Nuclear holocaust  

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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel
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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel

Nuclear holocaust refers to a possible nearly complete annihilation of human civilization by nuclear warfare. Under such a scenario, all or most of the Earth is made uninhabitable by nuclear weapons in future world wars.

Nuclear physicists and others have speculated that nuclear holocaust could result in an end to human life, or at least to modern civilization on Earth due to the immediate effects of nuclear fallout, the loss of much modern technology due to electromagnetic pulses, or nuclear winter and resulting extinctions. Since 1947, the Doomsday Clock of the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists visualizes how far the world is from a nuclear holocaust.

The threat of a nuclear holocaust plays an important role in the popular perception of nuclear weapons. It features in the security concept of mutually assured destruction (MAD) and is a common scenario in survivalism. Nuclear holocaust is a common feature in literature, especially in speculative genres such as science fiction, dystopian and post-apocalyptic fiction.

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Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Nuclear holocaust" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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