Website owner:  James Miller

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A New Era For Mankind

   How about the following scenario?  It is late fall, year 2008.  
   Islamic terrorists have just recently detonated, in rapid 
   succession, atomic bombs in four cities:  New York, Washington, 
   London and Paris.  And they are threatening to do the same in 
   other cities.  The struck cities are ghastly war zones of 
   blood and body parts and the stench of death.  Millions are 
   dead.  Tens of millions more are sick and dying.  Europe and 
   the United States are in total disarray.  People are streaming 
   out of the cities in terror, camping in the countryside.  
   Winter is coming on and millions are starving.  There is no 
   water, no food in the supermarkets, no gasoline in the service 
   stations, no power from the power stations, no heat in the 
   homes.  The basic infrastructures are all dead.  There is no 
   help from government.  The governmental resources for dealing 
   with disasters were totally overwhelmed.  Government help was a 
   joke.  Everyone is on his own, pawing and scratching to survive.  
   All commerce and economic activity is at a standstill.  Western 
   civilization is a heap of rubble. 

   It is not that the western governments didn't have their 
   warnings.  They had their warnings.  There was 9/11.  There 
   were the subway bombings of Madrid and London.  Yet only a week 
   before this great catastrophe Washington was being condemned by 
   European governments for violating the rules of the Geneva 
   Convention in its treatment of terrorist prisoners, condemned 
   for using prohibited tactics in attempting to extract 
   information -- and Washington was apologizing profusely.  In 
   America the ACLU (American Civil Liberties Union) and liberal 
   politicians have long been engaged in a high-profile battle to 
   protect civil rights and in angry denunciations of governmental 
   abuse of western rights.  The western news media have been more 
   focused on rights abuses than on the threats of terrorism.  
   American military interrogators have recently been sent to 
   prison for violating the civil rights of Islamic prisoners.  
   Western governments have been just as preoccupied with 
   preserving western liberty and civil rights as they have in 
   fighting terrorism.  With great fanfare they have fought a war 
   on terrorism, but with equally great fanfare they have 
   announced that there are certain basic human rights that are 
   sacrosanct and cannot be violated.   

   The terrorists have demanded billions from the western 
   governments and have been paid.  They now have issued a new 
   demand:  the entire western world must accept a fundamentalist 
   Islamic government and the entire Christian world must convert 
   to Islam.  No one knows who the terrorists are.  Some think it 
   is an Islamic terrorist group acting on its own.  Others think 
   it is directly controlled by some country or consortium of 

   It is now possible to build atomic devices small enough to fit 
   inside a suitcase.  It may even be possible to make them small 
   enough to fit inside a lunch box.  What does this mean?  It 
   means it is now possible for a single malicious person (who has 
   somehow managed to acquire some of these devices) to kill 
   millions.  It would be possible for one person to hold a 
   government hostage.  This is a totally new situation for 
   mankind.  Never before in the history of man has anything like 
   this been possible.  The number of persons that a single man 
   could kill has slowly increased with the advance of technology.  
   It used to be in the hundreds.  Now, suddenly, it is in the 
   millions.  What does it all mean?  It means we suddenly live in 
   a totally new landscape, a new landscape that is going to force 
   new assumptions, new outlooks, new ground rules; it is a 
   totally new ball game.  It is a position to which modern 
   science and technology has brought us.  We can thank technology 
   for it.  With all the good things that modern science has 
   brought us, it has also brought this.

   Take a minute to reflect over what this new situation means.  
   Would it be fair to say that if the genie ever gets out of the 
   bottle, if these nuclear devices ever get into the hands of 
   terrorists, that western civilization as we know it is dead?  
   It might continue in some form, but a form totally different, 
   totally alien, to what it is now. 

   We are currently pursuing Osama bin Laden and his organization 
   of terrorists over in Afghanistan.  Bin Laden has stated that 
   he possesses nuclear weapons.  Our government has said that 
   they don't believe that he has them (our government, not 
   wanting to alarm the population, would naturally like to say 
   that, even if they did think he had them).

   The prospect that the chemical, biological and nuclear devices 
   that modern science has created could ever get into the hands 
   of terrorists is truly scary.  In these weapons modern man has 
   created monsters which, if they ever get out of their cage, 
   will surely destroy him.  He will have been destroyed by the 
   work of his own hands.

   These are unstable times, dangerous times, and I don't see them 
   getting any better.  I am a pessimist.  I have to wonder what 
   kinds of measures and systems western governments will feel 
   they are forced into implementing in order to protect their 
   populations.  And I do fear that the cures that they are 
   finally forced to resort to may, in the end, prove even worse 
   for mankind than the diseases. 

   Dec 2001

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