Was Oppenheimer, the father of the atomic bomb, also the father of black holes?

Feb 15, 2023
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While Ronald Reagan postulated that “Of the four wars in my lifetime none came about because the U.S. was too strong,” who can know what may have historically come to fruition had the U.S. remained the sole possessor of atomic weaponry.

There’s a presumptive, and perhaps even arrogant, concept of American leadership as somehow, unless directly militarily provoked, being morally/ethically above using nuclear weapons internationally. ... Cannot absolute power corrupt absolutely?

I read that, after President Harry S. Truman relieved General Douglas MacArthur as commander of the forces warring with North Korea — for the latter’s remarks about using many atomic bombs to promptly end the war — Americans’ approval-rating of the president dropped to 23 percent.

It was a record-breaking low, even lower than the worst approval-rating points of the presidencies of Richard Nixon and Lyndon Johnson.

Had it not been for the formidable international pressure on Truman (and perhaps his personal morality) to relieve MacArthur as commander,

Truman may have eventually succumbed to domestic political pressure to allow MacArthur’s command to continue.
The allowability of a nuclear first strike, in international law, is laid out in the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty. known as NPT, which has been in effect since 1970. The only countries that have not signed it are Israel, South Sudan, Pakistan, India and North Korea. When a country signs it they agree never to make a nuke and in return are put on the "no first strike list". We would only use a nuke in retaliation. That covers the legal aspect.
Morally, one could only launch a first strike in self defense with the usual caveats applied: Imminent existential threat, no retreat possible. It is hard to imagine such a scenario though.

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