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Warheads to Windmills at All Souls Forum Jan. 14


January 14, 2024 9:30 am

By Spencer Graves

Timmon Wallis, co-founder and Executive Director of, discusses on Zoom his brand new book, Warheads to Windmills,1 January 14, 9:30 – 10:30 AM, at All Souls Forum, 4501 Walnut St., Kansas City, Missouri 64111. Or join the program via YouTube Live at, where you select UU Forum at All Souls Church  Channel, and choose the second YouTube channel on that webpage.

Timmon explains how we need people with the skills currently making nuclear weapons instead working on green energy — solar and wind power. Instead we have people at the euphemistically named the Kansas City National Security Campus working to increase the threat of nuclear Armageddon. Rev. Jim Hannah has said that a more descriptive name is the “National Insecurity Campus”. Richard Ned Lebow, an expert on deterrence, has provided extensive documentation showing how deterrence strategies have in the past been as likely to provoke as prevent undesired behavior.2

A team of 10 experts in climatology, food production and economics published simulations in 2022 of a variety of nuclear war scenarios.3 A nuclear war between the US and Russia would most likely loft so much smoke to the stratosphere where it would linger for years depressing food production worldwide that 99% of the humans in the northern hemisphere — including the US, Russia, Europe and China — would starve to death if they did not die of something else sooner. Conditions in the global South would not be as grim, but over 80% of humans worldwide would starve to death if they did not die of something else sooner, and over 90% of those would be in countries not involved in the nuclear exchange.4

Pope Francis has said, “Nuclear weapons are immoral.”5

Worse, a substantial body of research since the 1950s has documented that expert intuition is learned from frequent, rapid, high-quality feedback. That means that the longer the world goes without a nuclear war, the more willing military and political leaders will be to take ever riskier actions, because their expert intuition tells them it’s safe. This contributes to a phenomenon known as “system accidents,” which says that it is humanly impossible to design, build and manage a complex system to ultra-high levels of reliability, because the expert intuition of people operating and managing that system tells them they can safely cut corners, defer maintenance on redundant systems needed to ensure safe operations, etc.6

A 4:08 m:ss video of a nuclear war between the US and Russia was created by the Future of Life Institute7 and discussed in a Time magazine article.8

Spencer Graves is Secretary of PeaceWorks Kansas City. He is a Vietnam era veteran, licensed since 1974-02-1 as a Professional Engineer in Missouri. He holds a PhD in statistics and has published numerous working papers on the long-term impact of alternative approaches to conflict.9 This essay is his personal opinion and is not an official position of PeaceWorks Kansas City.


  1. Warheads to Windmills is available from many bookstores and from ““.
  2. “Richard Ned Lebow on national defense including deterrence”, 2023-11-28, Radio Active Magazine,, (
  3. Xia et al. (2022) “”Global food insecurity and famine … due to … nuclear war soot injection”, Nature Food, vol. 3, pp. 568-599 (
  4. Wikiversity, “Responding to a nuclear attack” (
  5. Maisy Sullivan (2022-06-21) “Pope Francis: Nuclear weapons are ‘immoral’”, Catholic News Agency (
  6. Wikiversity, “Expertise of military leaders and national security experts” (
  7. Future of Life Institute (2023-06-29) “How would a nuclear war between Russia and the US affect you personally?” (
  8. Max Tegmark (2023-06-29) “Here’s How Bad a Nuclear War Would Actually Be” (
  9. Wikiversity, “Category:Freedom and abundance” (

Copyright 2023 Spencer Graves, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike (CC BY-SA) 4.0 international license.

Image of the book cover — copyright 2023 Timmon Wallis; used here under the “Fair Use” doctrine of US copyright law.

Man hanging origame peace cranes.