Tag Archives: japan

Time to Stop Playing Nuclear Roulette

In Russian roulette, there’s one chance in six you’ll be killed – if you pull the trigger only once. If you pull it once a day, or even once a year, it’s not a question of IF you’ll be killed, only WHEN. After the Cuban Missile Crisis, Pres. Kennedy said he thought the odds of war were somewhere between 1-in-3 and even. If he was right, that crisis was equivalent to playing nuclear roulette – a global version of Russian roulette – with a 2- or 3-chambered revolver. Fortunately, most events have a much smaller chance of escalating to nuclear war, but even a small probability per event can add up to an unacceptable risk if repeated often enough. Continue reading

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Could Japan Drag America into War with China?

Several earlier posts on this blog have highlighted the risk that China and Japan might come to blows over a few tiny, uninhabited islands known as the Senkaku in Japan and the Diaoyu in China. One pathway to war is inadvertent escalation as a result of both nations sending jet fighters over the disputed territory. As noted in an an article in yesterday’s New York Times: Continue reading

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Are We Encouraging a Japanese Nuclear Weapons Program?

One of the last things we should do is empower those in Japan who would like to develop their own nuclear weapons. Yet, we are doing that because we have not thought through the long term consequences of our actions. Continue reading

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Another Early Warning Sign

My post of two days ago showed that, if you are watching for them, early warning signs of potential nuclear disasters often can be seen, and catastrophe averted. As a current day example, I noted the dispute between Japan and … Continue reading

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Do Nuclear Weapons Really Deter?

In my Stanford seminar, “Nuclear Weapons, Risk and Hope,” I argue that much of the risk stems from a lack of critical thinking – accepting conventional wisdom on key points of national security even when it is wrong. Much of … Continue reading

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