Monday, October 09, 2006
I wake to discover North Korea has conducted a nuclear test. It is, says the official statement, 'a historic event that brought happiness to our military and people.' For Kim Jong-il, it is a rational step. People are much nicer to you if you can turn Beijing or Tokyo into an ash tray. But, in general, Kim is not rational. The Soviet Union was rational, its leaders made legible calculations, which is why we survived the Cold War. Now we have to deal with irrational possessors of nuclear weapons. I seem to remember Edward O.Wilson observing that if Hamadryas Baboons had nukes, the world would be destroyed in a couple of days. Slowly, irrevocably, unusually hairy fingers are finding the triggers.
Posted by Bryan Appleyard at 5:13 am