edge provided information about Hamas’ leadership, and planning and infiltration methods. But it is also true that the enemy learned a good deal about the capacity of Iron Dome, the deployment of Israeli forces, and Israel’s intelligence apparatus.

Iran’s transparent encirclement strategy is not entirely new, but it is being reinforced based on accumulated knowledge. Encirclement is also a variable that must be entertained in any preemptive strike against Iranian nuclear facilities.

Iran’s obsessive desire to destroy Israel must be met by an equally obsessive desire to defend the Jewish nation. If encirclement compromises Israeli defenses, a strategy must be developed to break through missile intimidation with a clear and unequivocal response.

Herbert London is the President of the London Center for Policy Research.

Babylon The Great Playing With Russian Nuclear Fire

Russia: Ukraine’s import of U.S. nuclear fuel risky

Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk  gestures, during a press conference in Kiev, Ukraine, Tuesday, Dec. 30, 2014. (AP Photo/Efrem Lukatsky)
Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk gestures, during a press conference in Kiev, Ukraine, Tuesday, Dec. 30, 2014. (AP Photo/Efrem Lukatsky)
MOSCOW (AP) — Russia says Ukraine’s deal to buy U.S.-made nuclear fuel for its Soviet-built reactors could trigger a nuclear accident.

Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk of Ukraine announced Tuesday that his nation has reached a deal on nuclear fuel deliveries with Westinghouse to reduce dependence on Russian supplies.

Russia’s Foreign Ministry deplored the move as a “dangerous experiment that threatens safety and health of the Ukrainian citizens and peoples of Europe.” It said nuclear fuel produced by the U.S. company doesn’t quite fit Soviet-built nuclear reactors that Ukraine has.

The ministry said Ukrainian authorities must take a responsible approach to nuclear safety, or risk disasters such as the 1986 Chernobyl one, which was a result of a flawed Soviet reactor design coupled with serious mistakes made by the plant operators.

In a statement Tuesday, Westinghouse said it “has been working in the Ukrainian market since 2003, and brings diversification of suppliers, global best practices and technology to the Ukraine market. Westinghouse fuel is currently operating safely and efficiently at the South Ukraine Nuclear Power Plant without any defects in performance.”

Iranian Nuclear Program Very Much Alive

Mysterious blast at Iran nuke plant proves weapons program alive, say experts

Mysterious Explosion Occurred At This Iranian Nuclear Facility Earlier This Week

Mysterious Explosion Occurred At This Tehran Nuclear Facility Earlier This Week

The massive blast at an Iranian nuclear plant earlier this week remains shrouded in mystery, but it cleared up one thing, according to those who track the Islamic Republic: The nuclear weapons program Tehran has long denied is real.

The massive blast Sunday night rocked buildings more than 10 miles away, and before-and-after satellite images published by the Israel Defense Force showed startling destruction at a facility Iran has repeatedly barred international inspectors from entering.

“[The] images indicate that a complete section of structures was simply eliminated by an unexplained explosion,” IDF analyst Ronen Solomon said. “The explosion wiped several testing units off the face of the earth while inflicting collateral damage on adjacent buildings.”

Iran, which initially denied an explosion took place, was forced a day later to own up to a blast, via the IRNA official Iranian news agency. The report said two people had been killed as a result of a fire at the site. The true casualty figure may never be known.

“The explosion wiped several testing units off the face of the earth while inflicting collateral damage on adjacent buildings.”- Ronen Solomon, IDF analyst

Israel has long insisted that Iran’s charm offensive, successful in easing western sanctions, is a ruse to buy time while it pursues nuclear weapons.

“Don’t be fooled by Iran’s manipulative charm offensive,” Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu warned the UN General Assembly in New York on Sept. 29. “It’s designed for one purpose and for one purpose only: to lift the sanctions and remove the obstacles to Iran’s path to the bomb.

“Once Iran produces atomic bombs,” Netanyahu added, “all the charms and all the smiles will suddenly disappear. They’ll just vanish. And it’s then that the ayatollahs will show their true face and unleash their aggressive fanaticism on the entire world.”

As in past cases when things explode or scientists are killed in Iran, speculation centers on Israeli intelligence agencies, who, just as predictably, do not comment. Both misplaced blame and proper credit serve the purpose of burnishing their reputation within enemy and terrorist regimes. There are other possibilities, including that it was an accident or that Iranian dissident groups or western intelligence agencies played a role.

“If someone did succeed in infiltrating the Parchin site with explosives and causing the huge explosion which took place there, we are talking about an exceptional achievement,” regional terror analyst Ronen Bergman suggested in Wednesday’s Ynet.com.

Parchin, a site to which international inspectors have repeatedly been denied access since 2007 – a fact that many opponents of the P5+1 talks have long insisted in itself makes a mockery of the so-called negotiation process – is rumored to be the location of the development of the key warhead components required for making a nuclear bomb.

“Western officials suspect that at the heart of this secret development is the weapon group developing the nuclear lens mechanism,” Bergman said. “It’s a complex system of timers and explosives assembled around the core of the bomb, which explode in a way that “pushes” the enriched uranium sphere inwards and starts the chain reaction needed for an atomic explosion. If the smoking gun for the existence of the weapon group is found, it will serve as decisive evidence that Iran has been lying and that there is no point in negotiating with it.”

The assassination of a series of Iranian nuclear scientists inside Iran in recent years as the result of bombs planted on, or next to their vehicles by mysterious motorcycle-riding hitmen, together with the vicious Stuxnet computer virus that hit Iran’s key Natanz nuclear facility in 2010, has allegedly put the brakes on the Islamic Republic’s nuclear project.

According to Amnesty International, thousands of dissidents languish in Iranian jails, (including a significant number of journalists). Iran is second only to China in the number of executions it carries out each year, often following only a token trial.

Regime support is also indicated in the September 2013 massacre of at least 52 Iranians in neighbouring Iraq at the Camp Ashraf refugee camp that had been designated a safe haven for Iranian activists, many of whom had opposed the direction of their nation’s nuclear ambitions. U.S. officials were reportedly furious at Iran’s Revolutionary Guard praising the attack, while Foreign Policy magazine reported that, “U.S. intelligence officials believe that Iranian commandos took part [in the attack].”

A Catastrophe Waiting To Happen – THE FIRE (Revelation 16:10)

Nuclear ‘Command And Control’: A History Of False Alarms And Near Catastrophes

 
Titan II Intercontinental Nuclear Missile

Titan II Intercontinental Nuclear Missile

Globally, there are thousands of nuclear weapons hidden away and ready to go, just awaiting the right electrical signal. They are, writes investigative reporter Eric Schlosser, a collective death wish — barely suppressed. Every one is an accident waiting to happen, a potential act of mass murder, he says.

“When it comes to nuclear command and control, anything less than perfection is unacceptable because of how devastatingly powerful these weapons are,” Schlosser tells Fresh Air’s Dave Davies.
Schlosser, best known for his book Fast Food Nation, spent six years researching America’s nuclear weapons, interviewing many involved in developing defense policy and in maintaining and deploying weapons systems, and examining government documents.

His new book Command and Control: Nuclear Weapons, the Damascus Accident, and the Illusion of Safety is a critical look at the history of the nation’s nuclear weapons systems — and a terrifying account of the fires, explosions, false attack alerts and accidentally dropped bombs that plagued America’s military throughout the Cold War.

“One of the themes of my book is about how we are so much better at creating complex technological systems than we are at controlling them,” he says.

“It’s only since the Cold War ended that we’ve been able to find out how close we came, again and again, to having our own weapons detonate by accident, or potentially be stolen, or potentially be used by people without proper authorization.”

 

Interview Highlights

On a B-52 bomber that accidentally dropped a bomb on North Carolina in 1962

This plane was on a routine flight. At that period, we had B-52 bombers in the air 24 hours a day ready to attack the Soviet Union. So this plane took off with two very powerful hydrogen bombs. And while it was flying, the pilot noticed that there was a weight imbalance and they needed to essentially dump their fuel and get back to the base.

While they were trying to get back to the base, the weight imbalance started to break apart the plane. As the B-52 bomber broke apart midair, the crew was evacuating, there was a lanyard in the cockpit and it was the lanyard that one of the crew members would normally pull to release the hydrogen bombs. The centrifugal forces of the plane breaking apart pulled the lanyard as though [a] human being had pulled it.

Now, these bombs are dumb machines — and they didn’t know the difference between a person pulling on the lanyard or centrifugal forces. So the bombs were released as though we were over enemy territory and at war.

One of those hydrogen bombs went through all of its proper arming steps except for one, and when it hit the ground in North Carolina, there was a firing signal sent. And if that one switch in the bomb had been switched, it would’ve detonated a full-scale — an enormous, enormous thermonuclear explosion — in North Carolina.

On a false alarm that the United States was under Soviet attack

By the late 1970s, the great threat to the United States was Soviet missiles. These would come very quickly; the president of the United States would not have very much time whether to decide if this was a real attack or a false alarm and whether to launch our missiles — it might be as few as 10, 12 minutes to make this decision. …

On Nov. 9, 1979, at NORAD [North American Aerospace Defense Command] headquarters inside Cheyenne Mountain in Colorado Springs, Co., suddenly the screens were filled with images of a major Soviet attack on the United States. It really looked like an all-out attack and that the president [Jimmy Carter] might have to make a decision about whether or not to respond. It was investigated very quickly and other radars showed no sign of this attack. And the decision was made that this was a false alarm.

And it was soon realized that someone had inadvertently put a training tape — and the training tape was of an all-out Soviet attack — into a computer and the computer had presented the training tape as a real attack.

On another serious false alarm

We had another serious, serious incident … when Zbigniew Brzezinski, President Carter’s national security adviser, was awoken at 2:30 in the morning and told by his military aide that the United States was most likely under attack by 220 missiles. And as Brzezinski said, “I need confirmation of that,” and his military aide got off the phone and the military aide called back Brzezinski and said, “It’s actually 2,200 soviet missiles [that] are coming toward the United States.”

Brzezinski wanted further confirmation, and as he lay there in bed in the early morning hours, he decided not to wake up his wife because if Washington, D.C., was about to be destroyed, he preferred that she die in her sleep. And Brzezinski was preparing to call President Carter to talk about the American retaliation and his military aide called back one more time [and] said it was a false alarm.
And this false alarm was later traced to a faulty computer chip that cost 46 cents that had malfunctioned and had sent this signal that 2,000 Soviet missiles with warheads were on their way.

On early nuclear weapons and the destruction of Hiroshima

Early nuclear weapons were essentially handmade. … The bomb that was dropped on Hiroshima was an incredibly crude and inefficient weapon. When it exploded, about 99 percent of the uranium that was supposed to undergo this chain reaction didn’t — it just blew apart in the air. And a very small percentage, maybe 2 percent of the fissile material, actually detonated — and most of it just became other radioactive elements.

So when you look at the destruction of Hiroshima, this major city, Hiroshima was destroyed in an instant, and 80,000 people were killed and two-thirds of the buildings in this enormous metropolitan area were destroyed instantly because 7/10 of a gram of uranium-235 became pure energy. To imagine how small of an amount that is — 7/10 of a gram of uranium is about the size of a peppercorn; 7/10 of a gram weighs less than a dollar bill.

Even though this weapon was unbelievably inefficient and almost 99 percent of the uranium had nothing to do with the destruction of Hiroshima, it was a catastrophic explosion. Nuclear weapons since then have become remarkably efficient and small and capable of destruction that makes Hiroshima seem trivial.

On the frequency of these mistakes

I was able to obtain thousands of pages through the Freedom of Information Act to write the book that revealed these details, and also to do interviews with people who designed the weapons, people who handled them routinely, who told me these stories. It’s quite extraordinary how much was suppressed.

If you look at the Pentagon’s official list of how many nuclear weapons accidents, serious accidents, we have — what they call “broken arrows” — the list contains 32 accidents. But I was able to obtain a document through the Freedom of Information Act that said just between the years 1950 and 1968, there were more than 1,000 accidents involving nuclear weapons. And many of the serious accidents I found don’t even appear on the Pentagon’s list. So I’m sure there were many more that I was unable to uncover that occurred.

On how the aging missile technology is a safety hazard

The problem today is that we have very aging weapons systems — both in the United States and Russia. It’s very old technology. Our principle nuclear bomber, the B-52, hasn’t been built since John F. Kennedy was president. Our principle land-based missile, the Minuteman III, was put into the ground originally in 1970. [It] was supposed to be retired in the early 1980s, and the infrastructure is aging — the wiring, the computers in our Minuteman launch complexes use 9-inch floppy discs. There’s all kinds of potential for problems there — and in Russia, the same thing.

The White House Is Playing With THE FIRE (Revelation 16)

The Lethality of Nuclear Weapons: Nuclear War has No Winner

Nuclear war has no winner. Beginning in 2006, several of the world’s leading climatologists (at Rutgers, UCLA, John Hopkins University, and the University of Colorado-Boulder) published a series of studies that evaluated the long-term environmental consequences of a nuclear war, including baseline scenarios fought with merely 1% of the explosive power in the US and/or Russian launch-ready nuclear arsenals. They concluded that the consequences of even a “small” nuclear war would include catastrophic disruptions of global climate[i] and massive destruction of Earth’s protective ozone layer[ii]. These and more recent studies predict that global agriculture would be so negatively affected by such a war, a global famine would result, which would cause up to 2 billion people to starve to death. [iii]

These peer-reviewed studies – which were analyzed by the best scientists in the world and found to be without error – also predict that a war fought with less than half of US or Russian strategic nuclear weapons would destroy the human race.[iv] In other words, a US-Russian nuclear war would create such extreme long-term damage to the global environment that it would leave the Earth uninhabitable for humans and most animal forms of life.

A recent article in the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, “Self-assured destruction: The climate impacts of nuclear war”,[v] begins by stating:

A nuclear war between Russia and the United States, even after the arsenal reductions planned under New START, could produce a nuclear winter. Hence, an attack by either side could be suicidal, resulting in self-assured destruction.”

In 2009, I wrote an article[vi] for the International Commission on Nuclear Non-proliferation and Disarmament that summarizes the findings of these studies. It explains that nuclear firestorms would produce millions of tons of smoke, which would rise above cloud level and form a global stratospheric smoke layer that would rapidly encircle the Earth. The smoke layer would remain for at least a decade, and it would act to destroy the protective ozone layer (vastly increasing the UV-B reaching Earth[vii]) as well as block warming sunlight, thus creating Ice Age weather conditions that would last 10 years or longer.

Following a US-Russian nuclear war, temperatures in the central US and Eurasia would fall below freezing every day for one to three years; the intense cold would completely eliminate growing seasons for a decade or longer. No crops could be grown, leading to a famine that would kill most humans and large animal populations.

Electromagnetic pulse from high-altitude nuclear detonations would destroy the integrated circuits in all modern electronic devices[viii], including those in commercial nuclear power plants. Every nuclear reactor would almost instantly meltdown; every nuclear spent fuel pool (which contain many times more radioactivity than found in the reactors) would boil-off, releasing vast amounts of long-lived radioactivity. The fallout would make most of the US and Europe uninhabitable. Of course, the survivors of the nuclear war would be starving to death anyway.

Once nuclear weapons were introduced into a US-Russian conflict, there would be little chance that a nuclear holocaust could be avoided. Theories of “limited nuclear war” and “nuclear de-escalation” are unrealistic.[ix] In 2010 the Bush administration modified US strategic doctrine from a retaliatory role to permit preemptive nuclear attack, and Counterforce doctrine[x] – used by both the US and Russian military – emphasizes the need for preemptive strikes once nuclear war begins. Both sides would be under immense pressure to launch a preemptive nuclear first-strike once military hostilities had commenced, especially if nuclear weapons had already been used on the battlefield.

Both the US and Russia each have 400 to 500 launch-ready ballistic missiles armed with a total of at least 1800 strategic nuclear warheads,[xi] which can be launched with only a few minutes warning.[xii] Both the US and Russian Presidents are accompanied 24/7 by military officers carrying a “nuclear briefcase”, which allows them to transmit the permission order to launch in a matter of seconds.

Yet top political leaders and policymakers of both the US and Russia seem to be unaware that their launch-ready nuclear weapons represent a self-destruct mechanism for the human race. For example, in 2010, I was able to publicly question the chief negotiators of the New START treaty, Russian Ambassador Anatoly Antonov and (then) US Assistant Secretary of State, Rose Gottemoeller, during their joint briefing at the UN (during the Non-Proliferation Treaty Review Conference). I asked them if they were familiar with the recent peer-reviewed studies that predicted the detonation of less than 1% of the explosive power contained in the operational and deployed U.S. and Russian nuclear forces would cause catastrophic changes in the global climate, and that a nuclear war fought with their strategic nuclear weapons would kill most people on Earth. They both answered “no.”

More recently, on April 20, 2014, I asked the same question and received the same answer from the US officials sent to brief representatives of the NGOS at the Non-Proliferation Treaty Preparatory Committee meeting at the UN. None of the US officials at the briefing were aware of the studies. Those present included top officials of the National Security Council.

It is frightening that President Obama and his administration appear unaware that the world’s leading scientists have for years predicted that a nuclear war fought with the US and/or Russian strategic nuclear arsenal means the end of human history. Do they not know of the existential threat these arsenals pose to the human race . . . or do they choose to remain silent because this fact doesn’t fit into their official narratives? We hear only about terrorist threats that could destroy a city with an atomic bomb, while the threat of human extinction from nuclear war is never mentioned – even when the US and Russia are each running huge nuclear war games in preparation for a US-Russian war.

Even more frightening is the fact that the neocons running US foreign policy believe that the US has “nuclear primacy” over Russia; that is, the US could successfully launch a nuclear sneak attack against Russian (and Chinese) nuclear forces and completely destroy them. This theory was articulated in 2006 in “The Rise of U.S. Nuclear Primacy”, which was published in Foreign Affairs by the Council on Foreign Relations.[xiii] By concluding that the Russians and Chinese would be unable to retaliate, or if some small part of their forces remained, would not risk a second US attack by retaliating, the article invites nuclear war.

Colonel Valery Yarynich (who was in charge of security of the Soviet/Russian nuclear command and control systems for 7 years) asked me to help him write a rebuttal, which was titled “Nuclear Primacy is a Fallacy”.[xiv] Colonel Yarynich, who was on the Soviet General Staff and did war planning for the USSR, concluded that the “Primacy” article used faulty methodology and erroneous assumptions, thus invalidating its conclusions. My contribution lay in my knowledge of the recently published (in 2006) studies, which predicted even a “successful” nuclear first-strike, which destroyed 100% of the opposing sides nuclear weapons, would cause the citizens of the side that “won” the nuclear war to perish from nuclear famine, just as would the rest of humanity.

Although the nuclear primacy article created quite a backlash in Russia, leading to a public speech by the Russian Foreign Minister, the story was essentially not covered in the US press. We were unable to get our rebuttal published by US media. The question remains as to whether the US nuclear primacy asserted in the article has been accepted as a fact by the US political and military establishment. Such acceptance would explain the recklessness of US policy toward Russia and China.

Thus we find ourselves in a situation in which those who are in charge of our nuclear arsenal seem not to understand that they can end human history if they choose to push the button. Most of the American public also remains completely unaware of this deadly threat. The uninformed are leading the uninformed toward the abyss of extinction.

US public schools have not taught students about nuclear weapons for more than 20 years. The last time nuclear war was discussed or debated in a US Presidential election was sometime in the last century. Thus, most people do not know that a single strategic nuclear weapon can easily ignite a massive firestorm over 100 square miles, and that the US and Russia each have many thousands of these weapons ready for immediate use.

Meanwhile, neoconservative ideology has kept the US at war during the entire 21st century. It has led to the expansion of US/NATO forces to the very borders of Russia, a huge mistake that has consequently revived the Cold War. A hallmark of neconservatism is that America is the “indispensable nation”, as evidenced by the neoconservative belief in “American exceptionalism”, which essentially asserts that Americans are superior to all other peoples, that American interests and values should reign supreme in the world.

At his West Point speech on May 28, President Obama said, “I believe in American exceptionalism with every fiber of my being.” Obama stated his bottom line is that “America must always lead on the world stage,” and “the backbone of that leadership always will be the military.” American exceptionalism based on might, not diplomacy, on hard power, not soft, is precisely the hubris and arrogance that could lead to the termination of human life. Washington’s determination to prevent the rise of Russia and China, as set out in the Brzezinski and Wolfowitz doctrines, is a recipe for nuclear war.

The need is dire for the president of the US, Russia, or China to state in a highly public forum that the existence of nuclear weapons creates the possibility of their use and that their use in war would likely mean human extinction. As nuclear war has no winners, the weapons should be banned and destroyed before they destroy all of us.

Steven Starr is the Senior Scientist for Physicians for Social Responsibility (www.psr.org) and Director of the Clinical Laboratory Science Program at the University of Missouri. Starr has published in the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists and the Strategic Arms Reduction (STAR) website of the Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology. He has a website on the environmental consequences of nuclear war (www.nucleardarkness.org ).

The statements are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Physicians for Social Responsibility or the opinions of the University of Missouri and its faculty.

Playing with THE FIRE

Proponents of Iran Sanctions Bill Are Playing With Fire

Posted: 12/20/2013 2:26 pm

Philosopher and essayist George Santayana famously said that those who cannot learn from history are condemned to repeat it.
How true this is right now for the United States, which after years of tragic and costly combat in Iraq and Afghanistan, now finds itself at a crossroads in its efforts to reach a peaceful, diplomatic solution to the crisis created by Iran’s nuclear program.
Last month, the Obama administration, backed by five other major world powers, reached a preliminary agreement with Iran to freeze its nuclear program and roll back some of its most dangerous components for six months. During this time, the parties will try to reach a permanent solution that would place the Iranian program under strict and enforceable limitations and constant international supervision. Such an outcome would make Israel, the Middle East and the entire world infinitely safer.
This is not good enough for some in the US Senate, who have been backed by AIPAC, the American Jewish Committee and several other organizations. Far from trusting President Obama and allowing the administration to pursue negotiations, they are actively trying to sabotage the process. The result may well put the United States, Israel and the international community back on a course with only two outcomes, both catastrophic. Either Iran will move forward to develop a nuclear weapon — or military action will be taken, not to destroy but only to delay, the Iranian program.
Of course, nobody wants to see Iran develop a nuclear weapon. But it’s been clear for years that the goal of sanctions is to bring the Iranians to the negotiating table. Now that we’ve succeeded in this, why would we be trying to drive them away?
If we have learned anything from our disastrous military entanglement in Iraq, it should be that it is easy to begin wars — but very difficult to end them or to predict where they might lead. The American people were sold a bill of goods on Iraq. We were promised a simple, clean operation aimed at destroying weapons of mass destruction, which it turned out did not exist. We were told it would be easy to topple the Iraqi dictator and replace him with a democracy. Instead, we virtually destroyed a nation, setting off a sectarian conflict which has claimed hundreds of thousands of lives and cost trillions of dollars and which still continues. We lost thousands of our finest men and women and condemned tens of thousands others to debilitating physical and mental trauma. And we created a political vacuum that allowed Iranian influence to expand — and Iran’s nuclear program to proceed.
Some of those who advocated most strongly for that war are behind this week’s Senate bill to “expand sanctions imposed with respect to Iran and to impose additional sanctions with respect to Iran, and for other purposes.”
The bill was introduced despite clear warnings from the administration that it risks derailing the negotiations with Iran and isolating the United States from its allies. The bill’s sponsors also ignored a letter from 10 Senate committee chairmen which stated that enacting new sanctions now simply plays into the hands of Iranian hardliners who want the negotiations to fail. Lastly, the bill’s sponsors choose to disregard the assessment of the US Intelligence Community that new sanctions undermine the chance of a negotiated end to the Iranian nuclear crisis.
Not only the bill’s timing is extremely suspect but its content is also designed to ensure the failure of the talks. The bill demands the total dismantlement of Iran’s nuclear program – a demand Israel has made but one that is entirely unrealistic — as President Obama himself has stated. The goal of the talks has to be to convert the program into a peaceful, non-military endeavor under strict international supervision. The bill seeks to tie the President’s hands in many different ways. No wonder he has stated clearly that he will veto it if it ever reaches his desk.
Once again, J Street stands almost entirely alone among major American-Jewish organizations in opposing this bill. Our aim will be to persuade enough Senators to join the 10 senior committee chairs to stop the bill moving forward.
We simply must give these negotiations a chance to succeed. They are the only way to stop Iran developing a nuclear weapon while avoiding the threat of war. Those advocating for new sanctions, it seems, have learned nothing from history and are determined to repeat it. It’s up to us to stop them.