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Doomsday Clock at 90 Seconds to Midnight

Jan. 24, 2023, 2022 (EIRNS)—The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists has announced its Doomsday Clock for 2023, as it has done every year since 1947. The clock now stands at 90 seconds to midnight—10 seconds closer than last year’s announcement of 100 seconds to midnight.

“This year, the Science and Security Board of the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists moves the hands of the Doomsday Clock forward, largely (though not exclusively) because of the mounting dangers of the war in Ukraine. The Clock now stands at 90 seconds to midnight—the closest to global catastrophe it has ever been.”

In the context of last year’s announcement by the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, Helga Zepp-LaRouche issued a statement on Feb. 6, titled, “100 Seconds to Midnight on the Doomsday Clock: We Need a New Security Architecture!” Zepp-LaRouche began by noting that the five nuclear weapons powers, which are also the permanent members of the UN Security Council, had just reaffirmed that “a nuclear war cannot be won and must never be fought,” in a joint statement issued a month earlier, on Jan. 3, 2022. She then said that the U.S. Strategic Command, nonetheless, launched their Global Lightning exercise, designed to test the readiness of U.S. nuclear forces, only a few weeks after that joint statement at the United Nations. That exercise was supposed to simulate an “extended” nuclear war, prompting Helga Zepp-LaRouche to ask:

“Who would be able to survive such a prolonged nuclear war? The few people who can nest in deep underground bunkers? It makes the morbid fantasies of Dr. Strangelove look like a child’s birthday party.”

In her statement, Zepp-LaRouche said that these nuclear exercises were not directed solely at Russia, but at China as well. She referred to the fact that Vladimir Putin and Xi Jinping had just issued their “Joint Declaration of the Russian Federation and the People’s Republic of China on International Relations Entering a New Era and Global Sustainable Development,” which she described as calling for “replacing geopolitical confrontation with economic cooperation as the basis for a common security policy.”

She continued: “Both nations are calling on NATO to refrain from further expansion plans, to move beyond Cold War thinking, and to enshrine the long-term security guarantees that Russia is demanding. The role of international organizations such as the G20, BRICS, APEC, and ASEAN should be strengthened, they say. Russia will cooperate in realizing China’s proposed ‘Global Development Initiative’ and emphasizes the importance of the concept of the ‘community of a common destiny for mankind.’ ”

She concluded her 2022 statement by calling for the creation of “an international security architecture that encompasses the security interests of all states on Earth,” based on the “principles of the Peace of Westphalia.”

Obviously, Zepp-LaRouche’s approach was not heeded, and a series of British-directed provocations ensued, which led to Russia’s special military operation in Ukraine. History will show that the joint declaration announced by Xi and Putin was at the bullseye of NATO’s present war drive.

Unfortunately, the summary which accompanies today’s announcement of the Doomsday Clock does not consider any of the provocations by NATO, whether it was the 30-year expansion of NATO to Russia’s border, the Anglo-American-backed 2014 coup d’état in Ukraine, or Zelenskyy’s call for expanded nuclear weapons at the 2022 Munich Security Conference. Instead, the Atomic Scientists’ Science and Security Board that sets the Doomsday Clock  lays responsibility for the conflict almost entirely on Russia. The statement even lies that Russia has threatened to use nuclear weapons, and goes out of its way to say that Russia has falsely claimed that U.S. bioweapons programs exist in Ukraine, when Undersecretary of State for Political Affairs Victoria Nuland admitted as much before Congress last year.

Nonetheless, the final sentence of the Bulletin for the Atomic Scientists’ statement does usefully conclude:

“Finding a path to serious peace negotiations could go a long way toward reducing the risk of escalation. In this time of unprecedented global danger, concerted action is required, and every second counts.”

Indeed, every second counts, but the only path forward now is the adoption of Helga Zepp-LaRouche’s Ten Principles for a New International Security and Development Architecture.

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