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We have a choice (Gerard Boyce)

by Tooba Arshad
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tooba Arshad

Last month saw the release of the highly anticipated blockbuster film Oppenheimer. Based on the life of the head of the Manhattan Project, the analyst, America’s secret world war II program to develop an atomic bomb, has given positive reviews about it. The Cillian Murphy actor, who plays the lead role in the title film, has been especially praised for his performance and his outstanding work. Which he has done in catching the pathos disturbing the title corrective after the bomb has successfully exploded.While he no doubt deserves the acclaim he has earned for his character, his character’s capture of tragedy and investing the film with melodrama risks sending a message that we are victims of our collective humanity who are somehow helpless in the face of this powerful technology.
From here on, it becomes relatively easy for cinemagoers to feel overwhelmed by a sense of fear that our nuclear destiny is out of our hands, which means that we must absolve ourselves of this reality, because it is useless to think otherwise. The more this attitude spreads, the less likely ordinary people are to feel that they can influence nuclear policy. If so, it is better to leave nuclear decision-making to technocrats and powers.who decide such matters. Despite this gloomy scene and helplessness, it can be easily born, there is always room for people to act on their conscience with the belief that doing so can change nuclear destiny. This can be clearly demonstrated in the actions of Sir Joseph Rootblatt, Oppenheimer’s contemporary and fellow scientist who worked on the Manhattan Project. Ostensibly excluded from the film’s cast, Rootblatt holds the distinction of being the only scientist working on the program who dared to withdraw from the project.
He chose to do so in 1944, a year before the end of the war, when it became clear to many in the U.S. military and political establishment, as well as in the U.S. military and political establishment, that Germany, the biggest enemy of the Allies that had mobilized the intelligence services, was also conducting nuclear research, was close to defeat. and was unable to design and deploy nuclear weapons. Far from cutting off a tragic figure in later life, Rootblatt’s bold decision set him on a path that would eventually earn him the highest honor, including the Nobel Peace Prize in 1955, for the tireless work he had campaigned for his eradication.
While his name may never be as popular as other eminent scientists who worked on the project that ushered in the nuclear bomb age, and it is unlikely that a major biopic will be made about him, his example serves as a reminder. We always have a choice. It also acts as a challenge for each one of us. Do we have the intellect to recognize our work and the courage to act as we can make a difference? For humanity’s sake, we hope we will. Because if we don’t do that, at a time when global tensions are rising and the hour of judgment is closer to midnight than ever before, there is only one ticket.
Quote: The Scientist Who Walked Away From the Manhattan Project

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