So, I was reading that the unilateral U.S. economic sanctions against Iran seem to be having some effect, though it’s unclear that it’s wholly positive.  It has shifted the flow of cash away from easily monitored sources to the ol’ suitcase full of cash.  And to the extent that the Iranian people believe and support their government, it’s bad, because their government is blaming the country’s economic woes on the sanctions, instead of its own mismanagement.

I was also reading that senior military officials – the former armed forces chiefs from the US, Britain, Germany, France and the Netherlands – are presenting a report to NATO arguing that a “first strike” nuclear option remains an “indispensable instrument” since there is “simply no realistic prospect of a nuclear-free world.”  And they go on to list global risks, like religious fundamentalism, the weakening of the nation state, climate change, and energy insecurity.

I think they’re correct about the risks, but I don’t see how either sanctions or pre-emptive nuclear strikes will, help, really.  The core problem is the weakening of the nation state.  How do you impose sanctions on, or bomb, an enemy that’s everywhere?  Which has no territory, infrastructure, or cohesive populace to protect … so nothing to lose from initiating a nuclear attack? 

It’s an asymmetric threat.  How DO you protect against that?  Really … how?

When I get too down about it, I think, well, at least I’ve had a good run.  I have people I love very much, who love me back, so my life hasn’t been in vain.  As for the species, well, some kind of life will go on without us.  And someday, maybe millions of years from now, it will piece together the clues to humanity’s demise.  I just hope, if it comes to it, that my own will be quick.

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