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Protect and Survive – 1970’s UK Public infommercials On Nuclear War Preparation

RADIOACTIVE FALLOUT & FALLOUT IN THE AFFECTED AREA BRITISH CIVIL DEFENSE FILM 72592  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1xjX_aoRUTQ

WW3 fears: How Britons were warned ‘NO ONE is safe’ during nuclear announcementBRITONS were told to “stay indoors” as “no place in the United Kingdom is safe” from the deadly threat of a nuclear bomb striking the nation during a broadcast intended to educate the population.

Express UK, By CALLUM HOARE Apr 12, 2019   Chilling video footage reveals how the UK was seriously preparing for a nuclear attack from the Soviet Union more than 40 years ago. It came as part of the “Protect and Survive” guide that was handed out during Margaret Thatcher’s Government during the Cold War in the late Seventies and early Eighties. Its purpose was to advise the public on how to act in the event of an imminent nuclear threat.

BRITONS were told to “stay indoors” as “no place in the United Kingdom is safe” from the deadly threat of a nuclear bomb striking the nation during a broadcast intended to educate the population.

Chilling video footage reveals how the UK was seriously preparing for a nuclear attack from the Soviet Union more than 40 years ago. It came as part of the “Protect and Survive” guide that was handed out during Margaret Thatcher’s Government during the Cold War in the late Seventies and early Eighties. Its purpose was to advise the public on how to act in the event of an imminent nuclear threat.

One part of a video, which was broadcasted on state TV, discussed nuclear fallout – the residual radioactive material propelled into the upper atmosphere following a nuclear blast. It explained how this toxic dust and ash can be carried by the wind and therefore poses a threat to everyone in the UK.  The narrator says: “Fallout is dust that is sucked up from the ground by the explosion

Fallout can kill and since it can be carried for great distances by the wind, it can settle anywhere – so no place in the United Kingdom is safe.

“The risk is as great in the countryside as in the towns, nobody can tell where the safest place will be.”

The documentary went on to reveal the Government’s safest advice of “stay at home” in the event of an attack.

It added: “You are just as safe in your own home as anywhere else.

“In fact, you are far better off in your home because it is the place you know and are known. So stay where you are – if you leave, your local authority may take it over for homeless families.

“And if you move, the authorities in the new place will not help you with food, accommodation or other essentials.”

The “Protect and Survive” campaign was released at a time when tensions between the Soviet Union and the Western Bloc were at an all-time high.

US President Ronald Reagan’s election victory in 1980 brought the world the closest it had been to nuclear war since the Cuban Missile Crisis of 1962, as his “evil empire” narrative proved to be particularly antagonising to the Soviet Politburo.

The Soviets racked up their defence and placed SS-30 missiles across eastern Europe as a show of force.

However, the US retaliated by convincing its allies in Europe to host its Pershing 2 ballistic missiles and ground-launched cruise missiles.

The fate of the world hung in the balance and Mrs Thatcher’s determination to make sure Britons were prepared for the worst is a testament to how seriously the situation was taken at the time.

The guide also taught families how to create a fallout room and, within that, an inner refuge.

It said families may have to stay inside there for at least two weeks, so stocking up on food and supplies was essential. Britons were urged to store three-and-a-half gallons of water each, keeping it in the bath or basins.

They were also given advice should they not be at home when a nuclear bomb struck.

The public was advised to “lie flat in a ditch and cover exposed skin”.

In the event of someone dying in a fallout room, their family should “place the body in another room and cover it as securely as possible”.

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April 13, 2019 Posted by | history, safety, weapons and war | Leave a comment

Nuclear weapons accidents and losses 1950s – 2000s

“Broken Arrows” – The World’s Lost Nuclear Weapons  https://interestingengineering.com/broken-arrows-the-worlds-lost-nuclear-weapons

Since the early 1950s, the United States and Russia have had numerous accidents with their nuclear bombs, and a number have even gone missing. By  Marcia Wendorf, April, 06th 2019  “Broken Arrow” is the name given to nuclear weapon accidents, whether they be by accidental launching, firing, detonating, theft or loss of the weapon. The U.S. admits to having 32 broken arrows worldwide, with six nuclear weapons having been lost and never recovered.

 
In the simplest terms, the way a nuclear weapon works is that a chemical high explosive compresses nuclear material until a critical mass is reached and fission is achieved. During fission, the nuclei of certain heavy atoms split into smaller, lighter nuclei, and release excess energy in the process. In some elements, such as certain isotopes of uranium and plutonium, the fission process releases excess neutrons which trigger a chain reaction if they’re absorbed by nearby atoms.

Thermonuclear weapons (hydrogen bombs) utilize a different process, that of fusion. When exposed to extremely high temperatures and pressures, some lightweight nuclei can fuse together to form heavier nuclei, releasing energy in the process. Those high temperatures and pressures are achieved by fission, so the trigger for a thermonuclear weapon is a nuclear weapon.

The 1950s

The first broken arrow occurred on February 14, 1950, when a U.S. Convair B-36 en route from Eielson Air Force Base near Fairbanks, Alaska to Carswell AFB in Fort Worth, Texas, crashed in northern British Columbia after jettisoning a Mark 4 nuclear bomb into the Pacific Ocean. The bomb was never found, and it contained a substantial amount of natural uranium plus 5,000 pounds (2,300 kg) of high explosives. According to the U.S. Air Force, the bomb didn’t contain the plutonium core necessary for a nuclear detonation. This was the first loss of a nuclear weapon in history.

On April 11, 1950a B-29 bomber carrying a nuclear weapon, four spare detonators, and a crew of 13 crashed into a mountain near Albuquerque, New Mexico. The bomb’s high explosives detonated and the nuclear capsule was damaged but it was recovered. All thirteen crew members onboard the aircraft died.

On August 5, 1950 at Fairfield-Suisun AFB, California, a B-29 bomber carrying a Mark 4 nuclear bomb experienced problems with two of its propellers and crashed while attempting an emergency landing. In the ensuing fire, the bomb’s high explosives detonated and killed 19 crew members and rescue personnel.

On November 10, 1950, near Riviere-du-Loup, Quebec, Canada, which is about 300 miles northeast of Montreal, a U.S. B-50 aircraft jettisoned a Mark 4 nuclear bombover the St. Lawrence River. The weapon’s high explosive detonated on impact, but the core was lacking a necessary component and did not detonate. The explosion did scatter almost 100 pounds (45 kg) of uranium. The airplane went on to land safely.

On March 10, 1956, a a B-47 aircraft, carrying three crewmen and two nuclear cores from MacDill Air Force Base near Tampa, Florida, was en-route to Ben Guerir Air Base, Morocco, and had completed its first aerial refueling without incident. It failed to make contact with the tanker for a second refueling somewhere over the Mediterranean Sea, and it was reported missing. The kind of weapons the plane was carrying remains undisclosed, but the type of nuclear bombs commonly carried by B-47s was the Mark 15, which would have had a combined yield of 3.4 megatons. No trace of the plane or the two nuclear cores has ever been found.

On July 27, 1956, a U.S. B-47 bomber was on a training exercise when it crashed into a nuclear weapons storage facility at the Lakenheath Air Base in Suffolk, England. The entire crew of the aircraft was killed. Known as an “igloo”, the storage facility contained three Mark 6 nuclear bombs, one of whose detonators had been sheared off in the accident. Investigators concluded that it was a miracle that the bomb hadn’t exploded.

On May 22, 1957, a plane was transporting a nuclear bomb to Kirtland Air Force Base when suddenly, the bomb fell through the bomb bay doors and crashed into a field near Albuquerque, New Mexico. The bomb’s high explosives detonated, creating a crater 12 feet deep and 25 feet wide, however, the nuclear capsule was found intact. The only casualty was a cow who had been grazing close to the crash site.

On July 28, 1957, a U.S. Air Force C-124 aircraft from Dover Air Force Base, Delaware was carrying three nuclear bombs over the Atlantic Ocean. The plane experienced a loss of power, and the crew jettisoned two nuclear bombs into the ocean, and they have never been recovered.

On October 11, 1957a plane carrying a nuclear bomb crashed on takeoff at Homestead Air Force Base, Florida. The plane burned for four hours, and the high explosives detonated, however, the nuclear capsule and its carrying case were found intact and only slightly damaged.

On February 5, 1958, near Savannah, Georgia, during a practice exercise, an F-86 fighter plane collided with a B-47 bomber that was carrying a 7,600-pound (3,400 kg) Mark 15 nuclear bomb. The F-86 crashed after the pilot ejected from the plane. The crew of the B-47 requested permission to jettison the bomb in order to reduce weight and prevent the bomb from exploding during an emergency landing. The bomb was jettisoned at 7,200 feet (2,200 m) over the Wassaw Sound off the shores of Tybee Island. Subsequent searches failed to locate the weapon.

It is not known if the bomb had its plutonium trigger, but if it did, the blast effects of a detonation would have been a fireball having a radius of 1.2 miles (2 km) and thermal radiation causing third-degree burns for 12 miles.

On March 11, 1958, a U.S. Air Force Boeing B-47E-LM Stratojet took off from Savannah, Georgia, and was scheduled to fly to the U.K. The aircraft was carrying nuclear weapons in case a war with the Soviet Union broke out. Captain Earl Koehler noticed a fault light in the cockpit, indicating that the bomb harness locking pin had not engaged. He sent Captain Bruce Kulka to the bomb bay area to fix the problem.

As Kulka reached around the bomb to pull himself up, he mistakenly grabbed the emergency release pin, and the Mark 6 bomb dropped onto the bomb bay doors. The bomb’s weight forced the doors open, and the bomb dropped 15,000 ft (4,600 m) to the ground. Two sisters, six-year-old Helen and nine-year-old Frances Gregg, along with their nine-year-old cousin Ella Davies, were playing 200 yards (180 m) from a playhouse their father had built for them.

The bomb struck the playhouse, its high explosives detonated and it created a crater 70 feet (21 m) wide and 35 feet (11 m) deep. Fortunately, the fissile nuclear core had been stored elsewhere on the plane. All three children were hurt, as were their father, mother and brother. The family sued the Air Force and received US $54,000. Today, the crater is still visible although overgrown by vegetation.

Sometime in 1958, a B-47 aircraft carrying a nuclear weapon inadvertently released the bomb over Mars Bluff, South Carolina. Luckily, the bomb lacked the fissile nuclear core, but the conventional explosives detonated, injuring six people and damaging buildings.

At a U.S. air base at Greenham Common, England on February 28, 1958, a B-47 carrying a nuclear weapon caught fire and completely burned. While the weapon didn’t explode, in 1960, a group of scientists found high levels of radioactive contamination at the base. The U.S. government has disclosed no further information about the incident.

On November 4, 1958, at Dyess Air Force Base in Texas, a plane carrying a nuclear weapon burst into flames during takeoff. The weapon’s high explosives detonated, killing a crewman, but the nuclear core remained intact. Only half a mile from the crash site was Butterfield Elementary School.

On November 26, 1958, at Chennault Air Force Base, Louisiana, a B-47 carrying one nuclear weapon caught fire while on the ground. This fire damaged the nuclear capsule and its protective case, and there was nuclear contamination of the area.

In Hardinsberg, Kentucky, on October 15, 1959, a B-52 carrying two nuclear weapons and a KC-135 refueling plane collided midair. Both planes and both bombs fell to the ground. The crash killed four crew members, and the two nuclear weapons were only slightly damaged. No radiation leakage was detected.

The 1960s

On January 24, 1961, a B-52 carrying two three- or four-megaton nuclear bombs was over Goldsboro, North Carolina when it suffered the structural failure of its right wing. The aircraft broke apart and the two nuclear weapons were released. On one bomb, three of its four arming mechanisms had activated.

In 2013, a Freedom of Information Act request confirmed that only a single switch out of four had prevented the bomb’s detonation. One of the recovery team recalled, “Until my death, I will never forget hearing my sergeant say, ‘Lieutenant, we found the arm/safe switch.’ And I said, ‘Great.’ He said, ‘Not great. It’s on arm.'”

The second bomb plunged into a muddy field, and its tail was discovered 20 feet below ground. A decision was made to leave the uranium and plutonium in place, and The United States Army Corps of Engineers purchased a 400-foot (120 m) circular easement over the buried components. Had either of the bombs gone off, everyone within an 8.5 mile (13.7km) radius would have been killed.

On March 14, 1961 a B-52F-70-BW Stratofortress bomber carrying four nuclear weapons experienced a problem with its cabin temperature. After temperatures climbed to between 125 degrees F and 160 degrees, the crew descended to 12,000 feet and depressurized the plane. After all four engines flamed out, the pilot put the plane into a dive and all crew members bailed out.

The plane crashed into a barley field near Yuba City, California, and the nuclear weapons were released. The weapons’ multiple safety measures protected against a nuclear explosion or release of radioactive material. A fireman was killed and several others were injured while rushing to the accident scene.

On July 4, 1961, a K-19 “Hotel”-class Soviet nuclear-powered ballistic missile submarine was off the coast of Norway. The cooling system of one of its two nuclear reactors failed, and the temperature of the nuclear core climbed to 800 degrees Celsius, threatening to melt down its fuel rods. The crew and the submarine itself were contaminated by radiation and several fatalities were reported.

On October 25, 1962, at the Duluth Sector Direction Center near Duluth, Minnesota, an intruder was shot while scaling a fence around the facility. This triggered a “sabotage alarm”, which triggered a warning at Volk Field in Wisconsin. This alarm triggered nuclear armed F-106A interceptor aircraft to be sent to the source of the original alarm – Duluth.

Because of the Cuban Missile Crisis, the U.S. was at DEFCON 3, and there were no practice drills, everything was the real deal. When Duluth communicated that nothing was seriously wrong, the planes were only stopped by a car that raced down the runway after them. The intruder turned out to have been a black bear.

On January 13, 1964, a U.S. B-52 carrying two nuclear bombs suffered severe turbulence, and its vertical stabilizer broke off. The crew bailed out and the plane crashed near Savage Mountain outside Barton, Maryland. The bombs were found “relatively intact in the middle of the wreckage”. Three crewmen were killed as a result of the accident.

On December 8, 1964, at Bunker Hill Air Force Base, Indiana, several Strategic Air Command (SAC) aircraft were taxiing down a runway. The jet blast from one aircraft caused the plane behind it to slide off the runway and catch fire. The five nuclear weapons onboard the plane burned, but radioactive contamination was limited to the immediate area of the crash and was subsequently removed.

On December 5, 1965, an A-4E Skyhawk attack aircraft carrying a 1-megaton thermonuclear weapon, rolled off the deck of the U.S.S. Ticonderoga and fell into the Pacific Ocean. The plane, its pilot, Douglas Webster, and the weapon sank in 16,000 feet of water and were never found. It wasn’t until 15 years later that the U.S. Navy finally admitted that the accident had taken place only 80 miles from Japan’s Ryuku island chain, and this caused an uproar in Japan, which prohibits nuclear weapons from being brought into its territory.

Sometime during the mid-1960s, in the Kara Sea, the Soviet nuclear-powered icebreaker Lenin encountered problems with its nuclear reactors, possibly experiencing a meltdown. It was forced to dump the reactors into the sea and they have never been found.

The most well-known broken arrow occurred on January 17, 1966 near Palomares, Spain. A U.S. B-52 aircraft, carrying four nuclear weapons, collided with its refueling tanker, a KC-135, at 31,000 feet (9,450 m) and crashed over the Mediterranean Sea. Of the four Mk28-type hydrogen bombs, three were found on land near the fishing village of Palomares. The high explosives in two of the bombs had detonated and released plutonium contamination across a 0.77-square-mile (2 km2) area.  The fourth bomb, was recovered intact after a 2 ½ month-long search. During the U.S. cleanup effort, over 1,400 tons of soil were sent to a nuclear storage site.

On January 21, 1968, a fire erupted onboard a B-52 bomber operating out of Thule Air Base in the Danish territory of Greenland. The plane was carrying four B28FI thermonuclear bombs, and it crashed onto the sea ice in North Star Bay. The conventional explosives detonated and the nuclear capsules ruptured and dispersed their contents, resulting in radioactive contamination.

The U.S. and Denmark launched a clean-up operation, but the secondary stage of one of the nuclear weapons was never found. Workers involved in the clean-up operation have been experiencing radiation-related illnesses, and they have sought compensation.

On April 11, 1968, a Soviet diesel-powered “Golf”-class ballistic missile submarine sank 750 miles northwest of the Hawaiian island of Oahu. U.S. intelligence determined that the submarine had been carrying three nuclear-armed ballistic missiles and several nuclear-tipped torpedoes. The U.S. Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), partnered with industrialist Howard Hughes to build a specially-designed deep-water salvage ship, the “Glomar Explorer” to recover the lost sub. They were only partly successful when the Glomar raised approximately half of the submarine.

Also during the Spring of 1968, the U.S.S. Scorpion, a nuclear attack submarine, mysteriously sank about 400 miles southwest of the Azores islands. Besides the tragic loss of all 99 crew members, the Scorpion was carrying two nuclear-tipped weapons with yields of up to 250 kilotons.

The 1970s

On April 12, 1970, in the Atlantic Ocean about 300 miles northwest of Spain, a Soviet “November”-class nuclear-powered attack submarine experienced a problem with its nuclear propulsion system. A merchant ship attached a tow line and attempted to pull the submarine to safety, but the submarine sank, killing all 52 crew members on board.

Off the coast of Sicily, Italy on November 22, 1975, twelve years to the day of his assassination, the U.S. aircraft carrier John F. Kennedy collided with the cruiser USS Belknap during an exercise. The collision occurred at night and during high seas. One, or possibly both ships, contained nuclear weapons, but no nuclear contamination was detected by rescue personnel.

The 1980s

On September 19, 1980, near Damascus, Arkansas, crewman were performing maintenance on a Titan II Inter-continental Ballistic Missile (ICBM). A crewman accidentally dropped a wrench into the silo, and it punctured the missile’s fuel tank. The missile leaked fuel for over eight hours before finally exploding, killing one and injuring 21 others. The blast destroyed the entire compound, but the nuclear warhead was recovered intact.

On October 3, 1986, 480 miles east of Bermuda, a Soviet “Yankee I”-class nuclear-powered ballistic missile submarine suffered an explosion and fire in one of its missile tubes. An attempt was made to tow the submarine, but it sank on October 6, 1986 in 18,000 feet of water, taking its two nuclear reactors and approximately 34 nuclear weapons down to the bottom of the sea.

About 300 miles north of the Norwegian coast on April 7, 1989, a Soviet nuclear-powered attack submarine, the “Komsomolets”, caught fire and sank. The vessel’s two nuclear reactors and two nuclear-armed torpedoes were lost, along with 42 of the 69 crew members.

On August 10, 1985, at the Chazhma Bay repair facility, about 35 miles from the city of Vladivostok, Russia, an “Echo”-class Soviet nuclear-powered submarine suffered a reactor explosion that released a cloud of radioactivity. Fortunately, the cloud never reached Vladivostok, but ten Soviet officers were killed by the explosion.

The 1990s

Also in the White Sea, on September 27, 1991, a “Typhoon”-class nuclear-powered ballistic missile submarine suffered a missile launch malfunction during a test. No other information is available about this incident.

In the Barents Sea on February 11, 1992 a collision occurred between a CIS (Commonwealth of Independent States) “Sierra”-class nuclear-powered attack submarine and the U.S. nuclear-powered attack submarine “Baton Rouge”. The Commonwealth of Independent States is comprised of Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Moldova, Russia, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Ukraine, and Uzbekistan. The vessels reportedly suffered only minor damage, but a dispute arose over whether the incident had happened inside or outside of Russian territorial waters.

On March 20, 1993, in the Barents Sea, the U.S. nuclear-powered submarine Grayling collided with a Russian Delta III nuclear-powered ballistic missile submarine. Both vessels reportedly only suffered minor damage.

The 2000s

On August 12, 2000, also in the Barents Sea, a CIS “Oscar II” class submarine, the “Kursk”, suffered a torpedo failure and explosion. The ship sank with all 118 men onboard. No evidence of radiation contamination was detected.

On August 29, 2007, at Minot Air Force Base in North Dakota, six AGM-129 ACM cruise missiles, each loaded with a W80-1 variable yield nuclear warhead, were mistakenly loaded onto a B-52H bomber, and transported to Barksdale Air Force Base in Louisiana. The nuclear warheads were supposed to have been removed before transport, but they weren’t..

Once at Barksdale, the missiles with the nuclear warheads remained mounted to the aircraft for 36 hours and were not protected by the various mandatory security precautions for nuclear weapons. The missiles were never reported as missing, by Minot.

April 8, 2019 Posted by | history, incidents, Reference, weapons and war | Leave a comment

First nations’ land in Australia was nuclear bombed by the British

Living with the legacy of British Nuclear testing: Bobby Brown

Maralinga No More: The British Nuclear Bombing of First Nations Lands , Sydney Criminal Lawyers, By Paul Gregoire   31/03/2019 “……..Around 800 kilometres northeast of Adelaide, Maralinga was chosen as the main nuclear testing site, as the government found that the Maralinga Tjarutja people – who’d been living there since time immemorial – weren’t actually using the land.

The local Indigenous peoples were never consulted about the testing. Many were forcibly removed from their lands and taken to Yalata mission in SA, which effectively served as a prison camp. Some remained in the vicinity of the test site. Signs written in English were erected warning them to leave.

Indeed, on 27 September 1956, when the first nuclear device, One Tree, was detonated at Maralinga, First Nations peoples had no rights under Commonwealth Law. The vote didn’t come until 1962, while citizenship rights weren’t granted until the 1967 Referendum.

A toxic legacy

The Menzies Liberal government passed the Defence (Special Undertakings) Act 1952, which effectively allowed the British to access remotes parts of Australia to test atomic weapons. The general public for the most part had no awareness or understanding of what would take place.

British and Australian servicemen built a test site, airstrip and township at Maralinga known as Section 400. Australian troops signed documents under Australian secrecy laws that required them never to divulge any operational information, with the threat of harsh prison sentences.

Between September 1956 and October 1957, the British set off seven above ground nuclear bombs ranging from 1 to 27 kilotons. The first four were part of Operation Buffalo, while the last three made up Operation Antler.

Following these tests, the British continued to carry out around 600 minor nuclear warhead tests up until 1963. And it was these that caused the greatest contamination. The most dire being the Vixen B tests that led to massive contamination of plutonium, which has a half-life of over 24,000 years.

The impact upon First Nations

Around 1,200 Aboriginal people were exposed to the radioactive fallout of the tests. This could lead to blindness, skin rashes and fever. It caused the early deaths of entire families. And long-term illnesses such as cancer and lung disease became prevalent amongst these communities.

As for those who were moved away from their homelands, their way of life was destroyed. The Maralinga Tjarutja Land Rights Act was passed by the SA parliament in 1984, which ensured the damaged land was handed back freehold to traditional owners, as soon as it became “safe” again.

The Maralinga Tjarutja people, as well as other First Nations peoples, gradually returned to their homelands. Australia and reluctant British governments carried out initially terribly shonky clean-ups, that got progressively better, of the Maralinga site in 1967, 2000 and 2009.

And the British government eventually paid affected Aboriginal peoples $13.5 million in compensation for the loss and contamination of their lands in 1995.

Prior to Maralinga

The late Yankunytjatjara elder Yami Lester was just a boy living at Walatinna in the South Australian outback, when at 7 am on 15 October 1953, the British detonated a nuclear bomb at a test site at Emu Fields, northeast of Maralinga.

Mr Lester watched as a long, black cloud of smoke stretched out from the bomb site towards his homelands. In the wake of two tests carried out at Emu Fields within 12 days of each other, Yemi permanently lost his site, sudden deaths occurred, and his people suffered long-term illnesses.

The Emu Fields blasts were not the first on Australian soils. The initial nuclear bomb blast was carried out on the Monte Bello Islands in October 1952, while two more blasts took place in this Indian Ocean region in 1956.

And just like the Maralinga and Emu Fields blasts, the radioactive waste from these islands travelled across the entire continent. Two hotspots of excessive radioactive fallout resulting from the Emu Fields blasts were the NSW towns of Lismore and Dubbo.

Adding insult to injury

In 1989, the federal government announced it was establishing a nuclear waste dump near Coober Pedy in SA on the lands the Kupa Piti Kungka Tjuta, a senior women’s council representing the local peoples, many of whom had directly suffered the impacts of British nuclear testing.

As opposition to the dump grew, the government used the provisions of the Land Acquisition Act 1989 to seize the land, where it proposed to store the waste that was being produced at Sydney’s Lucas Heights reactor.

n July 2004, after a six year long battle the Kungka Tjuta senior women brought a stop the nuclear waste repository being situated on their land. And the federal government then turned to the NT’s Muckaty Station to dump the NSW waste. However, after that fell through, it’s still looking for a site.

The global threat continues

Maralinga took place at the height of the Cold War, after the US government refused to continue its nuclear program with British participation. And following World War Two, the crumbling empire sought to develop its own nuclear capacities in its faraway colonial backyard.

But, while many believe the threat of nuclear war faded with the end of the Cold War, renowned political analyst Noam Chomsky still warns that the two major threats in the world today are climate change and nuclear war.

Chomsky has pointed to a March 2007 article published in the Bulletin of the Atomic Sciences that revealed the “extremely dangerous” threat the Trump administration’s nuclear forces modernisation program is creating.

And as of January this year, the Doomsday Clock – which measures the likelihood of human-made global catastrophe – is still set at two minutes to midnight, as it first was 12 months prior. Based on the two threats identified by Chomsky, this setting is the closest to midnight it’s been since 1953.    https://www.sydneycriminallawyers.com.au/blog/maralinga-no-more-the-british-nuclear-bombing-of-first-nations-lands/?fbclid=IwAR0UIC6VK_x6i8NAStEyZHZXK-Sld-IH4HFyE9gy-Zngp4RzaLtVeiWV7tM

April 6, 2019 Posted by | AUSTRALIA, history, weapons and war | Leave a comment

The very dangerous history of making plutonium weapons triggers – “pits” at Rocky Flats

Dangerous history of pit production  https://www.aikenstandard.com/opinion/guest-column-dangerous-history-of-pit-production/article_a22aa6b8-4ab2-11e9-83dc-7b695e05d8a7.html Dr. Rose O. Hayes

Recent comments on the proposed pit production at Savannah River Site warrant a cautionary comment. All is not wonderful news where pit production is concerned. It has a very dirty past. Awareness of that past is paramount to the protection of CSRA public health and safety.

The primary U.S. plant to smelt plutonium, purify it and shape it into “triggers” (pits) for nuclear bombs was Rocky Flats Nuclear Weapons Site. From 1952 to 1989, Rocky Flats manufactured more than 70,000 pits at a cost of nearly $4 million apiece. Each one contained enough breathable plutonium particles to kill every person on earth. Virtually all of the waste produced there remains on-site. As we have learned through the SRS waste storage struggles, there is no place for it to go and no government plan to develop a repository. What’s made at a nuclear processing plant, stays at the nuclear processing plant.

Much went wrong at Rocky Flats due to mismanagement, criminal government indifference and public complacency. It took more than 30 years for the public to become so concerned with the pollution hazards issuing from the plant before the Department of Energy (DOE) was forced to hold a public meeting in 1988 to address the problems. One example: The plant produced one boxcar a week packed with 140 drums of radioactive waste. They were parked on site. Moisture penetration of a drum could have triggered an explosion. Ground water, soil and air pollution were also major hazards. A subsequent DOE study indicated that Rocky Flats was the most dangerous site in the country.

On June 6, 1989 more than 70 FBI and EPA agents raided the plant to begin an official investigation of the contractor and DOE for environmental crimes. The plant manager acknowledged that problems were solved “when DOE wanted to pay for them.” The final FBI/EPA allegations included concealment of environmental contamination, false certification of federal environmental reports, improper storage and disposal of hazardous and radioactive waste, and illegal discharge of pollutants into creeks flowing to drinking water supplies. Another independent study found there was enough lost plutonium in the plant exhaust ducts to create the possibility of an accidental nuclear reaction. According to a later DOE report, about 62 pounds of plutonium was lost in the plant air ducts; enough for seven nuclear bombs.

A grand jury was convened to hear the case on Aug. 1, 1989. The contractor argued in court that it could not fulfill its DOE contract without also violating environmental laws. In order to remediate the damage, on Sept. 28, 1989, EPA added Rocky Flats to its Superfund cleanup list. The grand jury worked until May 1991, then voted to indict the plant contractor, five employees and three individuals working for DOE.

The Department of Justice refused to sign the indictments despite more than 400 environmental violations that occurred during the decades of pit production at the plant. All charges were dropped. A settlement guaranteed the contractor and all indicted individuals immunity. Although the contractor pleaded guilty to criminal violations of the federal hazardous waste law and the Clean Water Act, the fine was only $18.5 million, less than the corporation had collected in bonuses for meeting production quotas that year. The contractor’s annual fee to run the site was estimated at $10 million, with an additional $8.7 million paid from DOE for management and safety excellence.

The contractor was also allowed to sue for reimbursement of $7.9 million from taxpayers for fees and costs related to its case. In addition, the contractor’s plea agreement indemnified it from further claims and all future prosecution, criminal or civil. The trial records are permanently sealed. Further, the contractor argued that everything it did at Rocky Flats was at the behest of DOE and maintained the right to receive future government contracts.

Grand jury members asked to write their own report but the judge refused to read it or release it to the public. Not surprisingly, the report was leaked to the press and printed in a Denver newspaper and Harper’s magazine. In January 1993, a Congressional committee finally issued a report revealing evidence of high-level intervention by Justice Department officials for the purpose of reducing the contractor’s fines.

DOE has estimated that it will take until 2065 to clean up Rocky Flats, at a cost to American taxpayers of more than $40 billion. One DOE official testified to the Senate Armed Services Committee that some weapons plants, like Rocky Flats, may never be cleaned up because we lack the technology to do so at a reasonable cost. Another investigator, testifying before the U.S. Senate’s Governmental Affairs Committee, stated he did not believe it possible to reverse the harm done at Rocky Flats.

Could this history repeat itself at SRS? Without a comprehensive cradle to grave plan with built-in irrevocable government funding and independent oversight, including citizen stakeholder input, SRS could become the next Rocky Flats. How likely is the government to attach such planning and funding to an SRS pit processing campaign? Past experience at SRS includes years of having to do best guess planning under continuing resolution funding and government failures to pass a budget, decades of “temporarily” storing deadly radioactive waste due to the government’s failure to meet off-site disposition commitments, budget reductions, program cancellations (most recently, the MOX project), and more.

Plutonium pit production waste is not just radioactive. It is nuclear waste on steroids. If produced here, it will likely remain in our backyard, along with all the decades old waste at SRS. There is no place for it to go. Looming large as examples of the dangers and difficulties SRS will face in having pit production waste moved off-site are the explosion and prolonged closure at the New Mexico Waste Isolation Pilot Plant (the government’s only operating repository) and the abandonment of the Yucca Mountain project.

Is it the CSRA’s responsibility to take on this mission? Pit production, while bringing jobs to the Aiken/Augusts area, will add to the decades old SRS hazards waiting for DOE remediation. SRS is already part of the DOE nuclear complex cleanup program. That mission, 30 some years old, drags on under the burden of DOE mismanagement and variable federal funding. Estimates are it will take another 70 years to clean up the DOE nuclear complex and cost about $500 billion more. Celebration of plans to add U.S. pit production to SRS is a rush to judgement. Only the usual corporations, living large off gigantic federal awards, stand to benefit.

Dr. Rose O. Hayes is a medical anthropologist who spent her career in public health. She holds a B.S., M.S., M.A., and Ph.D. from SUNY and completed post-doctoral work in skeletal biology at The George Washington University. From 2009 to 2015, she served on the U.S. Department of Energy Site-Specific Advisory Board for the Savannah River plant, chairing its Nuclear Materials Committee. 

April 1, 2019 Posted by | - plutonium, history, legal, Reference, safety, USA | Leave a comment

Revealingthe horror of white Australia’s massacres of Aboriginal people

March 5, 2019 Posted by | AUSTRALIA, history, indigenous issues, Reference | Leave a comment

At Soviet Union’s Semipalatinsk Nuclear Test Site, civilian population were used as radiation guinea pigs

WW3 SHOCK: How Soviets used OWN population as ‘NUCLEAR GUINEA PIGS’ during secret tests.  https://www.express.co.uk/news/world/1086621/WW3-soviet-union-russia-guinea-pigs-nuclear-tests-polygon-spt

THE Soviet Union used its own population as “guinea pigs” to tests the effects of its secret nuclear weapons as tensions rose with the United States, a former member of the European Parliament for Scotland revealed. By CALLUM HOARE,  Feb 13, 2019 The Semipalatinsk Test Site, also known as The Polygon, was home to at least 456 nuclear tests between 1949 and 1989, during the height of the Cold War. These top-secret missions were carried out with little regard for human or environmental impact in the surrounding area, just 11 miles away. Locals were told their area had been selected to help counter the threat from the US but were not aware of the full extent of the radiation damage.

“They were not told these weapons were nuclear and there would be the question of radioactive fallout that would affect all of them.
“The KGB doctors would wait until the wind was blowing towards the villages, then detonate the bombs and spend days afterwards checking the effects on the locals.

“They were being used as human guinea pigs.”

Mr Stevenson claimed the KGB manipulated locals so they could test the full potential of their nuclear weapons.

He continued: “The KGB ordered them to pack books and bedding behind the windows of their houses and actually stand outside.

“The women were there holding their babies and the KGB told them ‘you will witness the might of Soviet technology’ and they were actually celebrating this massive bomb, not knowing it would make them severely ill.

“Igor Kurchatov and Andrei Sakharov were the fathers of the Soviet nuclear weapons.

“[Joseph] Stalin gave an order that if the bomb did not explode, the professors and all their team would be executed.”

In 1989, the anti-nuclear movement was started in Kazakhstan called “Nevada Semipalatinsk”, led by poet Olzhas Suleimenov.

The site was officially closed by the President of Kazakhstan Nursultan Nazarbayev on 29 August 1991, denuclearising the country.

It has now become the best-researched atomic testing site in the world and is open to the public to visit.

February 14, 2019 Posted by | civil liberties, history, Russia, weapons and war | 5 Comments

North Korea’s Nukes and the ‘Forgotten War’

Hampton Sides, author of a new book about a turning point in the Korea war, explores the state of the Koreas and Trump’s forthcoming visit.  Interview, Bloomberg, By Tobin Harshaw, January 28, 2019,

“……It is a cliche that the so-called police action in Korea from 1950 to 1952 is America’s “forgotten war.” But, like most cliches, there is a lot of truth to it. American ignorance about the Korean War is a shame, and not only because it devalues the sacrifices of those who fought in it. With North Korea’s nuclear arsenal now threatening the U.S. mainland (not to mention Hawaii, Japan and the folks on the southern end of the peninsula), and President Donald Trump and Kim Jong Un set to meet again next month, a little historical perspective might be helpful.

………. HS: Be mindful of the fact that North Korea’s fear and loathing of the U.S., however warped it seems, does have legitimate historical roots. During the Korean War, the U.S. bombed that country back to the Stone Age: Every building, every bridge, every village. The stated goal was to not leave a single brick standing upon another brick. That air campaign was gratuitous and cruel. We killed hundreds of thousands of civilians. We’re a country that has a habit of bombing people and then wondering why those people hate us. As we parse the madness that is the Kim regime, we should always keep in mind that this underlying history of “terror from above” figures into that madness.

Kim strikes many as a lunatic, but his nuclear strategy has actually been quite rational and effective in achieving his goals. So coaxing him to give up his nukes will take some extremely creative and forceful negotiating. The Hermit Kingdom desperately needs many, many things from the outside world — food, medicines, capital, technology, expertise and so on, and Kim knows this. A big question is whether he would really allow his own people to benefit in any meaningful way from the flow of goods and amenities that a removal of sanctions would usher in. Another question is whether he’d actually allow outside experts to come in and closely monitor his regime’s nuclear compliance. Caveats aside, we can only hope the talks continue. I’m highly skeptical of Trump’s much-avowed skills as a deal-maker, but a deal is certainly in the interest of the whole wide world.

……….. HS: It was repeatedly said during the 2016 campaign that Douglas MacArthur is Trump’s “favorite general.” I don’t get the sense that Trump reads history — or anything else, for that matter — but it’s a telling detail. Because with Douglas MacArthur you had a grandiose and vainglorious autocrat who had surrounded himself with sycophants and yes-men. He was a colorful and interesting character — in narrative terms, a gift that keeps on giving. But he was a thoroughgoing narcissist. It was said that he didn’t have a staff; he had a court. He didn’t want to hear inconvenient information. He didn’t like experts — he was the expert. He was in love with the vertical pronoun. It was all about him.This sounds extremely familiar to me.

………. Of course, Korea should never have been divided in the first place — drawing that line created one of the great geopolitical tragedies of modern times. Many thousands of families were torn apart and never allowed to see each other again. Historically speaking, there’s no difference between northern and southern Korea. It’s one country, one language, one culture, one people.

Or at least it was. After more than 70 years of living apart, a reunification, if by some miracle it ever happened, would be a wrenching and doubtless violent process. It’s not clear how a brainwashed and traumatized people from an impoverished police state integrates into the dynamic capitalist society that is modern South Korea. Still, I believe it’s destined to happen one day.https://www.bloomberg.com/opinion/articles/2019-01-27/korean-war-in-current-events-from-the-1950s-to-a-nuclear-north

January 29, 2019 Posted by | history, North Korea, politics international, USA | Leave a comment

A close call – a nuclear war just missed, 25 years ago

24 years ago today, the world came disturbingly close to ending, The Russian military mistook a research rocket launched by scientists for a US missile attack. https://www.vox.com/future-perfect/2019/1/25/18196416/nuclear-war-boris-yeltsin-1995-norway-rocket By Today, January 25, 2019, marks the 24th anniversary of the time that I (and many millions of others) came closest in my lifetime to getting nuked to death.

That day, a group of American and Norwegian researchers launched a Black Brant XII sounding rocket from the Arctic Circle island of Andøya in an effort to study aurora borealis (the northern lights).

The scientists had warned Russia, the US, and 28 other countries that they were planning a launch, as they knew there was a chance that the rocket would be mistaken for a nuclear first strike.

But someone forgot to tell Russian radar technicians. The technicians sent an alert to Moscow suggesting that an American first strike might be incoming.

Within minutes, President Boris Yeltsin was brought his black nuclear-command suitcase. For several tense minutes, while Yeltsin spoke with his defense minister by telephone, confusion reigned,” the Washington Post’s David Hoffman reported a few years after the incident. “Little is known about what Yeltsin said, but these may have been some of the most dangerous moments of the nuclear age.”

It was, Hoffman reported, the first time a Russian or Soviet leader had used a nuclear briefcase in response to an actual alert. Yeltsin concluded that it was not actually a first strike and did not retaliate.

For that, I thank him; I don’t know if a Russian second strike would have sent enough warheads to kill 4-year-old Dylan all the way up in New Hampshire, but I’m also glad we didn’t have to find out.

But, of course, the 1995 incident was hardly the only time in the nuclear area we came close to an accidental nuclear exchange.

On October 27, 1962, Vasili Arkhipov, a Soviet navy officer, was in a nuclear submarine near Cuba when US naval forces started dropping depth charges (a mild explosive meant to signal for the submarine to identify itself). Two senior officers on the submarine thought that a nuclear war had already begun and wanted to launch a nuclear torpedo at a US vessel. But all three senior officers had to agree for the missile to fire, and Arkhipov dissented, preventing a nuclear exchange.

On September 26, 1983, Soviet Lt. Col. Stanislav Petrov was watching the Soviet Union’s missile attack early warning system when it displayed, in large red letters, the word “LAUNCH”; Petrov’s computer terminal gradually indicated that one, then two, then three, and eventually a total of five American missiles were incoming. Petrov declined to report the strike, knowing that if he did, the likely response would be a full nuclear retaliation. And it was good he did, because the Minuteman missiles the detection system thought it saw were actually just the sun’s reflection off clouds.

Oh, and while we’re at it: The Air Force lost a nuclear bomb off the coast of Georgia in 1958, where it remains today. There’s also a nuclear weapon stuck in a field in Faro, North Carolina, because of another time the Air Force screwed up; that bomb came extremely close to detonating.

Also, in 1980, an intercontinental ballistic missile exploded in Damascus, Arkansas, while it had a 9-megaton nuclear warhead — with three times more explosive power than all the bombs of World War II combined — on top of it. The warhead didn’t detonate; if it did, Arkansas wouldn’t exist and you never would have heard of Bill or Hillary Clinton.

We can live safely in the knowledge that much or all of humankind won’t suddenly vanish due to a miscalculation by a radar officer in Russia or the US, and that people near missile sites won’t find themselves incinerated accidentally due to technician error. Or we can continue to have nuclear weapons. But we have to choose.

January 26, 2019 Posted by | history, incidents, Russia | Leave a comment

Martin Luther King Jr was also an activist for nuclear disarmament

My Turn: Martin Luther King’s quest to stop the nuclear arms race    https://www.concordmonitor.com/KIngs-quest-to-stop-the-nuclear-arms-race-22786447  For the Monitor January 21, 2019,  Civil rights champion Martin Luther King Jr. was also an activist for nuclear disarmament. Dr. King used his voice for peace during the Cold War nuclear arms race.

He can inspire us today to finish the journey of eliminating all nuclear weapons.

The year was 1958. The Soviet Union and the United States were developing and testing nukes at an alarming rate. In March, Dr. King received a letter from Norman Cousins and Clarence Pickett of the National Committee for a Sane Nuclear Policy. King was asked to support a statement urging an end to nuclear testing.

He joined the SANE movement right away. In April, Dr. King also signed an appeal by Protestant clergyman on halting nuke tests.

The public outcry against nuclear tests helped encourage President Dwight Eisenhower to start negotiations with the Soviets on a test ban treaty in 1958. In October, King joined a statement to the U.S. and Soviet negotiators in Geneva.

It read “an important beginning has to be made on one vital part of the problem of world peace, the permanent internationally inspected ending of nuclear weapons tests.”

Eisenhower proposed a suspension of nuclear tests during the talks. There were no nuclear tests by the U.S. or the Soviets from late 1958 into 1961. His successor President John F. Kennedy was able to produce a limited treaty with the Soviets in 1963 banning nuclear tests in the atmosphere, underwater and outer space. Underground tests did continue.

The 1996 Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty, banning all tests including underground, has yet to be ratified by the U.S. Senate. President Donald Trump could ask the Senate to ratify this treaty and fulfill one of Dr. King’s goals of ending nuke tests forever.

Ending nuclear testing was seen as a critical step toward stopping the arms race. Dr. King understood the threat of nukes.

In 1957, in Ebony Magazine, King wrote “I definitely feel that the development and use of nuclear weapons of war should be banned. It cannot be disputed that a full-scale nuclear war would be utterly catastrophic. Hundreds and millions of people would be killed outright by the blast and heat, and by the ionizing radiation produced at the instant of the explosion.”

Dr. King recognized that spending on nuclear armaments robbed from society. King said, “A nation that continues year after year to spend more money on military defense than on programs of social uplift is approaching spiritual doom.”

The goal of eliminating nuclear weapons has been shared by successive leaders including presidents Ronald Reagan and Barack Obama. President Trump has yet to take action on eliminating nuclear weapons. Instead Trump has sought to scrap the Iran nuclear deal and the INF Treaty with Russia.

We have lost any momentum in reducing the nuclear danger. There are still close to 15,000 nukes worldwide, according to the Arms Control Association. Dr. King’s words can inspire us to jumpstart nuclear disarmament.

In his sermon “Loving Your Enemies” Dr. King said, “It is an eternal reminder to a generation depending on nuclear and atomic energy, a generation depending on physical violence, that love is the only creative, redemptive, transforming power in the universe.”

King wanted all people, all nations, to come together to work out their differences. Through what Dr. King called “a great fellowship of love” the world can achieve peace and nuclear disarmament.

Instead of nation’s wasting dollars on nukes we could feed the hungry, end disease and save the environment. As we celebrate Martin Luther King Day listen to his words and be inspired to take action for world peace.

(William Lambers is the author of “The Road to Peace” and “Ending World Hunger.”)

January 22, 2019 Posted by | history, USA | Leave a comment

Switzerland’s nuclear meltdown in 1969

Historic nuclear accident dashed Swiss atomic dreams  https://www.swissinfo.ch/eng/radioactive_historic-nuclear-accident-dashed-swiss-atomic-dreams/44696398  JAN 21, 2019 

Fifty years ago today, a nuclear meltdown occurred in Switzerland’s first experimental nuclear power station. Built in an underground chamber in Lucens in the western part of the country, it was the site of the worst nuclear accident in Swiss history.

The plant was opened in 1962, with the aim of not only producing energy, but also allowing Switzerland to develop a reactor bearing the “Made in Switzerland” label and enabling experiments with nuclear energy.

But these plans were pushed aside when disaster struck in the plant’s reactor cavity on January 21, 1969. A pressure tube burst which created a power surge leading to the reactor malfunctioning and an explosion. Luckily, a member of staff who was scheduled to be working on the reactor at the time was found safe and sound elsewhere. The plant’s underground design also prevented people and the environment from being harmed.

The accident’s severity registered at 5 out of a possible 7. The concentration of leaked cooling gas that was behind the door of the reactor cavity was lethal. It wasn’t even possible to measure the radioactivity because it was above the maximum level on the measuring instruments.

But the reactor cavern was not completely sealed: the radioactivity spread to the control room 100 metres away. In the machine cavern closest to the reactor, a team involved in shutting down the turbine had been exposed to radiation. A witness report said that since the decontamination showers had been out of order, the workers had to shower in a temporary facility without hot water.

The government ordered an inquiry into the incident and a report was eventually published ten years later. The Swiss Association for Atomic Energy found there had been no major negligence on the part of the plant’s managers. The cause of the incident was corrosion in a pressure tube, brought about by humidity.

January 22, 2019 Posted by | history, incidents, Switzerland | Leave a comment

History of Israel’s Secret Nuclear Reactor

The papers, which include notes, memorandums, drafts and summaries by senior Israeli officials of the time, including Israel Galili, an adviser to prime ministers Levi Eshkol and Golda Meir, Eshkol himself, cabinet member Yigal Allon and IDF commander Moshe Dayan, defence chief-turned prime minister Shimon Peres, and senior diplomat Abba Eban, helped Raz piece together important details about the clandestine project.

Moral Qualms and Cost Concerns

The papers revealed that Galili had several concerns about the nuclear endeavour, known as “the enterprise,” including its potential to undermine Israel’s “moral status,” or cause then-Egyptian President Gamal Abdel Nasser to attack Israel to try to take out a “justified target.” Finally, he feared that the program could incite Cairo to start work on its own nuclear program.

The documents also indicated that the cost of the Dimona reactor, estimated at about $53 million by Peres in April 1962, was revised upwards by Alon to “three times” the $60 million discussed by the cabinet in 1964. An undated note, presumably written sometime between 1963 and 1966, indicated that the real cost may have been as much as $340 million (about $2.75 billion in present day dollars, accounting for inflation).

“If it were known in advance that it would cost $340 million – would we have voted for Dimona?” the note, written by Eban to Galili, reads.

Meir Proposes Switching From Defense to Offense

The documents showed that after Eshkol succeeded David Ben-Gurion as prime minister in 1963, the new PM’s foreign minister, Golda Meir, proposed admitting the existence of the program in a bid to get support from America’s Jews.

“Our situation will be stronger when the struggle becomes public,” she insisted, adding the need to “switch to offence instead of defence.”

Interestingly, the papers reportedly show that Israeli leaders had to resist pressures to place the project under international supervision, not only from Charles de Gaulle of France, but even from the Kennedy, Johnson and Nixon administrations, who urged Israel to sign on to the non-Proliferation Treaty, which was being developed at the time. In one memo, Peres reportedly told Galili that “in order to overcome the supervision [that the US wanted], cooperation by both sides is needed.”

Nuclear Status Undefined

One particularly important note, again by Galili, seems to indicate that even several years into the reactor’s construction, Tel Aviv did not commit to building actual nuclear bombs. “There is no decision by the government of Israel to manufacture atomic weapons,” the note says.

In another bombshell document cited by Raz, Yigal Allon refers to a phraseology agreed between himself and Nixon Secretary of State Henry Kissinger, whereby a nuclear state is defined as “a state that has exploded a bomb or a device.” This definition allowed the US not to classify Israel as a nuclear state subject to the NPT.

“I am constantly using a phrase agreed with Kissinger — that Israel is not a nuclear state,” Allon wrote in one of the papers.

Nuclear Option in 1973

Finally, without providing any direct quotations from the documents, Raz noted that the subject of the possible use of nuclear weapons during the 1973 Yom Kippur War, in which Israel came dangerously close to defeat at the hands of Egypt and Syria, was also discussed in the papers. In brief, Raz confirmed that Defence Minister Dayan had arrived at defence headquarters in Tel Aviv on the afternoon of 8 October 1973 to recommend preparations to activate the nuclear option.

On October 9, Meir told Israeli Atomic Energy Commission Chief Shalhevet Freier that preparations would not be made without her explicit authorisation. Israel Lior, Meir’s military secretary, similarly indicated to Dayan and Freier that the nuclear option was a no-go.

Citing censorship, Raz indicated that the information he provided addresses “only a small portion of the subject that came up in the notes,” and urged Israeli authorities to allow for a more open discussion of the country’s nuclear program.

 

January 21, 2019 Posted by | history, Israel, secrets,lies and civil liberties | Leave a comment

Secret Handwritten Memos Reveal How Israel’s Nuclear Program Came to Be

January 19, 2019 Posted by | history, Israel, secrets,lies and civil liberties | Leave a comment

Bizarre way in which Britain planned to kill their allies! – Russian soldiers during World War 2

Britain Built a Nuclear Land Mine and Almost Used Chickens To Detonate It, Popular Mechanics Blue Peacock may have been one of the strangest inventions of the Cold War. By Dec 22, 2018 “……Blue Peacock was supposed to be a nuclear land mine. It was designed to blow up on a time lag, days after U.K. forces had given ground to invading Russian troops. British engineers even considered using chickens as a crude (but theoretically effective) detonator timer………
The Western allies built nuclear rockets and artillery shells meant to repel invading communist forces, but there was another, often-overlooked weapons category in play: mines. This was a category British engineers at the Royal Armament Research and Development Establishment (RARDE) were ready to fill with an atomic land mine. In the YouTube video above, the channel Plainly Difficult describes the history of Blue Peacock.  …….

Blue Peacock was designed to be buried on German soil along likely Soviet routes of advance. As the British were pushed back, the Soviet Army would advance, and probably would set up things like headquarters, supply depots, and other units directly above a buried Blue Peacock mine. Once the bomb went off, a ten-kiloton atomic explosion would made a significant dent in the Soviet invasion force.

The weapon could go off in one of three ways: an 8-day timer, remote control, or if someone tampered with it. One proposed arming mechanism was placing chickens in the bomb along with just enough food for the chickens to die of starvation after eight days. Seriously. https://www.popularmechanics.com/military/weapons/a25645798/blue-peacock-land-mine/

December 28, 2018 Posted by | history, UK, weapons and war | Leave a comment

The East Yorkshire village almost wiped out by a nuclear bomb

 https://www.hulldailymail.co.uk/news/hull-east-yorkshire-news/nuclear-bomb-threat-yorkshire-village-2228206

It was, understandably, opposed by residents By Alex Grove 18 NOV 2018 

It is a quaint rural hamlet on the coast of East Yorkshire with around 600 people and a few small amenities.

Life in Skipsea is peaceful, sleepy and quiet, but a controversial proposal put forward by scientists 65 years ago threatened to effectively wipe out the village from existence and change the face of the seaside village forever.

In 1953, almost 240 miles away from Skipsea in another similarly small Berkshire village called Aldermaston, scientists at the Atomic Research Establishment seriously considered detonating a nuclear weapon next to Skipsea.

At the time it had a medieval church and the remains of a Norman castle but not much else, and its close proximity to the RAF base at Hull made it an ideal spot to explode an atomic bomb.

In the midst of the Cold War, the UK wanted to find a coastal site for an above-ground atomic bomb explosion after detonating under the sea off a group of islands near Australia in 1952.

They first opted for a Scottish beauty spot called Duncansby Wick near Caithness in the Highlands of Scotland, but this plan was halted by the damp.

They turned their attention to Donna Nook in Lincolnshire before settling on Skipsea.

However, the people of the small East Riding village were not going to relinquish their hamlet without a fight. Unsurprisingly, community leaders rallied to protest against the idea arguing the site chosen was too close to bungalows and beach huts. The area’s MPs encouraged the government to reconsider the radical plan and with opposition to the idea too fierce, the government backed down and secured Skipsea’s future with the bomb test carried out at Emu Field – a desert area in South Australia.

The village was still used later on by The Royal Observer Corps as a site for a Cold War observation post on the east coast of England. The site remained active from October 1959 until its decommissioning in September 1991. It gathered dust for years before being restored by an enthusiast ten years ago.

People may not think there is much to do in Skipsea with the village home to a couple of churches and post offices, a village hall a pub and a few shops.

However, this tale of old will just make you appreciate the fact that this quiet, sleepy village even exists at all.

November 19, 2018 Posted by | history, UK, weapons and war | Leave a comment

How the USA gave up on protecting its citizens against nuclear attack, and settled for just elite shelters

How the U.S. Government Might Have Survived a Nuclear War,  Yes, this is the real Deep State, National Interest, by Steve Weintz, 18 Nov 18 

With the arrival of the Bomb and its immense destructive power, the efforts to protect elites and commoners alike from swift destruction assumed novel and at times grotesque forms. Civil defense foundered in America upon the sheer scale of the problem—getting tens of millions of urbanites out of cities and into shelters before enemy nukes arrived. Ultimately the United States quietly gave up on protecting the majority of its residents from nuclear attack via shelter, and opted for a grand technological fix in missile defense.

Elite shelter concepts, however, had better success. Ostensibly, this makes sense; targeting the enemy leadership can sometimes win a struggle. The assassination of Admiral Yamamoto by the U.S. Navy in 1943, for example, derailed Japan’s defense of its island conquests. But such a policy opens a door into a very dark room, as many leaders instinctively know.

Tofrom early on in the Nuclear Age the U.S. government explored numerous ways to keep itself safe during and after Armageddon.

The Greenbriar Resort in West Virginia, a grand old vacation destination abounding in stately elegance, now includes a Cold War extra amongst a tour of its premises: the congressional bunker built in the late 1950s under the guise of a resort expansion. The Greenbriar bunker is a true time capsule, its rotary-dial phones and fusty office chairs ready for the cast of a period movie.

The Greenbriar bunker was never used for its intended purpose and was decommissioned in 1992 after a news expose. When members of Congress evacuated the Capitol on September 11, 2001, they flew to the Mount Weather emergency command facility in the Blue Ridge Mountains. Now run by FEMA, Mount Weather can shelter several hundred people from all three branches of government for months.

Along with Congress agencies such as the Federal Reserve made accommodations for apocalypse, including giant vaults full of currency . As Strangelovian as it sounds, the work of returning American society to some semblance of pre-war routine would depend on cash and banking.

As aircraft became faster and missiles faster still the warning times for nuclear attack shrank from hours to minutes. Even as Greenbriar and Mount Weather were conceived and built,  the evolving threat demanded more urgent safety measures. As Mark, the author of Atomic Skies blog writes:

“Two solutions were considered: mobility and hardness. Mobility meant keeping the president on the move, on plane or train or ship, so that the Soviets could not find and kill him. Hardness meant burying the president, deep underground, deeper than even a nuclear weapon could reach.” ………

So are there deep bunkers carved into the American soil still hiding in the dark? Vast sums have been spent since 9/11 and much is unaccounted for. But the same concerns that kept super bunkers from being built – cost, capacity and effectiveness—mitigate against any grand caverns of doom.

Yes, this is the real Deep State.https://nationalinterest.org/blog/buzz/how-us-government-might-have-survived-nuclear-war-36357

November 19, 2018 Posted by | history, USA, weapons and war | 1 Comment