The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) in Atlanta have announced that they will be holding a nuclear war response briefing in mid-January in an effort to prepare the American populace for a potential nuclear attack and its aftermath. The idea is to mitigate the likelihood of widespread illnesses due to radiation exposure and brief the public on the potential responses that will be carried out by various public health agencies.
According to the International Business Times, the CDC is preparing for a public health briefing on January 16 to address the issue of preparedness against a nuclear weapon strike. A posting on the organization’s website dated December 27, 2017, stated that it would offer information regarding public health programs designed for preparedness in the event of a nuclear attack. The posting also noted that public health agencies would be key in the response to such an attack.
The CDC notice was precautionary.
“While a nuclear detonation is unlikely, it would have devastating results and there would be limited time to take critical protection steps.”
The posting allowed that “planning and preparation can lessen deaths and illness” during and after a nuclear event, pointing out that “most people don’t realize that sheltering in place for at least 24 hours is crucial to saving lives and reducing exposure to radiation.”
The January 16 briefing will be part of the CDC webcast series called Grand Rounds. Presenters for the upcoming session on proactive and protective measures that can be effected during a nuclear weapon attack and/or detonation are, according to the International Business Times, radiation experts, emergency response officials, and Dan Sosin, who is the Deputy Director and Chief Medical Officer of the Office of Public Health Preparedness and Response at the CDC.
The CDC public health briefing notice appeared during the ramp-up to another volley of verbal threats between North Korea and American president Donald Trump.
North Korea’s leader, Kim Jong Un, declared in his annual New Year’s address that, “The entire mainland of the U.S. is within the range of our nuclear weapons and the nuclear button is always on the desk of my office. They should accurately be aware that this is not a threat but a reality.”
Trump wasted little time replying via his favorite platform, Twitter.
The nuclear attack briefing comes also as Americans’ views of North Korea reflect a growing certainty that relations between the U.S. and North Korea are headed toward some type of military confrontation.
An online poll conducted by NBC News/SurveyMonkey in October, as reported by Newsweek, indicated that 72 percent of Americans were fearful that the U.S. would become embroiled in a major conflict within four years. Of those surveyed, 94 percent saw North Korea as unfriendly or as an enemy. Fifty-four percent said they viewed North Korea as a direct threat to the U.S.
Those polling results followed a Public Policy Polling poll in August, reported by Axios, conducted just after North Korean leader Kim Jong Un threatened a missile strike against the U.S. territory of Guam, that reflected that 82 percent of Americans were somewhat or very fearful that North Korea would some day launch a missile attack against the U.S., possibly leading to nuclear war.