Nuclear core was unarmed, but 6,000 pounds of explosives detonated
WYFF News 4 Mar 13, 2017, Mars Bluff SC – This weekend was the 59th anniversary of an event many people don’t know happened in South Carolina. On March 11, 1958, a nuclear bomb was accidentally dropped on a small community near Florence.
A U.S. Air Force Boeing Stratojet that was flying out of Hunter Air Force Base took off at about 4:30 p.m. headed for the United Kingdom and then on to Africa. The aircraft was carrying nuclear weapons as a precaution in case war broke out with the Soviet Union.
The captain of the aircraft accidentally pulled an emergency release pin in response to a fault light in the cabin, and a Mark 4 nuclear bomb, weighing more than 7,000 pounds, dropped, forcing the bomb bay doors open. The bomb, which lacked an armed nuclear core, plunged 15,000 feet to the ground below…..http://www.wyff4.com/article/moose-on-the-loose-animal-races-to-catch-up-to-snowboarder/9131703
DID HITLER HAVE A NUKE? Declassified US documents suggest Adolf Hitler successfully tested nuclear bomb during World War Two https://www.thesun.co.uk/news/2938529/declassified-us-documents-suggest-adolf-hitler-successfully-tested-nuclear-bomb-during-world-war-two/ Two pilots claim they witnesses a mushroom cloud while flying over Nazi Germany in 1944 BY ALLAN HALL 23rd February 2017
What I DO KNOW for a fact, is that, when war ended, Werner Von Braun and 260 other nuclear scientists were quickly taken to USA to work on America’s atomic bomb project
ADOLF Hitler was on the brink of unleashing a nuclear bomb and plotted to drop the devastating weapons on London. By Henry Holloway / Published 5th February 2017 Nazi scientists were “years” ahead of their Western counterparts as they steamed ahead with developing a nuclear device.As well as the tank divisions sweeping across the Europe and naval war in the Pacific, a secret war was waged between the Allies and the Axis.
World War Two became a race to the nuclear bomb, and the Nazis were on the verge of winning, says respected British author Damien Lewis.
The former war reporter spent dozens of hours trawling through archives and documents as declassified files revealed the true threat from the Nazi nuke.
Hitler’s scientists were “two years” ahead of the allies, he said.
Nazi engineers planned to mount dirty bombs and nuclear warheads on the tips of Hitler’s devastating Vengeance V2 rockets – which could not be shot down by AA guns or chased by fighter planes because they were too fast.
Classified missions and projects to undercut the Nazis to either beat them to the bomb, or stop their nuclear programme saw a secret war waged beneath World War 2. Nazi nukes were a threat right up to the final days of the war when the Americans discovered the Third Reich’s nuclear reactor hidden in a cave beneath a church in the tiny village of Haigerloch, Germany.
“General Groves was the head of the Manhattan Project. In April 1945 he cabled the White House and told them ‘only now can I tell you the threat of a Nazi nuclear strike is over’,” said Mr Lewis.
Winston Churchill and Franklin D. Roosevelt took the threat so seriously the British Prime Minister flew across the Atlantic in a giant flying boat for a meeting about the threat in January, 1942, he adds. Hitler considered nuclear bombs the “ultimate terror weapons” and would have targeted cities such as London and New York.
Daily Star Online revealed Hitler’s obsession with terror weapons such as the monster tank the Panzer-1000 Ratte.
Mr Lewis told Daily Star Online the Germans had the resources and manpower to produce “scores of improvised nuclear devices and they could have engineered a full atom bomb”.
He said: “You are looking at a scenario where the world leaders were very concerned about the technology and its kill-rate.
“So behind the scenes you had special operations prioritising efforts to stop Hitler’s nuclear programme.
“Part of it was the Manhattan Project, part of it was sabotage efforts, and the third part was all about getting ready.” The author revealed reports to the Allies in late 1943 on the Nazi nukes said the Reich “had the technology and the wherewithal”.
“The concern was rooted in absolute science, the Nazis had working reactors, they had the raw materials, and they had the delivery system,” said Mr Lewis.
Both the US and Britain quaked in the face of the nuclear bomb, with discussions about evacuating Washington at Christmas, 1943, and rumours of a successful blast test in Nazi-occupied Russia.
Nazi efforts were hampered by daring Allied missions such as Operation Gunnerside which sabotaged Hitler’s heavy water plant in Norway – one of the key elements needed for atom bombs.
Operation Peppermint was a massive undertaking launched to prepare the troops during the D-Day landings from nuclear attack and analyse V2 detonation sites for radiation. But as the war on the sea, in the air and on land tipped in favour of the allies, Mr Lewis believes the Nazis hoped to use a nuclear weapon as a “bargaining chip” to sue for peace.
However, he says it is a mystery as to why the Third Reich did not use the technology that was tantalisingly within their reach.
“It is a brilliant question,” he said “I cannot give an answer from documents, but there will be an answer in a secret file somewhere which won’t be available for another 50 years.
“There is always back channels, always conversations during a war, so I am sure there must have been something like that.
“The allies must have said ‘if you use the nuclear material you have to hand, we will respond in this way’ – it does not make sense other wise.”
Scottish cold war nuclear submarine collision kept secret for 43 years
Documents published by CIA reveal crash between US and Soviet subs a few miles off coast of Scotland in 1974, Guardian, Matthew Weaver, 26 Jan 17, Two nuclear submarines from rival sides in the cold war collided a few miles off the coast of Scotland in an incident that was covered up for 43 years.
The potentially catastrophic crash occurred in November 1974 when the SSBN James Madison, armed with 16 Poseidon nuclear missiles, was heading out of the US naval base at Holy Loch, 30 miles north-west of Glasgow.
Soon after leaving the port it hit an unidentified Soviet submarine that had been sent to tail it, according to a cable to then US secretary of state Henry Kissinger, marked “secret eyes only” [pdf].
The cable, sent by national security adviser Brent Scowcroft, said: “Have just received word from the Pentagon that one of our Poseidon submarines has just collided with a Soviet submarine.
“The SSBN James Madison was departing Holy Loch to take up station when it collided with a Soviet submarine waiting outside the port to take up trail.
“Both submarines surfaced and the Soviet boat subsequently submerged again. There is no report yet of the extent of damage. Will keep you posted.”
The cable was published by the CIA on 17 January as part of a mass release of more than 12m pages of previously classified reports in 930,000 documents.
The cable corroborates an until-now unconfirmed report on the incident in the Washington Post on 1 January 1975 by the investigative journalist Jack Anderson. He reported that the collision left a 9ft scratch on the side of the James Madison and that the two submarines came within inches of sinking one another.
Another document marked “top secret” [pdf]released in the same batch expressed alarm that the news of the collision had leaked.
It said: “On 3 January, the NID [National Intelligence Daily] ran an item on the collision just off Holy Loch of US Polaris submarine and a Soviet attack submarine. Unfortunately, Jack Anderson had run the same news in the Washington Post a day or two earlier.
“This pre-emption on Anderson’s part forced the surfacing (no pun intended) of a piece of information in a current intelligence 2 months after the event occurred. …..
Kate Hudson, general secretary of the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament, said the secret cable exposed the “enormous risks” of nuclear weapons.
“The history of nuclear weapons is a history of near misses, accidents, potential catastrophes and cover-ups. This latest example joins 25 other near misses that could have led to nuclear war.”
CND is calling for an inquiry into Trident, the successor to the Poseidon programme, after it emerged that a malfunctioning missile with the potential to carry a nuclear warhead was forced to self-destruct in mid-air off the US coast last June.
Hudson added: “These enormous risks have to be acknowledged particularly when we also now face the increasing likelihood of cyber-attack on nuclear weapons systems. With advancing technological developments added to the already dangerous mix there can be no confidence that nuclear weapons are a credible part of British security in the 21st century……… https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2017/jan/25/nuclear-submarine-collision-cold-war-cia-scotland
The secret nuclear bunker built as the UK’s last hope, Dug for an underground ‘shadow factory’ for aircraft during World War Two, the Drakelow tunnels were re-purposed as a nuclear bunker to be used by the UK government. We went inside., BBC By William Park 4 January 2017
Deep beneath a hill in the Worcestershire countryside, about 20 miles west of Birmingham, lie a series of hidden tunnels. Once home to a secret aeroplane factory during World War Two, they were later repurposed to protect the UK in the event of a nuclear war: it’s from here that the government would have continued to run the country.
“This would have been the last resort of the UK government,” says Michael Scott, a volunteer with the Drakelow Preservation Trust, which is restoring the site. The Trust’s aim is to reopen parts of the tunnels as a museum to preserve their history in World War Two and the Cold War. But the organisation remains some years away from finishing the work, and without much funding, the volunteers are restricted mostly to repainting walls.
When cities across the UK came under siege during the war, the government needed to find a way to continue production of tanks, aircraft and ammunition. The solution was to build underground factories – also called shadow factories – away from large cities. The Drakelow Tunnels housed one of them. And the same remoteness and fortress-like qualities that made Drakelow an effective underground aircraft factory would later make it the location of choice for responding to nuclear attack in Britain.
Today, the entrance used by Scott and the other volunteers is called Adit A; it’s where the security office would have stood. Most of the hillside around the entrance is bare, revealing a sandstone mass towering above us that would have made this site virtually bomb-proof in World War Two.
Adit A shows many signs of the alterations that were made to Drakelow Tunnels to retrofit it for use as a nuclear bunker – including covered air vents that would have protected those inside from fallout. Through the heavy steel door, visitors would have had to strip, incinerate their clothes and shower as they decontaminated themselves……..
There are examples of similar subterranean shadow factories in Germany, too. The largest was Mittelwerk, Kohnstein, which produced V-1 and V-2 bombs from 1943 to 1945. The move underground was a direct result of the destruction of other, above-ground V-2 production plants, like Peenemunde in northern Germany. Unlike Drakelow, Mittelwerk was left in ruins after the war.
Perhaps the most intriguing underground network of Nazi military tunnels is the series of seven structures that make up Project Riese. Buried in the Owl Mountains – then part of Germany but now in south-west Poland near the Czech border – these sites were never finished and documents about their full purpose seem to have been destroyed…….
Top-secret military construction did not end with World War Two. In 1949, as the Cold War bloomed, the UK government began to build 15 fortified war rooms across the country.
But in the case of the much bigger threat of a nuclear attack, these buildings would not have been enough to protect their inhabitants. They were too small, making them unable to support a workforce for the extended period of time they’d need to remain indoors to avoid the fallout of a nuclear explosion. They also were built too close to the major cities which could have been a target for an attack: five were built in London, for example.
Having seen the effect of a nuclear attack in Japan, the British government commissioned the Strath Committee, led by head of the Central War Plans Secretariat William Strath, to analyse the potential effects of a nuclear attack on the UK. In 1955 the committee published the Strath Report which found that even a ‘limited’ attack would have devastating consequences. Food and water would be contaminated, the NHS would be overwhelmed with four million serious casualties and 12 million deaths, and industry would shut down. In short, the “social and economic fabric of the country [would be] destroyed”.
Strath recommended the UK invest in a network of nuclear bunkers to protect the population. However, estimates put the cost of such an enormous series of bunkers at £1.25bn (equal to £30.88bn in 2016)……… http://www.bbc.com/future/story/20170103-the-secret-nuclear-bunker-built-as-the-uks-last-hope
Cabinet files reveal plan to shoot nuclear intruders
PM Margaret Thatcher, who was told of the order, said she was “horrified” that the intrusion had succeeded.
The papers are among records filed in 1989 and 1990 and released on Friday……..
‘Grave danger’ at Faslane
Three anti-nuclear demonstrators successfully cut through the perimeter fence at Faslane, on the Clyde, in the early hours of 10 October 1988. The demonstrators went through an open submarine hatch to reach the control room of HMS Repulse, a ballistic missile submarine, where they sprayed anti-nuclear slogans before being arrested.
A fourth demonstrator attempted to swim into the base, but was caught…….
Since the Eighties, anti-nuclear protesters have peacefully camped outsideFaslane, which is now the home of Trident nuclear weapons…….http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-38369742
These are the 12 largest nuclear detonations in history http://www.businessinsider.com/largest-nuclear-detonations-in-history-2016-12//?r=AU&IR=T/#youve-seen-the-worlds-largest-man-made-explosions-11 [good maps and pictures] Business Insider
Since the first nuclear test on July 15, 1945, there have been over 2,051 other nuclear weapons tests around the world.
No other force epitomizes the absolute destructive power humanity has unlocked in the way nuclear weapons have. And the weapons rapidly became more powerful in the decades after that first test.
The device tested in 1945 had a 20 kiloton yield, meaning it had the explosive force of 20,000 tons of TNT. Within 20 years, the US and USSR tested nuclear weapons larger than 10 megatons, or 10 million tons of TNT. For scale, these weapons were at least 500 times as strong as the first atomic bomb.
To put the size of history’s largest nuclear blasts to scale, we have used Alex Wellerstein’s Nukemap, a tool for visualizing the terrifying real-world impact of a nuclear explosion.
11 (tie). Soviet Tests #158 and #168
On August 25 and September 19, 1962, less than a month apart, the USSR conducted nuclear tests #158 and #168. Both tests were held over the Novaya Zemlya region of Russia, an archipelago to the north of Russia near the Arctic Ocean.
No film or photographs of the tests have been released, but both tests included the use of 10-megaton atomic bombs. These blasts would have incinerated everything within 1.77 square miles of their epicenters while causing third-degree burns up to an area of 1,090 square miles.
10. Ivy Mike
On November 1, 1952, the US tested Ivy Mike over the Marshall Islands. Ivy Mike was the world’s first hydrogen bomb and had a yield of 10.4 megatons, making it 700 times as strong as the first atomic bomb.
Ivy Mike’s detonation was so powerful that it vaporized the Elugelab Island where it was detonated, leaving in its place a 164-foot-deep crater. The explosion’s mushroom cloud traveled 30 miles into the atmosphere.
9. Castle Romeo
Romeo was the second US nuclear detonation of the Castle Series of tests, which were conducted in 1954. All of the detonations took place over Bikini Atoll. Castle Romeo was the third-most powerful test of the series and had a yield of 11 megatons.
Romeo was the first device to be tested on a barge over open water instead of on a reef, as the US was quickly running out of islands upon which it could test nuclear weapons.
The blast would have incinerated everything within 1.91 square miles.
8. Soviet Test #123
On October 23, 1961, the Soviets conductednuclear test #123 over Novaya Zemlya. Test #123 used a 12.5 megaton nuclear bomb. A bomb of this size would incinerate everything within 2.11 square miles while causing third-degree burns in an area of 1,309 square miles.
No footage or photographs of this nuclear test have been released.
7. Castle Yankee
6. Castle Bravo
Castle Bravo, detonated on February 28, 1954, was the first of the Castle series of tests and the largest US nuclear blast of all time.
Bravo was anticipated as a 6-megaton explosion. Instead, the bomb produced a 15-megaton fission blast. Its mushroom cloud reached 114,000 feet into the air.
The US military’s miscalculation of the test’s size resulted in the irradiation of approximately 665 inhabitants of the Marshall Islands and the radiation poisoning death of a Japanese fisherman who was 80 miles away from the detonation site.
3 (tie). Soviet Tests #173, #174, and #147
From August 5 to September 27, 1962, the USSR conducted a series of nuclear tests over Novaya Zemlya. Tests #173, #174, and #147 all stand out as being the fifth-, fourth-, and third-strongest nuclear blasts in history.
All three produced blasts of about 20 megatons, or about 1,000 times as strong as the Trinity bomb. A bomb of this strength would incinerate everything within 3 square miles.
No footage or photographs of these nuclear tests have been released.
2. Soviet Test #219
On December 24, 1962, the USSR conductedTest #219 over Novaya Zemlya. The bomb had a yield of 24.2 megatons. A bomb of this strength would incinerate everything within 3.58 square miles while causing third-degree burns in an area up to 2,250 square miles.
There are no released photos or video of this explosion.
1. The Tsar Bomba
On October 30, 1961, the USSR detonated the largest nuclear weapon ever tested and created the biggest man-made explosion in history. The blast, 3,000 times as strong as the bomb used on Hiroshima, broke windows 560 miles away, according to Slate.
The flash of light from the blast was visibleup to 620 miles away.
The Tsar Bomba, as the test was ultimately known, had a yield between 50 and 58 megatons, twice the size of the second-largest nuclear blast.
A bomb of this size would create a fireball 6.4 square miles large and would be able to give humans third-degree burns within 4,080 square miles of the bomb’s epicenter.
The first atomic bomb
The first atomic blast was a fraction the size of the Tsar Bomba, but it was still an explosion of almost unimaginable size.
According to the NukeMap, a weapon with a 20-kiloton yield produces a fireball with a radius of 260 meters, making its total width the size of 5 football fields. It would spew deadly radiation over an area 7 miles in width, and would produce third-degree burns in an area over 12 miles in width.
If dropped over lower Manhattan, a bomb of that size would kill over 150,000 people and produce fallout stretching all the way to central Connecticut, according to the NukeMap.
The first atomic bomb was tiny by nuclear weapons standards. But its destructiveness is sill nea lry impossible to grasp.
A 1912 news article ominously forecasted the catastrophic effects of fossil fuels on climate change http://qz.com/817354/scientists-have-been-forecasting-that-burning-fossil-fuels-will-cause-climate-change-as-early-as-1882/ Akshat Rathi 24 Oct 16, A short news clip from a New Zealand paper published in 1912 has gone viral as an example of an early news story to make the connection between burning fossil fuels and climate change.
The French physicist Joseph Fourier had made the observation in 1824 that the composition of the atmosphere is likely to affect the climate. But Svante Arrhenius’s 1896 study titled, “On the influence of carbonic acid in the air upon the temperature on the ground” was the first to quantify how carbon dioxide (or anhydrous carbonic acid, by another name) affects global temperature. Though the study does not explicitly say that the burning of fossil fuels would cause global warming, there were scientists before him who had made such a forecast.
The earliest such mention that Quartz could find was in the journal Nature in December of 1882. The author HA Phillips writes:
According to Prof Tyndall’s research, hydrogen, marsh gas, and ethylene have the property to a very high degree of absorbing and radiating heat, and so much that a very small proportion, of say one thousandth part, had very great effect. From this we may conclude that the increasing pollution of the atmosphere will have a marked influence on the climate of the world.
Phillips was relying on the work of John Tyndall, who in the 1860s had shown how various gases in the atmosphere absorb heat from the sun in the form of infrared radiation. Now we know that Phillips was wrong about a few scientific details: He ignored carbon dioxide from burning coal and focused more on the by-products of mining. Still, he was drawing the right conclusion about what our demand for fossil fuels might do to the climate.
Newspapers around the world took those words published in a prestigious scientific journal quite seriously. ……..
Nichols found many examples between 1883 and 1912, where newspapers, including the Philadelphia Inquirer, Kansas City Star, and York Daily, wrote articles about what rising carbon dioxide levels would do the climate.
All through the 19th century, the increasing use of coal was hard to miss. Towns and cities across the world were becoming noticeably polluted because of factories, and later steam trains. In this light, it’s not surprising that a tiny New Zealand newspaper carried an article in 1912 about how the ever-increasing use of fossil fuels might change Earth’s climate. http://qz.com/817354/scientists-have-been-forecasting-that-burning-fossil-fuels-will-cause-climate-change-as-early-as-1882/
the Prypiat River [Ukraine] flowing through the empty town and nuclear power plant was already a black, dead waterway. Not one bird flew or stray cat mewed….Reindeer [Norway] with ultra-high levels of radioactivity were killed that winter’s day. Many were calves.
Nuclear not for Tassie – The Mercury – The Voice of Tasmania, 26 March, 2011, Two of my own most memorable experiences as a journalist over the past three decades are linked to nuclear energy.
The first was in late 1986 when, just a few months after the Chernobyl nuclear disaster in the Ukraine region of the then-Soviet Union, I visited the site as one of the first Australian journalists allowed into the area.The burnt and melted-down nuclear reactor had not then been encased in its final concrete sarcophagus; Geiger counters and special suits were mandatory, and the closest we could go was the nearby deserted town of Prypiat.
But it was Prypiat rather than glimpses of the Chernobyl power plant 4km away that left the most chilling impression.
A thriving town of 49,000 people think all of Hobart’s Eastern Shore suburbs combined prior to the April 25, 1986, nuclear catastrophe.
Its residents all had to abandon their homes the following day after radiation reached fatal levels.
Not that the Soviet authorities immediately told locals a disaster was unfolding on their doorsteps, despite the new “glasnost” era of openness and transparency just proclaimed by new-look president Mikhail Gorbachev.
It was only when elevated radiation levels were detected in clouds above Sweden that night that Soviet officials finally admitted an accident and a fire had occurred at Chernobyl’s number 4 nuclear reactor earlier in the afternoon.
Visiting Prypiat a few months later was a haunting experience. Mouldy lunches and mugs still sat on kitchen tables, dusty coats were thrown over armchairs and bedrooms with their crumpled blankets and family snaps looked as if their occupants might return at any moment.
Children’s toys and bikes were scattered around outside the concrete apartment blocks, as rampant weeds reclaimed the ghost town’s city square.
But the Prypiat River flowing through the empty town and nuclear power plant was already a black, dead waterway. Not one bird flew or stray cat mewed.
Just two months later, I was on assignment in the snowy wilds of northern Norway with a family of traditional reindeer herders, in the dark December days of early winter.
For these families, who have for generations grazed their herds up on the mountain tops and who eat reindeer meat for breakfast, lunch and dinner as part of their reindeer-centric tradition 1986 was a terrible watershed year.
Chernobyl’s radioactive cloud had drifted over Norway for several days in late April, dropping its deadly heavy caesium molecules in spring rain and mist.
The lichen that grow above the snowline absorbed the radioactive load; turning these hardy plants into deadly fodder for the deer, which rely on them as food.
For the first time, the semi-wild reindeer herds had to be removed from the mountains, possibly for decades, as the lichen would not be fit to eat for many years. Instead they were ordered into barns to be fed hay brought in from other areas of Norway.
Reindeer with ultra-high levels of radioactivity were killed that winter’s day. Many were calves.
And later that night Norwegian Government experts delivered another fatal blow. They told the same herders reindeer meat could not be safely eaten more than twice a week until years later, when their herds would be free of all radioactive contamination.
It has been impossible not to reflect on my own two sombre brushes with nuclear power gone wrong, as the world has held its breath over the past two weeks wondering how close Japan’s stricken Fukushima nuclear plant has been to the total core meltdown experienced at Chernobyl.
Already water and milk on parts of Japan has been declared unsafe for drinking, leafy vegetables and crops in surrounding farms banned from sale and seaweed from nearby waters found to be contaminated…….
In 1968, a B-52 Bomber Crashed (With 4 Super Lethal Nuclear Weapons Onboard That ‘Exploded’) The National Interest, Matthew Gault December 15, 2016 Throughout the 1950s and ’60s American bombers carrying nuclear weapons crisscrossed the globe, ready at a moment’s notice to fly into the heart of Russia and bomb it back to the stone age. Strategic Air Command — a now defunct branch of the U.S. Air Force — commanded this airborne alert force.
It was once the pride of the American military. For more than a decade, SAC bombers were no more than 15 minutes from nuking Russia. But the shifts on the bombers were long — sometimes more than 24 hours — and keeping such an alert force ready was taxing on pilots and crew.
There were many accidents.
In 1958, a B-47 carrying a nuke collided with an F-86 Sabre in the skies above Savannah, Georgia. The B-47 jettisoned its nuclear payload into the Atlantic Ocean. Authorities never recovered the bomb.
Months later, another B-47 dropped its nuke over South Carolina when a bomb technician aboard accidentally activated the emergency release. The bomb’s conventional explosives detonated and destroyed a nearby house.
Those were bad, but SAC and its airborne alert survived them. Then, in 1968, a B-52 crashed near Thule Monitoring Station in Greenland and spilled its payload all over the ice. It was one disaster too many, and it signaled the end of America’s airborne alert program … and Strategic Air Command’s prestige……..
The Arctic’s climate is harsh and the radar station was fragile. Outages were frequent, and SAC needed redundancy to ensure that it didn’t attack Moscow just because it lost contact with Thule.
So SAC did what it always did. It strapped some nukes on a bomber. The air command sent one of its airborne alert bombers — complete with live nukes — to fly above the Thule monitoring station 24 hours a day … forever.
It seemed silly to keep live nukes in the air above the world’s head all day, every day. It was a sword of Damocles and it dropped in 1968.
On Jan. 21, 1968, fire swept through the cabin of the airborne B-52 watching Thule station. Smoke and flames consumed the plane and the seven crew members ejected. Six survived. The bomber crashed into an ice cap in the bay near the base.
The conventional explosives in the plane’s four hydrogen bombs exploded and cracked their nuclear payloads. Radioactive elements slid out of the bombs and onto the ice.
SAC’s Operation Chrome Dome was already on its last legs. The Thule accident just confirmed what many politicians and military leader already thought — keeping a fleet of nuclear-armed bombers in the air at all times was dangerous and insane……….
Only one of the B-52’s crew died during the Thule disaster, but his death wasn’t the end of the tragedy. The hydrogen bombs spread jet fuel and radioactive materials across the ice cap. It busted up the flow of the sea, blackened the ice and spread plutonium, uranium, americium and tritium into the ice and water……..
the Danish workers who helped clean up the site are dying of cancer. Crested Ice was a rush job done under pressure from the international community, and its leadership cut corners. American and Danish workers didn’t have the protective gear they needed to work with the radioactive materials.
The Danes tried to sue the United States for compensation and 1987, but failed. In 1995, Copenhagen paid a settlement to 1,700 members of the crew. Crested Ice, the plight of its workers and the possibility that America left contaminated material behind is a recurring story in the Danish press to this day……..This first appeared in WarIsBoring here. http://nationalinterest.org/blog/the-buzz/1968-b-52-bomber-crashed-4-super-lethal-nuclear-weapons-18746
BBC staff offered chance to survive nuclear holocaust – but wives left at home http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2016/07/23/bbc-staff-offered-chance-to-survive-nuclear-holocaust—but-wive/ Telegraph Reporters 23 JULY 2016
BBC employees were offered the chance to survive a nuclear holocaust by broadcasting from an underground bunker, but they could not tell their wives, newly released files reveal.
The broadcaster secretly drew up plans during the Cold War for how it would run a Wartime Broadcasting System in the event of a major disaster.
Early versions of the plan – known as the ‘War Book’ – say that staff were “assigned” or “designated” to go underground, but later editions suggest they were “invited”. Chosen workers were informed not to tell their wives or bring them to the bunker, the files released by the BBC reveal.
“My clearest memory is of a discussion about whether people with spouses could bring them along,” Bob Doran, an experienced editor in Radio News in the 1980s, who attended a civil service seminar in Yorkshire said. The answer was no.
BBC bosses planned to set up 11 protected bunkers – known as ‘Regional Seats of Government’ – spread across the UK, each with a studio and five staff from nearby local radio stations.
A bunker at the Engineering Training Department at Wood Norton in Worcestershire would be a headquarters staffed by 90 BBC staff including engineers, announcers, 12 news editors and sub-editors.
The output would be controlled by the government, but the BBC made a collection of cassette tapes of old radio comedies to entertain the public.
Shows chosen to amuse listeners during Armageddon included the Goon Show, Just a Minute and Round the Horne.
The start was America’s Manhattan project – developing the atomic bomb. Then came the horror of the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Then came – the shock and guilt, and the attempt to turn the nuclear project into something good – “atoms for peace’ “electricity too cheap to meter”.
Of course the costing for “cheap” nuclear energy did not include the health and environmental toll of uranium mining, which, as always, was to be paid by indigenous people. Costing also did not include the virtually eternal toll of the cleaup of radioactive trash. And of course, there would be no accidents, (no Chalk River, Rocky Flats, Windscale, Mayak, Lenin icebreaker, Three Mile Island, Chernobyl, Tomsk, Hanford, Fukushima Daiichi)
Meanwhile, the military-industrial complex continued its production of nuclear weapons. Other countries adopted the “peaceful nuke”, so that they could develop nuclear weapons. The nuclear arms race was underway.
FROM THE ARCHIVES For this month, each week we’ll be posting an item from the past. Lest we forget.
The press release was drafted ahead of Operation Buffalo at Maralinga, during which troops were ordered to crawl through areas hit by fallout. It was not meant to be made public
Top secret document reveals British troops were knowingly exposed to radiation during nuclear fallout tests – mirror.co.uk, by Susie Boniface, 2 Jan 2011, British troops WERE knowingly exposed to radiation during nuclear fallout tests, a top-secret document has finally proved. Continue reading
the long-term effects of low-level radiation exposure have consistently been downplayed, distorted or concealed by scientists, the nuclear industry and the government.
It seems that while the US and the USSR had a hard time cooperating on nuclear arms at that time, they had a tacit agreement to cover up each other’s nuclear power mistakes.
these facts, like all those about nuclear power and nuclear weapons testing, were kept secret and released only through the efforts of private citizens and a few courageous researchers and journalists.
At least 250,000 American troops were directly exposed to atomic radiation during the 17 years of bomb testing here and in the Pacific, but they have been totally ignored by the government and the Army.
There is little doubt that hundreds died and that countless others developed illnesses that led to death from various cancers, blood disorders and chronic body ailments. Today the government still rejects all claims for such illnesses.
The press also played a role in soothing public fears.
the US has led the world in setting examples of deliberate deceit, suppression of information and harassment of nuclear critics
Professionals, in order to perform their work, resist truth strongly if it calls the morality of their work into question. They sincerely believe they are helping humankind. In addition, scientific research involves so many uncertainties that scientists can, with an easy conscience, rationalize away dangers that are hypothetical or not immediately observable. They also have an intellectual investment if not a financial one in continuing their work as well as families to support, and nuclear science in particular has been endowed not only with government money and support but great status and prestige.
In order to perform professional work, one must not only believe one is doing good but must also rationalize the dangers. Indeed, with regard to ionizing radiation, this is quite easy inasmuch as the risks of radiation exposure at any level are statistical and not immediately manifested.
Pro Nuclear Propaganda: How Science, Government and the Press Conspire to Misinform the Public http://www.lornasalzman.com/collectedwritings/pro-nuclear.html by Lorna Salzman Hunter College, Energy Studies program, 1986 After the Chernobyl nuclear reactor disaster in the Soviet Union, there was much finger-wagging in the US about the suppression of information there, and the purported differences in reactor design and safety requirements between Russia and the US, which made a similar accident here unlikely if not impossible Continue reading
Today, journalism is in a sorry mess. Yet still, there are courageous examples of investigative journalism – such as the McClatchy report on nuclear workers’ health. All too often, revealing and informative reports on nuclear matters are forgotten, as celebrity sex scandals and sport dominate the mass media.
This month we will remember and refresh stories from our archives. It’s important that, while we look at current events, these events are illuminated by knowledge of their history. Especially today, as the nuclear industry struggles desperately to survive – and to portray itself as “clean, green and of course, peaceful”, the truth of its dirty history must be remembered.
In the first incident, on September 26, a Soviet lieutenant colonel named Stanislav Petrov saw that according to the early-warning system, the Americans had launched numerous missiles against the Russians. He suspected an error and ignored the warnings. His decision to breach protocol and not inform his superiors averted a panicked retaliation.
The second incident is less well known. An American lieutenant general, Leonard Perroots, also chose to ignore warnings – this time that the Soviet Union had gone on high nuclear alert. Like Petrov, he did nothing, and once again may have prevented an accidental nuclear war.
This was the “Able Archer War Scare”, which occurred over ten days in the November of the same year. Recently declassified documents inform Able Archer 83, a new book by the Cold War historian Nate Jones which shows just how close the world came to disaster.
Superpower mutual suspicion was rife in the early 1980s. President Reagan’s notorious “Evil Empire” speech, combined with imminent plans to deploy the Pershing II missile system in Europe, which could destroy Moscow with 15 minutes warning, had made the Kremlin especially paranoid. Was the US preparing a first strike to win the Cold War? The USSR’s ageing and sickly premier, Yuri Andropov, certainly thought Reagan would have no qualms about it. “Reagan is unpredictable. You should expect anything from him,” he told Anatoly Dobrynin, Soviet ambassdor to the US, at the time.
President Ronald Reagan – “Evil Empire” Speech
Another reason the leadership feared a US first strike was Project RYaN, an intricate Soviet intelligence-gathering effort designed to detect preparations for a surprise nuclear attack. It was being kept busy by US aircraft testing Soviet air defence systems by flying towards USSR airspace as part of the PSYOPs (psychological military operations) programme.
The aircraft would deliberately provoke an alert and monitor the Soviet command and control responses, while demonstrating American strength and resolve at the same time. It was an example of the “Peace Through Strength” policy that was seen as vital by Reaganites to help the US emerge from its own perceived era of military weakness under President Carter.
But this US chest-beating led to a resurgence of intense mutual mistrust, with tragic consequences. On September 1 1983, Korean Air Lines flight 007 was shot down by a Russian fighter, killing all 269 passengers and crew. The Kremlin claimed the jet was an American spy plane deep in Russian territory.
In this climate of extreme tension, NATO’s “Autumn Forge” war game season kicked off. NATO war games had been an annual occurrence, but the Soviets feared this particular edition might be cover for a surprise attack.
The final phase of the 1983 series, codenamed Able Archer 83, was different from previous years: dummy nuclear weapons, which looked like the real thing, were loaded on to planes. As many as 19,000 American troops were part of a radio-silent airlift to Europe over 170 flights. Military radio networks broadcast references to “nuclear strikes”.
This sent Project RYaN into overdrive and the Soviets went on high nuclear alert. Warsaw Pact non-essential military flights were cancelled; nuclear-capable aircraft were placed on alert; nuclear weapons were taken to their launch vehicles; and Chief of the General Staff Nikolai Ogarkov descended into a command bunker outside Moscow to coordinate a possible response to a NATO strike……….
Too often, intelligence agencies collect data and fit it into whichever threat hypothesis is in vogue. We should learn from Reagan’s 1983 insight and not wait for the brink of war: in the nuclear age, whatever an adversary’s political goals, we cannot afford to downplay their genuine fears about military posturing.
We have never yet returned to the awful global tensions of 1983, but the rivalries between the world’s three leading powers remain real enough. We need to ensure that we are never again left relying on the gut feelings of one or two soldiers to avoid stumbling into disaster. https://theconversation.com/how-the-world-reached-the-brink-of-nuclear-war-not-once-but-twice-in-1983-68998
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