During 2018, the fight against climate change was halted, nuclear threats multiplied and false news consolidated a new weapon: misinformation. Thus, “The Clock of the Apocalypse” stopped today two minutes from the abyss, as in the worst moments of the Cold War.
This “Clock of the Final Judgment” (Doomsday Clock) is a symbol directed by a group of scientists on the risks faced by the world and which aims to indicate how close the end of humanity is.
By 2019, the experts of the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists of the country today maintained this critical signal two minutes from midnight, that is, the disaster, and described the current “dark era” with the slogan of “the new abnormality”.
At this alarming level they placed it last year and twelve months later they decided to consolidate it to send the planet a clear message: “things do not improve”.
Only once since the end of World War II (1939-1945) has the Clock reached this horizon; It was in 1953 during one of the most tense stages of the Cold War when both the Soviets and the Americans made their first tests with thermonuclear weapons.
Today, 66 years later, humanity faces its own disaster at a distance of only 120 seconds.
It does so because of its “lack of progress in containing the nuclear risk”, now more complex and multiple, and “its recession in the battle to stop climate change,” the experts warned.
“These two main threats – nuclear and climatic – became more serious last year due to the growing disinformation war that undermines democracy throughout the world,” the president of the Bulletin of Atomic Scientists, Rachel Bronson, told Efe.
Thus, the proliferation of false news on the Internet, together with nuclear weapons distributed throughout the world and a climate change that is increasingly alarming, have generated a cocktail that “puts the future of civilization in an extraordinary danger”.
But all is not lost, the situation can improve if the leaders seek change and the citizens demand it.
“There is no reason why the Clock does not move away from the catastrophe,” Bronson said, “it did it in the past because the leaders acted under the pressure of informed and committed citizens around the world.”
Although now information has become one of the new pillars that sustain the risk because, instead of helping to clarify the world, new technologies and the speed with which data travel have sown the “bewilderment” among the population.
The expert in Cybernetics and Security Policy at Stanford University, Herb Lin, recognized at the time that “it is true that propaganda is as old as biblical times, but nowadays the volume and speed of information have grown in several orders of magnitude, available in huge quantities and devices. “
Precisely, Lin continued, “if access and production of information have become universal and cheap, also harmful messages have multiplied” leading to a “cyber war” that is played on the Internet and erodes the ability to face the world in a “constructive way”.
There are already consequences of this lack of calm and reason, admitted the experts, because “for the first time in years several countries of the European Union and the US have increased their emissions of polluting gases, after a period of reducing them”.
For the atmospheric chemistry Susan Solomon, this abandonment in the fight to stop climate change has made 2018 “an alarming year”, in which the glaciers melted at a faster rate, the average temperature of the planet reached record levels and the drought it fanned like never fires like those of California and the south of the Mediterranean.
“We ran out of time and a critical decade arrives to face it,” warned Solomon.
And to add fuel to the fire, although the “nuclear threat” can remember past times already overcome, experts said that international security is at the same level of alarm as in “the worst moments of the Cold War”, when it seemed that the world would explode at any moment.
It is what they called “the new abnormality”, a panorama “in constant change, where simmering conflicts are simmering” and multiplying the chances of an important military conflict erupting in which the wick is lit, it can burn everything. (EFEUSA) .-