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Open Letter Against Reckless Nuclear Escalation and Use

The abhorrent Ukraine war has the potential to escalate into an all-out NATO-Russia nuclear conflict that would be the greatest catastrophe in human history. More must be done to prevent such escalation.
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The abhorrent Ukraine war has the potential to escalate into an all-out NATO-Russia nuclear conflict that would be the greatest catastrophe in human history. Although uncertainties remain about the humanitarian impact, recent peer-reviewed work1 has suggested that we cannot rule out that nuclear winter would kill about 99% of people in America, Europe, Russia and China. More must be done to prevent such escalation. We, the undersigned, call for unequivocal condemnation of the following behaviors by any party:

  1. Nuclear first-use and threats or advocacy thereof
  2. Reckless escalation without significant military benefit, such as the perpetration of atrocities, militarily irrelevant assassinations, misleading atrocity propaganda2, attacks on nuclear reactors, and the destruction of militarily irrelevant infrastructure (e.g. Nord Stream)
  3. Suppression of constructive discussion on how to avoid nuclear war, such as falsely framing opposition to (2) as appeasement or disloyalty

As was recently affirmed in a P5 statement3, a nuclear war cannot be won and must never be fought. There are many de-escalation strategies that involve no concessions or appeasement. Breaking the current escalation spiral is a global moral imperative, because nuclear weapons threaten not merely those targeted by them, but all people on Earth.


  1. Xia et al, Nature Food, 3, 586–596 (2022)
  2. Atrocity propaganda", Wikipedia (2022)
  3. Joint statement of the 5 permanent security council members", White House Briefing Room (Jan. 2 2022)

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