Weapons of Mass Destruction
Red Cloud at Dawn: Truman, Stalin, and the End of the Atomic Monopoly
Red Cloud at Dawn
Truman, Stalin, and the End of the Atomic Monopoly
Paperback      ISBN: 0312655428

A NEW YORK TIMES BOOK REVIEW EDITORS' CHOICE

On August 29, 1949, the first Soviet test bomb, dubbed "First Lightning," exploded in the deserts of Kazakhstan. This surprising international event marked the beginning of an arms race that would ultimately lead to nuclear proliferation beyond the two superpowers of the Soviet Union and the United States.

With the use of newly opened archives, Michael D. Gordin folows a trail of espionage, secrecy, deception, political brinksmanship, and technical innovation to provide a fresh understanding of the nuclear arms race.

Shockwave: Countdown to Hiroshima
Shockwave
Countdown to Hiroshima
Paperback      ISBN: 0060742852

A riveting, minute-by-minute account of the momentous event that changed our world forever

On a quiet Monday morning in August 1945, a five-ton bomb--dubbed Little Boy by its creators--was dropped from an American plane onto the Japanese city of Hiroshima. On that day, a firestorm of previously unimagined power was unleashed on a vibrant metropolis of 300,000 people, leaving one third of its population dead, its buildings and landmarks incinerated. It was the terrifying dawn of the Atomic Age, spawning decades of paranoia, mistrust, and a widespread and very real fear of the potential annihilation of the human race.

Author Stephen Walker brilliantly re-creates the three terrible weeks leading up to the wartime detonation of the atomic bomb--from the first successful test in the New Mexico desert to the cataclysm and its aftermath--presenting the story through the eyes of pilots, scientists, civilian victims, and world leaders who stood at the center of earth-shattering drama. It is a startling, moving, frightening, and remarkable portrait of an extraordinary event--a shockwave whose repercussions can be felt to this very day.

A Short History of Nuclear Folly: Mad Scientists, Dithering Nazis, Lost Nukes, and Catastrophic Cover-Ups
A Short History of Nuclear Folly
Mad Scientists, Dithering Nazis, Lost Nukes, and Catastrophic Cover-Ups
Paperback      ISBN: 1612193307
In the spirit of Dr. Strangelove and The Atomic Caf , a blackly sardonic people's history of atomic blunders and near-misses revealing the hushed-up and forgotten episodes in which the great powers gambled with catastrophe

Rudolph Herzog, the acclaimed author of Dead Funny, presents a devastating account of history's most irresponsible uses of nuclear technology. From the rarely-discussed nightmare of "Broken Arrows" (40 nuclear weapons lost during the Cold War) to "Operation Plowshare" (a proposal to use nuclear bombs for large engineering projects, such as a the construction of a second Panama Canal using 300 H-Bombs), Herzog focuses in on long-forgotten nuclear projects that nearly led to disaster.

In an unprecedented people's history, Herzog digs deep into archives, interviews nuclear scientists, and collects dozens of rare photos. He explores the "accidental" drop of a Nagasaki-type bomb on a train conductor's home, the implanting of plutonium into patients' hearts, and the invention of wild tactical nukes, including weapons designed to kill enemy astronauts.

Told in a riveting narrative voice, Herzog--the son of filmmaker Werner Herzog--also draws on childhood memories of the final period of the Cold War in Germany, the country once seen as the nuclear battleground for NATO and the Warsaw Pact countries, and discusses evidence that Nazi scientists knew how to make atomic weaponry . . . and chose not to.

Stockpile: The Story Behind 10,000 Strategic Nuclear Weapons
Stockpile
The Story Behind 10,000 Strategic Nuclear Weapons
Hardcover      ISBN: 1591145317

In 1960 there were some 3,500 strategic nuclear weapons in the United States and by the mid-1970s there were more than 10,000. This book, written by a member of the U.S. nuclear weapons force, gives an account of that buildup and the efforts taken to keep the stockpile under control. Jerry Miller highlights the strategies, targeting and attack plans, and arms control measures associated with the bomb. He addresses the role of the military in establishing requirements and the role of the scientists in meeting those requirements and identifies the weapons' strengths and weaknesses and their significance for the future. A final chapter reviews threat scenarios and suggests actions to bring the nuclear force into line.

Twilight of the Bombs: Recent Challenges, New Dangers, and the Prospects for a World Without Nuclear Weapons
Twilight of the Bombs
Recent Challenges, New Dangers, and the Prospects for a World Without Nuclear Weapons
Paperback      ISBN: 0307387410

The final volume in Richard Rhodes's prizewinning history of nuclear weapons offers the first comprehensive narrative of the challenges faced in the post-Cold War age.

The past twenty years have transformed our relationship with nuclear weapons drastically. With extraordinary depth of knowledge and understanding, Richard Rhodes makes clear how the five original nuclear powers--Russia, Great Britain, France, China, and especially the United States--have struggled with new realities. He reveals the real reasons George W. Bush chose to fight a second war in Iraq, assesses the emerging threat of nuclear terrorism, and offers advice on how our complicated relationships with North Korea and South Asia should evolve. Finally, he imagines what a post-nuclear world might look like, as only he can.
The United States Armed Forces Nuclear, Biological and Chemical Survival Manual: Everything You Need to Know to Protect Yourself and Your Family from
The United States Armed Forces Nuclear, Biological and Chemical Survival Manual
Everything You Need to Know to Protect Yourself and Your Family from
Paperback      ISBN: 046500797x
In this comprehensive guide, military experts teach you how to survive an attack on American soil, from North Korean missiles to weaponized smallpox

North Korean nukes. Emerging epidemic and pandemic disease. Dirty bombs in train stations. Chemical warfare. Americans have more reasons than ever to be afraid. If a nuclear missile strikes, will you know what to do? If a nerve agent is released in your office building, will you know the best way to avoid harm? The U.S. Armed Forces Nuclear, Biological and Chemical Survival Manual gives you the information you need to survive a terrorist attack. It contains the best practices of all the United States' military services, adapted for the first time for civilian use. Experts agree that the threats posed by terrorists and enemy nations have never been graver. This handbook is the single most effective tool you can own to protect yourself and your family against the danger looming over our homeland.

This manual will show you how to
- Protect yourself during a chemical or biological attack
- Recognize the indicators of nuclear, chemical and biological attack
- Develop a simple and effective family action plan
- Guard against the radiological effects of a dirty bomb
- Assist victims of nuclear, chemical, or biological agents
- Assemble and store the everyday materials that could save your life

War of Nerves: Chemical Warfare from World War I to Al-qaeda
War of Nerves
Chemical Warfare from World War I to Al-qaeda
Hardcover      ISBN: 0375422293

Statesmen, generals, and diplomats have long debated the military utility and morality of chemical warfare. In 1925, the use of chemical weapons in war was prohibited by international treaty; in 1997 the ban on the use of chemical weapons was extended to cover their development, production, and stockpiling. Nevertheless, Iraq employed chemical weapons on a large scale as recently as the 1980s, first during its eight-year war with Iran and then against its rebellious Kurdish minority.
In "War of Nerves," Jonathan Tucker, a leading expert on chemical and biological weapons, writes about chemical warfare from World War I to the present.
The author makes clear how, at the turn of the twentieth century, the large-scale use of toxic chemicals on the battlefield became feasible and cheap; how Germany first developed and employed toxic weapons during World War I, burying some 6,000 cylinders (containing 168 tons of chlorine) opposite the Allied trenches defending the town of Ypres, in Belgium. German troops simultaneously opened the chlorine cylinders, panicking two French divisions and tearing a gap four miles wide in the Ypres front.
Chemical warfare had begun: five months later, the Allies retaliated with their own use of chlorine gas. By the end of the war, chemical warfare had inflicted roughly one million casualties, 90,000 of them fatal.
Tucker writes about the synthesis of the first nerve agent--Tabun--in 1936 by a German industrial chemist developing new pesticides how its high toxicity made it unusable as a pesticide but viable as a weapon for the Nazi regime. A few years later, two even more toxic nerve agents--Sarin and Soman--were developed for military use. Hitler never employed this secret weapon; German intelligence concluded--incorrectly--that the Allies had developed a similar capability.
Following World War II, we see the rise of a Cold War chemical competition between the United States and the Soviet Union that paralleled the nuclear arms race, as each pursued the secrets of the German nerve agents; how the United States and Britain planned to mass-produce Sarin (only the United States did); how the superpowers developed and mass-produced V-agents, a new generation of nerve agents of extraordinary potency; and how nerve agents spread to the Third World, including their suspected use by Egypt during the Yemen Civil War (1963--1967), as well as Iraq's use of nerve agents in its war against Iran and on its own people. Iraq's use of nerve agents hastened the negotiation of an international treaty banning the use of chemical weapons, which went into effect in 1997. Although the treaty now has more than 175 member-states, al-Qaeda and related terrorist groups are seeking to acquire nerve agents.
In this important and revelatory book, Jonathan Tucker makes clear that we are at a crossroads that could lead either to the further spread of these weapons or to their ultimate abolition.