There has been a lot of talk recently about the possibility of a nuclear conflict between the United States and Russia. There was even a poll on Twitter the other day — offered by a mainstream media outlet in the U.S. — asking which country might emerge the winner from such a war between the two superpowers.

My answer: no one would win. Everybody would lose.

It is possible, indeed, probable that all the war talk is propaganda associated with the U.S. presidential election. But it is also possible that the U.S. might be seen as vulnerable right now because of the chaos associated with its presidential election — and its perceived weakness — and its enemies might see this as an opportune time to strike it.

Of course, nuclear war would profit no one — not even the weapons makers, because civilization as we know it now in North America, Russia and much of Europe would be over. It was Einstein who said World War IV would be fought with sticks and stones . . . if there is anyone left to fight that war.

So, if we are on the eve of World War III, is there any point in stocking up your pantry now, just in case? Would there be any point in building a bomb shelter or . . . well, you get the point. Is there anything one can do in hopes of riding out the nuclear storm?

— Jillian