Middle Earth had its Mount Doom, into which the One Ring of Power could be tossed, ridding that evil from J.R.R. Tolkien’s fictional setting. Real Earth is not so fortunate, but in all other aspects the lessons drawn from his classic apply. It only comes up short in one respect. Tolkien never delved into the psychology of Sauron, Saruman, and the lessor denizens of Middle Earth who lusted after the One Ring’s power, other than to depict the inevitable corruption of the soul their lust produced.There are two conclusions uncorrupted souls have difficulty accepting, although both experience and logic point uncompromisingly towards them. The first is that those in power and those who lust for it want power for power’s sake, ultimately to destroy and kill. The second is that they want to destroy and kill because they want to destroy existence and kill themselves. We owe the first conclusion to Orwell, the second to Rand. (For a fuller explanation see “The Last Gasp,” Robert Gore, SLL, March 24, 2020.)This article assumes both conclusions are well-founded and that the second in particular is the key to understanding where the world is now and where it’s going. They offer a realistic assessment of the chances for nuclear Armageddon.