The Increasing Likelihood Of Nuclear War Should Straighten Out All Our Priorities

Authored by Caitlin Johnstone via,

A Russian pilot has been killed by US-armed terrorists in Syria. The Ron Paul Institute‘s Daniel McAdams writes the following about this new development:

“The scenario where a US-backed, US-supplied jihadist group in Syria uses US weapons to shoot down a Russian plane and then murders the pilot on the ground should be seen as a near-nightmare escalation, drawing the US and Russia terrifyingly closer to direct conflict.”

McAdams is not fearmongering; he is stating a plainly obvious fact.

The Trump administration has just announced that it is restructuring its nuclear weapons policy to take a more aggressive stance toward Russia than that which was held by the previous administration. This is coming after this administration’s decision to arm Ukraine against Russia, a move Obama refused to take for fear of escalating tensions with Moscow, as well as its decision to continue to occupy Syria in order to effect regime change, along with numerous other escalations. The Council on Foreign Relations, which is without exaggeration as close to the voice of the US establishment as you can possibly get, is now openly admitting that the “United States is currently in a second Cold War with Russia.”

In a recent interview with The Real News, leading US-Russian relations expert Stephen Cohen repeated his ongoing warning that “this new Cold War is much more dangerous, much more likely to end in Hot War, than was the 40-year of Cold War, which we barely survived.” In a previous interview with the same outlet, Cohen elaborated more extensively:

“We are in new cold war that is much more dangerous than the last cold war for various reasons. One is that the new cold war today, as we talk, includes three fronts. U.S.-Russian fronts, they’re fought with hot war. That’s Syria. That’s the reckless NATO military build-up on Russia’s western boarders, which has resulted in a situation today that ordinarily artillery, not missiles, ordinary artillery, can hit Russia’s second city of Saint Petersburg. Just think about that and the instability. And the third front is Ukraine.”

Cohen explains how the political pressures placed on Trump by the ongoing fact-free allegation that he is a Kremlin puppet makes it far more difficult for him to negotiate on these multiple fronts agilely, thus making it much more likely that Trump will choose to advance when he should retreat, hold his ground when he should back down, and generally be locked into patterns of aggression and forward movement rather than the back-and-forth finesse required for safe cold war negotiations with a nuclear superpower

We came within a hair’s breadth of nuclear annihilation on more than one occasion during the last cold war, and the further things escalate in this new one the more likely we are to tempt fate again. The only reason we survived the extremely tense stand-offs in the last cold war ultimately boiled down to pure dumb luck in some cases, and there’s no legitimate reason to believe we’ll get lucky again.

To be clear, I am not saying that the US or Russia actually want nuclear war. Two men with guns pointed at one another in a conventional standoff generally don’t want either weapon to discharge, either. What I am saying is that we learned in situations snatched from the brink of disaster by men like Stanislov Petrov and Vasili Arkhipov that there are too many small, unpredictable moving parts involved in a nuclear standoff for cold war escalations to unfold safely and predictably, and the more tense things get the more likely it becomes that a nuclear warhead gets discharged in the chaos and confusion. Once a single warhead goes off, Mutually Assured Destruction comes into play. Add into that the hot war dynamics and political pressures described by Stephen Cohen and we’re looking at some very uncomfortable odds as a species.

In my view most of the political disagreements I have with people ultimately boil down to this. I see us as facing an immediate existential crisis as a species that needs to be dealt with right now, and people say I should be more worried about this or that conservative figure saying rude things on Twitter. We are facing the very real possibility of near-term human extinction; I don’t know how to care about the petty sectarian squabbles in America’s various political factions. It really is time for us to all get over ourselves and grow up.

This unprecedented crisis should be drawing us together, yet we’re more politically divided than ever. It is evolve or die time, and we’re all still arguing over airplane peanuts while the plane is in a full nose dive.

Thought experiment:

Imagine if you wake up one morning and turn on the TV to an emergency broadcast alert that a nuclear weapon has been discharged by either the US or Russia in the chaos and confusion of this convoluted new cold war, and saying that you need to seek shelter immediately.

What thoughts will go through your head as the realization dawns that this is really happening? Do you imagine that you will be spending much time thinking about how Trump said “shit hole countries”? Will you spend your last moments on earth mentally shaking your fist at Antifa and “libtards”? Or will you instead perhaps wish that you and your brothers and sisters around the world had more aggressively opposed these new cold war games your leaders have been playing?

It is entirely possible that you will one day in the near future find yourself in this very situation and answering the questions I just asked you for yourself.

Let’s skip that part of our story together, please. The reason they need to work so hard to manufacture consent for these escalations is because they require that consent. If we all loudly raise our voices and say “No. Enough. This ends now,” they will necessarily have to obey. The Russiagate psyop exists because the western power establishment is trying to cripple the Russia-China tandem in order to ensure US hegemony, and if they tried to thrust us all into a new cold war without our permission they’d shatter the illusion of freedom and democracy they depend on to rule you. If we all rise as one voice and withdraw that permission, they will be forced to obey.

Can we do this, please? Can we make ensuring our survival into the future a priority right now and put bickering over identity politics and the president’s tweets on the back burner until then? We’ll have a whole future ahead of us to sort that stuff out if we survive the urgent crisis we are facing right now.


lolmao500 Mon, 02/05/2018 - 23:54 Permalink

Please. Trump is a russian puppet. This ``escalation`` is nothing. It should have happened way earlier. I bet the manpad was from turkey, qatar or saudi arabia. Putin is just going nuts over one pilot just shows how he's not getting laid enough.

Trump new nuclear doctrine is just like that so he can use small nukes because he thinks they are cool. Also russia nuclear doctrine says they can use tactical nukes if they start losing on the battlefield so hes just making it on par.

This whole article is a big nothing

. . . _ _ _ . . . pier Tue, 02/06/2018 - 00:06 Permalink

The Trump administration has just announced that it is restructuring its nuclear weapons policy to take a more aggressive stance toward Russia than that which was held by the previous administration.

This is bullshit.
That's twice in a row, ZH.
I posted the following yesterday in response to an article that makes the same false claim, just to portray Trump in a bad light.
Is ZH going anti-Trump? Maybe it isn't so much anti-Trump as pro-war. Could it be anti-Russia? Either way, when you have to lie to sell your position, it isn't a good sign.
First with the two articles claiming Russian-backed terrorists invaded Ukraine, now with two articles claiming Trump's nuclear stance is more dangerous than the previous administrations'. All four contained erroneous claims.
Maybe it has to do with the new management here at the Hedge.

From yesterday:

...raising concerns that President Donald Trump will argue for the use of nuclear force as a deterrent—a significant departure from previous administrations which saw nuclear weapons as an option only for retaliation.

The above is either a disingenuous statement, or an erroneous one.
The author seems not to understand the language.
Or maybe they just want to make Trump look bad by lying... again.

The 2010 Nuclear Posture Review established the Administration’s goal to set conditions that would allow the United States to safely adopt a policy of making deterrence of nuclear attack the sole purpose of U.S. nuclear weapons. Although we cannot  adopt such a policy today, the new guidance re-iterates the intention to work towards that goal over time.

Since “nuclear deterrence” is not now and has never been the Obama administration’s nuclear weapons  policy from the get-go, then by default this means that offensive first-strike strategic nuclear war fighting is now and has always been the Obama administration’s nuclear weapons policy.

Obama Backs First-Strike Nuclear War as U.S. Policy

Russia does not have a first-strike policy, their stance is defensive only, but they do advocate use of tactical nukes.
The USA had to respond in kind. Obama started the policy of deterrance but did not adopt it, Trump is simply continuing the work which had been planned since 2010. Trump's policy is actually less insane than Obama's was.
I am not for nukes, but the grand chessboard requires either a stalemate or a loss. There is no winning.
Until these weapons can be done away with, there must be parity in arsenal size and type.

Way to fact-check your contributors, ZH! /s

In reply to by pier

Polynik3s BabaLooey Tue, 02/06/2018 - 09:45 Permalink

Hillary Clinton sold nuclear material to Russian government. Donald Trump was laundering Jewish-Russian Mafia money to save his troubled real estate. No one is free of Stain. Trump is not a Russian puppet, he is a Jewish-Russian Mafia member. Their Mafia is sometimes at war with Putin. Stalin and Putin have slowly taken their control out of Jewish Bolshevik hands, a long process. How long will the USA take to rid itself of Zionists, Neocons, Rothschilds fiat central banks, NWO Judas State government, and Jewish Cultural Marxism media and schools?

Trump was a hope, but he is definitely a Zionist. If you are a Christian and still living in the Ziomatrix, then understand that Zionism is headed by Lucifarians. Today's Jews are not Hebrew, not Semite, and are not God's Chosen. They are Eurasians that hijacked Judaism to control Christiandom. They practice the Babylonian Black Majik of the Pharisees, as Jesus called them the Sons Of Satan.

In reply to by BabaLooey

Element lolmao500 Tue, 02/06/2018 - 02:09 Permalink



Oh , blah blah blah, nuclear war, blah blah blah.


It's all irrelevant, as no one is going to use them.


Pootie wants to pretend he'll use tactical yields because he can't deter conventional operations other way, except diplomacy, he knows they're lost if nuke deterrence lacks credibility, so wishes to try and fool everyone, still.


And Trump wants an excuse to renovate the old tactical yield arsenal, so he and experts contrived from Pooties words, implying big ones won't be used, so maybe small ones will seem more credible?



High or low yield, they will not be used, by either side.


Russia, China, US, Brits, Frogs, Israel, DPRK, Paki's, India, will have to get used to the loss of credibility of all their nukes, due the non-usability, and the implication that only conventional capabilities will actually matter, if/when it comes to fighting.


That inescapable tactical conventional quandary is behind all of this pretense, of trying to reestablish deterrence, via the unconvincing nuclear attack boggie-man and the irradiated doomsday BS stories.


You can make them smaller, but it's still wasted money, as they still won't be used by any side.


The only thing nukes deter is nuclear weapons use.


But having credible nukes doesn't prevent conventional weapon use.


The notion of 'nuclear escalation' is a mere diplomatic tool, not a realistic military option when facing a similarly armed military power.

That won't change. Nukes are militarily irrelevant.


Face it, no one's going to use them, and it ain't so bad.


It's about time the nuclear war 'threat' bullshit was dispensed with, as it will never seem, nor be credible again.


In reply to by lolmao500

beijing expat Mon, 02/05/2018 - 23:57 Permalink

People are far more concerned with the global warming scam than they are with the prospect of nuclear war.  It hasn't been on their radar since the Left collapsed in the early 90s and was replaced with the Post Modern left that focuses only on identity politics. 


Where re is the anti war movement now?  It's on the center right. But the center right can gain no traction as they are painted with the same brush as the extreme right by the establishment media. 


The left is the establishment now and they are pro war (humanitarian bombing) and pro police state, though they hate the regular police who try to keep a lid on criminal anarchy (social justice)


these se are truly bizarre times. 

conraddobler Tue, 02/06/2018 - 00:02 Permalink

When you take a high level objective look at earth and human nature you begin to marvel that we didn't exterminate ourselves at the first chance we got.

It's a true miracle that we've lasted this long after having the ability to completely off ourselves.

That's the real problem facing earth, the ONLY problem, all others we could easily deal with if we just dropped pretenses and agendas and focused on the facts as they are.

It's our inability to allow for facts in the face of agendas that will be our total undoing.

like any dysfunctional family is transparent to outsiders but stunningly opaque to those in the family, so too is our world completely careening towards disaster arguing about nothing all the way until the boom hits.

NumbersUsa Tue, 02/06/2018 - 00:02 Permalink

Meanwhile over in so-called israel they built the wall & now:

"TEL AVIV (Reuters) - Israel has started handing out notices to 20,000 male African migrants giving them two months to leave the country or risk being thrown in jail.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's government is offering the migrants, most of whom are from Sudan and Eritrea, $3,500 and a plane ticket to what it says is a safe destination in another country in sub-Saharan Africa."

The dual citizen israeli jew supremacists in the U.S. scream & hiss if we want to build a wall & remove illegal aliens, but in so-called israel the wall has already been built and the kick-out is in full swing.

Flush out all the dual citizen israelis out of all our federal, state & local governments- NOW !

Prosecute & shut down all foreign agent jew supremacist organizations (Aipac, Adl, Aclu, Splc, Jwc, Zoa, Cfr, Jdl,) in America- NOW !  

MusicIsYou Tue, 02/06/2018 - 00:06 Permalink

I'm not stupid.  The U. S gained world dominance by nuking Japan,  U. S dominance can only be ended by nuclear strikes on the U. S.  I'm all for it,nuke it. 


MusicIsYou Tue, 02/06/2018 - 00:09 Permalink

The U. S gained world dominance by nuclear strikes on Japan a dominance that can only be ended by nuclear strikes on the U. S.  Its  not rocket science. If you can't push the button then give up your nukes you idiots. 

Alexander De Large Tue, 02/06/2018 - 00:23 Permalink

Articles like these make the assholes of our founding fathers bleed in shame in their graves.

Son of Jor-El Donuld Trump needs to nuke ZeroHedge's Christopher Street writing headquarters, to vaporize America-hating gayness.

Ms No Tue, 02/06/2018 - 00:26 Permalink

Actually biological weaponry should have straightened everybody out but despite nearly a hundred years of them working on it in a "defense" capacity it's never even mentioned.  They have been taking Russian DNA samples for these purposes.  They don't need yours, they already have them.


MusicIsYou Tue, 02/06/2018 - 00:33 Permalink

I guess the rest of the world is too stupid to realize the only way to independence  from a country that used nuclear weapons is to use nuclear weapons. Otherwise you should just give up your nukes and suck American cocks. 

Mekongerbigdonger Tue, 02/06/2018 - 00:40 Permalink

Nukes are fake. Disney was behind all of the "films". The whole nuke bomb is a propaganda. This was mainly for the 40s-60s before it was changed to the big nuke threat from other countries. Anyone who believes nukes are real probably also believes the world is a ball. 

conraddobler Tue, 02/06/2018 - 00:41 Permalink

I don't think the American haters are going to be very happy when the shit we spent the untold missing trillions of dollars shows up.

God I hope it works better than the shit we allow to be seen, you would think so but then again who knows.

At the end of the day it's a fatal mistake to underestimate your opponent.

Given AI and a host of other goodies that I am sure are lurking around don't be surprised if we aren't rope a doping the world into an ass fucking.

Don't say you weren't warned.  

Nothing would surprise me but this much I know, inciting people towards hatred is a trick as old as time, we have become masters at it and there is no way all that money went to hookers and blow there simply aren't that many hookers and there isn't that much blow.

Nope I'd be they have some shit they don't talk about at all and I'm sure other countries do as well we've just had more time and money to monkey with it.

ThunderStruck Tue, 02/06/2018 - 00:42 Permalink

I say fuck it, let a full scale nuclear exchange take place and end this miserable human existence. Let some other strain of bacteria evolve into the next humanoid race that may well be better custodians of planet Earth.

MusicIsYou Tue, 02/06/2018 - 00:43 Permalink

Look at all those countries that have nukes but they don't have it in them to use.  Just open your mouth cause youre  going to suck my American cock forever. 

East Indian Tue, 02/06/2018 - 03:01 Permalink

A Russian pilot has been killed by US-armed terrorists in Syria


Not by "US-armed terrorists", but by US citizens / soldiers. "Got him, got him, got him..." 

Putin will demand blood money. It is still not clear how much money Turkey paid Russia to compensate for the Russian plane and pilot downed and killed in 2015.

NuYawkFrankie Tue, 02/06/2018 - 04:05 Permalink

The War-Mongering Demonically-Possessed Cabal driving America and The World to castastophe is THE Enemy.

Its depravity can NO LONGER be tolerated: It is TIME for The NeoCONs to GO!!!

Akdov Telmig Tue, 02/06/2018 - 05:04 Permalink

*US Envoy in Geneva says North Korea has accelerated pursuit and now may only be months away from the capability to strike the US with nuclear armed ballistic missiles.


Just what the stock market needs! 

Joiningupthedots Tue, 02/06/2018 - 07:17 Permalink

"The scenario where a US-backed, US-supplied jihadist group in Syria uses US weapons to shoot down a Russian plane and then murders the pilot on the ground should be seen as a near-nightmare escalation, drawing the US and Russia terrifyingly closer to direct conflict."

1. Provenance of the missile has yet to be established

2. The pilot detonated a grenade on himself rather than be captured, tortured etc not murdered.

3. Russia and America are no closer to battlefield confrontation in Syria than yesterday.


The first projectile to cross the Russian border will result in the immediate destruction of everything of any military consequence in Western Europe within minutes. This will include all bases, personnel and equipment and transport infrastructure belonging to everyone including America.

The missiles are there, the numbers required are there and the political will by Russia to use them is there.

Thereafter its up to the septuagenarians who run America/NATO whether they wish to die peacefully or take America with them because in this war America will be totally and utterly destroyed. Destruction on the levels of Hiroshima and Nagasaki x 100 will be the order of the day across the entire continental United States.

Another war/doom porn article for the less informed.