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    EMP Attack: What Would Actually Happen?

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    EMP Attack: What Would Actually Happen?

    Editor's Note: Normally we don't publish scary “doom and gloom” articles, preferring to focus on practical information. However, many signs point to the 2020s being an extremely dangerous decade for humanity. Preparedness is more important than ever before. Hopefully, this article will inspire some of you stragglers to start getting prepared. – Alan

    That 90% of the US population will die is often cited as a result of a full scale EMP attack, and for good reason. Most of the US population lives in cities, suburbs, and metropolitan areas. An EMP would destroy any delivery of electrical power to communications, emergency services, water distribution systems, and access to food supplies, transportation services, and first responders.

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    EMP: The Immediate Results In The USA

    Cities would be totally paralyzed. Do you recall the images of rioting from anarchists, gangs, and criminals in 2020? There will be no restocks of food and other necessities. The supply chain would be interrupted and destroyed. Big box stores have 3 days of stock at the most. And most urban and suburban households have about the same.

    Remember the shortages during Covid19? Food riots would erupt from lack of stock and no means of resupply. Martial law would be declared by state governments, and the military (which has equipment hardened against an EMP), would conduct evacuations to sports complexes and stadiums where they can supply order, food, water, medical supplies, and security.

    First responders, fire departments, and police would be overwhelmed in first 24 hours, which means you would be on your own. States will mobilize the National Guard and the Federal Government, from its Cheyenne Mountain bunker, will authorize the Army and Armed Forces to enforce a National Emergency Martial Law action.

    In an atmosphere of looting, even law-abiding citizens would be involved in food riots. Violence from gangs, anarchists, terrorist cells, and other groups would turn cities into kill-or-be-killed jungles. The rioters and looters would branch out into nearby suburbs in search of food, property, and other desirable items. Those left on the city streets would be violent rioters, and they would make their way outwards in search of things to loot.

    Cities are dependencies with inhabitants unable to provide necessities on their own. Water, heating, and food are brought in by electricity and these people would be doomed without them. Apartment buildings are totally dependent on electrical power for elevators, lighting, heating, cooking, water supply, and safety.

    In a short time, cities would hover between ghost towns and graveyards as roving mobs of looters spread outward. Severe weather would also add to the rising death toll. The EMP would destroy the control mechanisms on nuclear power plants and meltdowns like Chernobyl and Fukushima would release high amounts of radioactive radiation into the atmosphere, resulting in countless deaths by radiation sickness. 

    Suicides would take many of those who cannot adapt to the changed conditions and rapid effects of the loss of electrical power, communication, stresses of relocation, loss of family and friends. etc. Those who cannot rapidly adapt to the constant changes would undergo serious mental and emotional stress and weaken their immune systems, making way for illness and the spread of disease.

    Most of those in hospitals, retirement homes, and other vulnerable persons with health issues requiring medical care, medications, and other conditions will face fatal results. Urban dwellers should be ready to shelter in place and be prepared to defend their homes until some sense of order and control is in place.

    City In Ruins After Apocalypse

    The National Power Grid

    The power grid is a complex network of power generation sources, transformers, and distribution systems that supply electrical power to the United States. Many of its components are at least 30 years old and in need of repair or replacement. Failure of any will disrupt the flow of power throughout the system.

    Weather, wildfires, intentional rolling blackouts, sabotage and cyber-attacks (recently by Iran) can interrupt electrical power delivery throughout the network. Most of these incidents are recoverable in time, but an EMP attack with a nuclear weapon would destroy most of the grid’s elements and it would take months or years to fully restore electrical power. 

    Without electrical power for years, it would be impossible to provide everyone with the food, water, and medical help they need to survive. The only survivors would be people with the necessary skills, supplies, and mental fortitude—about 10% of the population.

    Where Might An EMP Attack Come From?

    In this section we'll look at the usual suspects, their geopolitical and economic motivations, and their delivery capacity.


    Communist China as advanced nuclear technology and ICBM inventory. China is building a new space station and a space launched missile could detonate and create an EMP while being virtually undetectable and unstoppable. China’s national goal set by President Xi (president for life, like Mao) is total world domination by 2049, the centennial of the People’s Republic Elimination of the USA could be achieved by an EMP attack without risk of a nuclear exchange. 


    Iran has a growing inventory of missiles and, according to some sources, is close to building its first atomic bomb. Iran’s motivation combines its Constitutional mandate to be the guardian of true Islam until the Mahdi; the 12th Imam appears to rule the world under Islam. Iran also considers “Death to America” to be its duty. Iran has worked in partnership with North Korea to build its nuclear capability.

    North Korea

    North Korea has as its goal the annexation of South Korea and its resources. North Korea’s main product and resource is coal. North Korea has a growing nuclear arsenal and ample means to deliver.


    Russia has the technical capability but not a real motivation. Since the dissolution of the Soviet Union, Russia has become a capitalist economy and energy producer.  Putin’s main goal is to recreate the territory and resources of the USSR without damage to its economy, and any missile launch from Russian sources would result in massive nuclear retaliation and war

    What is Needed to Launch an EMP on the USA?


    To launch an EMP attack against the USA would require a missile with the range to achieve an altitude where a nuclear blast would have a radius of 440 miles. That way, the pulse effect would cover the curvature of Earth and destroy all digital devices along with the power grid in a cascading effect (like dominoes falling) but going off into all connected lines and directions.

    Launch Platform

    It has been shown that a missile with the necessary range and power can be launched from a mobile launcher transported in a container on a container ship; these are the most common.

    A launch from space, such as the new Chinese space station, would be unexpected and unstoppable. Especially if a hypersonic missile is used to deliver the blast and pulse at America’s most vulnerable area of the grid, the cascade of the EMP pulse would spread rapidly.

    EMP and Rural Areas

    Rural areas would be forced to use horse, mule, oxen, and manpower. Farms and ranches would rely on themselves and neighbors for food, and security. The real dangers would come from radioactivity released from meltdowns from reactors and food-seeking mobs from nearby cities.

    Most farmers and ranchers have excellent community relationships and cooperate on many projects as well as guarding each other’s property. They are skilled in firearms use and are well armed.

    A World Without America: Consequences

    Asia and Indo Pacific: China domination.

    Middle East: Iran moves on its enemies: Saudi Arabia, Gulf States, and Israel.

    Russia: Putin gains back the previous USSR states along with resources and markets for energy.

    Europe: NATO collapses, Russia dominates economics and military. 

    Survivor On Road After Doomsday

    Welcome to Amish America

    The Amish actually do make use of electric powered machines and appliances but use alternate sources to connect to the grid. They are a close-knit, traditionally agricultural society and can exist outside the grid and commodity supply chain.

    Their communities are self-supportive for religious and social reasons. Until the grid is restored, many Americans may be drawn to Amish-style lifestyles for basic necessities and social support. City dwellers are usually limited in farm type skills, however. Those who survive the emotional and physical stresses of loss of familiar habits and isolation may be able to adapt to this “new normal”.

    Suggested Preparations for Emergencies Where Power Is Off indefinitely

    Having food and water supplies and other necessities are important for rolling blackouts, weather emergencies (hurricanes, blizzards), etc. But an EMP attack would take months or even years to fully restore the previous status quo.

    Here are a few things you can do that would help you survive a long-term grid-down situation:

    • Food: Purchase staples like rice, beans, and canned meat at bulk stores.
    • Water: In addition to stockpiling water, learn the many ways to collect and purify water.
    • Power: Stock up on batteries but also find ways to generate power using wind or solar.
    • Plan: Make an emergency plan that includes where to meet, what everyone's responsibilities are, etc.
    • Weapon: Select something that any family member can use and train everyone to use it. Many dealers and ranges offer classes on self defense as well as recommendations on what to buy. You may be faced with life or death decisions, and hesitation can be a tragedy.
    • Skills: You can have all the supplies in the world, but without the proper skills you won't be able to survive. Start learning what you can while you still can.

    These are just the basics. For a more detailed list of supplies, check out this list.

    On and Over The Horizon: Positive and Negative


    Tesla is developing high-capacity and endurance ion storage batteries for storing power panels and generator power.


    An EMP can also result from solar activity. The Carrington Event in 1859 was from a powerful solar flare that had serious effects on the new telegraph system. A similar event would result in global EMP effects. Earth’s magnetosphere, which shields us from solar radiation, has declined in the last two decades.

    A major CME (Coronal Mass Ejection) occurred recently which narrowly missed the earth with huge amounts of solar radiation. Had that CME hit Earth directly, it would have been devastating.

    An EMP attack is a cheaper and less risky way to eliminate the United States as a major power and make it a country dependent on outside resources for everyday survival. Several nations have the capability and motivation to launch such an attack. America’s present state of division and national indecision by the current administration make an EMP attack by outlaw states an attractive way to achieve national goals.

    Your best defense is preparedness and being able to adapt. These are in your hands.

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