MOTHER NATURE’S TARGET LIST by Michael Krepon

May 29, 2019 | Arms Control Wonk

When we wonks think about target lists and we think about the consequences of nuclear weapons’ use, we consult Alex Wellerstein’s teaching tool, NUKEMAP. As a consequence of our abusive behavior to Mother Earth, I’ve begun to think of a different kind of target list. On a daily basis, multiple targets are struck by extreme weather.

Military bases are not exempt from these natural detonations. Offutt Air Force Base, home of the U.S. Strategic Command, was partially drowned by a surging Missouri River. Repairs will cost about two billion dollars.

Hurricane Michael (no relation) walloped Tyndall Air Force Base, former home of the 325th Fighter Wing. Its reconstruction will cost approximately three billion dollars.

Marines based at Camp Lejeune, the “Home of Expeditionary Forces in Readiness,” were no match for Hurricane Florence. Repairs and reconstruction are estimated to cost upwards of four billion dollars.

Mother Nature is sending us messages with due cause from accumulated grievances. The mantra “clear, hold and build” relates to the Gulf Coast as well as to Afghanistan. Advertising in glossy magazines for the one percenters showcase luxury high-rise condos in Miami. Here’s the only reason to buy one: They offer exceptional views of Category Five storms.

 

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Michael Krepon is Co-Founder of the Stimson Center.