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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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The BattalionMay 4, 2024

Opinion: How I learned to stop worrying and love the bomb

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Courtesy of Burnt Pineapple Productions

Opinion columnist Zach Freeman explains why a nuclear war on Russia should be a no-brainer. 

“You know, I turn back to your ancient prophets in the Old Testament and the signs foretelling Armageddon and I find myself wondering … if we’re the generation to see that come about. I don’t know if you’ve noted any of these prophecies lately, but believe me, they certainly describe the times we’re going through.”

The above quote by Ronald Reagan, beloved former president, speaks to a sentiment seemingly felt by civilizations throughout history. Unlike these ancient societies, we today possess not only the means to make the end a reality, but the responsibility as well.  

As former Secretary of State, National Security Advisor and honorary American Patriot Henry Kissinger wisely wrote in a report published by the Council on Foreign Relations, “The willingness to engage in nuclear war when necessary is part of the price of our freedom.”

It’s time to pay the bill. 

War between Russia and Ukraine not only threatens American freedoms and values, but adds more kindling to the log pile of credibility of these great men’s ideas. When facing a paranoid lunatic with the world’s largest nuclear arsenal, we must fight nuclear hellfire with nuclear hellfire.

Equally worthy of consideration, in 1999, Prince said, “Life is just a party and parties aren’t meant to last.”

Synthesize the words of this modern holy trinity and any rational mind will begin to see the truth.

The Bulletin of Atomic Scientists has stuck the Doomsday Clock at 100 seconds to midnight. All it needs is a little push of the hand.

Already, my underslept and over-caffeinated brain has begun to process the futile smashing of keys in dissent by those of lesser vision.

The writers of life have been getting lazy lately; rehashing plague arcs, the threat of nuclear war with Russia, every movie ever made and hairstyles like the pixie cut and bob. It is only natural that these attitudes on foreign policy are revived as well. What’s more, Americans still agree with the sentiments in question. 

According to NewsNation, nearly 70% of Americans want a no-fly zone over Ukraine. In questions clarifying that a no-fly zone could spark a war with Russia, the number in support drops to a still-solid majority of 52%. Ultimately, instituting a no-fly zone means that America will shoot Russian planes out of the blue part of Ukraine’s flag down to the yellow part of their flag and pursue combatants to their point of origin to neutralize the threat. All that’s left at that point is to wait and see if Vladimir Putin makes good on his promises.

Of course, many average Joes and Janes may not be aware of the full scope of what a no-fly zone might entail, and responses are likely to change based on additional information. Good polling is so hard to come by these days. Thankfully, the University of Massachusetts Lowell has got us covered! Researchers posed the explicit choice of, “Leave Ukrainian airspace alone and risk greater civilian casualties” or “Establish a no-fly zone and risk global nuclear war.”

Nearly half of those involved in the study picked the latter, saying yes to nuclear war. One of the political scientists responsible for the poll, John Cluverius, later remarked about this on his Twitter. 

Naturally, I’m just surprised the number was so low. Going forward, I will assume there must be a margin of error of about 5%. That being said, I think I have demonstrated, pretty clearly, that the majority of Americans — or at least the majority whose opinions matter — desperately crave atomic annihilation. 

At this point, the hypothetical person I was arguing with probably feels pretty stupid.

An interesting tidbit from the prior study shows that only 42% of Americans support deploying troops on the ground to Ukraine. This result, to me, makes more sense. 

If we’re going to usher in nuclear Armageddon anyway, what’s the point in getting off the couch and going over there? Nukes could do for war what DoorDash has done for cooking. What Americans are looking for in this day and age is not another prolonged exhausting 20-year ground war. What we need is quick, gratifying, instantaneous mutually assured destruction. For all of my loyal readers within the military-industrial complex, marketing is important. In light of that, here’s a new slogan, on the house. 

“ICBMs: Apocalypse made easy.”

Prolonged existence is simply not a bullish investment. In fact, the reasons for why Americans — and by extension the rest of the world — want nuclear war are countless. Why wait for climate change, another pandemic or a dwindling water supply to take us out with a whimper when we can go out with a bang instead? Let’s make an event out of it. Pull up some lawn chairs, get some weenies for roasting and put on your Ansell® OR50-T-92-186-05-G02 AlphaTec® 5000 Model 186-G02 Apollo Hazmat Suit, if you’re so inclined. After all, watching shit explode is a treasured American pastime.

I have referenced my personal hero, Ted Kaczynski, on the failures of industrial society in my articles before. Day by day, these sentiments have only been proven more true.

Recently, microplastics were found in human blood for the first time. Endocrine disruptors in plastics are believed to have reduced the average sperm count from 99 million per milliliter in the 1970s to 47 million per milliliter in 2011, threatening the entire human species with a future infertility crisis. So, who are we even leaving the planet to anyway, the kids we’re not having? All the more reason to make our exit a spectacular one! 

We owe it to ourselves and any extraterrestrials who might be watching to make the final season of Earth a good one. Let’s not peter out like so many disappointing series finales before us — looking at you, “Game of Thrones.” So how about it? One last big hurrah and then an eternity of silence. 

For the first time in our species’ history, we have the unique opportunity to light up the night skies of neighboring planets with a brand new star. Not only would it be easy and look cool, it’s our duty to preserve our freedom, and nothing is more freeing than a complete atomization of all bonds tethering us to this hell world. Plus, it gives you a pretty good excuse to use some vacation days if you’ve got them. So sit back, relax, put on some tunes and enjoy the show.

Zachary Freeman is an anthropology senior and opinion columnist for The Battalion.

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