[ RadSafe ] RE: From offtopict to an ontopic comment

Brennan, Mike (DOH) Mike.Brennan at DOH.WA.GOV
Fri Jan 30 11:07:43 CST 2009

Speaking as one who spent his first career in the trenches of the Cold War, babysitting bombs, I believe that nuclear weapons, as potentially destructive as they are, still have less potential for devastation than certain biological weapons do.  There are strains of smallpox that had almost an 80% mortality rate, and infected almost everyone who was exposed who didn't have immunity from vaccination or having already had a similar disease.   

-----Original Message-----
From: Franz Schönhofer [mailto:franz.schoenhofer at chello.at] 
Sent: Thursday, January 29, 2009 5:28 PM
To: neildm at id.doe.gov; Brennan, Mike (DOH); radsafe at radlab.nl
Subject: From offtopict to an ontopic comment

Neil et al.,

Continuing the thoughts put forward by Mike and Neil we easily hit back to

One of the next steps in this chain of "horrible weapons" is said to refer to Alfred Nobel. When he had developed nitroglycerin and later dynamite he is said to have considered the effect of the explosives to be so powerful and terrible, that no wars would be fought in the future any more because of the destructions caused. Later he had to recognize that he had been fundamentally wrong and his discoveries made war even worse. It is said that this was the motive to donate his wealth for the nobel prizes, one of them for peace achievements. His secretary (Bertha von Suttner) was extremely active in the movement for peace ("Down with weapons") and banning of wars and might have influenced him toward this decision.

Now we have ended up with nuclear weapons, more destructive by orders of magnitude. Should mankind have become a little more rational in the face of potential destruction? At least this weapon has been used only twice in a war and never since. Also in the case of nuclear weapons there are decade-long attempts to ban these weapons. Much progress has been made, but a worldwide ban has not been achieved yet. To the contrary new "nuclear states" have emerged. 

Is this logic of increased destruction power from fire to crossbow to dynamite to nuclear weapons to be continued with even more destructive weapons? I cannot imagine anything worse in destruction power, but who could have thought in the thirties of the last century of the power of nuclear weapons?

Food for thought.

Best regards,


Franz Schoenhofer, PhD
MinRat i.R.
Habicherg. 31/7
A-1160 Wien/Vienna

-----Ursprüngliche Nachricht-----
Von: radsafe-bounces at radlab.nl [mailto:radsafe-bounces at radlab.nl] Im Auftrag von neildm at id.doe.gov
Gesendet: Freitag, 30. Jänner 2009 00:20
An: Mike.Brennan at DOH.WA.GOV; radsafe at radlab.nl
Betreff: RE: [ RadSafe ] Fwd: Don't X-ray My Veggies - Offtopic comment

 Actual occurrence:

The leaders of Europe met and voted to suppress the use of the latest super weapon as it made war too horrible to countenance.

The weapon was the crossbow, and the meeting was on August 30, 1146 

-----Original Message-----
From: radsafe-bounces at radlab.nl [mailto:radsafe-bounces at radlab.nl] On Behalf Of Brennan, Mike (DOH) <SNIP>

 It reminds me of
a short story I once wrote in which a council of Homo Erectus voted to suppress research into controlling fire because it was against the laws of nature.  

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