Sadly, in my youth, I was almost obsessed with the possibility of nuclear attack. The prime target in the 70's was Seattle, so after such an attack we in Vancouver had approximately 4 hours to prepare for fallout. I had reams of books and instructions on how to convert basements, gather supplies, and other steps to harden a house into a safe place for many months. If you are not within 60 kms of the blast, you might be able to survive. Of course, since my memory works better with stuff from my youth than my recent week, I still recall a lot of it! :) If an all-out exchange happens between two superpowers, the world will be a dark cinder. Here's hoping the people in control of such things are wiser and don't start something which finishes us all.
I don't think it'll be a cinder in a general nuclear exchange and a lot of humans will survive the initial attacks. Of course, the radiation that then spreads will get into the food supply all over the world and that will change things. That, and the fact that there would be a lot of dead people. Most infrastructure in the industrialized countries would be gone too. Little things like communications and electricity would be gone and money would mean less than nothing.
Those who are left would be in for generations of hard living to come back from something like that. Life expectancy would drop by decades. Various forms of cancer would increase tenfold. The initial survival actions of those who don't die will cause even more deaths as people take what they want from the weak and unprepared. Women would become objects to trade… unless they too are prepared. Humanity would enter a new dark age. Of course, the after effects may be severe enough to kill off the rest of us and then Nature can start over, maybe with the roaches.
Edited: Abnninja on 2nd Oct, 2017 - 8:25pm
I have been looking at this more with all the barking going on both sides of the fence. I have to say that if you aren't in the exact location of a missile then you might likely get hit with fallout or even winds that carry it your way. So you might try to escape only to have all the radiation blown your way by the wind. Really there are no winners in a nuclear war.
You are absolutely correct. You should read some of the other posts regarding nuclear war. That said, there is a possibility of surviving a nuclear exchange, but it would take a lot of planning, a lot of knowledge, a fair amount of ruthlessness, and a dose of luck too. And survval would be just that, survival. The world as we know it would be gone.
That's also where my wife & I conflict. She wouldn't want to live in a world devastated by a nuclear exchange, while I would at least try to survive. Harsh choices in harsh times. But I'd start a habit of cursing the 'leaders' who got us into that situation, every morning, and make it a daily litany that all my possible progeny would carry for generations, understanding the stupidity of allowing stupid people to lead.