X-Message-Number: 18057
Date: Fri, 30 Nov 2001 22:30:24 -0700
From: Mike Perry <>
Subject: Terrorism, Nukes, and Cryonics

George Smith (#18045) raises the possibility (again) of the use of nuclear 
weapons against terrorists. It is possible that logic would favor such a 
choice; for example, nuking Japan in 1945 is generally thought to have 
saved millions of lives by ending WWII even if many thousands were killed. 
On the other hand, it is easy to see how the use of nukes is hardly 
*guaranteed* to produce the better outcome and constitute the lesser evil. 
At present there is strong support worldwide for the position that nukes 
must not be used, and they probably will not be used until there is such a 
threat from terrorists themselves. Our present opponents do not appear to 
have them, despite some claims of Osama bin Laden, but what of the future? 
We hope that terrorists in the future will not be able to acquire such 
weapons and others of mass destruction but it's clear they are trying, and 
not at all clear they can be stopped.

This is certainly a serious issue for cryonicists; in addition to the usual 
concerns, we have to protect our people in storage--how do we do that? If 
you expect a lot of civil unrest, is cryopreservation even the best choice? 
Maybe chemo+permafrost would be better. Maybe there should be considerably 
stepped-up research in this direction. Maybe, on the other hand, we need to 
rethink our policies on more conventional storage facilities. No easy 
answers here; we must stay on our toes, keep thinking, and act accordingly 
when it seems justified.

Mike Perry

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