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Wed Apr 30, 2014, 01:41 AM

Risk of nuclear accidents is rising, says report on near-misses

Source: Guardian

A report recounting a litany of near-misses in which nuclear weapons came close to being launched by mistake concludes that the risk of potentially catastrophic accidents is higher than previously thought and appears to be rising.

Too Close for Comfort: Cases of Near Nuclear Use and Options for Policy, published by Chatham House, says that "individual decision-making, often in disobedience of protocol and political guidance, has on several occasions saved the day", preventing the launch of nuclear warheads.

The report lists 13 instances since 1962 when nuclear weapons were nearly used. In several cases the large-scale launch of nuclear weapons was nearly triggered by technical malfunctions or breakdowns in communication causing false alarms, in both the US and Russia. Disaster was averted only by cool-headed individuals gambling that the alert was caused by a glitch and not an actual attack.

The Chatham House authors say the risks appear to be rising. Nuclear weapons are spreading most recently to North Korea and disarmament is stalling. Russia and the US still have an estimated 1,800 warheads on high alert, ready to launch between five and 15 minutes after receiving the launch order a fact that becomes all the more significant with rising tensions over Ukraine.

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Read more: http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/apr/29/nuclear-accident-near-misses-report

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Reply Risk of nuclear accidents is rising, says report on near-misses (Original post)
bananas Apr 2014 OP
newthinking Apr 2014 #1

Response to bananas (Original post)

Wed Apr 30, 2014, 01:55 AM

1. The youngest generation probably has not realized how close we got to blowing the world to

smithareens during the cold war. Minutes.

I would venture even many who lived it do not realize how close we came and on how many occasions. This is a must read as we venture back in that direction.

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