STAFF NEWS & ANALYSIS
Pentagon’s Not Properly Funding Its Trillion-Dollar Nuclear Costs
By Daily Bell Staff - July 01, 2016

Tomorrow never comes: neglecting the nuclear force … In 2014, following several high-level embarrassments, Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel ordered two enterprise-level reviews of nuclear forces. Remarking on their findings, Hagel said, “the internal and external reviews I ordered show that a consistent lack of investment and support for our nuclear forces —over far too many years — has left us with too little margin to cope with mounting stresses.” -WarontheRocks.com

This article published in June makes a case that the Pentagon’s nuclear weapons ought to be funded in a disciplined manner every year.

We have a different issue. The review the article refers to was carried out in 2014, and is indicative of the larger, troublesome issue affecting the Pentagon.

The Pentagon investigates itself.

When researching our articles on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, see HERE, we discovered that a single journalist, William Laurence, had been provided significant access to the Manhattan Project, the first test of  the A-Bomb and a seat on the bomber that dropped the bomb on Nagasaki.

The reporter provided elaborate coverage of the mission including a written portrait of the plutonium bomb exploding.

Not only was broad access provided only to one reported, this reporter – it was later revealed – was on the payroll of the Dept, of Defense, though at the time he was characterized solely as an employee of the New York Times.

Wikipedia tell us:

An estimated 35,000–40,000 people were killed outright by the bombing at Nagasaki. A total of 60,000–80,000 fatalities resulted, including from long-term health effects, the strongest of which was leukemia, with an attributable risk of 46% for bomb victims.

Yet, Crawford Sams who ran the Atomic Bomb Casualty Commission in Japan had this to say about the bombing of Nagasaki:

When I came back to this country, I was appalled, from a military standpoint, to find that our major planners in the War Department were using their own propaganda, 100 thousand deaths, Bing!  …

You don’t hear much about the effects of Nagasaki because actually it was pretty ineffective. That was a narrow corridor from the hospital … down to the port, and the effects were very limited as far as the fire spread and all that stuff. So you don’t hear much about Nagasaki.

In our Hiroshima and Nagasaki coverage, we simply collected Internet articles and videos and compared them. There is contradictory information on all fronts. The Defense Department shaped the narrative, however, as it wished.

The entire process is a lot like what happened in the aftermath of 9/11. There was plenty of anomalous evidence. But somehow the idea that a handful of “terrorists” rammed planes into buildings and destroyed them remains the major explanation.

Curiously, there have been reported sightings of many of these terrorists after the fact. The FBI has blamed the situation on “mis-identification.”

Similarly, the Nagasaki and Hiroshima narratives remain questionable. Very few reported were allowed to investigate either city.

Now, as then, the Pentagon provides information to selected journalists who write stories based on what they have received.

The WarontheRocks.com article reveals the following:

Recent estimates for needed facilities, weapons, and infrastructure upgrades for the nuclear triad total $1 trillion over the next 30 years, even after cutting the nuclear stockpile in half since 2001.

The vast sums of money flowing to the Pentagon, and the secretive way that it generates its budgets and then, eventually shares them with politicians and journalists, is a recipe for confusion and misinformation.

The whole military process begins to resemble a “dominant social theme” – elaborate propaganda designed to suck as many tax dollars as possible out of Treasury coffers, often with little in the way of results.

But the most troublesome aspects of the Pentagons operations have to do with the lack of even rudimentary oversight by anyone other than the Pentagon itself.

It is true that Congress overseas the Pentagon. But Congressional reps obviously depend on the Pentagon to investigate its own issues. They then receive the “reports” just as the media does.

As communications technology continues to expand, there will doubtless be more and better investigations about nuclear weapons, how effective they are and why they cost so much. Hopefully, they will come from third-party sources.

Conclusion: This hasn’t happened yet, but the Internet is process not an episode. No matter the misdirection, it is likely the 21st century will provide a good deal more truth about  these critical issues than the 20th.

Posted in STAFF NEWS & ANALYSIS
  • Samarami

    Truth is the first casualty of war. It’s not surprising that people in their own hearts begin to rewrite history the instant the first of the murders occur. At this time of political holiday for the purpose of aggrandizing war, I wouldn’t bank on “truth” arising from any source, including the web. Perhaps one day massive numbers of human beings will develop intense desires to quell the collectivist boilerplate within themselves. But I’m convinced each will be forced to wade through writings such as this before that day comes.

    I don’t see that happening anytime soon — even among “libertarians” (quotes intended and necessary). Sam

  • mary

    “…this reporter – it was later revealed – was on the payroll of the Dept,
    of Defense, though at the time he was characterized solely as an
    employee of the New York Times”

    DB, do you have a reference for this, please. It is, of course, VERY significant and therefore should be verified. Thanks.

    • http://www.gutenberg.us/articles/william_laurence

      It turns out that William L. Laurence was not only receiving a salary from The New York Times. He was also on the payroll of the War Department. In March 1945, General Leslie Groves had held a secret meeting at The New York Times with Laurence to offer him a job writing press releases for the Manhattan Project, the U.S. program to develop atomic weapons.

      The intent, according to the Times, was “to explain the intricacies of the atomic bomb’s operating principles in laymen’s language.” Laurence also helped write statements on the bomb for President Truman and Secretary of War Henry Stimson.

      Laurence eagerly accepted the offer, “his scientific curiosity and patriotic zeal perhaps blinding him to the notion that he was at the same time compromising his journalistic independence,” as essayist Harold Evans wrote in a history of war reporting.

      … Numerous press releases issued by the military after the Hiroshima bombing-which in the absence of eyewitness accounts were often reproduced verbatim by U.S. newspapers-were written by none other than Laurence.

      “Mine has been the honor, unique in the history of journalism, of preparing the War Department’s official press release for worldwide distribution,” boasted Laurence in his memoirs, Dawn Over Zero. “No greater honor could have come to any newspaperman, or anyone else for that matter.”

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