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November 1: The H-Bomb

November 1, 2012

The island of Elugelab was turned into a crater by the explosion of the first hydrogen bomb on this date in 1952. The bomb, designed for the United States by Edward Teller and Stanislaw Ulam (both European-born Jews), exploded with a thousand times more power than the bomb dropped on Hiroshima — in fact, with more explosive power than all the high explosives used in all of World War II — and left an underwater crater more than a mile wide where the island had once been. The mushroom cloud rose 27 miles high, to the top of the stratosphere, and eventually spread to 1000 miles wide. Within nine months, the USSR tested its own H-bomb, and the thermonuclear arms race was underway.
“Had we not pursued the hydrogen bomb, there is a very real threat that we would now all be speaking Russian. I have no regrets.” —Edward Teller