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The Putin Interviews
by Stephen Lendman
Coming June 12 on Showtime, famed filmmaker Oliver Stone interviews Vladimir Putin, a four-part documentary series, including discussion of his relations with four US presidents, current US/Russian ties, and the risk of possible nuclear war.
Nuclear winter could follow if launched, the effects devastating, nuclear arms expert Steven Starr stresses.
It would cause “most humans and large animals to die from nuclear famine in a mass extinction event similar to the one that wiped out the dinosaurs,” he explained.
“(N)uclear firestorms would burn simultaneously over a total land surface area of many thousands or tens of thousands of square miles.”
“These mass fires, many of which would rage over large cities and industrial areas, would release many tens of millions of tons of black carbon soot, which would rise rapidly above cloud level and into the stratosphere.”
“Once in the stratosphere, the smoke would rapidly engulf the (entire) earth,” blocking out most sunlight. An ice age could follow in weeks.
Growing seasons would be eliminated for a decade or longer. Most humans and animals surviving the blasts would starve to death from global famine.
It’s unclear if nuclear winter would cause human extinction. There’s no way to know for sure.
The threat of possible nuclear devastation is absent from public debate, the importance of banning and eliminating these weapons not discussed.
If a single major US city was struck by an 800-kiloton nuclear warhead, it would largely be reduced to smoldering rubble, structures vaporized, tall buildings torn apart, most everyone killed within a few miles of ground zero.
A gigantic firestorm would affect areas up to nine miles from ground zero. Superheated hurricane-force winds would incinerate virtually everyone.
“Nobody would survive,” Putin told Oliver Stone. Asked he’s hopeful for improved Russian/US relations, he said “(t)here is always hope until they are ready to bring us to the cemetery and bury us.”
He explained bilateral relations are worse than any previous time since the Cold War, a very dangerous situation.
He called NATO members US “vassals,” doing Washington’s bidding, harming their own self-interest, saying:
“Once a country becomes a NATO member, it is hard to resist the pressures of the US. And all of a sudden any weapons system can be placed in this country.”
“An anti-ballistic missile system, new military bases and if need be, new offensive systems.” Russia is forced to act defensively.
“We have to aim our missile systems at facilities that are threatening us (making the situation) more tense,” Putin explained.
Russia promotes world peace and stability. America’s agenda is polar opposite, making unthinkable nuclear war possible.
Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at
His new book as editor and contributor is titled “Flashpoint in Ukraine: How the US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III.”
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Stephen Lendman
Stephen Lendman
Stephen Lendman was born in 1934 in Boston, MA. In 1956, he received a BA from Harvard University. Two years of US Army service followed, then an MBA from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania in 1960. After working seven years as a marketing research analyst, he joined the Lendman Group family business in 1967. He remained there until retiring at year end 1999. Writing on major world and national issues began in summer 2005. In early 2007, radio hosting followed. Lendman now hosts the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network three times weekly. Distinguished guests are featured. Listen live or archived. Major world and national issues are discussed. Lendman is a 2008 Project Censored winner and 2011 Mexican Journalists Club international journalism award recipient.