A Dark Alternative. . .greenspun.com : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread
We found out early in 1999 that the Y2K computer problem would not matter.
By the time the year 2000 arrived, there were no functioning computers left in western civilization. In fact, "Western Civilization" was a past tense term. There was nothing left that even vaguely resembled a civilization. But I'm getting ahead of myself. . .
Early in the year, in a second vain attempt to derail congressional action, this time in the US Senate, the US president ordered a major attack against Iraq. This time, however, the results exceeded anyone's expectations. Once again, as in failing to predict the fall of the Soviet Union, the Western intelligence community was far, far behind the curve and no one knew just how far into the corner this attack would push "Sadly Insane" and the Iraqi regime. To be totally objective, it must be said that the attack might have been ordered even had such advisories been available. Whether or not it would have been carried out under such a threat is an open question.
What was ostensibly a "final attempt to deny Iraq Weapons of Mass Destruction" turned quickly and horribly into simple mass destruction. The first flight of cruise missles inbound for Baghdad were detected by Iraqi radar soon enough that they actually crossed flight paths with the outbound, anthrax/ebola bearing Scuds that were headed to Tel Aviv and Haifa.
The subsequent total mobilization of the Israeli Defense Force and in particular the "scrambling" of every fighter/attack aircraft in the Israeli Air Force quickly brought US forces to DEFCON 1 and the Russians followed closely behind. Within a single hour, the skies of the Middle East were filled with missles and the military warplanes of Iraq, Iran (which ironically were formerly Iraqi planes), Syria, Israel, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, and of course, the US, the UK and France. The much vaunted US air superiority was simply overwhelmed by the sheer number of "enemy" planes and while the Americans, the British and the French were struggling to survive, someone delivered multiple nuclear warheads to Baghdad, Damascus, Tehran and Riyadh. Somehow, in the melee, the Saudi, Iraqi and Kuwaiti oilfields took multiple nuclear "hits" also, ensuring that the only crude oil available from there for several thousand years would be highly radioactive.
A week later, the only human beings who had been in the Middle East that were not fatally ill with radiation poisoning were the American and Iranian submariners who had been underwater during the exchange and had stayed submerged until they had left the area.
The rest of the planet struggled to cope with events, but in spite of draconian public health measures, the epidemics which "mysteriously" began in America and the United Kingdom quickly spread to the rest of the world. Within a month, 90 % of the human race was dead or dying. There were simply not enough people left to keep even a highly automated society going, and one by one, the great cities went dark.
When the sun rose on January 1st, 2000 A.D., there were exactly 7,248 people left who knew what "A.D." stood for and they were widely scattered across a planet that was already beginning to heal itself.
-- Hardliner (firstname.lastname@example.org), December 31, 1998
-- Perry Arnett (email@example.com), December 31, 1998.
You and I suffer from the same twisted thoughts...
Excellent analysis. There is simply way too much here that is possible tomorrow, let alone six months from now.
-- Michael Taylor (firstname.lastname@example.org), December 31, 1998.
The ends of years, and of decades, the closing of centuries are traditionally and historically fertile ground for more darkened thoughts...the ponderings of ends.
Hardliner, I want to take you by the hand and walk you directly to the Asylum, for a rhyme to accompany this dark vision. It's well written, and my only divergent thought is that your numbers are low for remaining humans who will remember. It occurs to me also, that we have been blasted daily for years by "gummint" propaganda about "those bad guys out there with (puleaseeee)Weapons of Mass Destruction". How better to control people, and keep them in thrall to the masters than to keep fear of the "enemy OUT THERE" in the forefront of everyone's thoughts. And of course our particular masters have had those self-same weapons and USED them....Just some more food for thought.
Have some New Year's cheer,...hug someone you love,..wish them peace and prosperity. It goes a long way to ameliorate fear, and chase away the Dark. This from the most UNpollyana-ish of sheet-wearing women survivors!!!
-- Donna Barthuley (email@example.com), December 31, 1998.
Cool, Hardliner. Read Stephen King's The Stand to see how your epic ends.
Ahm, don't read the uncut version if you're a Christian. Stick with the original version.
-- Lisa (firstname.lastname@example.org), December 31, 1998.
I read this and felt compelled to offer an alternative. See "A Lighter Y2K Choice..."
The "truth" of the Y2K end game is probably somewhere in between.
-- Diane J. Squire (email@example.com), January 01, 1999.
A quite reasonable scenario, great post.
The probability of events occurring as you describe are extremely small, yet the probability of a variation of your scenario, IMHO, are extremely high. We live in a world of far too many variables, of acceleration, culture shock, disintegration, subjugation.
It's just a matter of time before something gives monumentally.
Y2K may well be the catalyst, but if it isn't something else will be.
-- Andy (2000EOD@prodigy.net), January 01, 1999.
It appears that Saddam enjoys tweaking the United States in an effort to provoke additional attacks. If he feels that the sanctions may never be lifted the attacts may be worth the cost to him if they can eliminate future inspections which has apparently happened. This would also create an enemy for the people to unite against and possibly divert efforts to overthrow him. The US is creating numerous enemies in the third world by these attacks and they may retaliate by biological weapons against major cities in the US. Is the real purpose to reduce Iraq oil production? A good Historic Novel of an atomic war was "The Crash of 79 by Paul E. Erdman published by Pocket Books copyright 1976 which used real names of World leaders including the Shaw of Iran, oil politics, banking etc. etc. It was a number 1 best seller. It is also amazing how minor players on the stage of events can have such an impact on history including Monica, Linda Tripp, Paula, and how these ordinary people have affected the careers of the major politicians including the President, Newt etc.
-- steve (firstname.lastname@example.org), January 01, 1999.
Steve, great book the crash of 79, however...
I have a problem with Mr. Erdman, I used to respect his views but he is now blowing off y2k, similar to Rush Limbaugh. A bump in the road...
Another y2k-blind economist.
-- Andy (2000EOD@prodigy.net), January 02, 1999.