• A Matter of Priorities

    July 30, 2012

    Tags: , ,
    Posted in: Iran, Military

    The Obama administration is supporting bipartisan legislation in Congress that would designate sites in Oak Ridge, Tennessee, Hanford, Washington and Los Alamos, New Mexico as America’s newest national parks. They would stand alongside Yosemite, Yellowstone and the Grand Canyon as part of the country’s crown jewels.

    Familiar names? They should be. The Hanford site produced plutonium during WWII. The Oak Ridge site enriched uranium. Workers in Los Alamos used those materials to assemble the Little Boy and Fat Man bombs dropped on Japan, killing about 200,000 civilians in Hiroshima and Nagasaki as World War II ended. The sites were the production arms of the massive Manhattan Project that in large part created the current American Empire. Emerging from world war with the world’s largest army and only intact industrial society but also with the world’s only nuclear weapons gave the American Empire Project a kick start that is only now fading.

    At the same time, war again looms as US she-devil Hillary Clinton (remember when Secretaries of State were the peace mongering part of the government?) declares “Our own choice is clear, we will use all elements of American power to prevent Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon.”

    Israel denied (by which we mean, “called more attention to”) reports that Obama’s national security adviser briefed Israel’s Prime Minister Netanyahu on a U.S. contingency plan to attack Iran. A proxy war between the US and Iran, first on the ground in Lebanon and Iraq, now in cyberspace, waits to bubble over even as more Navy arrives in and near the Gulf in time for an October surprise (no use having a politically popular war while the Olympics dominate the media).

    It is a matter of priorities. If you wanted to celebrate the justifiably awesome scientific accomplishments of the Manhattan Project, sites at Columbia or the University of Chicago where the basic research took place stand out. Designating Los Alamos and the others as national parks is a crude displacement of the ideals of the national park system and a celebration more of testosterone than science. Doing all this while at the same time risking another world war over Iranian nuclear ambitions makes far too clear the selfish, narrow and scared position the US now occupies in the world. For me, I’ll stick to Yellowstone, Boo Boo.

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  • Recent Comments

    • teri said...


      National parks? What, what, what? Idyllic places where families can camp, cook out, and enjoy the nature trails. Oh, and carry concealed weapons. (Thanks, Congress!)

      This is a thin-the-herd idea. Hanford is the most contaminated site in the US. They don’t expect clean-up to be completed until the 2040’s sometime. If ever. It all depends on if vitrification works. But we have Bechtel on it; what could go wrong? Los Alamos (home to our largest supply of nuclear weapons) was at risk during the fires in New Mexico last year and the scene of much scrambled activity because it was discovered that some 30,000 barrels of radioactive material was stored under open tents near the facility as the fires drew near. (Not that it matters – those guys had been dumping barrels of the shit in the nearby ravines for decades. Imagine the barrels exploding in the heat and releasing their load into the atmosphere. Never mind, don’t worry, be happy.)
      Oak Ridge, also called Y12, is the world’s largest repository of highly enriched uranium.

      But hey, what’s a little plutonium and uranium amongst friends – or enemies, for that matter? See the sights, enjoy the view! Breathe it all in deeply, citizens.

      “Ours is a world of nuclear giants and ethical infants. We know more about war than we know about peace, more about killing than we know about living. We have grasped the mystery of the atom and rejected the Sermon on the Mount.” -Gen. Omar Bradley

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