As tensions continue to rise across the globe due to the Russian invasion of Ukraine, many are wondering what a nuclear war might look like, especially in their own backyards.

Get our free mobile app

Is Grand Rapids & West Michigan A Nuclear Target?

It's been a long time since anywhere in the United States has been regularly discussed as a potential target of nuclear weapons from Russia. But with the Ukrainian invasion, war scenarios are being talked about in a way not seen since the 'Cold War' ostensibly ended in the 1990s.

📷Canva Pro
📷Canva Pro
loading...

But as many once again wonder if their hometowns are a target, things don't look good for West Michigan in the case of a nuclear attack, in fact, in data compiled by FEMA, West Michigan seems to be a target in either a 500 warhead or 2000 warhead attack from the Russians.

Via FEMA Data
Via FEMA Data - Triangles Represent a 500 Warhead Attack and Black Dots Represent a 2000 Warhead Attack
loading...

What is a 500 warhead attack versus a 2000 warhead attack?

In scenarios developed by the Department of Defense and FEMA, the different scenarios refer to the type of nuclear weapons 'launch' the Russians would use.

📷 Canva Pro
📷 Canva Pro
loading...

In a 2000 warhead attack, it is assumed that the Russians would essentially 'launch first' and have the whole of their nuclear arsenal available to them. In a 500 warhead attack, the United States is assumed to have attacked first, so the Russians would be limited to nuclear submarines and stockpiles of weapons left unharmed by the U.S. attack.

Via FEMA Data - Triangles Represent a 200 Warhead Attack and Black Dots Represent a 500 Warhead Attack
Via FEMA Data - Triangles Represent a 500 Warhead Attack and Black Dots Represent a 2000 Warhead Attack
loading...

Why is West Michigan a nuclear target in a 2000 warhead scenario?

While no one can be sure as to why certain targets were chosen, it seems clear that the Lakeshore areas have been chosen for two reasons, power plants including the Palisades nuclear plant in Covert, and possible ports for seaway shipping in areas such as Muskegon, Holland, St Joseph, and more.

📷Canva Pro
📷Canva Pro
loading...

Why is Grand Rapids a nuclear target in the 500 warhead scenario?

You can see that not only does Grand Rapids appear to be a target in Michigan in a 500 warhead scenario, but so are the highly populated areas of Muskegon, Kalamazoo, Lansing, Ann Arbor, Flint, and nearly all of metro Detroit.

Via FEMA Data - Triangles Represent a 500 Warhead Attack and Black Dots Represent a 2000 Warhead Attack
Via FEMA Data - Triangles Represent a 500 Warhead Attack and Black Dots Represent a 2000 Warhead Attack
loading...

The reason for this is simple, in a retaliatory attack, the goal is likely not to dismantle infrastructure or take out warheads, it's simply to kill as many people as possible, and to do that, you target the biggest cities in the country.

So as things don't look good for West Michigan, and really no one in the country, let's hope cooler heads continue to prevail and these scenarios continue to remain theoretical.

So with that being said, maybe just look at these cute cats and try to forget about a possible armageddon. 🙀

These Are West Michigan's Cutest Cats