The Doomsday Clock shows how close the end of mankind is – but it should also give courage that the end can be averted.
With blatant nuclear threats by Russian President Vladimir Putin, the hands of the so-called “Doomsday Clock” have been moved from 90 seconds to midnight. In doing so, the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists researchers on Tuesday changed the extended time until Earth’s demise from the previous 100 seconds for the first time in three years.
“Nuclear risks have increased significantly over the past year, largely because of Russia’s unprovoked invasion of Ukraine,” said Professor Steve Fetter of the University of Maryland in the U.S. capital, Washington. Putin has repeatedly threatened to use nuclear weapons to prevent the U.S. and its NATO allies from intervening in the Ukraine war, he said. “This is not a bluff,” Fetter said.
The symbolic state of the clock is reported once a year. In 2018 and 2019, the clock indicated two minutes to twelve. In 2020, the clock symbolically advanced to 100 seconds to midnight for the first time. The danger that humanity would extinguish itself through nuclear war or climate change is, therefore, greater than ever since the invention of the clock in 1947.
Foreign Minister Alexander Schallenberg (ÖVP) had already referred to the danger of nuclear escalation on Sunday on the occasion of the second anniversary of the entry into force of the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons: “Threats with nuclear weapons are extremely dangerous,” Schallenberg said, according to the statement. “Not only are they completely unacceptable morally, they also lower the inhibition threshold for others and clearly violate international law. There is no alternative to nuclear disarmament, because as long as these terrible weapons exist, they are a threat to us all. We must destroy them before they destroy us.”
- source: k.at/picture: www.zsz.ch
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