Letter: How can Asheville prepare for nuclear war?

Graphic by Lori Deaton

I agree with John Penley’s letter, “Asheville Should be Prepared for War,” in the Oct. 4 edition [Xpress]. We are in a very dangerous situation vis-a-vis North Korea (and possibly Iran), and Trump seems to want to make it even more so.

The question that arises for me is: How could we, as a local community “prepare for war”? What actions can city government take that would serve to protect the citizens? The U.S and North Korea are saber-rattling with nuclear weapons. A nuclear war is virtually impossible to imagine, as the consequences would be so devastating, possibly leading to the end of human civilization.

In the ’50s and early ’60s, during the height of the nuclear arms race, some people built fallout shelters in their backyards, and some buildings in virtually every city had the yellow and black radiation symbol that indicated that it had a shelter in the basement. As a child in elementary school, I participated in “duck and cover” drills (like hiding under my desk would protect me from a nuclear blast!).

Perhaps this is a conversation our city should have, as the unthinkable may actually occur. Just as we should start conversing about the possibility of many climate refugees moving to the mountains, just as we talk about our resilience to mitigate climate change locally, perhaps we should include nuclear war in the mix. Noam Chomsky has stated that climate change and nuclear war are the two existential threats to human civilization that we must face and address. Are we up to the challenge?

— Anne Craig


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9 thoughts on “Letter: How can Asheville prepare for nuclear war?

  1. Jason

    Sadly the reality is that the world (collectively) will NOT due without nuclear weapons.
    I’m not a Trump supporter; I didn’t vote for him and I won’t be sad to see him go. I do (however) support his most aggressive stance and posturing with regards to NORTH Korea (minus the childish TWEETS), he does this to simply pander to his ignorant constituency. NK has been a serious issue since Clinton and has been unacceptably ignored since. NK has made it clear it has every intention of using nuclear weapons against us and our allies; and the regime pursues these weapons in favor of attending to the needs of its people. After WW2 we signed treaties where the US pledged to protect Japan; and in return they’d minimize the size of their military….. NK has since launched missile OVER Japan.
    If Rogue nations are properly dealt with in regards to pursuing nuclear weapons; Asheville won’t have to prepare for a Nuclear War.

    • Big Al

      Clinton et al. did not ignore NK, they simply dealt with them in a subdued, mature way, not the blustery chest-bumping silliness of Twitter Trump, an approach which will make war with NK, and perhaps China, more likely. You may not like Trump, but your support of his so-called policy on this issue is just as misguided as that of his simplistic, nationalist base.

      As for Japan, recent events have shown that Shinzo Abe, Japan’s own version of Twitter Trump, is actively moving to change their constitution to allow for more aggressive military options. That cat is already climbing out of the bag and only the generally pacifist nature of the Japanese electorate will stop it.

      • Jason

        “Clinton et al. did not ignore NK, they simply dealt with them in a subdued, mature way”!!?
        Well a lot of good that did them !!!!!
        Now the North Koreans have nukes; and the technology to Launch them directly at us!!!! Amen to “subdued” and “mature “

  2. gloco

    Thank you Anne for writing this letter in agreement with mine. I am glad that you have done this since it makes me feel better to see that I am not the only area resident who is thinking about and concerned about the lack of community conversation and planning for the possibility of this happening, especially since Trump will be in South Korea and China next week and also because there has recently been large troop, aircraft carrier, aircraft and other military preparations being made by the US military in the last few weeks. John Penley

  3. Robert Thompson

    The saddest part of this is that if we (humans) were truly civilized, this would not be an issue. We seem to overvalue our existence.

  4. SpareChange

    I’d first like to see city government demonstrate that it can effectively take on some issues it might reasonably have an impact upon. Continuing to fix the sidewalks downtown might be a good start. Then when there’s nuclear and climatic apocalypse, at least we’ll be able to run for our lives without the added worry of tripping.

    • Lulz

      City is too busy building infrastructure for their rich crony developer friends. They even got the TDA to pay for some of it in the RAD.

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