By Brian Todd and Dugald McConnell
You could easily skip by it in an archive search: a project titled "A Study of Lunar Research Flights." Its nickname is even more low-brow: "Project A-119."
But the reality was much more explosive.
It was a top-secret plan, developed by the U.S. Air Force, to look at the possibility of detonating a nuclear device on the moon.
It was hatched in 1958 - a time when the United States and the Soviet Union were locked in a nuclear arms race that would last decades and drive the two superpowers to the verge of nuclear war. The Soviets had also just launched Sputnik 1, the world's first satellite. The U.S. was falling behind in the space race, and needed a big splash.
"People were worried very much by (first human in space Soviet cosmonaut Yuri) Gagarin and Sputnik and the very great accomplishments of the Soviet Union in those days, and in comparison, the United States was feared to be looking puny. So this was a concept to sort of reassure people that the United States could maintain a mutually-assured deterrence, and therefore avoid any huge conflagration on the Earth," said physicist Leonard Reiffel, who led the project.
Reiffel, now 85, spoke to CNN at his home in Chicago. A 1959 report Reiffel wrote on the project, declassified many years ago, was obtained online by CNN.
According to Reiffel's report, "The motivation for such a detonation is clearly threefold: scientific, military and political."
The military considerations were frightening. The report said a nuclear detonation on the moon could yield information "...concerning the capability of nuclear weapons for space warfare." Reiffel said that in military circles at the time, there was "discussion of the moon as military high ground."
That included talk of having nuclear launch sites on the moon, he said. The thinking, according to Reiffel, was that if the Soviets hit the United States with nuclear weapons first and wiped out the U.S. ability to strike back, the U.S. could launch warheads from the moon.
"These are horrendous concepts," Reiffel said, "and they are hopefully going to remain in the realm of science fiction for the rest of eternity."
The basic plan, Reiffel explained, was for an intercontinental ballistic missile to be launched from an undisclosed location, travel some 240,000 miles to the moon, and detonate on impact. Various news reports since 1958 have said project leaders considered using an atom bomb the same size as "Little Boy," the bomb that was dropped on Hiroshima, Japan, near the end of World War II.
Reiffel, who was cited for that information in those reports, now says he wasn't in on those discussions.
Contrary to some reports, Reiffel told CNN, the device would not have "blown up" the moon. "Absolutely not. It would have been microscopic, so to speak. It would have been, I think, essentially invisible from the Earth, even with a good telescope."
Reiffel had some brilliant minds on his team. One of them was an up-and-coming graduate student named Carl Sagan. Sagan went on to become one of the world's most renowned astronomers, creating the book and popular TV series "Cosmos."
But after working on the moon program, Reiffel said, Sagan violated security when he mentioned the still-classified project on a job application. "He did formally break the classification status of the project", Reiffel said of Sagan, who subsequently died in 1996.
Sagan's widow, Ann Druyan, told CNN she's not sure if Sagan ever broke the classification, but if he did, she said, it wasn't intentional. "I can't imagine he would have done that knowingly," Druyan said.
By 1959, Project A-119 was drawing more concern than excitement.
"We didn't want to clutter up the natural radioactivities of the moon with additional bits of radioactivity from the Earth," Reiffel said. The project was abandoned.
Project planners also weren't sure of the reliability of the weapons, and feared the public backlash in the U.S. would be significant," Reiffel said.
"It disappeared in the files of the Pentagon", he said of the project. "They come up with what I believe was the right answer."
Contacted by CNN, the Air Force would not comment on Project A-119.
There is certainly a lot to find out about this topic. I really like all the points you have made.
Iím impressed, I have to admit. Rarely do I come across a blog thatís both educative and amusing, and without a doubt, you have hit the nail on the head. The problem is something not enough people are speaking intelligently about. I'm very happy that I came across this during my hunt for something relating to this.
You are so cool! I do not think I have read anything like that before. So good to find somebody with some unique thoughts on this subject matter. Really.. many thanks for starting this up. This site is one thing that is required on the internet, someone with a bit of originality!
Thanks for any other magnificent post. The place
else may just anybody get that kind of info in such a perfect manner of writing?
I have a presentation subsequent week, and I'm at the look for such info.
erectile cure http://sildenafilicp.com#
Сервисный центр COREX предоставляет услуги по ремонту компьютеров и ноутбуков, в Иваново. Мастера проводят диагностику, устраняют неисправности, собирают компьютеры на заказ, а также скупают старые компьютеры и комплектующие. На сайте https://ivanovo.flamp.ru/firm/corex_servisnyjj_centr-70000001034942437 можно подробнее ознакомиться с услугами, почитать отзывы клиентов, оставить свои комментарии, а также узнать контактные данные сервисного центра.
Aw, this was an exceptionally good post. Spending some time and actual effort to
make a superb article… but what can I say… I put things off
a whole lot and don't manage to get anything done.
Quality articles or reviews is the secret to interest the viewers to go to see the web site, that's what this site is providing.
Good post. I learn something new and challenging on websites I stumbleupon on a daily basis. It will always be interesting to read content from other writers and practice something from their websites.
I am sure this piece of writing has touched all the internet users, its really really good post on building up new website.
erectile shots diagram http://tadalafilsol.com#
bookmarked!!, I like your blog!
An outstanding share! I've just forwarded this onto a colleague who was conducting a little research on this. And he in fact bought me breakfast due to the fact that I stumbled upon it for him... lol. So let me reword this.... Thanks for the meal!! But yeah, thanks for spending time to discuss this issue here on your internet site.
Write more, thats all I have to say. Literally, it seems as though
you relied on the video to make your point. You obviously know what youre talking about, why waste
your intelligence on just posting videos to your blog when you could be giving us something enlightening to read?
solutions erectile dysfunction http://tadalafiletc.com#
На блоге https://mcla.blog можно найти информацию о казино, азарте и гемблинге. Бонусы и спины можно получать открыто, а играть в казино можно даже на кредитные деньги. Изучать можно информацию о том, как не попасть на поддельные слоты. Кроме этого, доступным является и азартный гороскоп для всех знаков Зодиака. Приметы и поверья игроков казино изучать можно в любое удобное время. Собственную беспроигрышную стратегию в казино можно построить так, как будет необходимо. Мультиаккаунт в онлайн казино поможет многого достичь.
Oh my goodness! Impressive article dude!
Many thanks, However I am encountering troubles with your RSS.
I don't know why I cannot join it. Is there anybody getting similar RSS problems?
Anyone who knows the answer will you kindly respond?
Iím amazed, I have to admit. Seldom do I encounter a blog thatís both equally educative and interesting, and let me tell you, you have hit the nail on the head. The issue is something too few men and women are speaking intelligently about. I am very happy I stumbled across this during my search for something concerning this.
На сайте http://ppkprofil.ru/ можно заказать строительные материалы от производителя – компании ППК «Профиль». Компания специализируется на производстве кровельных материалов, водосточных систем, а также материалов, которые используются для возведения заборов. Продукция производится из качественного сырья, поэтому материалы имеют длительный срок эксплуатации. В ассортименте большое количество расцветок. Производим металлочерепицу, кровельный и стеновой профнастил, сэндвич-панели ПВХ. Доставка осуществляется в Московской области.
erectile clamp http://hydrochloroquinetrx.com#
Excellent post. I definitely appreciate this site. Keep it up!
I love it when people get together and share opinions. Great website, continue the good work!
When I originally left a comment I seem to have clicked on the -Notify me when new comments are added- checkbox and from now on whenever a comment is added I receive four emails with the same comment. There has to be a means you can remove me from that service? Many thanks!
You ought to take part in a contest for one of the greatest websites online. I'm going to recommend this site!
can erectile dysfunction be hereditary https://www.pharmaceptica.com/
That is a good tip particularly to those new to the blogosphere. Short but very accurate infoÖ Appreciate your sharing this one. A must read post!
what is hydroxychloroquine 200 mg https://www.pharmaceptica.com/
There is certainly a lot to find out about this topic. I like all of the points you have made.
Greetings! Very helpful advice within this article! It is the little changes that will make the most significant changes. Thanks for sharing!
erectile creams for men http://loratadine-claritin.com#
Hello there, I do believe your web site might be having web browser compatibility problems. Whenever I look at your web site in Safari, it looks fine however, if opening in Internet Explorer, it has some overlapping issues. I merely wanted to give you a quick heads up! Apart from that, fantastic blog!
Way cool! Some extremely valid points! I appreciate you penning this post plus the rest of the website is also very good.
tadalafil goodrx https://www.pharmaceptica.com/
Pretty! This has been a really wonderful article. Thank you for providing this information.
I wanted to thank you for this fantastic read!! I absolutely enjoyed every little bit of it. I've got you book marked to check out new stuff you postÖ
I simply couldn't depart your website before suggesting that I extremely loved the standard information a person provide
in your guests? Is going to be back incessantly to investigate cross-check new posts
Howdy! This post could not be written any better! Going through this article reminds me of my previous roommate! He always kept preaching about this. I am going to forward this post to him. Fairly certain he'll have a very good read. Many thanks for sharing!
erectile machines http://tadalafilusdc.com#
is erectile dysfunction common in older men https://www.pharmaceptica.com/
Your style is very unique in comparison to other people I've read stuff from. Thanks for posting when you've got the opportunity, Guess I will just bookmark this blog.
Can I simply say what a comfort to uncover somebody that truly knows what they're discussing on the web. You certainly know how to bring an issue to light and make it important. More and more people ought to check this out and understand this side of the story. I was surprised you're not more popular because you definitely have the gift.
I'm very happy to uncover this site. I need to to thank you for your time just for this fantastic read!! I definitely appreciated every bit of it and I have you saved to fav to check out new stuff in your website.
Great info. Lucky me I recently found your blog by chance (stumbleupon). I have book marked it for later!
can erectile dysfunction be treated loonee erectile enhancement pills
which erectile dysfunction pills work Theotte erectile bleeding
erectile strength diet Bribly erectile 20170 elderly
По ссылке http://www.youtube.com/c/RubiconAndrei вас ждет познавательный канал с распаковкой товаров, розыгрышами и походами по различным живописным местам. На канале представлены видеообзоры на товары из Китая, которые упрощают жизнь, а также недорогие товары с Aliexpress, которые стоит заказать. Также канал понравится любителям походов, ведь здесь вы узнаете, как подготовиться, что взять, куда пойти, чтобы незабываемо провести время. Подписавшись на канал, вы будете получать уведомления о новых видео.
When some one searches for his required thing, so he/she wishes to be available that in detail, so that thing is maintained over here.
An interesting discussion is worth comment. I do believe that you ought to write more about this subject, it might not be a taboo matter but usually people do not discuss such issues. To the next! Kind regards!!
Itís hard to find educated people about this topic, but you sound like you know what youíre talking about! Thanks
Like clockwork the bug had struck me again. Single other away championship win was in 1992 when UM defeated Boise
State 82-67. One with the first a few is how to put it.
Nice post. I learn something new and challenging on sites I stumbleupon on a daily basis. It's always interesting to read through content from other writers and use a little something from other sites.
This blog was... how do I say it? Relevant!! Finally I've found something that helped me. Kudos!
After I initially left a comment I seem to have clicked the -Notify me when new comments are added- checkbox and now each time a comment is added I receive 4 emails with the exact same comment. There has to be an easy method you can remove me from that service? Thanks!
Iím impressed, I must say. Seldom do I come across a blog thatís both educative and amusing, and without a doubt, you have hit the nail on the head. The problem is something that too few folks are speaking intelligently about. Now i'm very happy that I came across this during my search for something concerning this.
erectile issues in your 40s loonee erectile disorder treatment
erectile band Theotte soma erectile dysfunction
erectile function questionnaire Bribly erectile d with matt lauer
Установку забора из профнастила можно закатать с помощью сайта https://ps02.ru/ в любое время суток. Появление ограждения должно сопровождаться работой профессионалов. Чтобы построить надежный, долговечный и красивый забор из профнастила, достаточно обратиться по указанным контактным данным. Процесс строительства осуществляется поэтапно. Подготовка участка, а также проведение разметки и другие работы производятся ответственно. Расположение столбов будет подбираться с учетом всех имеющихся аспектов.
Hello! I simply would like to give you a big thumbs up for the great info you have got here on this post. I am coming back to your website for more soon.
chloroquine phosphate vs hydroxychloroquine https://www.pharmaceptica.com/
Itís hard to find well-informed people on this subject, but you seem like you know what youíre talking about! Thanks
Nice post. I learn something totally new and challenging on blogs I stumbleupon everyday. It's always helpful to read through articles from other authors and practice a little something from other web sites.
erectile dysfunction loonee erectile dysfunction exercises
does erectile dysfunction come on suddenly Theotte erectile hardening cream
do erectile sprays work Bribly erectile pictures
This is a topic which is close to my heart... Many thanks! Exactly where are your contact details though?
[url=http://www.MDAh6jlcGg4.at] kkkkkkkkkk [/url]