Although the United States has not tested a nuclear weapon for twenty years, we still spend billions each year on an array of machines that conduct all kinds of diagnostic experiments to mimic nuclear explosions. One of the most expensive is called the National Ignition Facility (NIF).
Welcome to 1962. Slick back your hair, grab a scotch, and don’t forget to triple check that route to the nearest Fallout Shelter. It is October after all, the month in which the US and the Soviet Union came closer to nuclear war than any other time in history. The nation held its breath as President John F. Kennedy faced off with Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev in waters just offshore of Cuba.
It's not easy to know how much our nation pays for our nuclear weapons programs. There is no official nuclear weapons budget. Instead, government spending accounts are often opaque, poorly defined and always spread out over several government agencies.
Say what you will about North Korea. It’s “backwards,” impoverished, isolated, led by an enigmatic, secretive leader, or even that it is “the land of no smiles” whose people live a life on the edge of survival.
Like a big ship, even a country ruled by dictator cannot turn on a dime. It takes time and careful planning to change direction. Is it possible that a course change may be happening in repressive North Korea under its new leader Kim Jong Un?
In the good old days, Superman fought villains like Parasite, the purple-skinned monster, and Titano, a giant ape with laser-beam eyes. Batman warded off evil-doers The Penguin and Mr. Freeze. Spiderman battled Doctor Octopuses’ eight lethal arms.
Sadako Sasaki was two years old on August 6, 1945 when a nuclear bomb was dropped on her hometown of Hiroshima. It was the world’s first experience with nuclear war. Sadako was among the fortunate who survived the initial blast.