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September 1, 2004

'Nuclear War Survival Skills'


I just finished this book, by Cresson H. Kearny, last night.

Kearny authored the original 1979 Oak Ridge National Laboratory edition, and then updated and expanded it for a new 1987 edition and added yet another section on hormesis (the positive effects of low-level radiation on the human body) in 1999.

For $19.50 (at amazon), you get a plain-spoken, clearly written, how-to guide to shelter and protection before, during, and after an all-out nuclear exchange.

Written at the height of the Cold War, this book was intended for average Americans who believed it not only possible but desirable to ride out a nuclear exchange with "The Evil Empire" and then emerge weeks or months later into a Mad Max-like world to rebuild.


The matter-of-fact prose about the millions of dead and maimed is compelling.

Even more so, however, are the pictures of what happens to structures and shelters after being exposed to a nuclear explosion at close range.

For example, one simple underground wood-framed shelter survived completely intact 300 yards from ground zero at Hiroshima.

Writes Kearny, "Although the shelter itself was undamaged, its occupants would have been fatally injured because the shelter had no blast door.


"The combined effect of blast waves, excessive pressure, blast wind, and burns from extremely hot dust blown into the shelter (the popcorning effect) and from the heated air would have killed the occupants.

"For people to survive in areas of severe blast, their shelters must have strong blast doors."

What with our post 9/11 world, and the apparently endless war on terror that appears to be a major underlying theme of the early 21st century, I expect that sales of this book will steadily increase in years to come.


If an "event" occurs, look for an inflection point in the sales curve.

September 1, 2004 at 09:01 AM | Permalink


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