REALITY CHECK

Humanity is as threatened by nuclear weapons today as it was at the height of the Cold War. As of 2019, there are nearly 14,000 nuclear weapons across the globe, 90% of which belong to the United States and Russia. Currently, the United States has about 4000 nuclear weapons in its arsenal with 2000 in reserve. 1500 of these are presently deployed and ready for launch. And of those, 1000 are kept loaded and within range of their targets at all times. The President of the United States has sole authority — even without an authentication bracelet — to launch these nuclear weapons. So why do all these weapons still exist, waiting to be used? Because the Cold War never ended. It simply lost its notoriety.

Now, if you’ve read my novel, you know that nuclear weapons — and the existential threat they pose to all of humanity — is nothing to be taken lightly. Hopefully, Steven’s adventure has inspired you to help protect humanity and prevent the use of such devastating weapons. But how? Unless you’re a daring secret agent like Hunter Gunne, that can be rather difficult from the safety of our own homes. Fortunately, there are several nonprofit organizations dedicated to nuclear disarmament. Donating to them, in whatever amount, goes a long way to making the world a safer place…

  • The Center for Arms Control and Non-Proliferation seeks to reduce nuclear weapons arsenals, halt the spread of nuclear weapons, and minimize the risk of war by educating the public and policymakers. They have a great podcast (with a fantastic name): Nukes of Hazzard. Recently, they’ve been digging into the new, low-yield tactical nuclear weapons being developed by the United States, the flaws of the United States’ presidential launch authority, and more. It’s worth checking out: armscontrolcenter.org
  • Ploughshares Fund supports initiatives to reduce — and eventually eliminate — all nuclear weapons, prevent the emergence of new nuclear states, and build regional peace and security in hopes of avoiding conflicts that could lead to their use. They also have a fantastic (and weekly) podcast, Press the Button, that features top officials and experts discussing the latest developments on Iran, North Korea, military budgets, and foreign policy: www.ploughshares.org
  • Global Zero is an international movement striving to eliminate the nuclear threat. By stopping nuclear proliferation, preventing nuclear terrorism, securing all nuclear materials, and reducing current nuclear weapons arsenals, Global Zero fights — through policy development and public outreach — for the worldwide elimination of all nuclear weapons: www.globalzero.org

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