Experience of nukes in real life by atomic veterans

  1. This happened to my grandfather, he described it similarly, they just brought all the soldiers out on the boat and onto the deck to watch the blast. They all thought the test would be much farther away than it actually was. He said a lot of soldiers were crying and begging for their lives during it. Insane they treated it like a fireworks show for the soldiers.

  2. My buddy's dad said they just brought them out to the desert, had them sit on lawn chairs and were like "watch this" and detonated a nuke for them to see.

  3. Hard to imagine a horror so great that it reduces trained and battle tested soldiers to blubbering tears in a matter of seconds.

  4. Was the government just ignornat of the danger, or actually wanted to see the long term damage this woiuld do to the men?

  5. my Dad was a part of Operation Hardtack 57-59. Spoke to him about his experience yesterday. He was a photographer in the US Navy during hardtack and his job was photographing the effects. He witnessed and photographed "about a dozen" detonations during his time. Told me he was on guard duty on Oahu during

  6. Was it Castle Bravo? That detonation was about three times bigger than anyone predicted it would be, and a lot of people who thought they were a safe distance away thought they were going to die

  7. It actually was the right distance. The math was wrong was the problem. The bomb was significantly bigger than intended.

  8. I met one of these veterans, just a couple of years ago. He told me that he and his fellow sailors were told to remain in the deck, turn away from the blast, and close their eyes — which had no effect whatsoever. It was exactly as if they were facing it and had no eyelids, it was that bright. When I expressed happy amazement that he appeared to be doing so well (mobile and lucid in his 90s!) he told me about a horrific list of health problems he’d had ever since. And he was one of the lucky ones.

  9. My uncle was one of those soldiers. He died a slow and painful death of a rare leukemia. Guy lived a hell of a life. Got drafted, government blew up a nuke next to him then shipped him to fight in Korea. When he left the military he was a prison guard that was nearly killed in a prison riot while defending the prisons weapons armory.

  10. That's why the tell you to close your eyes and cover your face with your hands. If you see it with your eyes open, instant blindness. It's pretty bright.

  11. My great uncle was in an atom test. Fought the gov. for it his whole life. Never made any progress with it. Died of cancer 7 years ago. He was the last of his platoon which also died from cancer.

  12. I remember watching the documentary these clips were taken from but can't recall the name. Many of their children developed unusual cancers that are rarely seen in children too.

  13. Yeah I met a Veteran about 8 years ago that was involved in that event. He wasn't on one of the ships, however, he was on that plane that took the aerial film of the explosion. Still suffered complications from up there.

  14. I met one while I was in the military, he was a civilian contractor doing the same job. The look on his face, the one when someone is visualizing a memory, was something I’ll never forget. It was this indescribable combination of awe and horror. Had the hell of the time getting the government to recognize fault for his health.

  15. Honestly, my heart rate really went up seeing this. And I watch true crime all the time, horrible stories and that never happens.

  16. Didn't even get a medal. My Grandmothers brother was part of the 1st test in 1952. He died of cancer in the 1980's and had many friends who went the same way. Another shameful part of our past that they weren't even recognised.

  17. My aunt's father was at the Los Alamos tests. One of the soldiers ordered to hide in a ditch during the explosion. Later developed cancer and mysteriously his medical records suddenly couldn't be found. I will recommend Atomic Cafe (which I really can't tell, but this clip might be from). A documentary told entirely through the words and images of the cold war last I checked it was available on YouTube.

  18. My great grandfather died of cancer due to nuclear testing. His death was eligible for compensation by the US government, however I’m not sure if my family ever applied for it and as of this month they’re officially closing the fund off from any new applications

  19. My Grandpa was part of these tests, could even be in one of those vids. He was on a submarine and said they were all subjected to this. He also said the same things about seeing his bones through his hand. They were military lab rats. Lived to 80 and died from cancers but also smoked a pipe his whole life so..

  20. Oh we're still guinea pigs, just not the government but corporations. We are exposed to thousands of chemicals that are unregulated through air, soil, food, water, etc.

  21. This was my father. He was 1 of 9 volunteers to deep sea dive and take pictures of the damage done to the ships. They were told beforehand that they would be sterile from the radiation and may die from cancer. They did it anyway.

  22. an elderly neighbor who did occupation duty in Japan in 1946. He showed me a startling photo from his time in Japan. It was a photo of himself standing at ground zero Nagasaki...this was only a few months after the bomb was dropped. I said to my neighbor, 'Weren't you worried about the radiation?" My neighbor replied, "Nobody told us about any radiation." The US military allowed thousands of US military personnel to wander around Hiroshima and Nagasaki, like tourists in hell.

  23. Same thing with my great grandpa. He was 18 in 1946 when he went to Japan, and passed away in 93 from horrific battles with different cancer

  24. To be fair, we didn’t actually know the long term effects of radiation like we do now. It wasn’t too long ago shoe salesmen would X-ray your feet inside your shoes to make sure they fit right. They knew about acute radiation sickness, but no one was really aware of the long term effects from cancer.

  25. People are naturally curious and wanting to spread the information they find/already know. Probably going to happen more frequently for a bit considering the current state of world affairs.

  26. Now pay attention to those who treat nukes callously and want to use them as personal toys against other countries while they stay at home on Reddit, (downvote) and run as far away from them as possible. Their ignorance and arrogance will get everyone killed.

  27. There prepping us in case a certain invading army that's getting its ass handed to it by a much smaller country decides to start pulling out the "big guns".

  28. The American military did this as well. My grandfather served in the U. S. navy during the Korean War. He witnessed three different nuclear tests in the South Pacific. His stories are very similar to these gentleman. And yes, he did develop cancer. By then, the U.S. government had set up a fund for atomic veterans so he was able to get help with his medical bills. Believe it or not, he’s still alive and is 90 years old!

  29. French did it to their soldiers in Algeria. Arte recently had a 6h documentary on the war in Algeria and a former soldier was describing the same experience. All his comrades died eventually but they kept on checking out the impact crater while he only went there once.

  30. My Grandpa was stationed in Pearl Harbor After WW2 and they got to be a part of this fucked up history as well.

  31. reminded me of Castle Bravo, the first time they tested a thermonuclear bomb. Basically they miscalculated the TNT output because of different lithium isotopes they used for fuel. They expected 5MT of TNT, but the bomb was 15MT. Sailors who believed they were in safe distance said they felt like someone turned a torch on their face.

  32. Ivy Mike was the first thermonuclear device. Castle Bravo was the biggest from the US. Was supposed to be 5 Megatons and ended up being 15

  33. I believe that effect is just due to the sheer amount of visible light produced, remember that it is enough to permanently blind instantly, and at closer range do things like bleach concrete (leading to the shadows at Hiroshima and Nagasaki). To the best of my knowledge the eye is totally insensitive to X rays.

  34. The brightness was so much you could see all the bones of your hands when you close your eyes and cover your face with your hands.

  35. The scariest thing about it is, governments are made up of..... People.... So it's more like what people are willing to do to other people

  36. Any government doing this is disgraceful but just for my knowledge which country's government is concerned concerned with this video?

  37. Fun fact the bomb ‘little boy’ that was dropped on Hiroshima took 43 seconds to detonate after being dropped from the bomber. The whole crew was sure the bomb was a dud, until they saw the brightest flash in the distance that would completely devastate the city.

  38. The strange thing is, Hiroshima is beautiful city that came through the shock. The museum promotes hope. I'd never felt the weight of an event so heavy in a museum. Goodness knows how bad it was to witness it.

  39. If anybody is not aware yet - the government doesn’t give a s**t about you. Just keep that in mind.

  40. I’m surprised the accents aren’t a give away, they’re hardly Australian, Canadian or American, if you discount New Zealand then we’re all that’s left.

  41. I respect people that give themselves to the armed forces but imma be honest I ain't dying for nobody else other than me and my family. Fuck country pride when governments do shit like this to their own people.

  42. It's just a lottery as to where you were born, as far as I'm concerned. I feel no ties to my government or nation whatsoever.

  43. To be fair you have to be borderline brain dead to join the US military these days and think you are fighting for freedom or protecting America.

  44. What the government did was criminal. And they will never be punished which is almost as horrible as what has happened to those military personnel.

  45. I was a nuclear weapons specialist in the AF from 91-15 and wore dosimeters. During that time we would have to sign off quarterly the amount of radiation our head, chest and other parts of our body absorbed while disassembling, testing and assembling nuclear weapons. I know 2 former coworkers that have leukemia at this time. There was also one incident where everyone has to piss in jugs for 2 weeks straight at home and at work. Everyone was walking around with jugs of piss. It was funny at the time. Not so much now. The piss jugs were pallitized, loaded on a truck and hauled off. We were never told why.

  46. I work with radiation. We have to wear dosimeters and submit piss samples for bioassays. The only time I got really fried was when some asshole fucked up a field reading before I did some work in one of our cyclotrons.

  47. I remember getting the shit downvoted out of me for posting this video in response to somebody on Reddit saying the United States was the only country that did this sort of testing.

  48. Soldiers In the UK were test subjects for various gases. We're offered a 3 day pass which they thought was great. Many had long problems til they died. I wonder how many admirals and higher -ups went through shit like that, cus I'm guessing none.

  49. They could see their bones through their flesh because the flash was so bright. The density of the bones was the only thing they could see because the light shined right through the flesh.

  50. There have been different reports of that (Enola Gay for instance) but from what I've heard, the phenomenom isn't completely scientifically explained as your eyes shouldn't "see" the x-rays. Some explained it by just saying the people exposed saw just their hands but were also blinded by the flash making the shapes look thinner. But everyone keep mentioning the shape of the bones so it's not a really good explanation either.

  51. I was curious if any of them suffered acute radiation sickness with the discussion of how close it sounded like they were to the blast and the X-Ray insanity. They didn’t mention that.

  52. So when someone says, "They wouldn't do that!" The reply is yes, yes they will. They have, they will almost certainly do it again. The question of using nuclear weapons isn't about "the people" it's about power. If the government (yours or theirs) believes that using one will be beneficial to retaining their power, or gaining more, they will. How many die is only a means to apply pressure.

  53. I remember this. I watched the full video a while back. We really should have used all the people involved in the development of this weaponry as the Guinea pigs.. it’s sad all these men had to be test subjects. If I remember correctly they got little to no help with treatment and medical bills also. Disgusting what governments will do to their own people.

  54. To think of all the ingenuity that goes into making such an abominable weapon. Of all the things that humans could do with their potential, and how much we focus on power. We are a scaredy cat lot, so intent on gaining and maintaining a power over others that many resort to the worse natures. Not all are like that obviously, there’s almost as much good in us too. It’s just so sad to see this because it’s the counter to the greatness humanity can show.

  55. You should listen to Oppenheimer's full speech regarding the atomic bomb. He was so devastated he felt he personally had become a bringer of death. "I am become death, destroyer of worlds" for the full speech

  56. For reference, using cohort life tables for the UK, ignoring people who died before the partial test ban treaty in 1963 (the tables only went up to 1961) and assuming that everyone involved in the tests was between 18 and 30 in 1963, the expected number of people out of the 22500 who should've died based on the figures for the population as a whole is 7838, so this group of people had more than double the expected mortality of their peers.

  57. This is such an important video for people to watch. I’ve read into these weapons but I still obviously did not appreciate the immense power that they possess.

  58. My grandfather was on the second closest ship to the blast. Sometimes at dinner or just watching TV, a tooth would fall out or a chunk of hair. He knew exactly what it was from because all his old Navy buddies had similar issues. He was just used to it. He’d say “oh that’s just the radiation poisoning”, like it was a simple cold or allergies. He had intermittent dementia his whole life but no “cause”. Then one day it stopped being sporadic and was constant. It was such a sad way to go.

  59. If you’re not convinced that we have to do everything possible to avoid nuclear war at all costs, you’re batshit out of your mind.

  60. My grandfather was an atomic veteran and his job was to walk into the aftermath of a bomb test and investigate the wreckage. All his friends died from cancer, yet somehow he still lived to be 90.

  61. My father saw it in Algeria when the French were still testing nukes. He was on a military vessel at sea.

  62. My great grandfather was one of these men. We were watching a movie and there was a cut to old nuclear testing footage and he said "I witnessed one of those" I asked for details and he just said "not allowed talk about it", he got irate the few times after that I asked so eventually I dropped it. This was in mid 00's so he could but wouldn't or maybe he didn't know he could, he was a little gone by that point.

  63. My Grandad served in the Royal Marines on Christmas Island during the H Bomb tests, and his account is exactly like these men.

  64. My grandfather was a ship fitter in the navy, and was part of operation crossroads. He had to do damage assements of the ships after the blasts and see if they could be repaired or not. He died of an "unknown" form of soft tissue cancer in the late 80's, (not service related obviously /s). My dad told me that he experienced pretty much everything these other vets said.

  65. My dad was an atomic vet. I was conceived during the time he was part of test. He was okay . But later on when I was an adult I had to have my thyroid removed. They said that I had been exposed to radiation, the kind you get from Chernobyl. At the time I didn’t know that my father had been exposed radiation. Later he told me that he was a mile from the drop. That’s why I had thyroid cancer! I have four brothers and no one else had thyroid cancer.

  66. My Dad was in the Air Force (bomber pilot) and they had him fly through the mushroom cloud to measure the radiation. He and his crew were told to make sure to wash their clothes separately from the rest of the family’s wash. Oh, and to get a shower when he came home. He died of cancer.

  67. My friend's father was one of them. He died of cancer a few years later and his family did get some special compensation because his death was linked to the incident.

  68. Casual reminder that the current largest bomb, the Russian ‘Tsar Bomba’ is some 6000 times more powerful than the nuclear bomb seen here.

  69. It is beyond f'ed up that our government literally made our servicemen sit on the deck of a ship to purposefully be exposed to a nuclear wave. I guess you can make the argument for negligence and underestimating the potential effects. As a veteran, it feels like patriotism is ALWAYS exploited instead of rewarded by Uncle Sam.

  70. My Dad was at Bikini Atoll for the Castle Bravo blast. He sat on the deck of a ship during the test and after as it rained on them. He was told nothing. When his radiation badge pegged out he turned it in and was given another one. He eventually was sent home because of his radiation exposure. Most of his shipmates died of cancer and had children with birth defects. Not my Dad. He lived to 83, we called him our nuclear cockroach. When the VA hospital contacted him in the 90’s to come so they could do tests and find out why he wasn’t dead when everyone else was, he refused. He said they told him nothing, he was returning the favor. He was so close to the blast that he had burns to his face (like a sunburn) even though he was facing away from the blast. He was eventually sent home because of his radiation exposure. My Dad was used by the US government like a lab rat.

  71. My grandfather was part of a nuclear test like this and explained very eerily similar experiences. I never knew how much to believe. He was part of the marine reconnaissance, I think the first ever group. They were basically doing drills as the first in after a blast.

  72. My great-grandfather was in the US Navy onboard one of the ships that was part of the bikini atoll nuclear testing. He ended up dying of cancer as well. I remember, while I was growing up, he was constantly having to get skin cancer growths cut out of him all over.

  73. And now stop and realise that innocent Japanese civilians: men, women and children were hit with that horrible torment.

  74. Years ago, I worked with an guy who was ex-navy in the late 50s, early 60s that was part of those tests. He told me the same thing about being able to see through the guy in front of him. I thought he was bullshitting me at the time.

  75. About 12 years ago I was studying abroad in Japan and visited Hiroshima. I got to listen to two women who survived the bomb. It's a harrowing tale. Almost anything to do with this invention is just sad.

  76. i work in radiology and amount of radiation they experienced to see bones with bere eyes must be imense, cant even compere with todays cancer radiation tretments. must be in few silverts at once.

  77. It never occurred to me to wonder before, but since this was over the ocean, it finally came to mind: what is the “massive fireball?” There’s nothing out there to burn. Is it caused by a nuclear reaction that I don’t understand, or just a failure of language - the result of trying to verbalize something indescribable?

  78. Do we know if anyone from the Manhattan Project knew what kind of effects to expect on people? Having never experienced a nuclear bomb, I suspect it would be easy for someone like Oppenheimer to believe that if you were fine a few weeks after an explosion then you were probably good. Not sure if they knew to be concerned about cancer in the following decades after exposure to a nuclear blast.

  79. How have I literally never heard about this until now. This is insane. Like, I knew that people would watch nuclear tests in Vegas back then, but I had no idea that this was happening to navy soldiers and the like. Insanity.

  80. What scared me the most, despite most of the things, is closing your eyes and seeing the X-ray of other people, that fear of even closing your eyes and still seeing, as if your eyes were still open

  81. I'm not an antivaxxer but after seeing things like this done by the government to its own people, you can kind of understand.

  82. I’ve watched the whole documentary. The part that blew mind was when the one sailer said it was like an X-ray. He could see his bones and all the veins and stuff in his hands.

  83. I met the last surviving sailor of the second frigate in the hospital two years ago in Auckland. All the others were dead, and he was in treatment for numerous cancers. We spent the night talking, and he hadn't seen his wife for four months -as he didn't want her to see him deteriorating. They had no children; most of the sailors from those two boats didn't either, from Australia or New Zealand. Most of them died of aggressive cancerous tumours too.

  84. Between 1961 and 1971 there were over 500 tests performed in the desert outside Las Vegas. I've often wondered if people in the Southwest will have any long-term effects from those tests.

  85. All of this constant talk of nukes from everywhere makes me feel like I'm being force-fed information to normalize it. Like someone knows something I don't. I don't like it.

  86. The United Kingdom, the United States, the Soviet Union, France, China, India, Pakistan, and North Korea have all definitely conducted successful nuclear weapons tests. Israel probably did as well, and post-Soviet Russia might have done so at least once.

  87. ...he literally said it at the end, pretty much none of the dead have died from anything other than cancers of varying kinds.

  88. My friends grandpa was one of these guys. He didn't have much to say on it other than it was something he didn't really like talking about

  89. i can understand warfare, and bombs, but the idea of nukes, the idea that a few countries have to power to end the entire world just by themselves at a whim, and most of the time it would be over a petty fight. utterly terrifying that we allow people to basically say "if i cant win a war, everyone on earth must die because of it"

  90. They witnessed first hand one of the most powerful things humanity has ever created. To not be humbled into hysterics by witnessing such an abomination would be to feel nothing at all.

  91. Had a Western Civ professor who was an Atomic Soldier. He spent a class session or two describing the tests and the aftermath for the soldier and sailors. He had pictures from Las Vegas of tests. He passed a few years back from cancer. It was an unbelievable period of history, well documented.

  92. My grandfather told me he was there for these. He said he had to go and clear stuff of those boats before the test. He said it was one of the scariest things he’s ever seen.

  93. I never knew these people existed, Jesus how can you do this to your own men w/out briefing or a back out option. Why was I never thought about this

  94. Dan Carlin’s Hardcore History has a great podcast series on nuclear weapons and how precarious of a situation we’re still in. We’re in the long game of trying to resist using these weapons.

  95. Someone correct if wrong, but ive seen a lot of nuke witness say they can see the X-rays. Now since X-ray is not a visible form of light to humans isn’t it safer to assume that the blast is just so bright you can see your bones thru your skin. Like holding a flashlight under your hand but at a muchee brighter bigger scalw

  96. Reminds me of another experiment where the military set up a "common cold vaccine" test that soldiers could volunteer for. Turns out they were actually testing nerve agent on them.

  97. Close enough to leave permanent scars. I watched this full documentary and one of these veterans became infertile after getting exposed to so much radiation from the blast.

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