I am convinced that fans of the genre are in for a real treat each month as the panel of doom-Sayers, I mean well-informed authors, weigh in on the various topics we will be discussing. Which brings me to our very first question:
Which situation or event that is currently happening do you think most easily could result in the apocalypse?
Me first. Me first.
This is an easy question for me since some of the events during the last couple of weeks closely resemble my storyline in The Gathering. Even though the crazy weather the U.S.has had this winter fits with the topic the single situation that I think most easily
could result in the apocalypse is military aggression by Russia. Specifically, the invasion of the Ukraine.
With the United States showing weakness in its leadership and a propensity of down-sizing its military, Russia has the best opportunity that it has had in recent history to take what it wants by force and succeed where Germany failed in the last two major wars. Controlling the gas lines of Ukraine will allow it to put an energy stranglehold on Europe, forcing many of the nations to follow their lead or suffer.
If Russia takes the initiative others will follow. Aggressive countries will see this as a
chance to act without fear of U.S. intervention. And they will be right. The U.S. does not
have the military might to respond to hostilities on the part of Russian, China,
North Korea, and any number of Arab aggressors.
Are we seeing the first steps of the last war? Probably not, but I certainly can put together an effective story around that concept.
Now, for what the rest of the panel had to say. In most cases, I will only be posting a summary and a small excerpt from their response. Follow the link to their blogs to read the full article and any comments that have resulted.
Crazy people with nukes.
When world leaders such as the dictator of North Korea have access to weapons of mass destruction, there are all sorts of scary scenarios to contemplate. In my two books, Sudden Darkness and Glimmering Light, the electrical grid is down because terrorists have exploded an EMP device in the atmosphere...basically a nuke at high altitude. If done correctly, a terrorist (or other crazy people) could take out the entire US power grid without ever stepping foot on US soil.
I watched an interview by a government specialist who confessed he thought the probability of this occuring within ten years was 80-90%. Yikes!
Margot also gave me a link to a great article along this line that uses the picture above. Feel free to find out what Serge Stevens had to say about it.
Anthony E. Larson
Rogue planet theory.
Anthony actually posted his response as a comment in last week’s announcement of the Apocalypse Panel. You can go ahead and drop down to that post and read them, but here is an excerpt of what he offered. Feel free to follow the link to his blog to read more about this subject and see why he was such a great addition to the panel.
What Joseph did say about the last days on another occasion is most telling. He said, and I paraphrase, (you can read it for yourself in his journal, History of the Church, volume 5, page 337) that the last days will be instigated or incited by a cosmic body. He used the words "comet" and "planet" to describe the "grand sign," thereby indicating that this astral orb will be planet sized, but that it would also have a great comet-like
tail. Since I side with Joseph Smith's teachings, it's my view that the catastrophes of the last days will be directly attributable to an intruding planet, impinging upon the Earth.
Rather than being discreet calamities, separated in time and location, each disaster prophesied for the last days is directly linked to one specific cause: the close approach to Earth of a rogue planet. Therefore, the distructions happen in rapid succession, one
following immediately on the heals of the other, escalating in ferocity and extent, over a period of four or five months.
Global Thermonuclear Warfare (Or possibly alien invasion.)
Did you know there are more than 17,000 nuclear weapons on the planet right now? That's just insane. And it's not like world governments are all that stable. *shudder* I'm sure I don't have to outline all the effects a nuclear war would have on the
planet. We've seen enough movies, TV shows, etc. to already know
Daron D. Fraley
Collapse of the Dollar.
Unlike the 1920s and 30s when we experienced the Great Depression, a financial collapse of that magnitude would devastate this country, and every country in the world. Millions and millions will die. Starvation, disease, crumbling infrastructure,
civil wars, and military campaigns in an attempt to restore order . . . all of these will take their toll. Anarchy will reign in the population centers, and rural America will be seemingly cut off from the world.
(Does anyone besides me, and Daron, see the evidence of this in our current situation?)
As for HOW? Well, let me count the ways... To be honest, in today's day and age there are hundreds of ways this could happen - nuclear war, asteroids, viruses... the list is
endless and really only limited by one's own imagination. And seeing as we are a
panel of authors, who probably have the wildest imaginations on the planet, let me throw my 'imaginary' hypothesis out there...
Quite ironically, I read in a local newspaper yesterday that scientists discovered a 30000 year old virus in a frozen Siberian tundra, and REVIVED it!
Rogue planet theory.
Obviously, Anthony and I are in agreement as this reflects what he has already stated. Even when we talk about hundreds of thousands killed by earthquakes and tsunamis, the size of these catastrophes are nothing compared to what will happen when a “great mountain burning with fire [is] cast into the sea,” or “there [falls] a great star from heaven,” or the sun moon and stars are smitten so that the sun is darkened and the moon glows red as blood with heat. Catastrophic!
Idiots with nukes 2
Rogue planet 2
Collapse of the dollar 1
Frozen virus 1
Russian aggression 1
There you have it; the first round of answers for the Apocalypse Panel. What a grand variety of responses too. And who would’ve guessed that the Rogue Planet Theory would weigh in with two votes for the most likely cause.
If you haven’t already, I encourage you to follow the link to each of the blogs. I think you will agree that it makes for some fascinating reading. And then while you are there, or here, you can post a comment with your thoughts on the topic. Which of the scenarios do you think is most likely? Which is the scariest? Which theory did we miss? Which of these do you think would provide the best setting for an apocalyptic panel?
I have had a blast putting together this panel. If you enjoyed any part of it, please, let us know. Take a moment to leave a comment on any of our blogs telling us what you think. That informs us that we are contributing to the entertainment and education of our fans. With that sort of support I expect that the members of the forum will continue to contribute insightful discussions of the Apocalypse. (Which as Tim points out is not the end of the world, but rather a period of great destruction. Consider me corrected.)
Do any of you have suggestions for next month’s question? What apocalyptic quandary would you like to see the panel tackle next?