PD Smith

Faust and the bomb

10 August 2007 | atomic bomb, Doomsday Men, Faust, H-bomb, Oppenheimer, terrorism | Post a comment

It's been a good week for reviews of Doomsday Men. Joanna Bourke has written a very fair and insightful piece on it for the Independent today.

Here's the opening paragraph:

"We are right to be afraid. By the mid-20th century, nuclear physics had created weapons so immense that they dwarfed everything that went before. With the dropping of the uranium and plutonium bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki in 1945, scientific modernity had taken on a distinctly menacing dimension. In 1952, the first trial of the hydrogen bomb took place. Scientists such as Robert Oppenheimer warned President Truman that the new bomb was a 'weapon of genocide'. They alerted him that radioactivity could have 'global effects'. He paid no attention. Today, many powerful states possess the capacity to destroy our world. Without wanting to minimise the danger posed by criminal terrorists, the real threat to our security still lies with nuclear-primed governments."

You can read the rest here.

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