(Natural News) As the modern day "military-industrial complex" was being built during the early stages of the Cold War, President Dwight D. Eisenhower was said to be pessimistic about advance planning for any nuclear exchange with what was then the Soviet Union.
"In preparing for battle I have always found that plans are useless, but planning is indispensable," World War II's Supreme Allied Commander and five-star general once said.
The point is well-taken: Even the best-laid plans can fall apart in moments, but if you don't make them, you won't even have resources to deal with emergencies when they occur, let alone the people to carry them out.
That said, the U.S. government continues to update plans begun during the George W. Bush administration for a nuclear attack on the country while simultaneously rehearsing responses.
As reported by The Daily Star in the U.K., government planners believe the three most likely cities that would be targeted with a nuclear device are Washington, D.C., New York City, and Los Angeles — the two largest cities in the country as well as the most important one, in terms of governance.
Part of the plan, called "National Response Scenario Number One," involves sending in U.S. military forces in a search-and-rescue mode that will also very likely include a security mission.
Disaster planners are war-gaming a nuclear explosion equal to 10,000 tons of TNT that would lead to a 3,000-square-mile quarantine, mass evacuations, overwhelming numbers of casualties, and a national (and probably global) recession.
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The paper noted in online editions:
Predictions were sketched out based on a device being detonated within Washington by terrorists rather than a nuclear strike in World War 3.
The possible scenario for a nuclear attack was deemed to be an improvised bomb driving into the city centre in a delivery van.
Authorities believe a nuclear explosion in the center of Washington, D.C., especially on a typical work day, would kill "hundreds of thousands" of people, according to Department of Homeland Security documents seen by The Daily Star.