Last year I started looking into what was needed to prepare for a nuclear war. In part, this was because my analysis of history indicated that large “revolutions” in information, usually led to periods of appalling behaviour such as the Witch trials and the various atrocities of Hitler, Stalin Mao in the early 20th century.
The purpose of this article, is to explain, what I believe to be a realistic scenario, and to start to think about what we as individuals can do to prepare. Key to that preparation, is having a concept of what “survival” looks like. Because unless we both believe a nuclear war is possible and also believe surviving is feasible, there doesn’t appear to be much point preparing.
Why believe me? Because as a physicist I understand the impacts of nuclear, and as someone researching survival, I have looked into survival techniques. And last year I started, not by looking at a survival book, or worse a prepping site, but by looking at what had been successful strategies during other emergencies. Not just 20th century, but going way back into history. Does that mean I will be right? Probably not, but I would hope to be less wrong than the vast bulk of other people writing on the subject.
As history is our best predictor of the future, and as nuclear war seems to be on the table right now, it looks very likely, given the current behaviour of politicians, that we will end in nuclear war. It’s a terrible thing to say, and I could be wrong, but I’ve not yet seen anything to suggest the necessary sanity to prevent such an atrocity is returning. (We still have the utter madness of “net zero”, the most costly public policy ever … which is unlikely to do anything for the climate. We saw the insanity of locking up the country and closing down the NHS, for a bug that was not a lot worse than flus we see every ten years. And now Ukraine. Common sense seems to have departed politics … and that seems to be heading us towards nuclear war)
So, unless things improve, we should expect a nuclear war as more likely than not. Or perhaps the “atrocity” is something else entirely … the only way to tell what the actual threat may be, is a time machine, something which I do not have.
But, it does seem that we ought to start preparing. I’m still struggling with that. The concept that we ought to prepare for something so terrible … surely it can’t happen … but people thought the same about Hitler, and they no doubt also thought “it can’t happen”, they thought the same about Mao, about the witch trials. They can and do happen. It is a matter of fact they can and do happen, and if, as seems to be the case, this is the time that another one is likely to happen, then the rational thing to do is to prepare.