Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Of The Nine Nuclear Powers In The World, This Is A Look At Who Has Their Finger On The Nuclear Buttom

Popular Mechanics: What World Leaders Have Their Fingers on the Button? ​

There are nine nuclear powers in the world, and not all of them handle nuke-launching orders the same way.

Only nine countries are armed with nuclear weapons. Fundamentally different from other weapons, nukes have the ability to kill millions within hours and destroy human civilization. While the United States delegates the ability to use them to one person—the President—the majority of other countries do not, often involving multiple persons who must agree on the need to use them.

The United States has 4,018 nuclear weapons ready to use at a moment's notice. The authority to use them lies with the President of the United States and no one else. This system was implemented during the Cold War to speed their use in the case of war, when the U.S. might have as little as 25 minutes to react before its own nuclear weapons were destroyed by an incoming attack.

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WNU Editor: The Union of Concerned Scientists paper is here, and it is a fascinating read. The country that scares me the most is Pakistan. It appears that it is the military (and I am willing to bet this also includes the intelligence services) who have the final authority on using Pakistan's nuclear weapons.

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