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Reply #39: Your reply also points up something important -- the UNPREDICTABILITY [View All]

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vickitulsa Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jul-25-06 10:14 AM
Response to Reply #9
39. Your reply also points up something important -- the UNPREDICTABILITY
of any developments in the Middle East. Which is why, ultimately, I try to stay away from "nightmare predictions" and other duties of prophets and fearmongers.

I know Will Pitt isn't a fearmonger -- so maybe he really IS a prophet? But then, according to the manual on validating prophets, if they're wrong even ONCE, they're not a genuine prophet. ;)

And has no one noticed yet that even though the near-all-out fighting and shelling has gone on for two weeks now, with beaucoup opportunities for other nations (both in the ME and elsewhere) to be drawn into combat, that has not happened?

It seems worthwhile to me to stop and think about it, think BACK a ways through history to the end of WWII. Seems to me that ever since then, every time events in the world have come to a tipping point or powder-keg-blast state, the powers involved have cooled off and backed away at least enough to avert ultimate catastrophe, permit negotiations or peace talks, and re-establish stability if not true agreement and lasting peace. This has happened repeatedly and in a variety of situations, such as when a couple of nations with "superpower" status and massive nuclear arsenals on constant hairtrigger alert squared off (Cuban missile crisis), or when war among two or three nations in recurrent "hot spots" erupted one more time and raged so fiercely the entire world grew very nervous.

I remember life in 1962, during the Cuban missile crisis -- I was 13 and in the eighth grade. Like most of my peers, I was increasingly anxious as I watched the crisis building. Even though the public didn't learn until later just how close to global thermonuclear war we came then, still the reality of the result of nuclear bombing was very clear to us and we knew that our spyplanes had photographed missiles with nuclear warheads ready to fire at us from Cuba.

Thank the fates that we had a brilliant Democrat in the White House -- one who proved he could also be very, VERY tough when it came to American security! With that shoe-banging nutcase Kruschev in power in the U.S.S.R., it's a miracle the whole thing didn't blow then, and I credit JFK with pulling off that miracle, though not without considerable help.

Because there had to be other sane minds out there also for any sensible solution to emerge and prevail, right? And isn't that also the case in any situation? We know without a doubt that there are plenty of delusional and power-greedy mental cases making some critical decisions, yes. But they don't operate in a vacuum; nor do any of them -- even the U.S. pResident -- have the ability to worsen the conflict without constraint by their own inner circles or parliament or whatever instruments are used in the many nations of the world.

The ultimate source of my skepticism about all-out global or even massive regional war erupting and drawing in nations with nuclear capability and the apparent willingness to use it is something several posters have mentioned in these threads: Self-preservation!

Not mine, but that of the individuals with their fingers on the buttons. Some claim that those at the top and their staff and families have luxurious and well-stocked bunkers where they'd be safe indefinitely. I agree such persons may well HAVE their hardened bunkers, but I cannot imagine that they would be willing to make a decision that would not only slaughter billions but also condemn themselves to bunker living conditions for the remainder of their lives....

Whenever there is serious talk of nations or even terrorists, individuals, actually using nuclear weapons, I, like so many others who are old enough or who have studied modern history with a modicum of diligence, cannot hear such threats without their producing instant images in my head. Images from still photos and videotapes made at Ground Zero, called "Trinity," where the first U.S. nuclear bomb was tested successfully. Images from Hiroshima a week or so after it was obliterated. Vivid, graphic, very human tragedy on such a massive and cruel scale as to shock and horrify absolutely anyone.

Of all those images, the one that lingers longest is a short bit of live video shot by that journalist who was the first Westerner allowed into the devastation that had been a major Japanese city, Hiroshima. He was himself in shock, he has said, and almost on auto-pilot as he filmed what he saw -- actually avoiding some of the worst scenes, if you can believe it! But at one point as he walked along the remains of a road, he saw a very small Japanese child, maybe two, at most four years of age. Its gender is not easily discernible, so I'll refer to the child as "she." She was clearly so traumatized that she could not even react to the Western photographer so near her -- a sight which no doubt would have elicited quite a response in other circumstances.

I see her now. She is sitting, either on a rock or the roadside dirt, and she is swaying slightly at times and trembling so hard she is SHAKING, not just trembling. Continuously shaking. Her eyes are fixed on nothing. Her clothing is in tatters and filthy, and her entire body is covered with blotchy layers of dust and soot. She is one of hundreds of thousands of the Living Dead.

And she could be me. Or you.

What I believe is that such images, perhaps even that very same image of one tiny child, appear also in the minds of those in power when a "flare-up" in a troubled region on our planet erupts and the potential for ultimate escalation is obvious to even a moron or madman. They too remember the images of cities not just blasted to rubble by conventional weapons but completely leveled by nuclear warheads. They, like me, can't help but recall the near- AND long-term danger of FALLOUT -- that word we seldom hear nowadays. Seldom hear it, but haven't forgotten about it.

Why do we think there have been NO subsequent uses of nuclear bombs? Many "conventional" wars have been fought since then -- desperately fierce ones and long-drawn-out ones like Vietnam -- where the devastation was massive. Yet no nuclear nation has used even ONE of its ultimate weapons in warfare, right? Not since the first ones 60 years ago have nukes been used.

Those "leaders" KNOW that fallout can blow back on THEM! They know if others respond in kind the entire earth could become a wasteland, a cemetery of the unburied, rendered unhabitable for decades or centuries.

In a region like the Middle East, the very oilfields that the world depends on could easily be impossible to put back into operation -- even if enough of the world remained intact or salvageable to make getting the oil an urgent necessity for rebuilding and continuing humanity's existence.

The ultimate kind of "blowback"!

No, I don't think this "flare-up" of violence in the Middle East, like any of those before it, will draw in other nations to the point of instigating World War Three or even a major regional war that could wreak more havoc and lasting devastation than we've seen since WWII or Korea or Vietnam ... or Bosnia or Chechnya or Iraq.

What WILL happen for certain is that yet another generation of children and adolescents will grow up with memories like mine ... memories of a very realistic impending disaster of war and carnage and fallout that burns flesh off bones, renders soil useless for crops, produces birth deformities and early deaths and suffering -- and doesn't go away for several lifetimes.

The anxiety they will feel throughout their individual lives will impair and reduce them in a thousand ways. It becomes a way of life, and they will adjust; but they will never be the same, never know a carefree day, a truly peaceful inner life.

Could it be that many of us anticipate and prophesy cataclysmic conflagrations developing from a localized "flare-up" like the one now in Israel and Lebanon because we have lived lives of anxiety due to previous dangers from events we recall all too well?

Sorry for the ramble, but I felt someone needed to say these things....

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