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The lessons of those 38 nightmare minutes in Hawaii

The 38+ minutes of terror felt by the residents of Hawaii after receiving a text alert about incoming nuclear missiles that proved to be a mistake, was a reminder that so-called civil defense is fundamentally useless. People sheltered in their bathrooms. There was nowhere to run to and no time to go. It also reminded us that our nuclear warning and even launch systems are vulnerable, too. This was a human error. The same thing could happen along the chain of command, or in a nuclear silo. A human or systems error could even lead to an accidental missile launch instead of an accidental message about one. The Hawaii incident further brings home the one inalienable truth: that no one should have to live with the traumatic prospect of “inbound” nuclear missiles and the only way to avoid that is for the world’s nuclear powers to disarm. And that’s also why diplomacy with North Korea is the essential and only option. The UN has called for an Olympic Truce. Beyond Nuclear is endorsing the Ploughshares Fund organizational initiative — Call for Olympic Truce Actions: Diplomacy NOT War. As an individual, you can also sign the People’s Peace Treaty with North Korea, here.