Comments

1

Former US Ambassador to Russia Michael McFaul last night on MSNBC: "I have hundreds of friends in Ukraine." As for what some of them are telling him: "'I can't believe now that we have to fight Vladimir Putin alone.' And they feel alone in this tragic moment in the history of their country."

Thank God we have Joe Biden as president at this horrible time. If there's anyone I trust to stand up to Putin without escalating this into a new world war, it's Joe Biden.

3

If trump was still president he would probably be sending our troops to russia to help take over Ukraine. Yet, somehow he is still rich and not behind bars or assassinated because America is so dang great. Here's hoping for a nuclear apocalypse.

4

Yeah, the southern hemisphere is looking really good right now!

5

It's important to note that the Trolls who were claiming that Biden's warning of imminent Russian invasion of Ukraine was a hoax and distraction are suspiciously quiet.

However the new talking point is that Biden is weak and that's why it happened (and to to misdirect to China's imaginary invasion of Taiwan as the "real" worry).

These taking points also contradict with the fact these same trolls say that that the US should not get involved at all. So I guess Biden is weak but should not do anything.

Also; Reminder:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Links_between_Trump_associates_and_Russian_officials

https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/2020/10/13/no-trump-has-not-been-tough-russia/

https://www.americanprogress.org/press/statement-u-s-senate-report-confirms-trump-campaign-colluded-russia-caps-neera-tanden-says/

6

No, there's not a "good chance" you'd be instantly killed by a nuclear attack on Seattle.

The provided link was to the effects of the Tsar Bomb, the largest yield device ever detonated (50 megatons). There basically aren't any weapons like that in the nuclear arsenal of Russia or the US. Most modern nuclear weapons are sub-megaton, so closer to the W-87 device:

https://outrider.org/nuclear-weapons/interactive/bomb-blast?airburst=true&bomb=2&lat=47.6038&location=Seattle%2C%20Washington%2C%20United%20States&long=-122.3301

(Also if you nuke a city, you do it with an airburst. More bang for your buck.)

The vast majority of Seattle's people would live through the initial blast, fireball, and radiation. So if you think you should prepare, absolutely do, because you'd probably live to die of thirst, hunger, zombies, or whatever.

Also worth noting that it is highly unlikely in the event of a nuclear exchange that Russia would target the center of Seattle itself. Far more likely they'd hit military facilities in the area. So an even greater chance of surviving the immediate effects.

7

The law against preparing for nuclear attack sprang from the quite reasonable mindset that preparing for nuclear war makes it more likely. I would have supported it in the face of Reagan's reckless nuclear saber-rattling ("We begin bombing in five minutes"). But I do think it's worth revisiting and maybe revising in a time when small nuclear devices have proliferated and the chances of an accident or a rogue ("terrorist") strike, involving a single stolen or cobbled-together weapon, seems much more likely than all-out conflict between nations.

8

Praise be. Looks like a swath of the aforementioned bad faith accounts have finally been deleted by The Stranger. I was wondering why there was a sudden downtick in the usual racist dog whistling. A day late and dollar short perhaps, and likely a brief reprieve as they set about re-creating the grievance puppetry — but welcomed nonetheless.

9

Way to casually mention the possibility of nuclear attack, and later implore readers to call yur electeds…What a knee jerk sensation this SLOG is. I’m not spending my last moments on earth filling out a bill comment web form. LOL

10

The pseudo-journalists at The Stranger imploring me to “Be skeptical. … Watch out for news that's not confirmed, watch out for word-of-mouth, and watch out for events, fundraisers, and aid efforts that aren't vetted by someone you trust.” The Stranger!

If there is a nuclear attack on Seattle, at least I’ll die laughing.

11

Cheers Matt re: the Sally Struthers nod.

12

@6:

My friends from Bainbridge used to half-facetiously joke about having a large bullseye painted on top of the water tower next to the high school there, since someone had calculated it as the most likely target for a Soviet MIRV, such as the R-36, which can carry up to 10 warheads in the 750 K-ton range each; more than sufficient to take out the major naval installations at Bremerton and Bangor, Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Whidbey Island NAS, Sea-Tac Airport, the downtowns of Seattle, Bellevue, and Tacoma, with a couple to spare for secondary targets or to just really hammer one or two of the primaries. Basically, one missile could potentially turn the Greater Puget Sound area into, if not a charred, smoking wasteland, at the very least a radioactive fallout zone that would make Chernobyl look like a destination resort in comparison.

So, yeah, you might survive depending on the breaks, but the real question in such a scenario is: would you WANT to?

13

It's extremely unlikely that anyplace in Washington State would be the target of a first or even second strike.

There's no major command and control center here.
Any submarines at Bangor have surely put out to sea.
Why waste a nuke on the shipyard before there are any capital ships there for repairs?
The air wing at Whidbey is likely aboard their carriers, at sea, Also the Growlers aren't strategic weapons capable of attacking Russia
JBLM does not house strategic bombers.

Besides if Russia does go nuclear they'll do it with tactical weapons in theatre.

Attn: Millennials and Gen Zers. The Baby Boomers and Gen Xers have thought these scenarios through countless times. Of course we are a bit rusty as it hasn't been a concern since 1989.

14

Ah, Sir Toby...you forgot about Jim Creek.

15

@12

You're absolutely correct. In the event of a full-scale attack on the Puget Sound region, there would be multiple hits from sub-megaton devices, likely resulting in huge amounts of fallout that would make survivors' lives hellish. But that's definitely getting into the weeds of modern nuclear tactics :)

The short answer is no, you wouldn't want to survive the initial blast. But if you did, humans tend to keep wanting to survive. So Matt's dismissal of keeping survival supplies because there's a "good chance" you'd be killed by the initial strike is just lazy. He likely spent 30 seconds googling "Seattle nuclear bomb effects" and found a splashy example of a weapon type that hasn't existed for 40 years.

16

@13:

Well, except for the fact that Putin has been upgrading and modernizing Russia's nuclear capabilities for the past several years, so they have a rather large arsenal of both tactical and strategic weapons to throw around, with plenty to spare for what you apparently believe are inconsequential targets such as repair facilities, logistical, staging, transport, and communications centers, and the like, or to just plain wipe out major municipal areas, since, as we learned from WW-II, nothing demoralizes a civilian population quite like having hundreds of thousands of pounds of highly incendiary explosives - or a couple of well-directed nukes - dropped on the center of your city.

Granted, the majority of their warheads are currently stockpiled, or so we believe, but once somebody starts throwing tactical or short-range nukes, things would most likely escalate pretty quickly from there.

https://thebulletin.org/premium/2021-03/nuclear-notebook-russian-nuclear-weapons-2021/

17

There is no scenario where Russia launching an ICBM at the USA is not part of a larger exchange. Meaning global thermonuclear war. That is the whole point of nuclear deterrent. Discussions about what Seattle would look like after such a strike miss the point.

The whole rationale behind the "Cold" in Cold War is that the nations with nuclear arsenals somehow tacitly agreed to limit conflicts to proxy wars in non-nuclear nations and avoid escalation into all-out war. After HIroshima and Nagasaki it became clear that the next World War would be orders of magnitude more deadly than the previous ones. Think "no survivors" levels of deadly. What is truly remarkable is that the global hegemons still managed to sate their addiction to war without allowing it to spiral into an extinction-level event.

18

@14

Didn’t know about Jim Creek.

That’s a first strike or earlier target. Don’t remember what kind of cruise missile technology the Russians have. Doesn’t seem very hardened, the EMP alone would probably melt the antenna.

Cold War memories.

Duck and cover everyone!

19

@15:

My late father spent part of his time in the Air Force game plotting exactly these types of scenarios, along with both military and civilian responses in the aftermath, and likely death tolls. Once the scenarios were de-classified in the early 2000's and his security clearance was downgraded he talked a lot about them. Basically, he said there wasn't a single scenario where most of the West Coast wasn't turned into a radioactive hellhole with casualty figures in the worst-cases running into the 60 - 70% range, based both on likely initial detonation targets (which, BTW the military predicted would include LOTS of civilian locations), as well as radiation disbursal, and longer-term effects such as disease, lack of adequate medical care, starvation, and the general chaos that would result from an almost complete breakdown of governmental authority, communication and transportation.

He'd say that even in the best-case "limited strike" scenarios survivors in targeted locations would be so deep in the shit that no amount of preparation would be adequate to endure the level of pain, suffering, turmoil and social degradation, and that most of our "civil defense contingencies" wouldn't come anywhere close to meeting the task of restoring order or providing even a minimal level of relief - that basically, it was all just "political theatre" to prevent widespread panic before the fact.

20

@5 & @8: Thanks for letting us know.

21

I remember when we actually ran the numbers and figured out Vancouver BC had 13 nukes targeted on it, and that you were definitely NOT going to survive.

Seattle is much more of a target than that.

Stop worrying, it won't help.

22

@21: Good Lord, you'd think one nuke per province or state would be sufficient.

23

@22
Depends on the target.
Offutt AFB and Cheyenne Mountain Colorado were going to be hit by multiple ground penetrating nukes in an attempt to disable the hardened command and control centers.

I’m not sure how true it is but there was a thought that while the US focused on precision guidance the USSR focused on launch vehicle thrust and more megatons. Our bombs didn’t need to be as big since we had better aim.

Back in the days when we both had enough nukes to turn most of both countries into a sheet of glass I’m sure there were launch options that included dozens of warheads at each major city.

With fewer warheads these days there probably isn’t as much indiscriminate use planned. Also if you have plans to occupy the opponent you might want to be more surgical in your targeting.

Dang never thought we’d be seriously talking about this ever again. Thanks Vlad.

24

Sir Toby dear, I was born and raised in Council Bluffs, Iowa, just across the river from Omaha/Offutt AFB. It was somewhat comforting to know that we'd be suddenly gone in the scenario of a nuclear war.

I hate the idea of the stupid "cold war" coming back, especially when it's against an inbred worthless country like Russia. Let's hope it doesn't come that.

Maybe the Russian military could take a lesson from the demise of the Ceausescu family.

27

Why can't Vladimir Putin and its willing sock puppet, Donald Jackass Trump just drop dead, already? If they could just both face a Ukrainian firing squad and we'd finally be done with both of them?? If there really is a WWIII--IT'S GAME OVER.
Dictators and their enablers, all for wont of the last US dollar / Russian ruble= Everything
Earth, 8+ billion innocent people, all life forms, and natural resources = 0.


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