Nuclear war more imminent under Trump, says Chomsky

Mankind faces existential threats from both climate change and the threat of a nuclear war, says Noam Chomsky in a candid interview with New York Times

Photo courtesy: Twitter
Photo courtesy: Twitter

NH Web Desk

Linguist, philosopher, historian and activist Noam Chomsky has voiced his concern over the growing threat to humanity from ‘’climate change and nuclear war” under the Trump administration in the US.

In an interview to New York Times, Chomsky underlined the twin threats as the most serious issues of modern times. Responding to a query, ‘’what are the weightiest issues facing us’’, Chomsky said: “The most important issues to address are the truly existential threats we face: climate change and nuclear war”.

Speaking about the American administration’s decision to walk out of the Paris Treaty, he said: The move, “in splendid isolation from the world, is almost unanimously dedicated to destroying the chances of decent survival.”

The famous author of books like ‘Hegemony or Survival’ and ‘Masters of Mankind’ also spoke candidly about the growing prospects of nuclear war. Chomsky did not rule out prospects of a nuclear war between Russia and the United states.

“On nuclear war, actions in Syria and at the Russian borders raise very serious threats of confrontation that might trigger (nuclear) war,” Chomsky said and added. “an unthinkable prospect.”

The internationally acclaimed Left-leaning scholar considered the possibility of a nuclear war as “the end for all of us”.

Chomsky sounded disturbed by the rise of “Trumpalism” and hopeful with new trends emerging in American politics. At one point he quipped, “I don’t think things are quite that bleak.”

He cited the rise of Left-of-centre Democrat Party leader Bernie Sanders during the Democratic Party nomination race as “the most remarkable feature of the 2016 (American presidential) election’’.

Chomsky described elections as “pretty much bought” affairs. He, in this regard, added: “Campaign spending alone is a remarkably good predictor of electoral success and support of corporate power and private wealth is a virtual prerequisite even for participation in the (electoral) political arena”.

Chomsky, in this background, sounded happy with Bernie Sanders’ performance in the last Democratic Party nomination race for the 2016 US presidential poll. Commenting on Sanders’ near success against Hilary Clinton in 2016, he said: “Sanders’ campaign showed that a candidate with mildly progressive views and programs could win the nomination, maybe elections, even without the backing of major funders or any media support.”

Media backing beside the corporate world seemed a key element for electoral success in these times for Chomsky. He, in this regard, pointed out that for Trump’s support base “the sources of information are Fox News, Talk radio and other practitioners of alternative facts’’.

Chomsky’s understanding of Donald Trump’s election campaign seemed to mirror Narendra Modi’s campaign in the 2014 Indian parliamentary elections. Modi, like Trump, ran a high voltage electoral campaign with huge corporate houses and media moghuls backing him to the hilt with ‘alternative information’.

The full interview can be read here.

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