by Michael Smith (Veshengro)
A great deal is being made by the media and others about the recently released document by the German government as to civil defense and the advice given to people to have at least ten days of supplies of food and other essentials, including water and cash, at home.
OK, the question that is sort of the elephant in the room is, obviously and unfortunately, with all the saber rattling going on by NATO, with Germany in the lead, against Russia, as to whether there is something in the offing.
On the other hand the threat of a cyber attack and the fear of it in government circles could be the reason for the ten days advice, as it would be hoped that any damage done by such an attack to the vital infrastructure could be mitigated and repaired in that time frame.
Cyber attacks do not, necessarily, have to be carried out by hostile states and no EMP “bomb” or other device is needed. Hackers and terrorists, of whatever persuasion, can easily cripple the vital infrastructure of a country such as Germany or the UK, or even that of the entire EU, and that alone due to the fact that everything today is computer controlled and thus extremely vulnerable.
Banks and cash points will no longer work, cell phone networks and possibly even the ordinary telephone network will be out of action, electricity, gas, and water will no longer be available on demand. Much, if not indeed all, of public transport, aviation, and even shipping could also be affected by such an attack or attacks. With today's Internet of Things things (no, no duplication of the word) can only get worse rather than better in that department.
Prepping, as it has been called for a while now in America and indeed other countries where the so-called “survival(ist) movement” had its reaches, has been sort of almost mainstream for some decades but amongst some folks it never has been out of fashion since the year dot almost.
Having supplies to almost withstand a siege and having alternative heat and light sources has been part of rural life in many places for ever, as storms can knock out electricity supply, and other weather conditions can make getting to the stores for supplies difficult to almost impossible.
Having supplies at at hand vegetables, fruit and even meat, canning, as in preserving produce in glass jars, has been in use even in towns and cities of Europe. It was, obviously, more practiced in rural areas but, nevertheless, many city folks also canned and preserved food in season for when it was not in season and thus always had at least some in store. Why, therefore, such advice to have provisions to hand in case of an emergency proves to be so controversial is, on one level, difficult to understand while, on another level, with the previously mentioned saber rattling and all that it is understandable that some people, and even the media, are concerned and are wondering as to why now, after more than 20 years of not having given such advice to the population.
Even during the Cold War there was never the admonition by the government to have such supplies at home. Then again it was more common than today for people to grow some of their own food and to can and preserve produce in other ways, even bought in produce.
It should be common sense to always have supplies at home in the event of any kind of emergency but that went out of the window in the last couple of decades, at least in places such as Germany, the UK, and such.
The biggest problem I can see in modern towns and cities and even the countryside in the countries of Western Europe, such as Germany, the UK, and others, is the fact that there will be little to nothing in the shops anyway a day or two after such an event – if the stuff in the stores even lasts that long – as all supermarkets especially work on the “as needed” principle in that they rely on daily supplies being trucked in. Thus, having a supply of cash at home is not going to make much of a difference unless one wants to trek to the country to buy from farmers direct, for instance.
And now, to top it all, it would appear that the German government is intending to follow the lead of the US by talking about confiscation of farms and food production facilities in the event of a crisis. That then does away with buying direct from the farmers as well. Then again, on the other hand it could be so that farmers are not able to profiteer from selling produce at overinflated prices to people wishing to buy them.
What really is behind this all, I guess, we will only find out some time later from this date. Preparing, however, is never a bad idea and many people do it the world over for emergencies without having to be told by the government.