nuclear weapons do have the capability to annihilate vast tracts of land, kill hundreds of thousands, even millions of people--there is no denying that fact. however, they also have saved millions of lives to date. the purple heart medals that the government issues today are the same ones they built and kept in stockpiles for use after the eventual invasion of japan in WWII. the only thing that kept those medals from being awarded in 1945, was the nuclear weapons that were dropped. furthermore, maintaining a stockpile is needed, due to various countries (ie, iran, north korea) that are attempting to develop these weapons. maintaining the ability to react the same way, if not stronger, to an attack, is the ONLY way to ensure that they will not have to be used.