META: Not SL4 material (was Re: Hiroshima Day)

From: J. Andrew Rogers (
Date: Thu Aug 11 2005 - 10:59:18 MDT

Hey folks,

This is quite obviously not an SL4 topic. Consider this thread dead.

J. Andrew Rogers

On 8/11/05 9:10 AM, "Richard Ames" <> wrote:
> Hey Phil,
> Not that I am trying to miss your point, but the comparison between Hiroshima
> and Dresden is a matter of efficacy.
> You are right that a nuclear bomb is just another killing tool, but a very
> good one. The bombing of Dresden was horrific, but required a fleet of
> aircraft over night. The Hiroshima bomb caused a similiar amount of
> destruction, but with only one plane and one bomb with the added horror of
> radiation poisoning.
> The large numbers of dead you reference were the result of years of
> conventional bombing - The events at Nagasaki and Hiroshima killed about
> 100,000 each with one crew, one plane and one bomb.
> From: Phil Goetz <>
> Date: Thu Aug 11 09:59:27 CDT 2005
> To:
> Subject: Re: Hiroshima Day
> Recently I saw a documentary about Robert McNamara. Part
> of it involved his role in World War II, planning the
> bombing of Japan. They flashed across the screen names of
> different cities, and the number of Japanese civilians
> killed in each one.
> I also happen to know a little bit about the number of
> German civilians killed in bombings of German cities. My
> mother was at Dresden the night it was bombed, and she said
> the entire city was packed with refugees.
> Anyway, what I'm getting to is that the number of civilians
> we killed in WW2 with conventional bombs was somewhere
> between 10 and 50 times as many as we killed with nuclear
> bombs. Curiously, a brief Google search turns up many
> references to the number of civilians killed by the atomic
> bomb, and a few references to Dresden and Tokyo, but I
> don't see anyone who has attempted to estimate the total
> number of civilians killed by conventional bombs. Total
> civilian deaths in World War 2 were about twenty million,
> not counting 30 million or so Soviet citizens killed by
> their own government throughout the 30's and early 40's,
> But even conventional bombs are more tech than you need.
> The most massive exterminations in history - in China,
> the USSR, Germany, Cambodia, Rwanda, and Uganda, for
> instance - were conducted with knives, clubs, and guns.
> On one hand, you could say this suggests that we shouldn't
> worry about future technologies for killing people, as we
> already do that quite well. On the other hand, you could
> say that comparing nanotech, biotech, and unfriendly AI to
> the atomic bomb trivializes the former. The atomic bomb
> is just another weapon by comparison.
> - Phil
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