There have been at least 700 significant accidents and incidents involving 1,250 nuclear weapons
Giles Prentice: A Broken what?
Secretary Baird: Broken Arrow. It's a Class 4 Strategic Theatre Emergency. It's what we call it when we lose a nuclear weapon.
Giles Prentice: I don't know what's scarier, losing nuclear weapons, or that it happens so often there's actually a term for it.
From the movie Broken Arrow.
Gary Rule #1 - People are fucking idiots. This article proves my contention that the End of Days is here. We are ruled by madmen who will kill us all.
(London Guardian) A secret document, published in declassified form for the first time by the Guardian today, reveals that the US Air Force came dramatically close to detonating an atom bomb over North Carolina that would have been 260 times more powerful than the device that devastated Hiroshima.
The document, obtained by the investigative journalist Eric Schlosser under the Freedom of Information Act, gives the first conclusive evidence that the US was narrowly spared a disaster of monumental proportions when two Mark 39 hydrogen bombs were accidentally dropped over Goldsboro, North Carolina on 23 January 1961.
The bombs fell to earth after a B-52 bomber broke up in mid-air, and one of the devices behaved precisely as a nuclear weapon was designed to behave in warfare: its parachute opened, its trigger mechanisms engaged, and only one low-voltage switch prevented untold carnage.
America is ruled by fucking insane lunatics. Only a madman would think it is a
good idea to send B-52s over North Carolina with live nuclear weapons.
Each bomb carried a payload of 4 megatons – the equivalent of 4 million tons of TNT explosive. Had the device detonated, lethal fallout could have been deposited over Washington, Baltimore, Philadelphia and as far north as New York city – putting millions of lives at risk.
Though there has been persistent speculation about how narrow the Goldsboro escape was, the US government has repeatedly publicly denied that its nuclear arsenal has ever put Americans’ lives in jeopardy through safety flaws. But in the newly-published document, a senior engineer in the Sandia national laboratories responsible for the mechanical safety of nuclear weapons concludes that “one simple, dynamo-technology, low voltage switch stood between the United States and a major catastrophe”.
The document was uncovered by Schlosser as part of his research into his new book on the nuclear arms race, Command and Control. Using freedom of information, he discovered that at least 700 "significant" accidents and incidents involving 1,250 nuclear weapons were recorded between 1950 and 1968 alone.
"The US government has consistently tried to withhold information from the American people in order to prevent questions being asked about our nuclear weapons policy," he said. "We were told there was no possibility of these weapons accidentally detonating, yet here's one that very nearly did."
Full article here
Major Kong Rides the Bomb
From Dr. Strangelove, the bomb riding sequence.
How US bomber nearly nuked North Carolina in 1961
In a new book Command and Control, journalist Eric Schlosser chronicles America's terrifying nuclear mishaps and near misses.
He recounts how in one incident in 1961, days after President John F Kennedy's inauguration, two hydrogen bombs were accidentally dropped on Goldsboro, North Carolina, as a B-52 bomber went into a tailspin.
Only the failure of a single low-voltage switch prevented disaster, Schlosser explains to the BBC's Katty Kay.
"The bomb assumed it was being deliberately released over an enemy target - and went through all its arming mechanisms save one, and very nearly detonated over North Carolina," said Schlosser.