One thing about having massively descructive weapons like the nuclear arsenal is how clearly it shows us the fragility of no-war, and the thin line that when crossed leads to total destruction. Within each of us there is hatred, anger, that when triggered the right way turns us into a raving animal.
Cuban missile crisis just one of at least 4 other crises(By Mark McDonald Knight Ridder Newspapers; Posted on Thu, Dec. 16, 2004; Knight-Ridder)
At the surface the story is simple. The world nearly had nuclear war on its hands in October 1962 over the Cuban Missile Crisis. The world powers of the time, the U.S.A. and Soviet Union, mutually stared down the barrel of nuclear war and ended up not pulling the trigger. However the article says this isn't the only time, that at least four other times there were momentary crisis (lasting about 10-20 minutes each) which had those same two powers at the brink of nuclear war.
Man who saved America now living quiet life in Russia (By Mark McDonald Knight Ridder Newspapers; Posted on Thu, Dec. 16, 2004) That article is the personal story of one of the near attacks.
It's in the nature of human beings, really, this war thing. The spiritual teachings talk of "duality". That the truth is that the world and all within it are one thing, one identity, but that in our humanness we believe we are somehow separate from the unity of everything. That is the duality, the separation between unitive consciousness and the consciousness that says I am distinct from you. It is the latter duality consciousness that is the root of war and conflict.
With a weapon such as a nuclear bomb, the conflict is really brought into our faces. That duality consciousness can, at any time, within a 10-20 minute period of time, cause nuclear war to begin. And we all know how nuclear war ends, with millions of people dead immediately and life killing radiation circling the globe for decades raining (literally) death upon the survivors.
Let us all pray that our leaders have the wisdom to use well the power we entrust to them.