HOSTAGE AMERICA: Human Aspects of A Nuclear Attack and A Program of Prevention by

HOSTAGE AMERICA: Human Aspects of A Nuclear Attack and A Program of Prevention

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KIRKUS REVIEW

In terms of human beings this book sets forth what a thermonuclear war would entail""-- i.e., who, from which walks of life, would survive. It describes how a war could be touched off; summarizes the devastation that would result from different sorts of attacks -- the closely reasoned verdict being that the prospects for national survival and recovery are practically nil. Current Civil Defense measures are dismissed, most convincingly, as worse than useless. And finally, this attempts to propose ""a feasible program for neutralizing the danger...of nuclear warfare, and suggests how Americans might work together to achieve this program"". The program consists mainly of a ""viable lobby"" to be created in Washington, ""based on a narrow platform aimed at the neutralization of nuclear weapons"" (that is, restricting stockpiles to the point where they are now, with only two nations controlling them and no effective defense against retaliation available), rather than striving for immediate disarmament. The book is an excellent summary of the known facts, and not the least of its virtues is its brevity, which nowhere subtracts from the grim effectiveness of the arguments presented. There are also two awesome appendices, one a listing of all towns and cities which would be wiped out by a limited attack, and the other a report on ""Aspects of Institutional and Corporate Defense"" which is a classic collation of halfway measures and wishful thinking indulged in by the arbiters of our future welfare.

Pub Date: Feb. 1st, 1962
Publisher: Beacon Press