Lately, I watch the news several times daily with trepidation, wondering if the fools in Pakistan and India have pushed the button, and launched a nuclear assault upon one another. It’s entirely selfish, but I am comforted that when the next nuclear action is taken on the globe, I am not likely to be near its epicenter. With China and Russia trying to broker peace in the region, the liklihood of this escalating into an ideological war between the nuclear superpowers is remote. That doesn’t diminish the impact if these yahoos arm wrestling over Kashmir decide to play the long-lasting version of hot potato.
It’s odd to me to think that there’s a whole generation out there that’s never lived under the shadow of a nuclear wasteland being descending on them from the other side of the planet. I remember when Ronald Reagan was elected, and believing that I would never live to see my high school graduation. I was convinced that his whole purpose in the cosmos was to annihilate the Soviet Union, which, of course, would mean our own annihilation. Movies like The Day After chilled me, and I remember watching intently, wondering if that was my fate. Books like Alas, Babylon and On the Beach brought it even closer, and made me wonder further about my future self, and what kind of hell I would be living through.
So how close to midnight is your nuclear clock?