Tuesday, January 10, 2012

‘Doomsday Clock’ moved one minute closer to ‘midnight’ - Chicago Sun-Times

The idea of this is scary in the worst way. It's even scarier that there are people who ponder this.
“It is five minutes to midnight,” the scientists said Tuesday. “Two years ago, it appeared that world leaders might address the truly global threats that we face. In many cases, that trend has not continued or been reversed.”

“There are still 20,000 nuclear weapons in the world — enough to kill all of humanity many times over,” Robert Socolow of Princeton University said at a news conference in Washington D.C..

The Bulletin of Atomic Scientists was founded in 1945 by University of Chicago scientists who had helped develop the first atomic weapons in the Manhattan Project. The scientists created the Doomsday Clock in 1947 using the imagery of apocalypse (midnight) and the contemporary idiom of nuclear explosion (countdown to zero), to convey threats to humanity and the Earth.

The bulletin has grown into an organization focused more generally on manmade threats to human civilization.

The Doomsday Clock had most recently been moved back from five to six minutes to midnight in 2010, in a response to the worldwide reduction of nuclear weapons and attempts to limit climate change.
According to this article back in 1953 we were only 2 minutes to midnight because the US had successfully tested a hydrogen bomb but in 1991 after the fall of the Soviet Union it was as far away at 17 minutes to midnight. You can check this history of this at this Wiki page. Scary stuff!

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