The Ultimate Nuclear Terrorist Attack?

By Donald A. Collins | 30 August 2021

Lower Manhattan skyline as seen from Governors Island in June 2017. (Credit: MusikAnimal / Wikipedia / CC BY-SA 4.0)

A nuclear attack on New York City? It can’t happen. But the question of a nuclear war has been feared since Hiroshima.

As we watch the current brutality unfold in Afghanistan with the 8/26 ISIS-K attack, we watch the relentless escalation that even our best intelligence experts could predict but still couldn’t stop.

The future seems full of more escalation. As the brutal Taliban could help now in this evacuation, that reminds us that the enemy of our enemy (very temporarily) is our friend.

This fatal attack, most feared and predicted by President Biden after our heroic airlift of recent over 100,000 in days, on August 26 in Kabul. Even as the Taliban didn’t want violence now.

After our own brutal American conquest of the North American continent, breaking every treaty our government made with its original inhabitants, one need not wonder if some Indian tribal chieftain would have used a nuke if he had had one.

Lots of dangerous nations have nukes and the certainty of their non-use is far from assured now.

It only takes one looney. Is there a nuclear Osama bin Laden with money and access lurking out there? Like those hapless and brave American soldiers frisking those crowding to enter the Kabul airport missed the suicide bombers.

The answer is that very possibly even a powerful dictatorship can’t cover all nuclear acquisition possibilities.

The literature is full of stories about total human control of the world’s population via brutal dictatorships, some of which like Kim’s in North Korea are now out there, but unlike the non-nuclear empowered American Indian Chief, resolute Osama types from the angry masses but still able dissident populations are appearing everywhere.

These dissidents and all human numbers have expanded in numbers 4 times in my 90-year lifetime from 2 to nearly 8 billion.

Today with many methods of communication and the proliferation of knowledge, some dissident getting a suitcase nuclear device and seeking revenge for his condition seems more possible than ever.

Our own fragile democracy hangs on despite our brutal record with minorities. Witness those in Kabul who want to come here! These folks are like so many others worldwide to come to the USA, so motivated for safety and possibly more freedom.


You can bet our Military Industrial Complex (MIC) has been pondering how best to scare us into another “police action” in the future such as Vietnam and Afghanistan.

But stopping escalation with a proven failed military strategy is no longer reasonable, even though that’s the counsel we will continue to hear. The fear mongering from the war hawks, who can cite our vast military supremacy, will claim to protect us, when we now stand humiliated before the entire world.

Are we in a new era of recognizing human survival on Earth that needs new thinking?

China’s continuing COVID coverup and the escalating climate crisis and the many turmoils of desperate people breaking out worldwide, strongly suggests it is well past time for a coming together of the most powerful nations for an urgent powwow on next steps.

What better forum for such a such a potential Earth changing meeting than the UN Security Council?

Can we overcome human long standing human behavior and recognize the certainty of our dismal future if we don’t act now?

If not a nuke on NYC, the impact of climate on human welfare will be worse and continuing COVIDs are a certainty.

In short, the escalation of more terrorism is assured now.

Two basic ways history could evolve: With a Chinese style dictatorship or a modified US model that recognizes that compromise and cooperation are the only workable answers to keep our own democracy as the only tenable way forward.

Wide recognition is urgently needed about the threats for an even more dangerous Trump style oligarchy in the USA than we have now.

And bigger funding of our MIC instead of our own urgent infrastructure and human education and service needs is insane.

Not that keeping a strong military is unimportant, but world policing will keep encouraging the terrorist groups to recruit and execute their evil acts.

Could better big nation cooperation be possible in curbing this escalation?

Who can know, but as we watch the current symbolic and tragic press of humanity against the gates of the road to freedom at the Kabul airport, we must at least consider a better way lead human life on Earth in a sustainable direction.

The main agenda item for such an all-embracing UN meeting? Finding the least repressive routes to human betterment for all our 8 billion world humans.

Certainly, the urgent and now seemingly languid pursuit of getting vital vaccinating methods to the entire planet would best symbolize our intentions.

And understanding the need for reducing human numbers with family planning.

Is a nuke attack on NYC or elsewhere no longer fantasy in the soup of unknown and uncontrollable human behaviors?

One final admonition on the irrationality of human behavior: Experts tell us that between now and December 1, 100,000 more Delta deaths could occur in the US if the nearly 90 million unvaccinated Americans don’t get vaccinated. Only half that number will die if they do. The link follows:

Does that suggest the urgency of my above message or just the fact that human irrational behavior can’t be modified by timely actions now?

Former US Navy officer, banker and venture capitalist, Donald A. Collins, a free lance writer living in Washington, DC, has spent over 40 years working for women’s reproductive health as a board member and/or officer of numerous family planning organizations including Planned Parenthood Federation of America, Guttmacher Institute, Family Health International and Ipas. Yale under graduate, NYU MBA. He is the author of From the Dissident Left: A Collection of Essays 2004-2013, Trump Becoming Macbeth: Will our democracy survive? and We Humans Overwhelm Our Earth: 11 or 2 Billion by 2100?.

Who are ISIS-K, the terrorist group claiming deadly Afghanistan attack?

Why the China Covid lab-leak theory is being taken seriously – BBC New

Dying in the Name of Vaccine Freedom | NYT Opinion

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