Virtual Bourgeois

Just An Analog Guy Trying to Upgrade For a Digital World


Posted by Gerald on September 6, 2007

There has been a lot of coverage of the mistaken flight of the B-52 with six nukes on board.  I was happy to see in this article from the L.A. Times someone mentioned the one thing that really bothered me about this.

I didn’t really care about the armed flight per se.  Maybe it is just the result of my being a Cold War era baby, but it never really occurred to me that the military DOESN’T routinely fly with nukes in US airspace.  What bothered me was this.  Evidently it is possible for the Air Force to just loose track of six nukes for a few hours.

I’m envisioning some senior Tech Sergeant on a North Dakota airbase going “Damn!  I know I’m missing something here.  Let’s see.  Car keys?  Check!  Cell phone?  Check!  Six thermonuclear weapons?  That’s it!  I’d better look in the glove compartment.”

I know it is possible to forget something important.  During my pre-teen years my mother showed an alarming propensity to drive off and leave me at various stores.  The U.S. Army seems to have forgotten everything it learned about counterinsurgency warfare in ten years in Vietnam.  The Democratic Party has control of Congress and still cannot find its ass with both hands.  I keep forgetting to pick up new Odor-Eaters and Diet Coke.

But damn – six nukes!?!


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