‘Doomsday Clock’ moves closer to midnight amid Ukraine war – DW – 01/24/2023

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Tuesday’s Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists published its iconic “Doomsday Clock” The threat of nuclear war, disease and climate change has worsened with Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, closer to midnight than ever before.

Clock time moved from 90 seconds to midnight in 2023. Midnight should symbolize the end of humanity.

The clock change comes after that Three years aided by the COVID-19 pandemic so An earlier record of 100 seconds to midnight.

The group said they were moving the hours closer to midnight. Russian invasion of Ukraine And the risk of nuclear escalation increases.”

Why is the “Doomsday Clock” approaching midnight?

“Russia’s veiled threat to use nuclear weapons poses a terrifying risk of conflict escalation through accident, intent, or miscalculation,” Bulletin president and CEO Rachel Bronson said at a press conference in Washington on Tuesday. We are reminding the world that the conflict is still likely to get out of everyone’s hands.”

The group, which can trace its roots to the design and use of the first nuclear weapons, also said: Fighting around the Zaporizhia nuclear power plant When The exclusion zone around the disused Chernobyl meltdown site exacerbated nuclear risks.

Explosion shakes Zaporizhia nuclear power plant

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Bronson said the group’s announcement will also be translated into Russian and Ukrainian for the first time to attract relevant attention.

She added that moving the clock closer to midnight was “a decision not taken lightly” and reflected “that we live in a time of unprecedented peril”. rice field.

She urged Western countries and Ukraine to redouble their efforts to reach a negotiated settlement.

The US government, its NATO allies, and Ukraine have numerous channels for dialogue. I urge leaders to explore all things to the fullest in order to turn back the clock,” Bronson said.

What is Doomsday Clock?

Bulletin describes its clock as “a metaphor for how close humanity is to self-annihilation,” moving the clock back and forth based on perceptions of changing global threat levels.

Albert Einstein, J. Robert Oppenheimer, and other scientists who worked on the Manhattan Project and the first nuclear weapon founded Bulletin, a Chicago-based non-profit organization, in 1945. The Doomsday Clock idea continued in 1947.

The clock was originally set to seven minutes to midnight. The furthest away from midnight he was in 1991, after the end of the Cold War and the collapse of the Soviet Union, was set at 17 minutes to midnight.

The watch was also featured prominently in graphic novels and later named films. watchmengained notoriety for getting it.

A group of nuclear and climate scientists and other experts, including 13 Nobel laureates, discuss world events and decide what time the clock is set each year.

Senior members of the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists group announced new clock times in Washington on TuesdayImage: Hastings Group Media/AFP

Chemical weapons threat, coal resurgence among other Ukraine-related factors

Bronson on Tuesday also mentioned the potential risk of the use of biological weapons in the war in Ukraine.

“The continued disinformation about Ukrainian bioweapons laboratories raises concerns that Russia itself may be considering deploying such weapons,” she said.

Sivan Kartha, a member of the board and a scientist at the Stockholm Environment Institute, said the risks to the climate are also becoming more visible than ever, with countries seeking alternatives to Russian natural gas. Because of this, the use of coal to generate electricity is increasing.

“Global carbon dioxide emissions from the burning of fossil fuels have recovered from the economic downturn caused by COVID-19, reaching a record high in 2021 and then continuing to increase in 2022 to hit a record high.” says Kartha. “Emissions are still rising, with extreme weather continuing and more clearly attributed to climate change.”

She cited the 2022 Pakistan floods as one example.

Forgotten Victims of Pakistan’s Floods

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Call for G7 nuclear disarmament talks

Former UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon took note of the changing clock and called on world leaders to take action.

“Leaders have failed to heed the warnings of the 2020 Doomsday Clock,” Ban said. “We all continue to pay the price, and in 2023 it is very important to us that they act.”

International Campaign to Abolish the Nobel Peace Prize nuclear weapons Also, watch out for clock drift.

ICAN Executive Director Beatrice Fihn said in a statement that “enough is enough for inaction following the warning of the Doomsday Clock.” “The leaders of nuclear-armed states must urgently negotiate on nuclear disarmament, and her G7 meeting in Hiroshima in May 2023 will be the best place to outline such a plan,” she said. It’s a great place.”

Hiroshima was the first Japanese city to be attacked by an American atomic bomb [August61945afewdaysbeforeNagasaki[1945年8月6日、長崎の数日前。

These two attacks led to Japan’s surrender and the end of fighting on the final front of World War II in Asia, but they also contributed to the establishment of Britain and the nuclear arms race with the Soviet Union that would become the Cold War. was also connected.

ICAN wins Nobel Peace Prize

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msh/ar (AFP, Reuters)

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