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The ”New Yorker” sinks to sloppy sentimenta praise of pro nuclear advocates

The Once-Proud New Yorker Soils Itself in Radioactive Offal  https://readersupportednews.org/opinion2/277-75/67935-rsn-the-once-proud-new-yorker-soils-itself-in-radioactive-offal, By Harvey Wasserman, 21 February 21

or decades, The New Yorker has set a high bar for journalistic excellence.

Graced by its signature brand of droll, sophisticated cartooning, the magazine’s exquisitely edited screeds have reliably delivered profound analyses of the world’s most pressing issues.

But in a breathless, amateurish pursuit of atomic energy, the editorial staff has leapt into a sad sinkhole of radioactive mediocracy.

The latest is Rebecca Tuhus-Dubrow’s shallow, shoddy “Activists Who Embrace Nuclear Power,” yet another tedious plea that we learn to love the Peaceful Atom.

For at least a century, countless scientific pioneers have exposed the murderous realities of nuclear radiation. Legendary researchers like Marie Curie, Alice Stewart, Rosalie Bertell, Helen Caldicott, John Gofman, Ernest Sternglass, Thomas Mancuso, Karl Z. Morgan, Samuel Epstein, Robert Alvarez, Arnie Gundersen, Amory Lovins, and others have issued vital warnings.

In Pavlovian opposition, the industry has rolled out an endless array of amateur “environmentalists” whose activist credentials are distinguished only by an endless love for atomic power.

Most infamous are Greenpeace veteran Patrick Moore and Berkeley-based Michael Shellenberger, both climate skeptics who share a theatrical passion for uninspected, uninsured nukes. With no credible scientific credentials, this unholy pair has conjured imaginative advocacies for companion corporate embarrassments like genetically modified food, clear-cut deforestation, and more.

With far more prestige, climate pioneer Dr. James Hanson and Whole Earth Catalogue founder Stewart Brand have brought significant gravitas to the nuclear debate.

But The New Yorker dotes on two workers at California’s Diablo Canyon. Neither is a scientist. Both claim to be “environmentalists.” One wears a lavender pendant made of uranium glass which “emits a near-negligible amount” of radiation, despite a huge body of scientific evidence warning this is a literally insane thing to do – especially for someone who might be around small children.

The writer lauds her heroines for calling themselves “Mothers for Nuclear” while snubbing legendary “Mothers for Peace” activists who’ve organized locally for a half-century. While touring Diablo with her new best friends, the author coos that “we smiled as if we were at Disneyland.”

Such “Nuclear Renaissance” absurdities are very old news.

Given The New Yorker’s stellar history, we might expect a meaningful, in-depth exploration of today’s core atomic realities: no more big reactors will be built in the US, and our 90+ old plants are in deep, dangerous disarray.

Forbes long ago branded atomic power “the largest managerial failure in US history.” America’s very last two reactors (at Georgia’s Plant Vogtle) sucked up $8.3 billion in federal loan guarantees from Barack Obama plus $3.7 billion more from Donald Trump. Years behind schedule, Vogtle’s final price tag (if it ever opens) will exceed $30 billion.

South Carolina’s engineering and legal morass at V.C. Summer wasted more than $10 billion on two failed reactors. In Ohio, $61 million in utility bribes for a massive nuke bailout have shattered the state.

As for alternatives, Rebecca Tuhus-Dubrow says, “nuclear scientists, for their part, are working on smaller, more nimble nuclear reactors. There are complex economic considerations, which are inseparable from policy.”

In other words, the proposed Small Modular Reactors are already so clearly uncompetitive that only obsessive pro-nukers (like Bill Gates) think they’ll hold market value against wind and solar (which The New Yorker attacks).

Precisely as ice storms froze feedwater pipes and shut one of two reactors at the South Texas Nuclear Plant, the magazine falsely claims that atomic reactors do “not depend on particular weather conditions to operate.” Globally-warmed rivers can no longer reliably cool many French reactors. Earthquakes have dangerously damaged US-designed nukes in Ohio and Virginia. Intake pipes at Diablo and other coastal plants are vulnerable to tsunami surges. Staggering design and construction flaws (a major Diablo component was once installed backwards; boric acid ate through key parts of Ohio’s Davis-Besse) give the entire industry a Keystone Kops/Rube Goldberg aura.

Tuhus-Dubrow skims the waste issue. Dry casks at Diablo and elsewhere are generally less than an inch thick. They can’t be re-opened for inspection or maintenance, and are already cracking (more-versatile German casks are 19 inches thick).

With an average age of well over 30, US reactors face dangerous decay. After four years of Trump, and even longer as a corrupt rubber stamp, the infamously dysfunctional Nuclear Regulatory Commission has left these collapsing, uninsured jalopies virtually unregulated and uninspected.

Tuhus-Dubrow ignores the fact that (unlike Disneyland) Diablo Unit One was long ago reported to be severely embrittled. That means critical components could shatter like glass if flooded to contain a meltdown. Ensuing Chernobyl-scale steam and hydrogen explosions would spread apocalyptic radiation throughout the ecosphere.

Despite a petition signed by more than 2,000 Californians and key Hollywood A-listers, Gov. Gavin Newsom refuses to inspect Diablo’s decayed reactors.

The New Yorker says smoke coming from huge northern California fires dimmed solar panels. But those fires were caused by the gross incompetence, neglect, and mismanagement of the twice-bankrupt Pacific Gas & Electric, which runs Diablo.

PG&E is a federal felon, convicted for killing scores of Californians in avoidable explosions and fires. Tuhus-Dubrow simply ignores such slipshod mismanagement, which could prove catastrophic at a nuke as old as Diablo.

Overall, the nuke power debate has long since transcended random, folksy industry devotees who like to label themselves “green.” No serious analyst argues that, after the fiscal fiascos at V.C. Summer and Plant Vogtle, any big new reactors will ever be built in the US. Small ones are cost-prohibitive pipe dreams, especially as wind, solar, battery and LED/efficiency technologies continue to advance.

The question of how long America’s 90+ jalopy nukes can run until the next one explodes remains unanswered … and utterly terrifying.

Somehow, the revered New Yorker has polluted its pages with a pro-nuke fantasy while missing this most critical atomic issue.

Let’s hope it corrects the deficiency before the next Chernobyl lays waste to our own nation.

 


Harvey Wasserman’s Solartopia! Our Green-Powered Earth is at www.solatopia.org, along with The People’s Spiral of US History.

February 22, 2021 Posted by | spinbuster, USA | Leave a comment

Fukushima launches first sake promotion event in New York

Fukushima ‘hot’ sake anyone?
n-sake-a-20191204-870x603.jpg
Customers at a Japanese restaurant in New York drink Fukushima sake
Dec 3, 2019
NEW YORK – The Fukushima Prefectural Government launched a weeklong sake promotion event in New York City on Monday, hoping to boost recognition of its Japanese rice wine among U.S. consumers amid a sales slump in the domestic market.
Ten Japanese restaurants in the city are participating in the first-ever Fukushima Sake Week through Sunday, offering 23 varieties of sake from 13 breweries.
The event is aimed at increasing sake sales in the U.S. and European markets as Japanese sake brewers face declining domestic sales due partly to changing consumer tastes.
Sake brewers in Fukushima Prefecture are also facing export restrictions to some countries such as China following the nuclear disaster triggered by a powerful earthquake and tsunami in March 2011.
Sakamai, one of the restaurants taking part, is offering three brands.
Ken Chino, floor manager at Sakamai, said, “I am always impressed by Fukushima sake.”
The Fukushima Prefectural Government official in charge of trade promotion said, “By holding this event in New York where information is disseminated, we hope that the high quality (of Fukushima’s sake products) will be spread to the world and also shared by people in the regions where safety concerns still take root.”

December 8, 2019 Posted by | fukushima 2019 | , | Leave a comment

New York’s Climate Strike and the Things That Make Teen-Agers March — limitless life

Cultural Comment New York’s Climate Strike and the Things That Make Teen-Agers March By Alexandra Schwartz September 20, 2019 What had brought so many teens to Foley Square, in Manhattan, for the New York climate strike? Everyone’s answer was the same, the only one possible: a sense of existential threat. Photograph by Jonno Rattman for The […]

via New York’s Climate Strike and the Things That Make Teen-Agers March — limitless life

September 22, 2019 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

New York City supports students’ climate protest

More than one million New York students allowed to skip school for climate protest, Public school students in New York are allowed to skip class to join the youth climate strikes.

SBS NEWS,   BY ANNE BARNARD  18 Sep 19 When New York City announced that public school students could skip classes without penalties to join the youth climate strikes planned around the world on Friday, you could almost hear a sigh of relief.Before the announcement, the protests, to be held three days ahead of the United Nations Climate Action Summit, had thrown a new complication into the usual back-to-school chaos: With the protests framed as a cry to protect their futures from climate disaster, should students heed the call?

Parents had wondered how to word emails to principals requesting excused absences. Teachers had been wondering how to react. Some students had been vowing to protest no matter what, but others had worried about possible repercussions.

Most of all, the decision last week by the nation’s largest school district buoyed national protest organisers, who are hoping that the demonstrations will be the largest on climate in US history, with at least 800 planned across the 50 states. They expressed hope that other districts around the country would follow suit.

“Holy smokes, this thing could get HUGE,” Jamie Henn, a founder of the climate action organisation 350.org, said on Twitter after the decision was announced by New York City’s Department of Education………

Demonstrators as young as nine had already turned up to greet the 16-year-old Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg when she arrived last month by an emissions-free yacht in New York Harbour. Greta has inspired Friday student protests in at least 100 countries.

Larger crowds, mostly of high school students, have demonstrated with her on two recent Fridays at the United Nations………

Some 600 medical professionals across the country have also signed a virtual “doctor’s note” encouraging teachers to excuse students on the grounds that climate change is dangerous to their and others’ health.  HTTPS://WWW.SBS.COM.AU/NEWS/MORE-THAN-ONE-MILLION-NEW-YORK-STUDENTS-ALLOWED-TO-SKIP-SCHOOL-FOR-CLIMATE-PROTEST

September 19, 2019 Posted by | climate change, USA | Leave a comment

Australian investigative journalist exposes Guardian/New York Times betrayal of Assange — Rise Up Times

The papers leaked by Manning documented at least 200 civilian deaths at the hands of US and allied forces that had previously been hidden from the public, along with clear evidence of war crimes, including the existence of a secret “black unit” within the US military, tasked with carrying out illegal assassinations.

via Australian investigative journalist exposes Guardian/New York Times betrayal of Assange — Rise Up Times

August 13, 2019 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

City councillors call for New York City to divest from companies involved in the production of nuclear weapons

Nuclear Weapons Money 27th June 2019 Move the Nuclear Weapons Money welcomes the initiative of New York CityCouncil members Daniel Dromm, Helen Rosenthal and Ben Kallos to call on New York City to divest from companies involved in the production of nuclear
weapons, and to reaffirm New York City as a Nuclear Weapons Free Zone.

On June 26, the city councillors introduced Resolution 976 calling on the City
Council to make such a policy decision, and Initiative 1621 under which the
City would establish an advisory committee to examine nuclear disarmament
and issues related to recognizing and reaffirming New York city as a
nuclear weapons-free zone.

The council declared New York to be a
Nuclear-Weapon-Free Zone in 1983 with the adoption of Resolution 364 which
prohibits the production, transport, placement or deployment of nuclear
weapons within the territorial limits of New York City, and the adoption of
Resolution 568 which declared that no ship be permitted to bring nuclear
missiles into the harbour of New York.

http://www.nuclearweaponsmoney.org/news/nycdivestment/

July 8, 2019 Posted by | opposition to nuclear, USA | 1 Comment

As Reactors Shut in Massachusetts and Pennsylvania, Nuke War Rages in Ohio and New York

https://readersupportednews.org/opinion2/277-75/56501-rsn-as-reactors-shut-in-massachusetts-a-pennsylvania-nuke-war-rages-in-ohio-a-new-york, By Harvey Wasserman, Reader Supported News, 11 May 19As the nuke power industry slumps toward oblivion, two huge reactors are shutting in Pennsylvania and Massachusetts.

The shutdowns are a body blow to atomic energy. The soaring costs of the decayed US reactor fleet have forced them to beg gerrymandered state legislatures for huge bailouts.

Just two US reactors are still being built. Stuffed with $12 billion in interest-free federal loans, Georgia’s Vogtle is nearing a staggering $30 billion in cost. Years behind schedule, the lowest possible costs of whatever electricity the two reactors there might produce already far exceed wind and solar.

Virtually none of the 98 US reactors now operating can compete with wind, solar, or methane. All but one are more than twenty years old, with serious issues of obsolescence and decay; some are more than forty, operating far behind their original design life.

Four decrepit, money-losing, upstate New York State reactors still run because Governor Andrew Cuomo is handing them $7.6 billion in bailouts. This year’s price tag jumped more than $50 million, despite Cuomo’s promise it would drop. Safe energy/consumer groups are fighting him in court.

Cuomo has otherwise agreed to shut two old reactors at Indian Point, which sit on an earthquake fault north of New York City.

But Illinois has voted billions to sustain three old reactors that can’t compete with wind/solar and gas. New Jersey has also jumped in with hundreds of millions for money-losing nukes.

In Massachusetts, the Pilgrim reactor will shut this month. The New York Times says Pennsylvania’s Three Mile Island Unit One will die in September, dropping the US fleet to 96. The industry wants to scam billions in bailouts for the Keystone State’s other nukes, which are being vastly outstripped by renewables.

But the Ohio war over two geezer nukes rages full bore. Their owner, Akron’s FirstEnergy, is bankrupt, trying to shed its cleanup responsibilities. Despite slipping millions in “lobbying” to key state officials, FirstEnergy has still been unable to shaft the state with its $300m/year nuke-bailout scam.

Designed in the 1960s, FirstEnergy’s Davis-Besse opened near Toledo in 1977. A serious accident presaged the 1979 meltdown at its doomed clone, Three Mile Island Unit Two.

In 2002, boric acid ate Davis-Besse’s infamous “hole in the head” to within an inch of irradiating the entire Great Lakes and north coast.

The leaks are still an issue. But Davis-Besse’s owners sawed off the top of an abandoned Michigan nuke, cut through the containment building, and pasted it into the damaged reactor. The radioactive shield building is crumbling along with the rest of the nuke, from top to bottom.

East of Cleveland, Perry opened in 1986, just after the first earthquake that damaged a US nuke. To this day, no operators have been forced to run a reactor caught amidst a seismic shaking.

The utility and its backers are betting on Ohio’s gerrymandered legislature to gouge some $300 million from the tax/rate-paying public. A bevy of “free market” Republicans wants at least $150 million per year for the nukes, and another $150 million or more for various unclear activities, including about $8.5 million yearly for company president Chuck Jones.

FirstEnergy burns huge quantities of gas, oil, and coal but hypes its “emissions free” nukes that spew Carbon 14, heat, and radiation. The industry does not want to mention or pay for its thousands of tons of radioactive waste.

Such details are loudly overlooked by a mutant choir trumpeting nukes as “zero emission.” All reactors spew deadly isotopes along with climate-killing heat and some Carbon 14. They stand in the way of the wind, solar, batteries, and LED efficiency that comprise our only route to saving the climate.

Ohio’s north coast region is great for wind. More than $4 billion in private capital is waiting to create more than 10,000 jobs while slashing electric rates. The surrounding states of Indiana, Michigan, New York, and Pennsylvania have far more wind turbines than Ohio, operating at big profits with substantial workforces.

But an absurd anti-green setback requirement from a bought legislature has frozen Ohio’s turbine industry. Without that single Ohio Code sentence, cheap wind energy would be flooding the state. The “need” for nukes would evaporate. The reactor jobs “lost” would be dwarfed by those in renewables.

Against all odds, a very broad coalition of environmentalists, wind promoters, consumers, and industrialists has kept FirstEnergy at bay. Bailout opponents vastly outnumber nuke pushers at ongoing hearings.

But worldwide, the clock ticks on the next old money-sucking reactor to collapse from incompetence and greed, or to crumble in an earthquake, tsunami, or terror attack.

The shutdowns of Pilgrim and Three Mile Island mark huge victories for jobs, the economy, and the climate. If green advocates can now win in Ohio and Pennsylvania and roll back the insanity in New York, New Jersey, and Illinois, the march of the shutdowns just might outrun the next meltdown. Stay tuned!

Harvey Wasserman’s Green Power & Wellness Show is podcast at prn.fm; California Solartopia is broadcast at KPFK-Pacifica, 90.7 fm, Los Angeles. His Life & Death Spiral of US History: From Deganawidah to Solartopia will soon be at www.solartopia.org.

May 13, 2019 Posted by | politics | Leave a comment

(Free Tasting) Japan’s No.1 Fukushima Sake Debut to New York

https _cdn.evbuc.com_images_57159229_188385184585_1_original.jpg
by Fukushima Trade Promotion Council
Date and Time: Sat, April 27, 2019 – 2:00 PM – 5:00 PM EDT
Location: Union Square Wine & Spirits, 140 4th Avenue, New York, NY 10003
Fukushima’s Sake Debut to New York!
Experience the best sake in Japan, without leaving NYC!!
 
Most Gold Prizes 6 years in a row in the century-old Japan Sake Awards. “Champion Sake” in 2015 and 2018 at the International Wine Challenge. Unmatched craftsmanship and the finest taste. While famous in Japan, Fukushima sake has remained a mystery to the outside world—until now!
Enjoy a FREE tasting session of premium Fukushima sake with us. Tasting session participants will receive a 20% discount for Fukushima sake purchased during event hours (while supplies last).
You will enjoy 10 sake brands! Be the first to taste these sake in New York.
1. Tenmei Hiire Junmai – Akebono Brewery
2. Tenmei Hiire Junmai Ginjo – Akebono Brewery
3. Junmai Kokken – Kokken Brewery
4. Kokken Yume no Kaori (Tokubetsu Junmai) – Kokken Brewery
5. Yamahai Junmai Kokken – Kokken Brewery
6. Daiginjo Kokken – Kokken Brewery
7. Junmai Daiginjo – Sakaegawa Brewery
8. Chidoriashi(Honjozo) – Sakaegawa Brewery
9. Kissui Hidari Uma Junmai Daiginjo – Ariga Brewery
10. Kissui Hidari Uma Junmai Ginjo – Ariga Brewery

April 8, 2019 Posted by | fukushima 2019 | , | Leave a comment

New York’s ‘Green New Deal’ for a zero carbon economy

Business Green 21st Jan 2019 New York has embraced the campaign for a ‘Green New Deal’, with Governor
Andrew Cuomo declaring last week he will launch a major programme to build
a zero carbon economy for the state.

New York’s Green New Deal was hailed
as a “nation-leading clean energy and jobs agenda” by the Governor’s
office, as it pledged to “aggressively put New York State on a path to
economy-wide carbon neutrality”. The plan includes doubling the state’s
solar capacity by 2025 and quadrupling its offshore wind capacity by 2035,
as part of a legally binding goal to deliver 100 per cent zero-carbon power
for the state by 2040.
https://www.businessgreen.com/bg/news/3069581/new-york-unveils-green-new-deal-with-plan-to-build-net-zero-economy

January 22, 2019 Posted by | politics, renewable, USA | Leave a comment

Fukushima sake shop opens in New York

Plainly criminal. Taking advantage of the unknowing American public and at the same time using such sales as propaganda in Japan telling to the Japanese public that it is safe, look even the Americans buy it. 
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December 2, 2018
The Fukushima government has opened a sake shop in New York specializing in brews from the prefecture.
 
The shop opened its doors on Saturday inside a commercial facility in Manhattan. Officials from the prefecture and the facility celebrated the occasion.
 
Sake sales are booming in the United States. Exports to the US have increased 50 percent in the past 10 years.
 
Sakes brewed in Fukushima Prefecture have performed well in competitions. The shop offers 50 brands from 11 breweries.
 
One customer said he’s tasted Japanese sake several times before, but none were as good as the one he tried in the shop. He said he would like to visit Fukushima someday.
 
A Fukushima tourism official said breweries in the prefecture are having a hard time finding buyers since the 2011 disaster. He said he hopes the shop will boost the image of Fukushima’s sakes worldwide.
 
The shop will operate until March next year.

December 7, 2018 Posted by | Fukushima 2018 | , , , , | Leave a comment

Prisoners in New York will learn about their radiation exposure due to body scans

November 10, 2018 Posted by | radiation, USA | Leave a comment

U.S. Appeals Court upholds New York program to subsidize nuclear plants

Federal court upholds New York program to subsidize nuclear plants, Washington Examiner, by Josh Siegel, September 27, 2018 The U.S. Court of Appeals for the 2nd Circuit on Thursday upheld the legality of New York’s program that props up struggling nuclear plants to provide electricity without carbon dioxide emissions.

The court said the state subsidy program does not interfere with the power that the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission has over wholesale electricity markets, as charged by other electricity suppliers who filed suit, including the Electric Power Supply Association.

The three-judge panel acknowledged that New York’s program would keep nuclear plants alive, and raise costs for competitors, but said those effects were “incidental.”

……..The ruling comes a few weeks after the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the 7th Circuit upheld a similar policy in Illinois………

FERC has filed amicus briefs in the cases affirming the programs do not preempt the agency’s legal authority set by the Federal Power Act.

Critics say the programs bailout failing nuclear plants in the state, that are struggling to compete with lower cost natural gas and renewables.

The Trump administration is considering a bigger, widely contested plan, on a national scale, to require grid operators to buy power from a select list of coal and nuclear plants.

Environmentalists cheered the state court rulings as a signal that courts consider states to have broad power to set clean energy goals, and to impose policies to achieve them. For example, many states have renewable portfolio standards requiring generators to obtain more and more of their electricity from clean sources.

“The 2nd Circuit’s decision rejecting a challenge to [New York’s] ZEC program may be narrowly covered as a decision affecting nuclear resources, but the much bigger reason it is major news is because it eliminates legal uncertainty for states in designing clean energy programs,” said Miles Farmer, a clean energy attorney at the Natural Resources Defense Council, in a Twitter post. https://www.washingtonexaminer.com/policy/energy/federal-court-upholds-new-york-program-to-subsidize-nuclear-plants

September 28, 2018 Posted by | Legal, USA | Leave a comment

New York environmentalists and state politicians want to opt out of nuclear subsidy program

Environmental groups, state politicians want to opt out of nuclear subsidy program http://www.wxxinews.org/post/environmental-groups-state-politicians-want-opt-out-nuclear-subsidy-program, 

After U.S. Energy Secretary Rick Perry came to Oswego County last week to praise the state’s support of nuclear power plants, several environmental groups and New York politicians sent a letter to state leaders saying the opposite.

The idea of using public dollars to keep financially struggling nuclear power plants afloat because they don’t emit carbon dioxide was never popular among some environmental groups that consider the facilities dangerous and dirty because of the radiation and nuclear waste they create. So when the New York Public Service Commission (PSC) voted two years ago to bail them with about $8 billion in fees on consumer’s energy bills, they left the door open to a potential compromise.

Then-chair of the PSC Audrey Zibelman said they would look at letting customers opt into a program to buy 100 percent of their energy from clean, renewable sources instead of paying into the system that supports the nuclear subsidies. Jessica Azulay with the Alliance for a Green Economy says it’s time for the state to make good on that promise.

“What this letter does that we filed with the governor and the chair of the Public Service Commission is to try to win the right for consumers to decide that they no longer want to pay this extra money toward nuclear energy and they want to instead adopt 100 percent renewable energy,” Azulay said. “We think that this is a really common sense approach – maybe a first step – in reversing the nuclear subsidies by allowing people to vote with their dollars and really create the pathway for renewable energy to accelerate in New York and phase out the nuclear reactors.”

To date, the nuclear subsidies have cost New York ratepayers about $650 million. A spokesperson for the PSC says the price would be even greater had the plants been allowed to shut down because they could have been replaced with fossil fuels that would have emitted carbon dioxide, setting back the state’s goals to lower carbon dioxide emissions 40 percent by 2030.

 

August 10, 2018 Posted by | politics, USA | Leave a comment

Over 120 organisations working to get rid of New York’s subsidies to nuclear power

More than 120 groups push NY to lift broad nuclear subsidies. by Associated Press & CNYCentral , August 7th 2018 ALBANY, N.Y. — Some 130 environmental groups are taking aim at New York’s nuclear subsidies.

August 8, 2018 Posted by | opposition to nuclear, politics, USA | Leave a comment

A nuclear bomb terrorist attack on New York – the sequence of events

What a nuclear attack in New York would look like This Is What a Nuclear Bomb Looks Like (picture of a somewhat rusting ordinary van) Ny Mag. 12 June 18 

If America is attacked, the strike probably won’t come from North Korea. And it will be even scarier than we imagine. …….

There are currently at least 2,000 tons of weapons-grade nuclear material stored in some 40 countries — enough to make more than 40,000 bombs approximately the size of the one that devastated Hiroshima. Stealing the material would be challenging but far from impossible. Russia stockpiles numerous bombs built before the use of electronic locks that disable the weapons in the event of tampering. Universities that handle uranium often have lax security. And insiders at military compounds sometimes steal radioactive material and sell it on the black market. Since 1993, there have been 762 known instances in which radioactive materials were lost or stolen, and more than 2,000 cases of trafficking and other criminal activities.
Once terrorists obtained the uranium, they would need only a small team of sympathetic engineers and physicists to build what is known as a gun-type nuclear bomb, like the one dropped on Hiroshima. A gun-type nuke uses traditional explosives to fire a slug of uranium through a tube directly into another chunk of uranium, fracturing huge numbers of atoms and unleashing a massive amount of energy. Compared to modern nuclear missiles, which are far more powerful and complex, constructing a crude gun-type nuke is fairly straightforward.  …..
The last step in the process — smuggling the weapon into the United States — would be even easier. A ten-kiloton bomb, which would release as much energy as 10,000 tons of TNT, would be only seven feet long and weigh about 1,000 pounds. It would be simple to transport such a device to America aboard a container ship, just another unseen object in a giant metal box among millions of other metal boxes floating on the ocean. Even a moderate amount of shielding would be enough to hide its radioactive signature from most detectors at shipping hubs. Given all the naturally radioactive items that frequently trigger false alarms — bananas, ceramics, Brazil nuts, pet deodorizers — a terrorist group could even bury the bomb in bags of Fresh Step or Tidy Cats to fool inspectors if a security sensor was tripped.
In 1946, a senator asked J. Robert Oppenheimer, the physicist who played a key role in the Manhattan Project, what instrument he would use to detect a nuclear bomb smuggled into the United States. Oppenheimer’s answer: “A screwdriver.” Amazingly, our detection systems have still not caught up to this threat: One would essentially have to open and visually inspect every single crate and container arriving on America’s shores. Once the container ship reached a port like Newark, terrorists would have no trouble loading the concealed bomb into the back of an unassuming white van and driving it through the Lincoln Tunnel directly into Times Square.
 

The Blast

One of the greatest misconceptions about nuclear bombs is that they annihilate everything in sight, leaving nothing but a barren flatland devoid of shape and life. In truth, the physical destruction inflicted by a nuclear explosion resembles that of a combined hurricane and firestorm of unprecedented proportion. Consider one example: A ten-kiloton nuclear bomb detonated on the ground in Times Square would explode with a white flash brighter than the sun. It would be seen for hundreds of miles, briefly blinding people as far away as Queens and Newark. In the same moment, a wave of searing heat would radiate outward from the explosion, followed by a massive fireball, the core of which would reach tens of millions of degrees, as hot as the center of the sun.

When such a bomb explodes, everyone within 100 feet of ground zero is instantaneously reduced to a spray of atoms. There are photos from Hiroshima and Nagasaki showing eerie silhouettes of people cast against a flat surface, such as a wall or floor. These are not, as is sometimes claimed, the remains of vaporized individuals, but rather a kind of morbid nuclear photograph. The heat of the nuclear explosion bleaches or darkens the background surface, except for the spot blocked by the person, leaving a corresponding outline. In some cases the heat released by the explosion will also burn the patterns of clothing onto people’s skin.

Near the center of the blast, the suffering and devastation most closely conform to the fictional apocalypse of our imaginations. This is what it would look like within a half-mile of Times Square: Few buildings would remain standing. Mountains of rubble would soar as high as 30 feet. As fires raged, smoke and ash would loft into the air. The New York Public Library’s stone guardians would be reduced to pebble and dust. Rockefeller Center would be an unrecognizable snarl of steel and concrete, its titanic statue of Prometheus — eight tons of bronze and plaster clad in gold  — completely incinerated. 

Within a half-mile radius of the blast, there would be few survivors. Those closest to the atomic bombings on Hiroshima and Nagasaki have described the horrors they witnessed: People with ripped sheets of skin hanging from their bodies; people whose brains were visible through their shattered skulls; people with holes for eyes. Sakue Shimohira watched her mother’s charred body crumble into ash as she tried to wake her. Shigeko Sasamori’s father cut off the blackened husk of skin all over her face, revealing pools of pus beneath.

As the fireball travels outward from the blast, people, buildings, and trees within a one-mile radius would be severely burned or charred. Metal, fabric, plastic, and clay would ignite, melt, or blister. The intense heat would set gas lines, fuel tanks, and power lines on fire, and an electromagnetic pulse created by the explosion would knock out most computers, cell phones, and communication towers within several miles.

Traveling much farther than the fireball, a colossal pressure wave would hurtle forth faster than the speed of sound, generating winds up to 500 miles per hour. The shock wave would demolish the flimsiest buildings and strip the walls and roofs off stronger structures, leaving only their naked and warped scaffolding. It would snap utility poles like toothpicks and rip through trees, fling people through the air, and turn brick, glass, wood, and metal into deadly projectiles. A blast in Times Square, combined with the fireball, would carve a crater 50 feet deep at the center of the explosion. The shock wave would reach a diameter of nearly 3.2 miles, shattering windows as far as Gramercy Park and the American Museum of Natural History.

All this would happen within a few seconds.

From Van to Tsunami

Five different nukes, and what they would do if unleashed on Times Square.……….http://nymag.com/daily/intelligencer/2018/06/what-a-nuclear-attack-in-new-york-would-look-like.html

June 20, 2018 Posted by | Reference, USA, weapons and war | Leave a comment