Forwarded from Ralph Johansen ('bunker buster')

Louis Proyect lnp3 at
Tue Sep 24 18:23:08 MDT 2002

Fwd by Gerry Cavanaugh:

>From  Helen Caldicott, "The New Nuclear Danger"( 2002), pp. 47-48:
"Actually, the scientists have already made a new nuclear weapon, violating
the NPT. This is the B61-11 earth-penetrating 'bunker buster,' the first new
weapon produced since 1989, designed to have a variable yield of 300 tons to
over 300 kilotons.  Twelve feet long and weighing 1200 pounds this bomb is
to replace the old B53, with a 9-megaton yield. It has a casing made of
uranium 238 (depelted uranium), which is 1.7 times more dense than lead.
Because of its weight, it supposedly can burrow 15 to 20 feet into the earth
before exploding. It is, scientists say, 'a new way to hold at risk robustly
defended, deeply buried targets'----for example, Saddam Hussein's bunker."

(This is one glaring example of excess. Any nuclear weapon exploding at
ground level will gouge out a huge crater in the earth. It doesn't need to
"burrow." Furthermore, the construction [and use: GJC] of such small nuclear
weapons may make their use "thinkable," breaking the traditional firewall
between conventional and nuclear weapons.)"



Louis Proyect

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