I don’t anticipate that Jerusalem will ever be the target of a nuclear attack — it is a holy city for the three major Western religions.  However, the hazards of nuclear explosions in this era of hatreds is somewhat terrifying — whether these be the consequences of bombs or attacks on nuclear plants.

I am personally conscious of the after effects of the Chernobyl disaster because some of my students who had immigrated from the Ukraine were still facing the consequences of their exposures to the fallout — particularly thyroid cancer.  I also happened to catch a Symphony Space reading of a grim short story yesterday that detailed the sad dying of a young fireman with his wife in attendance who had responded to the explosion of the plant.  G-d forbid that the world ever see the spread of nuclear fallout again!

I don’t think we Americans take seriously enough the need to make peace rather than threaten war upon other nations which encourages them, as we have seen in the instance of North Korea, to proceed with the development of a nuclear weapon — when a superpower publicly designates small nations “evil” what else can one expect?

Shortly before 9/11 I became aware that our own nearby nuclear plant at Indian Point was minimally protected, if at all, and did all that I could to quietly publicize this fact.  There was some fuss for a time and then not too much later we were informed by the security force employed by the Texas outfit, Entergy, that they did not feel adequately prepared to deal with a terrorist attack!

One has the sense that the Bush administration has managed to get all of our priorities messed up since he has been in office.  We attack one of the few disabled nations in the Middle East without WMD, while stirring up hatreds among those disposed to commit suicide to spread disaster.  Hopefully sanity will return to our national leadership before it is too late.  We have a good bit to apologize for to the world — ranging from Hiroshima to our most recent imperialistic military ventures — killing people is wrong and we have been doing far too much of that rather than keeping the peace!

No, I don’t think the Iranians are a suicidal nation and most likely they can be persuaded to lay off the nuclear bomb route.  They are themselves too vulnerable to a nuclear counter attack — if not from Israel from other powers positioned to annihilate a nuclear renegade.  Jerusalem will presumably survive another millennium, but it must be converted from a military fortress to a center of peace-making.

Let us hope!

“A war is just if there is no alternative, and the resort to arms is legitimate if they represent your last hope.” (Livy cited by Machiavelli)

Ed Kent  718-951-5324 (voice mail only) [blind copies]

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