The thing that most frustrates me about people who support renewal of the Trident weapons system is their apparent inability (or unwillingness) to imagine what would happen if we ever came to use it. I may be wrong, but I picture them saying something fatalistic like:
"Well, we'll all be dead anyway - so it doesn't bear thinking about".
But it does bear thinking about; we have a responsibility to think about it.
And by no stretch of the imagination would everyone be dead after a nuclear exchange. The reality would be far worse than that - for around every ground zero there would be a series of zones within which every imaginable horror would be endured.
Just to bring it home: if a single Trident warhead was exploded over a major city (similar to London) there would be half a million fatalities but, more significantly, around a quarter of a million people would suffer third degree burns and of these, upwards of 50,000 would be children. It doesn't take a great deal of imagination to picture the chaos and suffering that these numbers represent.
Bearing in mind that the UK National Burns Care Group currently defines a Mass Casualty Incident as one involving around 1000 patients, it is no exaggeration to say that injuries resulting from a nuclear strike, would overwhelm even the best-resourced medical services.
I for one am not prepared to support a defence policy that threatens to unleash an obscenity of this sort - even in retaliation.