nuclear-news

The News That Matters about the Nuclear Industry

Both Russia and America Prepare for Nuclear War? (and this is ‘good for business’)

Dangerous Crossroads: Both Russia and America Prepare for Nuclear War? http://www.globalresearch.ca/dangerous-crossroads-both-russia-and-america-prepare-for-nuclear-war/5548074  By Prof Michel Chossudovsky Global Research, September 27, 2016 Barely acknowledged by the Western media. both Russia and America are “rearming” their nuclear weapons systems. While the US is committed to a multibillion dollar modernization project, Russia is largely involved in a “cost-effective” restructuring process which consists in decommissioning parts of its land-based ICBM arsenal (Topol) and replacing it with the more advanced Yars RS-24 system, developed in 2007. 

While a new arms race has “unofficially” been launched, the US modernization process pertains to the all three legs of the triad system, -i.e land based  airborne and submarine launched atomic missiles. It is also coupled with the development of the B61-12 tactical bomb to be deployed in Germany, Italy, Netherlands, Belgium and Turkey.

Rest assured, the B61-12 is a “mini-nuke” with an explosive capacity of up to four Hiroshima bombs. It is   categorized as a “defensive” (peace-making) weapon for use in the conventional war theater. According to scientists on contract to the Pentagon, the B61-11 and 12 (bunker buster bombs with nuclear warheads) are “harmless to civilians because the explosion is underground”. 

The nuclear triad modernization project is at the expense of US tax payers. It requires the redirection of federal revenues from the financing of “civilian” expenditure categories (including health, education, infrastructure etc) to the “war economy”.  It’s all for a good cause: “peace and security”. 

missile-moneyWar is “Good for Business”

The multibillion dollar project is a financial bonanza for America’s major defense contractors including Boeing, Lockheed Martin and Northrop Grumman, which are also firm supporters of Hillary Clinton’s stance regarding a possible first strike nuclear attack against Russia, China, Iran and North Korea.

Reported by Defense News, US Secretary of Defense Ash Carter on September 26 called for the “need to modernize all three legs of the nuclear triad.” The project would require a major boost in defense expenditure.

Underscoring today’s “volatile security environment”, the multibillion dollar project is required, according to Carter, in view of threats largely emanating from Russia, China as well as North Korea:

Carter’s comments came during a visit to Minot Air Force Base in North Dakota, … Under the fiscal year 2017 budget request, Carter said, the department pledged $19 billion to the nuclear enterprise, part of $108 billion planned over the next five years. The department has also spent around $10 billion over the last two years, the secretary said in prepared comments. The “nuclear triad” references the three arms of the US strategic posture — land-based ICBMs, airborne weapons carried by bombers, and submarine-launched atomic missiles. All of those programs are entering an age where they need to be modernized.

Pentagon estimates have pegged the cost of modernizing the triad and all its accompanying requirements at the range of $350 to $450 billion over the next 10 years, with a large chunk of costs hitting in the mid-2020s, just as competing major modernization projects for both the Air Force and Navy come due.

Critics of both America’s nuclear strategy and Pentagon spending have attempted to find ways to change the modernization plan, perhaps by cancelling one leg of the triad entirely.But Carter made it clear in his speech that he feels such plans would put America at risk at a time when Russia, China and North Korea, among others, are looking to modernize their arsenals. (Defense News, September 26, 2016)

Carter casually dismissed the dangers of a no-win global war, which could evolve towards a “nuclear holocaust”, Ironically  ”… He also hit at critics of the nuclear program — which include former Secretary of Defense William Perry, [who ironically is] widely seen as a mentor for Carter — who argue that investing further into nuclear weapons will increase the risk of atomic catastrophe in the future. (Defense News, September 26, 2016)

Carter expressed his concern regarding Russia’s alleged “nuclear saber-rattling”.

Russia’s  ICBM System

Were Carter’s timely statements in response to Russia redeployment and restructuring of its ICBM system on its Western frontier,  which were announced on September 20?

Last week, the Russian news agency Tass confirmed that “The westernmost strategic missile force division in the Tver region will soon begin to be rearmed with the missile system Yars.”

It will be a sixth strategic missile division where the newest mobile ground-based missile complexes will replace the intercontinental ballistic missile Topol,” the press-service of the Strategic Missile Force quotes its commander Sergey Karakayev as saying.

According to the official, this year regiments in the Irktusk and Yoshkar-Ola divisions began to be rearmed. The re-armament of the Novosibirsk and Tagil divisions is nearing completion. Earlier, the Teikovo division was fully rearmed.

The final decision to rearm the strategic missile division in the Tver Region will be made after a command staff exercise there. The press-service said the exercises will be devoted to maneuvering along combat patrol routes.

In the near future the ICBM RS-24 Yars, alongside the previously commissioned monoblock warhead ballistic missile RS-12M2 Topol-M, will constitute the backbone of Russia’s strategic missile force.

The Yars ICBM RS-24 was developed in 2007 in response to the US Missile Shield. It is nothing new in Russia’s military arsenal. It is a high performance system equipped with thermonuclear capabilities.

What this report suggests is the restructuring of Russia’s strategic missile force and the replacement of the Topol system (which Moscow considers obsolete) with the Yars ICBM RS-24.

September 28, 2016 Posted by | Russia, USA, weapons and war | Leave a comment

New US Bill Would Ban President From Launching ‘First Use’ Nuclear Strike

text politicsUS Congress Bill Bans President From Launching ‘First Use’ Nuclear Strike, https://sputniknews.com/us/20160927/1045761657/bill-ban-us-nuclear-strike.htmlNewly-introduced legislation would ban the US commander-in-chief from authorizing a nuclear attack without approval from the legislative branch, Congressman Ted Lieu and Senator Ed Markey said in a press release on Tuesday.  WASHINGTON — The release claimed that the issue of “nuclear first use” is even more critical in light of the fact that a majority of Americans do not trust Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump with the US nuclear arsenal.

“This legislation would prohibit the [US] President from launching a nuclear first strike without a declaration of war by Congress,” the release stated. On Monday, US Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton during the campaign’s first debate argued that Trump’s position on nuclear weapons runs contrary to longstanding US policy given he has repeatedly said he did not care if other countries possessed them.

September 28, 2016 Posted by | politics, USA, weapons and war | 1 Comment

South Korea and Japan tempted to develop nuclear weapons, in response to North Korea’s nuclear test?

Will North Korea’s Nuclear Test Tempt South Korea and Japan to Go Nuclear?The latest test may strengthen calls South Korea and Japan to develop their own nuclear weapons. The Diplomat, By Pang Zhongying September 27, 2016  North Korea’s latest nuclear test strengthened the sections of public opinion that approve of obtaining nuclear weapons in South Korea and Japan. The test, then, could bring about a chain reaction and accelerate the pace of Japanese and South Korean efforts to possess nuclear weapons. Under these circumstances, China will face not only a threat from the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) system, but also the further deterioration of Northeast Asia’s strategic environment.

In my opinion, the biggest challenge posed to China by this North Korean nuclear test is that South Korea’s domestic support for nuclear weapons may increase. Since Kim Jong-un assumed leadership of North Korea — especially this year — public support for possessing nuclear weapons and turning South Korea into a nuclear state has reached a certain scale. South Korea has been protected by the U.S nuclear umbrella, but now more and more people in South Korea want to build up a domestic nuclear deterrent to balance against North Korea.

On July 1, President Park Geun-hye suddenly decided to deploy the U.S. THAAD system in South Korea. In the following two months, domestic voices advocating for possessing and/or developing nuclear weapons have been constantly coming from South Korea. These voices will get even louder after the latest nuclear test in North Korea. It is said that the tested nuclear warhead was miniaturized, but its blast is estimated to be very large. Readings of the seismic activity in North Korea indicate that the test was very successful. Therefore, South Korea is currently enveloped by the sense of a national security crisis and many now believe that it is not enough to only have United States’ nuclear protection. So North Korea’s nuclear test may further stimulate South Korea to acquire nuclear weapons or develop nuclear weapons, which is also a big challenge for the United States………http://thediplomat.com/2016/09/will-north-koreas-nuclear-test-tempt-south-korea-and-japan-to-go-nuclear/

September 28, 2016 Posted by | Japan, North Korea, politics international, South Korea, weapons and war | Leave a comment

International day for the total elimination of nuclear weapons -September 26

Nagasaki one day after the atomic bombing seen in newly-discovered pictures.[HERALD INTERVIEW] Nagasaki atom bomb survivor urges denuclearization of world  Korea Herald, 24 Sept 16 TOKYO — More than 70 years later, Terumi Tanaka can still relive the havoc wrought on his hometown Nagasaki, which was flattened by a plutonium bomb unleashed from a United States Army Air Forces plane.

At around 11 a.m. on Aug. 9, 1945, Tanaka was at his home some 3.2 kilometers away from the hypocenter of the atomic blast, when he heard a “loud bang” and immediately fell unconscious.

“Everything was instantly blown away in a storm,” the 84-year-old Japanese man told The Korea Herald in Tokyo last week. “I survived because I was lying down on the floor. However, five out of my six relatives died, some instantaneously from the raging inferno, some slowly from putrefying burns.”

Ahead of the international day for the total elimination of nuclear weapons on Sept. 26, designated by the United Nations in 2014, the secretary-general of the Japan Confederation of Atomic and Hydrogen Bomb Sufferers’ Organization, also known as Nihon Hidankyo, warned of the indelible consequences of pursuing nuclear arms and energy.

There are more than 15,000 nuclear weapons in the world, with the US and Russia possessing 93 percent of them, according to anti-nuclear organization the Ploughshares Fund. The arsenals are a thousand times more destructive than the bombs dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

The bombshell dropped on Nagasaki, dubbed “Fat Man,” killed 74,000 people, roughly half the number that had perished from Hiroshima three days earlier. There are currently over 174,000 survivors — called “hibakusha” in Japanese — of the apocalyptic events in Japan and several thousands more worldwide.

Along with civic organizations such as Japan NGO Network for Nuclear Weapons Abolition and Peace Boat, Nihon Hidankyo has shepherded anti-nuclear calls around the world since it was established in 1956. It has participated in international conferences, street rallies and speaking tours, urging the total abolition of nuclear weapons, state compensation for their injuries, enhancement of government policies and relief measures, and solidarity with nuclear victims around the globe.

“Japan practically became a colony of the US since the war ended,” Tanaka said. “The US government forbade discussion or research of the bombing for seven years after 1945, and the Japanese government followed suit for an additional three years, thereby doing nothing for 10 years.”

As part of the San Francisco Peace Treaty in 1951, Tokyo renounced its right to claim damages from the nuclear bombardments from Washington. The hibakushas were deprived of their health, disadvantaged in employment and discriminated against by society, according to Nihon Hidankyo.

However, the legacy of Hiroshima and Nagasaki became the subject of national discourse following the radiation exposure and death of Japanese fishermen who were affected by America’s nuclear weapons testing in the Pacific Ocean.

“Life was very tough before 1956, when our government started legislating laws and providing health care to the victims,” Tanaka recalled. “Before that, the sick and dying had to pay for medical expenses out of their own pockets, and many poor people died from malnutrition.”

Tanaka, who lived with a mother and three siblings, had to scrape by working odd jobs and saving pennies for the family as well as schooling. He called it an “unspeakable hardship.”

“We couldn’t eat for days on end. Everyone was poor, and even with little money there was practically nothing we could buy,” he said. “In spite of all our misery, we hoped that things would get better. We survived by shoving whatever was edible into our mouths.”

In the tragedy’s aftermath, Tanaka noted he did not experience particular health problems, but one of his sisters died from cancer 10 years ago, and several of his acquaintances contracted leukemia and other malignancies. Particularly, many children around age 10 and younger developed cancerous tumors, he pointed out, surmising the bombing was to blame.

While Hiroshima has since become a universal symbol of mass destruction, Nagasaki on Japan’s southwestern island of Kyushu has largely been relegated to the larger city’s shadow. Nagasaki was bombed after Hiroshima, though it was less devastating due to the mountains and valleys of the city.

According to analysts, some 50,000 Koreans are thought to have lived in Hiroshima and 20,000 in Nagasaki during the attack, out of which roughly 30,000 and 10,000 are estimated to have died.

Most of Nagasaki’s Korean victims, who came from Hapcheon County in South Gyeongsang Province, were forcibly conscripted for backbreaking labor in wartime factories. The survivors returned home after the war to establish an organization similar to Nihon Hidankyo, with which the Japanese side maintains close contact. …… http://www.koreaherald.com/view.php?ud=20160925000225

September 26, 2016 Posted by | Japan, PERSONAL STORIES, weapons and war | Leave a comment

Israel with 200 nuclear weapons a bigger threat than Iran

Atomic-Bomb-Smflag-IsraelWhich is the Real Threat? Iranian Nuclear Program Versus Israel’s 200 Nukes.Sputnik News, 23 Sept 16  As Israel continues to oppose the Iranian nuclear deal, leaked emails written by former US Secretary of State Colin Powell suggest that Tel Aviv does have a sizeable cache of functioning nuclear weapons at its disposal.
While Israel doesn’t confirm nor deny the alleged existence of its nuclear arsenal, one of Colin Powell’s recently leaked emails suggests that Tel Aviv does possess 200 nuclear warheads “all targeted at Tehran”.

These revelations cast a new light on Israel’s vehement opposition to the nuclear deal reached between the P5+1 group and Iran in July 2015. Furthermore, Sabbah Zanganeh, Iranian political analyst and Middle Eastern affairs expert, told Sputnik Persian that the existence of the Israeli nuclear arsenal is one of the chief factors contributing to the tensions in the region. “This is all part of the US double standards policy. The Americans are well-aware of the fact that the Iranian nuclear program always was and still is peaceful in nature and poses no threat to any nation or country. The US also knows that Iran opposes nuclear weapons, and not just for moral or humanitarian reasons, but first and foremost due to its religious beliefs. Iran rejects weapons of mass destruction of any kind,” Zanganeh said. On the other hand, he argued, Israel, which enjoys absolute US support, constantly threatens other countries in the region, provoking military conflicts and instigating wars against Egypt, Syria, Lebanon, Jordan and Palestine……..https://sputniknews.com/middleeast/20160921/1045551459/tehran-israel-nuclear-weapons.html

September 26, 2016 Posted by | Israel, weapons and war | Leave a comment

United Nations calls on U.S., China, others to ratify nuclear test ban treaty

flag-UN-largeU.N. urges U.S., China, others to ratify nuclear test ban treaty , Reuters By Michelle Nichols | UNITED NATIONS, 23 SEPT 16, 

The United Nations Security Council urged China, the United States, North Korea, Egypt, India, Iran, Israel and Pakistan to ratify a treaty banning nuclear explosions, which would allow the deal negotiated 20 years ago to come into force.

More than 160 countries have ratified the 1996 Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty (CTBT). Since then India, Pakistan and North Korea have conducted nuclear tests. This month Pyongyang conducted its fifth and largest test.

The 15-member Security Council adopted a U.S.-drafted resolution on Friday with 14 votes in favor and an abstention by Egypt. It does not impose any legal obligations but adds political weight to the push for the treaty to be enacted.

The U.N. resolution calls on all states to refrain from conducting any nuclear explosions……..http://www.reuters.com/article/us-un-nuclear-idUSKCN11T29J

September 24, 2016 Posted by | 2 WORLD, weapons and war | Leave a comment

‘Going nuclear’ – the only option says North Korea

North Korea tells UN ‘going nuclear’ is only option North Korea’s foreign minister has told the United Nations that “going nuclear” is his country’s only way to defend itself and vowed to further bolster its nuclear military forces. SBS News, AFP    24 SEP 2016

Speaking to the General Assembly, Ri Yong-ho said his country will “continue to take measures to strengthen its national nuclear armed forces in both quantity and quality.”

He spoke just two weeks after North Korea’s fifth and most powerful nuclear test provoked worldwide condemnation, prompting the UN Security Council to begin work on a new sanctions resolution.

“Going nuclear armed is the policy of our state,” Ri, who has been foreign minister since May, told the world gathering.

“As long as there exists a nuclear weapon state in hostile relations with the DPRK (North Korea), our national security and the peace on the Korean peninsula can be defended only with reliable nuclear deterrence,” he said……..http://www.sbs.com.au/news/article/2016/09/24/north-korea-tells-un-going-nuclear-only-option

September 24, 2016 Posted by | North Korea, weapons and war | Leave a comment

USA and South Korea to conduct mock attack on nuclear facility, (with North Korea in mind)

atomic-bomb-lFlag-USAflag-S-KoreaSouth Korea, US to simulate attack on nuclear facility By Jungeun Kim, Paula Hancocks and Joshua Berlinger, CNN  September 21, 2016

Story highlights

  • The two countries will simulate attacks on nuclear facilities and sudden missile strikes
  • The announcement comes after North Korea conducted a nuclear test this month
 Seoul (CNN)South Korea and the United States will conduct a mock attack on a nuclear facility next month, an official with the South Korean Defense Department told CNN.
Though the official said the drills are not aimed particularly at North Korea, the announcement comes less than two weeks after North Korea claimed to have successfully tested a nuclear warhead — its second nuclear test this year and fifth one ever.
The US and South Korea will also simulate what to do in the event of a sudden missile attack……..
The simulation, dubbed joint exercise “Red Flag,” will take place in Alaska from October 3 until October 21……..The munitions
In its announcement, South Korea said the nuclear facility attack simulation will take place using a GBU-31 Joint Direct Attack Munition, a kit that converts bombs that normally just free-fall from planes into guided munitions…….
Another show of force

The US on Wednesday also announced that it conducted its second show of force operation in two weeks in South Korea to send North Korea a message.
It sent two B-1B bombers to fly alongside the Korean demilitarized zone, a source told CNN……
The US flew B-1 bombers over Seoul on September 13th in a show of force responding to the recent North Korean nuclear test.
A day after that flyover, North Korea accused the US of “bluffing” and “blustering” with the flyover and said such actions were inflaming tensions on the Korean Peninsula. http://edition.cnn.com/2016/09/20/asia/south-korea-us-nuclear-drills/

September 23, 2016 Posted by | North Korea, South Korea, USA, weapons and war | Leave a comment

Nuclear weapons cuts for USA? Obama tries, but has limited options

Obama Germany 2013Obama to decide on cuts to US nuclear arsenal in October  Limited politically feasible options on table for president to cement a disarmer legacy, most far-reaching of which is a one-third cut to deployed strategic arsenal, Guardian, , 17 Sep 16, Barack Obama is expected to make a final decision next month on possible cuts to the US nuclear arsenal, in an attempt to consolidate his legacy as a disarmer before leaving office.

Options on the table include reducing the number of deployed strategic warheads, slimming down the reserve stockpile, cutting military stores of fissile material available for making new warheads, and putting off some modernisation plans, including the a controversial air force programme for developing an air-launched cruise missile.

The president is due to consult his principal national security officials in October on which, if any, of the options are still feasible in the time left before he leaves office.

Some more radical options, like changing the US nuclear posture to rule out first use of nuclear arms in a conflict and taking some of the nation’s intercontinental ballistic missiles off hair-trigger alert, have faced such strong opposition from allies abroad and the Pentagon that they are no longer being seriously considered………https://www.theguardian.com/world/2016/sep/17/obama-nuclear-arsenal-disarmament-russia-congress

September 19, 2016 Posted by | politics, weapons and war | Leave a comment

The world might just have to accept North Korea as a nuclear power

flag-N-KoreaAs world protests, North Korea sees nuclear power status within reach B on SEPTEMBER 18, 2016 in ASIA TIMES NEWS

Denying North Korea nuclear status may be “as foolish an act as trying to eclipse the sun with a palm.” Since its first nuclear test in 2006, Pyongyang has detonated progressively more powerful devices, in 2009, 2013 and twice this year and also made major strides in developing its delivery systems.  The more the U.S. isolates North Korea, the more are the chances of Pyongyang rising to a fully fledged nuclear power.Following North Korea’s fifth and most powerful nuclear test last week, U.S. President Barack Obama reiterated a stance that has undergirded American and much international policy for decades: Pyongyang would never be accepted as a member of the nuclear arms club.

Promising new sanctions against the already isolated country in response to its “unlawful and dangerous actions,” Obama was unequivocal that “the United States does not, and never will, accept North Korea as a nuclear state.”

It’s a vow, however, that appears increasingly hollow in light of Pyongyang’s impressive advancement of its nuclear ambitions, forcefully demonstrated by last Friday’s detonation, the second this year and fourth on Obama’s watch……..

Since its first nuclear test in 2006, Pyongyang has detonated progressively more powerful devices, in 2009, 2013 and twice this year, with its most recent weapon thought to have been more powerful than the bomb dropped on Hiroshima. At the same time, it has made major strides in developing its delivery systems. Last month, it successfully launched a ballistic missile from a submarine.

Experts such as Siegfried Hecker now consider plausible the once fanciful idea that North Korea could soon be capable of striking the U.S. mainland with a nuclear warhead, possibly within a decade……..http://atimes.com/2016/09/as-world-protests-north-korea-sees-nuclear-power-status-within-reach/

September 19, 2016 Posted by | North Korea, weapons and war | Leave a comment

Australia’s secret shame – the Maralinga nuclear bomb tests

This March, documents obtained exclusively by news.com.au revealed that hundreds of children and grandchildren of veterans exposed to radiation were born with shocking illnesses including tumours, Down syndrome, cleft palates, cerebral palsy, autism, missing bones and heart disease.

Other veterans posted to the Maralinga nuclear test site blamed the British Nuclear Test for an unusually high number of stillbirths and miscarriages among the group.

“The rest of the Aboriginal people in this country need to know the story as well,”    “This one’s been kept very quiet.”

Nuclear will be on show at the National Aboriginal Cultural Institute in Adelaide, South Australia from 17 September to 12 November.

Book Maralinga Anangu StoryThe secret destruction of Australia’s Hiroshima,  http://www.news.com.au/lifestyle/real-life/news-life/the-secret-destruction-of-australias-hiroshima/news-story/9eabf722dbe2f87e03a297c2a348a8e1  news.com.au, SEPTEMBER 17, 2016 WHEN nuclear explosions tore through Australia’s vast, arid centre, some people living there didn’t even know it was coming.

It devastated the country for miles around, annihilating every bird, tree and animal in its path.

Even today, the effects of our very own Hiroshima are still felt by the families it ripped apart, and those suffering horrific health problems as a result.

The British military detonated seven nuclear bombs in remote Maralinga, around 800km north-west of Adelaide, plus two at Emu Fields and three off the coast near Karratha, Western Australia.

They also staged hundreds of minor trials investigating the impact of non-nuclear explosions on atomic weapons, involving tanks, gun, mannequins in uniforms and even tethered goats. In many ways, these smaller tests were equally dangerous, spraying plutonium in all directions.

Yet most Australians know very little about the blasts that shattered communities, and the dramatic story now buried under layers of dust.

Archie Barton was just a child when the nuclear testing took place between 1956 and 1963, stretching across a huge now uninhabitable 120km of land where he and thousands of others lived.

“He was taken away from his mother,” his stepson Steve Harrison tells news.com.au. “He was part of the Stolen Generations. He grew up in homes around Australia, and led a very rough life.

“Before my mum, he was a full-blown alcoholic. He wanted to go back to his birthplace.

 “With his brother, he fought a battle with the British government to come back to clean up the area.

“He came into my life at a very young age. I was 14. I knew him as a strong, proud Aboriginal black man. He ended up getting an OBE.”

‘CHEAP AND NASTY SOLUTION’

Mr Barton’s family was not the only one scattered by the bombs. Many walked for days or even weeks to find new homes, deliberately going barefoot so their relatives could follow behind. British soldiers repeatedly turned them back south when they tried to head north.

Unsurprisingly, many never found each other.

“They were dispersed pretty much to the four points of the compass,” said Paul Brown, creative director of new showcase Nuclear, featuring Mr Harrison’s artwork. “It represented a massive dislocation from the watering holes and places that were important to Aboriginal people.

“If Aboriginal people weren’t caught up in the blast, it was by sheer luck, not design.

“People were very close at the time of the blast, they even had to take people into the decontamination area to scrub them down.”

Decades later, 57-year-old Mr Harrison’s village still isn’t a safe place for humans to live, despite numerous attempts to decontaminate the area, in 1967, 1985 and the late 1990s.

Ian Anderson’s 1993 New Scientist article “Britain’s dirty deeds at Maralinga” exposed negotiations between the UK and Australia to dispose of toxic plutonium that had been lightly covered with soil instead of being buried in concrete bunkers.

And as recently as 2007, nuclear engineer Alan Parkinson claimed the latest $100 million clean-up was a “cheap and nasty solution”.

IT RUINED QUITE A LOT OF LIVES’

The Anandu people fled to Oak Valley, Yalata, Renmark and almost anywhere between Kalgoorlie in WA and Adelaide.

Torn from family members and their homes, indigenous communities saw the consequences travel down the generations. Alcoholism is one of the biggest problems, along with drugs, crime, homelessness and lack of acceptance from new towns where these displaced people live on the fringes.

The Royal Commission found evidence of terrible disabilities caused by likely radiation impacts on both veterans and Aboriginal communities.

This March, documents obtained exclusively by news.com.au revealed that hundreds of children and grandchildren of veterans exposed to radiation were born with shocking illnesses including tumours, Down syndrome, cleft palates, cerebral palsy, autism, missing bones and heart disease.

Other veterans posted to the Maralinga nuclear test site blamed the British Nuclear Test for an unusually high number of stillbirths and miscarriages among the group.

A 2008 Department of Veterans’ Affairs study reported that the doses to Australians were small, with a spokesman tellingnews.com.au that studies into the descendants of Hiroshima and Nagasaki nuclear bombs survivors showed they “do not have an increased frequency of chromosome abnormalities or major birth defects.”

Yet a 1999 study for the British Nuclear Test Veterans Association found that 30 per cent of involved veterans had died from cancer, mainly in their 50s.

Troops flew through mushroom clouds from explosions without protection and marched to ground zero immediately after bomb detonation. Airborne drifts of radioactive material resulted in “radioactive rain” being dropped on Brisbane and Queensland country areas.

“When they created this problem, they didn’t picture it at the end,” says Mr Harrison. “People are fighting for their existence.

“We can go back, but cannot go back and live there. It’s ruined quite a lot of lives.

“I see people who’ve been taken away coming back trying to reconnect with family. Most now live in Yalata on the Nullabor Plains.

“It was so sad, so hard. You need to grow up with family from a young age. Now they’re telling people they’ve got to leave communities in the Northern Territory, they’re closing down a lot of these communities.”

THIS ONE’S BEEN KEPT QUIET’

The Maralinga bombs were set off in a way that officially satisfied safe firing requirements. The detonations were even celebrated as a “great success” in The Advertiser.

But Mr Brown says there is evidence the military was “deliberately misleading the public about the likely impact.”

Britain’s Parliament last year issued a statement of recognition and set up a benevolent fund for veterans who took part in the nuclear tests.

Mr Brown hopes his exhibition, 60 years on from the blasts, will show that these are not simply stories about victims. “Often people have gone on the front foot,” he said. “In Japan, the Hibakusha are world leaders in the peace movement. They’ve taken it upon themselves to campaign for disarmament and world peace.”

Mr Harrison, who has visited Hiroshima and Nagasaki survivors in Japan and presented them with a sculpture, says his main concern is making sure Australians know what happened in their own country.

“The rest of the Aboriginal people in this country need to know the story as well,” he added.

“This one’s been kept very quiet.”

Nuclear will be on show at the National Aboriginal Cultural Institute in Adelaide, South Australia from 17 September to 12 November.

September 17, 2016 Posted by | AUSTRALIA, health, secrets,lies and civil liberties, weapons and war | Leave a comment

Russia has not changed its nuclear weapons doctrine -Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) conference

Russian Nuclear Doctrine Unchanged Despite Escalation Claims, Sputnik News, 16 Sept 16  – Official Russia has stressed to its four Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) nuclear state partners that claims of it lowering its threshold for nuclear weapon use and increasing its military doctrine’s reliance on nuclear weapons are untrue, a senior official from the Russian Foreign Ministry told Sputnik…….

Nuclear-armed states party to the NPT gathered for their seventh conference in Washington on Wednesday and Thursday, discussing disarmament, nonproliferation, confidence building measures, transparency and the peaceful use of nuclear energy.

The five countries, known as the P5 group, include Russia, the United States, the United Kingdom, France and China. The international NPT treaty took effect in 1970 and has been ratified by 191 governments………

The document envisions the hypothetical use of nuclear weapons in two cases, one being an attack against Russia with the use of nuclear weapons and another being large-scale aggression with the use of conventional weapons that would threaten the country’s existence, Leontyev explained.

“Therefore, the possibility of any preventive offensive actions with the use of the nuclear weapons threat is not implied,” he added. The comments come as a rebuke to several claims previously made by NATO officials with regard to Russia allegedly modernizing its nuclear forces……..

The nonproliferation official noted the difference between nuclear weapons clauses of the Russian and the US doctrines, describing the US military doctrine as too broad in justifying use of nuclear weapons for almost all purposes.

“We noted that the US nuclear doctrine is practically oversized, envisioning use of nuclear weapons for protection of vital interest, which could include almost all purposes,” Leontyev said. These interests can be anything defined as such by the United States, including the global economy and international laws, he emphasized…….

Russia and the United States, which together hold almost 90 percent of the world’s operational nuclear arsenals, are bound by the New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START) which lasts until 2021 and stipulates that both sides cut their stockpiles by half.

Russia did not receive any official initiatives from the United States on renewing the treaty, but will consider them should Washington offer them, Leontyev said. “There were no official initiatives. We shall consider them if we receive them,” he said………https://sputniknews.com/russia/20160917/1045395099/russian-nuclear-doctrine-unchanged.htm

September 17, 2016 Posted by | weapons and war | Leave a comment

America’s role in shaping the North Korea nuclear crisis

Rooting Out the North Korean Nuclear Crisis: the Past and Present U.S. Role, CounterPunch, by CHRISTINE HONG – PAUL LIEM, 15 Sept 16,  North Korea’s nuclear test of September 9, 2016, the fifth and largest measuring twice the force of previous blasts, prompted a predictable round of condemnations by the United States and its allies along with calls for China to step up its enforcement of sanctions on North Korea. Yet few “expert” analyses suggest that China will risk destabilizing North Korea or that further United Nations resolutions and international sanctions will succeed in deterring North Korea from pursuing its nuclear weapons and missile programs.

The Obama administration’s reliance on China to rein in North Korea is at odds with its efforts to contain China’s influence in Asia, a quixotic goal in itself. It reflects an unrealistic desire for China to be influential just enough to do the bidding of the United States but not powerful enough to act in its own interests.

North Korea is, after all, China’s strategic ally in the region, and it is in South Korea that the United States plans to deploy THAAD, a defense system with radar capable of tracking incoming missiles from China. It is simply not in China’s interest to risk losing an ally on its border only to have it replaced by a U.S.-backed state hosting missile-tracking systems and other military forces targeting it. And China knows it is not the target of North Korea’s nukes. If the United States cannot punt the problem of North Korea’s nuclear weapons to China it must deal with North Korea directly.

Indeed, in response to U.S. Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter’s recent condemnation of China’s “role” and “responsibility” in failing to restrain North Korea’s nuclear pursuits, the Chinese Foreign Ministry issued a statement calling on the United States to take a long hard look at its own foreign policy:……….

Despite President Barack Obama’s efforts over his two terms in office to “pivot” or “rebalance” U.S. foreign policy to Asia and the Pacific and his repeated identification of the United States as a Pacific power, the memory of nuclear ruin in the region is shadowed by the history of the United States as a first-user of atomic weapons against civilian populations in Japan at the close of World War II and as a tester of devastating nuclear technology, including human radiation experiments, in the Marshall Islands during the Cold War. Moreover, it has not gone unnoticed that President Obama, despite his professed commitment to nuclear de-escalation, has refused to issue an “unequivocal no-first-use pledge.”

In Korea, the one place on the planet where nuclear conflagration is most likely to erupt, given the current state of affairs, President Obama can still end the threat of nuclear warfare. This would require what few in his administration appear to have entertained, namely, the elimination of the demand for North Korea to agree to irreversible denuclearization as a precondition for bilateral talks. This rigid goal makes it virtually impossible for the United States to respond positively to any overture from North Korea short of a fantastic offer by that country to surrender all its nuclear weapons. The premise that the denuclearization of North Korea is necessary to ensure peace and stability on the Korean peninsula needs to be shelved, and all possibilities for finding common ground upon which to negotiate the cessation of hostilities on the Korean peninsula should be explored…….

Let us also recall that North Korea offered to halt testing of its nuclear weapons if the United States agreed to put an end to the annual U.S.-South Korea war games.[6] Combining live artillery drills and virtual exercises, these war games, as of this year, implemented OPLAN 5015, a new operational war plan that puts into motion a preemptive U.S. nuclear strike against North Korea and the “decapitation” of its leadership. Unsurprisingly, North Korea considers this updated operational plan to be a rehearsal for Libya-style regime change……..

President Obama should prioritize any and all possibilities for achieving a halt to North Korea’s nuclear programs by diplomacy, over the goal of achieving an illusory agreement for complete denuclearization. As an achievement, halting North Korea’s nuclear advances is far short of the peace treaty needed to bring an end to the Korean War and a lasting peace to Korea. It is far short of creating international conditions for the Korean people to achieve the peaceful reunification of their country. And it is a far cry from achieving nuclear disarmament on a global scale. Yet, as a redirection of U.S. policy towards engagement with North Korea, it would be the greatest achievement in U.S. Korea policy of the last fifteen years, and a concrete step towards achieving denuclearization in the region, and worldwide… (extensive references) http://www.counterpunch.org/2016/09/15/rooting-out-the-north-korean-nuclear-crisis-the-past-and-present-u-s-role/#_edn3

September 16, 2016 Posted by | North Korea, politics international, USA, weapons and war | Leave a comment

South Korea prepared a plan to destroy Pyongyang

flag-S-Koreaflag-N-KoreaS Korea draws up plan to destroy Pyongyang https://au.news.yahoo.com/thewest/a/32588140/s-korea-draws-up-plan-to-destroy-pyongyang/#page1 AAP on September 11, 2016, 

South Korea has devised a plan to destroy North Korea’s capital, Pyongyang, through intensive bombing if the communist regime shows signs of launching a nuclear attack.

“Every Pyongyang district, particularly where the North Korean leadership is possibly hidden, will be completely destroyed by ballistic missiles and high-explosive shells as soon as the North shows any signs of using a nuclear weapon. In other words, the North’s capital city will be reduced to ashes and removed from the map,” reported South Korean news agency Yonhap, citing a military official.

The details of the operation came to light after the South Korean Defence Ministry unveiled the Korea Massive Punishment and Retaliation (KMPR) plan in front of the National Assembly in response to the latest nuclear test by North Korea.

The plan is to carry out pre-emptive strikes against North Korean leader Kim Jong-un and the country’s military leadership if any signs of an imminent use of nuclear weapons is detected or in case of a war, the official explained.

In such a scenario, South Korea will deploy its Hyunmoo 2A and Hyunmoo 2B ballistic missiles, with a range of between 300 and 500 kilometres as well as the Hyunmoo-3 cruise missiles with a range of 1000 kilometres.

In mid-August, Seoul announced its intention to significantly boost its arsenal of missiles to counter the growing military threat from North Korea.

Another source cited by Yonhap said Seoul recently set up a special unit in charge of targeting North Korea’s top military leadership and “launching retaliatory attacks on them.”

North Korea conducted its fifth and largest-ever nuclear test on Friday, claiming it had tested a nuclear warhead that can be fitted onto missiles.

September 12, 2016 Posted by | North Korea, politics international, South Korea, weapons and war | Leave a comment

Haunting new documentary “Command and Control”

FilmAn Accidental Nuclear Detonation “Will Happen”

Atomic weapons are just machines, as this harrowing new film demonstrates, and machines inevitably fail. Mother Jones, MICHAEL MECHANIC SEP. 11, 2016 It would be impossible to fully replicate the depth of dread and disbelief tha tCommand and Control—Eric Schlosser’s 2013 book chronicling the Air Force’s history of nuclear weapons mishaps—bestows on its readers. This is not to say thatthe haunting new documentary of the same name, co-written by Schlosser and director Robert Kenner (Food, Inc.), doesn’t pack a punch. While the film’s producers were forced to simplify and trim from the book’s deeper content, any viewer who has not read the original or who, like most Americans, pays little heed to our modern nuclear arsenal, is due for a fine scare.

An Accidental Nuclear Detonation “Will Happen”

Atomic weapons are just machines, as this harrowing new film demonstrates, and machines inevitably fail. Mother Jones, 

MICHAEL MECHANICSEP. 11, 2016 It would be impossible to fully replicate the depth of dread and disbelief thatCommand and Control—Eric Schlosser’s 2013 book chronicling the Air Force’s history of nuclear weapons mishaps—bestows on its readers. This is not to say thatthe haunting new documentary of the same name, co-written by Schlosser and director Robert Kenner (Food, Inc.), doesn’t pack a punch. While the film’s producers were forced to simplify and trim from the book’s deeper content, any viewer who has not read the original or who, like most Americans, pays little heed to our modern nuclear arsenal, is due for a fine scare.

The contextual backdrop of Schosser’s book incudes plenty of the kind of Cold War insanity that many Americans have relegated to the attics of our memories:………

chlosser’s coup de grâce was a list he obtained (via freedom of information requests) detailing a litany of nuclear fuckupsby the Air Force. Although the brass typically blamed human error, the record in its totality suggested that America’s systems for safeguarding its nuclear weapons were profoundly broken, were they ever working in the first place. Some incidents were fairly minor and others reflected organizational ineptitude………

A film, of course, delivers something a book cannot. We get to see real footage from nuclear detonations, from the actual Damascus Incident, and from some of the past nuclear mishaps, the worst one involved the accidental release of two H-bombs over Goldsboro, North Carolina, in 1961—such an insanely close call that I still shudder to contemplate it. ………

The military screws things up routinely, of course, even if the public seldom hears about it. “Nuclear accidents continue to the present day,” Harold Brown, who was defense secretary under Jimmy Carter at the time of the Damascus Incident, says in the film. “The degree of oversight and attention has if anything gotten worse, because people don’t worry about nuclear war as much.”…….

It’s not just the US arsenal we need to worry about, however……..Command and Control rolls out in selected theaters starting on September 14 in New York City. Click here for dates, cities, and venues. http://www.motherjones.com/media/2016/09/eric-schlosser-command-control-movie-documentary-nuclear-weapons-accidents

The contextual backdrop of Schosser’s book incudes plenty of the kind of Cold War insanity that many Americans have relegated to the attics of our memories:………

chlosser’s coup de grâce was a list he obtained (via freedom of information requests) detailing a litany of nuclear fuckupsby the Air Force. Although the brass typically blamed human error, the record in its totality suggested that America’s systems for safeguarding its nuclear weapons were profoundly broken, were they ever working in the first place. Some incidents were fairly minor and others reflected organizational ineptitude………

A film, of course, delivers something a book cannot. We get to see real footage from nuclear detonations, from the actual Damascus Incident, and from some of the past nuclear mishaps, the worst one involved the accidental release of two H-bombs over Goldsboro, North Carolina, in 1961—such an insanely close call that I still shudder to contemplate it. ………

The military screws things up routinely, of course, even if the public seldom hears about it. “Nuclear accidents continue to the present day,” Harold Brown, who was defense secretary under Jimmy Carter at the time of the Damascus Incident, says in the film. “The degree of oversight and attention has if anything gotten worse, because people don’t worry about nuclear war as much.”…….

It’s not just the US arsenal we need to worry about, however……..Command and Control rolls out in selected theaters starting on September 14 in New York City. Click here for dates, cities, and venues. http://www.motherjones.com/media/2016/09/eric-schlosser-command-control-movie-documentary-nuclear-weapons-accidents

September 12, 2016 Posted by | 2 WORLD, Resources -audiovicual, weapons and war | 1 Comment