When it comes to the truth about radiation and health effects, there are no experts who are honest - not in government, not in science, not anywhere. Yet, people would rather listen to liars than challenge their assumptions about the sources of the so-called truth and disregard the purveyors of actual truth on this topic: the non-creditialed self-taught. - Andrew Kishner, May 18, 2013
You are reading from a free online e-book titled 'Deception, Cover-up and Murder in the Nuclear Age.' The book discusses the Trinity test, Hiroshima and Nagasaki, hydrogen bomb testing fallout, U.S. experiments done on Marshall Islanders (Project 4.1), the Irene Allen trial, Cosmos 954, the Fukushima meltdowns, Three Mile Island updates, and so much more. Visit the Table of Contents to find this free content.
Footnotes are located at the end of each chapter - press the (right facing) 'PAGE' button icon until you reach the footnotes page, or locate it via the table of contents
|Chapter 3 - Global fallout from nuclear testing||
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In the early part of the 20th century, no scientist imagined that a single human-made or accidental explosion at one location could contaminate the entire Earth with ash and toxic residues like an erupting volcano.
But in the years and decades following the first detonations of the atom bomb in the 1940s, it became clear to those in the scientific community that a single nuclear bomb explosion could do the job. One of the first discoveries demonstrating this effect came in the 1970s when a team of scientists studying the chemical composition of an ice core layer taken near the Arctic determined that airborne plutonium had been absorbed into the ice as early as mid-1945.1 That plutonium, which is a chemical element that doesn't occur naturally, could have only originated from the radioactive debris injected into the atmosphere from any, or all, of the three atomic explosions in 1945: Trinity, and the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. The fact that the southern-most atomic explosion in 1945 occured at 33 degrees North latitude (Nagasaki, Japan) and plutonium was detected as far north as 80 degrees (Ellesmere Island, Canada), in the Arctic Circle, is shocking.
After the atomic attacks on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, the U.S.'s nuclear weapons development program intensified with 'Operation Crossroads,' a series of atom bomb tests on Bikini Island in the Pacific in 1946 and 1948. In 1949, when the Soviet Union conducted its first-ever atomic blast, the U.S. nuclear arms program shifted into a 'racing' mode. The Soviets revved its engines and the two nations began producing immense amounts of nuclear bomb fuel and also testing nuclear bombs at multiple test sites at a dizzying pace.
Although chemicals of a radioactive nature wasn't a new concept to Americans - radium was commonly found painted on watch-dials to make them glow and it was also prescribed as a health tonic in the 1920s - the atom bomb had created so-called 'fission products,' which were new radioactive elements and never before found in nature. By the late 1950s and early 1960s, experts began issuing the first warnings that these 'artificial' chemicals dispersed via nuclear bomb tests into the atmosphere may be contributing to significant disease and death. Notable scientists including Linus Pauling, Dr. Spock, Albert Schweitzer, and Silent Spring author Rachel Carlson warned of the perils of chemicals associated with atomic fallout - notably strontium-90 - that were being found in increasing quantities in milk and human teeth. Many of those concerned about this possible threat to public health and who spoke out against nuclear testing met with rebukes from scientists and politicians and, on occasion, were subpoenaed by Congressional committees set up to ascertain the Communist affiliations of Americans and U.S. organizations engaged in 'unAmerican' activities.2
Unclean clean bombs
In 1956, fallout became a political issue when Adlai Stevenson ran for President. Stevenson, an opponent of the bomb tests, used his speaking opportunities to level criticisms at his opponent, incumbent President Dwight Eisenhower, who was firmly in support of testing. Eisenhower believed bomb tests were essential if we wanted to avoid nuclear war and took the position of his advisors that continued testing could actually make both war and testing safer. The logic behind this idea was that as weapons experts were making progress at reducing the 'fallout' generated from bomb tests, then allowing additional nuclear tests would help advance the ability to decrease radioactive pollution from continued nuclear tests and even nuclear war itself! This was the rhetoric that was framed around the hydrogen bomb - which the U.S. first tested in 1952 and the Soviets in 1953. The 'clean' bomb was in fact a pipe-dream concept that has always been very, very far from the reach of weapons designers and was simply used as a ploy to convince the masses to accept further weapons testing. The reality is that our most powerful 'clean' H-bombs, if exploded by the dozens, could cause a mass-extinction event across Earth.
By 1957 and 1958, increasing pressure in the United States and from abroad - by scientists and humanitarian leaders with strong, clear-cut positions against continued weapons testing - persuaded Eisenhower to shift his stance. Eisenhower met with the Soviet leadership and agreed on a moratorium on all bomb testing that would begin in late 1958 that would serve as a 'cooling off' period for the negotiation of a broad, comprehensive, lasting treaty.
In 1960, Premiere Krushchev and President Eisenhower drafted such a treaty - that would only allow small underground nuclear tests - but disagreements over mutual inspections and other tensions led to the disintegration of talks. When John F. Kennedy entered the Oval Office, he attempted in early 1961 to push towards a test ban treaty but by then it was too late. The Soviets became so livid over the discovery that France, which argued it wasn't a party to the moratorium, was conducting nuclear tests (four of them in 1960) during this 'cooling off' period that all bets were now off. The Soviets began readying their test sites to start a large-scale bomb testing series in September 1961. That testing series, which lasted through November 1961, featured the biggest 'superbomb' ever tested on Earth - a 58-megaton device dubbed 'Tsar Bomba' (over 3,000 times the firepower of the device that leveled Hiroshima in 1945).
The Americans put no effort into mending the now-broken moratorium - which was simply a verbal agreement (not a treaty). The U.S. resumed testing at the Nevada Test Site and later Pacific Proving Grounds in April 1962. The Russians 'retaliated' with a test series that included four hydrogen bomb explosions that were half the size of 'Tsar Bomba' over August and September of 1962.
The 'Cold War' by this time was taking on the appearance of a simulated nuclear war as massive H-bombs capable of vaporizing whole cities were blown up in air and outerspace. On July 9, 1962, the U.S. blew up a hydrogen bomb 100 times the yield of the Hiroshima bomb at a distance of 248 miles above Earth - somewhere between the orbits of the present-day International Space System and the Hubble telescope! Many American and Soviet atomic and hydrogen bomb tests during this time were experiments designed to assess the nuclear blast effects on mock military targets on land, sea or in space.
Although the Cuban Missile Crisis and other events stoked fears of imminent nuclear war that trumped worries over worsening radioactive fallout contamination in the early 1960s, the fallout issue was still in motion politically. In late 1963, President Kennedy offered to halt U.S. bomb tests if the Soviets also ceased testing. Luckily, the Soviets agreed and the Limited Test Ban Treaty, which prohibited nuclear bomb tests carried out in sea, air and space, was born.
Too little too late
During the intense nuclear bomb testing from 1961 to 1963 (and primarily from September 1961 to Christmas 1962), the Americans and the Soviets exploded bombs that injected into the atmosphere the same amount of fallout over the Earth as would be created by over 7,600 Hiroshima bombs. During the 1950s, fallout from another 5,000 Hiroshima-equivalents coated the Earth mostly from U.S. hydrogen bomb tests carried out in the Marshall Islands, including Bikini Atoll. (Although many people have come to believe the fallout that emerged from the Hiroshima and Nagasaki A-bomb attacks harmlessly dissipated in the atmosphere, this is a misconception. Read more in Chapter 1.)
Through the year 1963, roughly 400 atomic or hydrogen bombs were tested in the open-air by the two superpowers and other rising nuclear powers including China, the U.K. and France. The cumulative size, or yield, of these nuclear explosions in open-air totaled 440 million tons of TNT-equivalent and injected into the atmosphere over 15 times the quantity of two common long-lived radioactive chemicals (cesium-137 and stronium-90) released during the 1986 Chernobyl accident. The Earth in the 1950s and 1960s was turned into a simulated nuclear war environment by the nuclear powers of the mid-20th century, yet the effects on the environment from the massive amount of fallout from these nuclear 'tests' were anything but simulated.
You may be wondering to yourself 'How did we survive?' Top scientists and government officials of the 1960s also wondered the same thing. There was a moment in time when government scientists secretly feared that the fallout may have damaged Earth's life-sustaining qualities 'beyond the tipping point.' As we will discover in the following paragraphs and sections, the fate of life on Earth was spared from immediate destruction from the 'nuclear autumn' of this 'soft nuclear war' but millions of humans and untold numbers of other life forms were caught in the crosshairs of environmental radioactive assault and were sacrificed on the altar of the atom.
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