A nuclear war -- even a limited one -- would result in death, injury, and disease on a scale that has no precedent in the history of human existence, Physicians for Social Responsibility claimed here Sunday.
This group organized a two-day symposium at Harvard University on the medical consequences of nuclear weapons and nuclear war, Monitor staff writer Stephen Webbe reports. The physicians called on President Carter and Chairman Brezhnev to defuse current tensions between the United States and the Soviet Union, ban the use of nuclear weapons, and begin dismantling nuclear arsenals.
In a telegram to the two leaders they said they were alarmed "by an international political climate that increasingly presents nuclear war as a 'rational' possibility."
Based on medical and scientific analyses they asserted that:
* Medical "disaster planning" for a nuclear war is meaningless. There is no effective civil defense in case of nuclear war.
* Recovery from nuclear war would be impossible.
"In sum," they stated, "there can be no winners in a nuclear war."