The book's premise sets the stage for a series of "die-offs". The first takes place within a week (those in hospitals and assisted living). After about 15 days, salmonella-induced typhoid fever and cholera set in from eating tainted food, drinking tainted water, and generally poor sanitation. Americans have lived in an environment of easy hygiene, sterilization, and antibiotics, making them prime targets for third-world diseases. The lack of bathing and poor diet will lead to rampant feminine hygiene infections; deep cuts, rusty nail punctures, and dog bites go untreated with antibiotics, tetanus shots, or rabies treatment as more die from common infections. Critical medical supply and food thieves and others are executed in public as enforcement of martial law. In 30 days, cardiac and other drug-dependent patients die off. In 60 or so days, the pacemaker and Type I diabetics patients begin to die off (although John's young daughter manages to survive until Day 163). The 5% of population having severe psychotic disorders that no longer have medication will re-create bedlam. Jury-rigged wood-burning stoves lead to carbon monoxide deaths and fires that cannot be controlled due to the lack of a fire department. Then, refugees from the cities show up looking for food and shelter and the fight over scarce resources leads to confrontation, home invasion, and more violence-related die-offs. The community becomes an inviting target for escaped prisoners and organized gangs and more violence-related die-off. Ration cards are issued to conserve the little remaining food; regardless, the community slowly starves, with the elderly the first to die off. Next, parents starve themselves to save their children. Throughout this period suicides are common. After a year, approximately 20% of the initial population has "survived". The "average" die-off for the country was 90% leaving 30 million surviving out of original 300 million US population. The food-rich Midwest had the highest survival rate with a 50% die-off. New York City and Florida had a 95% die-off from infighting among their large populations, low levels of cultivated land, high elderly population, a lack of air conditioning, rampant transmission of disease, and natural disasters such as hurricanes. Non-fiction afterword
Originally posted by winterkill
If you have nothing better to do some time, maybe give that little book a read on the vulnerability of the U.S. to an electromagnetic pulse from a nuclear weapon. Maybe that's the real reason the U.S. is so worried that North Korea is about to run a nuclear test, and has space launch capacity.
could the next test by DPRK be just that, a EMP burst test??
The pulse can easily span continent-sized areas, and this radiation can affect systems on land, sea, and air. The first recorded EMP incident accompanied a high-altitude nuclear test over the South Pacific and resulted in power system failures as far away as Hawaii. A large device detonated at 400�500 km over Kansas would affect all of CONUS. The signal from such an event extends to the visual horizon as seen from the burst point.
Originally posted by PlatinumShatinum
All of our nuclear response capabilities are EMP hardened.