What if there really aren't any big nuclear weapons?
The most secretive programs in history building weapons that we can never use but require total security and secrecy and untold billions of dollars decade after decade seem like a great way to scam the peasants; who can tell? Is that big metal tube in the silo a missile or just a big metal tube that looks like one? Actually building lots of functional nukes threatens the existence of the very people who threaten each other with them (world leaders), so not building them while pocketing most of the money seems like the greatest potential scam in history (right up there with the Iraq War).
But that's just crazy talk, right?
The following article made me consider the possibility, which I found in the Irish Times many years ago (late-1990's) and have have had a hell of a time finding this exact article again since their Archive doesn't have a search function (glad I copied the text!), I haven't searched Vlast (a Russian magazine), and scroogle doesn't seem to know about it when I search the text:
Red Square parade
missiles were dummies
Many of the monstrous strategic missiles displayed in Red Square parades during the Soviet era were only dummies, but they scared the West into an expensive response, a Russian magazine claimed yesterday.
One such fake, GR-1, an acronym for Global Missile, showed during a parade in May 1965 prompted the United States to build an anti-missile defence system worth billions of pounds, said the weekly Vlast (Power).
In fact, the Soviets had abandoned the GR-1 project long before the parade.
Another two mobile ballistic missiles shown on the same day were also fakes, their test launches having been a complete failure, the magazine said.
"Foreign military attaches were scared to death, triggering panic in NATO headquarters," it said. "A huge international uproar followed, and only those who prepared this demonstration knew they were dummies."
One of the authors of the Vlast report worked as a Soviet missile engineer and said he had personally worked on a support system for one of the fake missiles to prevent it from bouncing on the stone-paved Red Square.
The magazine said Soviet leader Nikita Krushchev first bluffed the West with the legend of powerful Russian missiles, saying the Soviet Union was making them "like sausage."
"Such comparison sounded ambiguous for the Soviet people, because the sausage was in deficit, but it duly impressed foreigners," it said.
At the time Krushchev made the comment, the Soviets only had four intercontinental ballistic missiles on duty, while the United States had 60.
It wasn't until 1970 that the Soviet Union reached a parity with the United States on land-based intercontinental ballistic missiles, and the nuclear balance was attained shortly before the 1991 Soviet collapse, Vlast said.
I just looked again, and I found a few other sources reporting on the original Russian article in Vlast that use the exact same text as the Irish Times article, which until TODAY was the only place I'd seen the fake missiles mentioned (I haven't thought about that article in years).
Most if not all nukes being fake would also explain the baffling fact that we're still here. If the world's nuclear weapon stockpile was truly what it's been reported to be then chances seem REALLY high (to me) that we would have nuked ourselves to extinction by now.
The fact that we haven't turned Earth into a smoking ruin in a world of religious zealots, a preponderance of high-functioning psychopaths in positions of power, ubiquitous governmental incompetence and greed (Chernobyl being a related example), and the ever-present specter of Murphy's Law (aka Applied Chaos Theory; see Dr. Strangelove) strongly suggests to me that the weapons that should have wiped us out ten times over by now don't actually exist, or at least not to the extent that they present an existential threat.
I guess that's actually good news, if true.
Edited by TVCasualty, 16 February 2022 - 08:38 PM.