This is a Chinese propaganda film from 1966 about the communist country’s first nuclear weapons tests starting in 1964. The film shows the preparation of the testing area and the participation of the scientists and workers organized for the event which shocked the world. The soundtrack features a complete English translation of the narration which is delivered in a rather deadpan fashion, contrasting with the obvious enthusiasm of the original Chinese narrator.
Most interesting to me in nuclear testing documentaries, both from the communist and democratic worlds of the mid-twentieth century, is the willingness of researchers to subject both animals and people to the effects of nuclear fallout. One would think that some of those U.S. and Chinese soldiers placed out in the desert to weather a nuclear blast with sunglasses would have decided to pick up some machine guns and slaughter a few commanding officers rather than risk the deadly radiation. That’s the problem with being a soldier. You have to follow some idiot’s orders and those orders can easily place you right up against a threat to your life and health that may be totally unnecessary. The twentieth century was filled with masses of people who willingly subjected themselves to the instructions of leaders and dropped themselves right into the meat-grinder of war, sacrificing themselves to some vague idea of glory which was actually just the glory of the guys at the bank. We’re doing it a little differently now in the U.S., making war with drones and ‘volunteer’ armies. But the fact is that people are still sacrificing themselves for some idea that’s never been properly explained to them. So they tell themselves that the idea they fight for is ‘freedom.’ We’ve somehow used the events of 9/11 to convince many people to volunteer for a fight they don’t understand. 9/11 was a criminal act by a criminal organization, not a true act of war. The inability to understand that has led to decades of hatred and an all-encompassing worldwide war of vagueness that infiltrates every daily activity, even those as simple as taking a photograph in a subway or near an airport. The terror organizations we fight all over the world could only ever hope to kill as many people in a single year as the drug cartels do. So why aren’t we flying drones over Mexico, killing anyone who looks like a cartel member?
So enjoy the film. What it’s really about is how people turn themselves into horses.
In 1956 Peter and Joan Foldes made this animation about nuclear doomsday that caused quite an outcry after Ed Sullivan presented it to unsuspecting viewers and their children on his evening show. Io9 has more about the broadcast.
If this man bows a bit lower, someone should take the opportunity to kick his head through a plate glass window.
These Japanese power company nincompoops are not only disrespectful, but they are quite possibly criminals.
The CEO of TEPCO has all but disappeared, requiring low-level employees to work in his nuclear death camp, risking their health and lives for a company that has been shown to have falsified inspections when not skipping them altogether.
The TEPCO CEO should be forced to work in his own death camp. Then when he is done there and has suffered irreparable cellular damage, he should be tried and sent to prison.
The U.S. government wants you to keep your house tidy and clean. If you don’t, it’ll get blown up and burned to a cinder by an atomic bomb blast. Seriously. This is the entire message of this ridiculous 1954 U.S. government educational film about the effects of a nuclear blast. It seems obvious to me that if you were working for the U.S. government in the fifties you were just a drooling simpleton. This film actually goes from mind-boggling insanity to postmodern masterpiece if you squint at it in the right way. It represents nearly everything you need to know about the 20th century in America.
This is a five-part documentary by British filmmaker Adam Curtis about the rise of nuclear energy in the United States. These sections make up A is for Atom which is a 1-hour segment of a much longer science and politics television series called Pandora’s Box. It chronicles the development of the nuclear power industry and shows clearly how little was ever understood about what would happen or what should be done during a nuclear accident.
In the 1950s, while the US army was intentionally blasting soldiers with radiation in order to study them as they melted and died, this film was made to minimize public worry about nuclear radiation. Governments always lie about nuclear radiation. They never tell the truth. So, as President Obama stands before the nation assuring us that no dangerous radiation will reach our shores from the sudden nuclear Armageddon of Japan, watch this reassuring little film and wonder.