Ask not for whom the bell tolls…

B-52s are state sponsored terrorismit tolls for thee and me.
According to a story originally reported in the Army Times, a B-52 carrying six nuclear warheads traveled from North Dakota to Louisiana last week. Accidentally. This, despite the fact that flying nuclear warheads violates a treaty bearing our signature. The mistake was not discovered until after the plane had landed six hours later. President Bush was notified due to the gravity of the situation. As a result, all fighters and bombers within the U.S. will be grounded starting September 14 to allow for an internal investigation.
Can you spell DRILL?

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8 Responses to Ask not for whom the bell tolls…

  1. Avatar Marie says:

    I believe that both the Navy Times and the Army Times reported this story. Both URLs are giving Page Not Found messages now. There is also some conflict as to whether it was five or six missiles. FYI.

  2. eeJ eeJ says:

    one’s missing

  3. Avatar The 13th says:

    ummm… I posted a blurb about this incident this morning too, over here.

  4. Avatar The 13th says:

    Also – the Navy Times link works occasionally. The story’s link is at

    If it goes dead and there’s interest to read it, I got a copy of their account.

  5. Avatar The 13th says:

    Ok – I just got into the Army Times version of this story. It’s the same account as Navy Times. Both sites list the story’s author as Michael Hoffman – Staff writer – and according to his report the number of warheads that were missing is FIVE.

    The story has now also been covered by CNN and the AP. And in each of their accounts the number of missing warheads is SIX.

    But hey, what’s a few missing kilotons of nuclear force among friends, right?

    Meanwhile, in an unconfirmed story, a local Dunkin’ Donuts in Lincoln, Nebraska is speculating that the plane might have made an unauthorized stop. The owner of the store received an odd phone call on their after hours answering machine yesterday. Transcript as follows:

    ” Hello, my name is Major Fubar. I was wondering if I might have left my wallet at your place a few days ago? Also, I seem to be missing a 100 kiloton nuclear weapon. If you locate either, could you please give me a call at…”

  6. Avatar The 13th says:

    I’ve quite a bit to say today, maybe even some grandstanding about this nuke event. My apologies to the Editors of NMT if commenters are expected a reasonable word count.

    These are unreasonable times.

    For sake of continuity, I’ll start with a reprint of the comments I made about the missing nuke event on Tony’s wonderful blog about U.S. WMDs and their potential threat to the U.S. that’s linked above.

    Seems the Air Force was missing a few of its friends recently…


    Where were they??? Flying over the United States.

    Who did not know they were aboard the aircraft? The U.S. Air Force.

    Who did they belong to? The U.S. Air Force.

    How long were they floating innocently above U.S. airspace without anyone’s awareness? 3 1/2 hours -the entire flight.

    Should we worry? The people who made this mistake assure us that the warheads were in their custody at all times – EVEN THOUGH THEY HAD NO IDEA ABOUT THEIR WHEREABOUTS FOR 3 1/2 HOURS. Whew! I feel better! It would have been a shame to find they had fallen into the hands of the Girl Scouts!

    News of this story first appeared on Navy Times website and it has also been covered by CNN. The missing nuclear missiles were part of a small arms re-shuffle, in process of being decommissioned. Apparently better WMDs keep everyone so busy that our tired troops just don’t know what’s coming or going lest they hear explosions.

    O.k. I exaggerate. The Air Force has also reassured us there was no way for these nuclear weapons to accidentally detonate. Maybe true. I have an American-made stapler and I’ll be damned if I can keep the thing from jamming. More clipping for sure.

    Meanwhile the Air Force has also reassured the public they will be investigating their procedures. Such a statement is akin to the surgeons who misplace their scalpels inside their patients. It’s good to know that the cancer is being removed – but that stabbing stomach ache also assures the customer will be back for more. Look forward to another massive taxpayer-sponsored secret dossier to advocate better whipmasters.

    Until then, beware of carrion luggage and in-fight intern-raiments!


    What more can be said? The news event is now classified during its investigation. Like the missing Scorpion nuclear submarine fiasco it may be years before the public is given accountability – if that is even possible anymore.

    Judging from the lack of response within blogs as well as alternative news sources, I feel motivated to write further, but also a bit discouraged. I suppose this news is just one more piece of proof that our senses have been numbed beyond concern. Perhaps the lack of coverage is just more evidence of my own farcical belief in the citizen’s right to know. Maybe we all have become so decommissioned in our own civilian hopes towards peace that even missing nuclear weapons are no more different than Britney Spears’ rehab efforts.

    And maybe… that’s the real truth. The conspiracy truly is US. We’ve gone insane.

    A recent biography about Bush has garnered attention. It reveals to headline’s amazement that Bush has tear ducts (though offering little account as to why the public tears have become insignificant). The book also features yet another memorable quote from Bush.

    “I wouldn’t be president if I kept drinking.” – George Bush

    My immediate thoughts were that if America wasn’t drinking George wouldn’t be president either! Perhaps the quote provides a potential political solution too. We should be sending bartenders to the White House. Maybe vote them in as Senators?

    Probably a bad idea. Washington has enough lame parties as it is. We need some work done by those we pay.

    Here in Current Eventland we all know: 1.) Terrorism exists. 2.) Propaganda, economics, and apathy are blinding our senses.

    U.S. citizens have been told by our government that the Al Qaeda is within the United States trying to procure nuclear weaponry. Retired Air Force Lt. Gen. James Clapper, the undersecretary of defense for intelligence warned us in July by stating “Al Qaeda has and will continue to attempt visually dramatic mass-casualty attacks here at home, and they will continue to attempt to acquire chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear materials, and if they’re so successful in obtaining these materials, we believe they would use them.”

    Now, beyond the general clapping for increased vigilance, we’ve also been told by scientists, historians, peace activists, and ANYONE that can recall Hiroshima or the Cuban Missile Crisis that NUCLEAR WEAPONS ARE AN ABOMINATION TO MANKIND – no matter who has them!

    I’m not keen on human abominations in ANY form. Global warming is not pretty science. I’m also not very fond of Alzheimer’s disease for its ability to remove all aspects of memory from the living, another form of human abomination for sure!

    Yet global warming, Alzheimer’s, cancer, not even police bathroom attendants are worth a fart of concern compared to the threat of nuclear weaponry’s potential for immediate danger.

    In 1978, the U.S. Department of Defense established a hierarchy of the potential threats from nuclear weaponry, from explosion to “minor” radiation leakage.

    The first level of threat is known as NUCFLASH – the accidental detonation of a nuclear device that inadvertently starts a war. While the military assures us this is virtually impossible, such an accident is still listed by the DOD as a top “provisionary” concern.

    The second level of threat is known as BROKEN ARROW. This level of accident has several facets including:

    1. The accidental or unauthorized detonation, or possible detonation of a nuclear weapon (other than war risk)
    2. Non-nuclear detonation or burning of a nuclear weapon
    3. Seizure, theft, or loss of a nuclear weapon or component (including jettisoning); public hazard, actual or implied.

    Additional levels in this grizzly list of potential nuclear accidents are named (in order) BENT SPEAR, DULL SWORD, and FADED GIANT, but let’s not kid ourselves… even a FADED GIANT scenario (nuclear reactor accident) risks extreme human carnage.

    Of these five levels established by the U.S. Department of Defense what happened this year on August 30th is a LEVEL TWO accident. The only thing worse than losing the nuclear weapons would have been accidentally firing nuclear weapons at another country.

    I repeat. By our own government’s definitions, the incident was the second worst nuclear mistake possible.

    Now let’s add to that bleak revelation, the current events of the day…

    The U.S. is at war. Our country is so concerned with security that we have sacrificed a great deal of citizen rights in order to “safeguard” our nation. Bush, Cheney, and Condy Rice, like a bad version of Three’s Company, run through our TV sets daily, defending the need for the war and warning America of dangers so great that we all feel like a pack of dinosaurs in a cage. One Clapper announces “the aliens are here! And they are looking for weaponry!” A month later our own military forces lose 5 or 6 nuclear warheads for hours.

    We all know that the Air Force has a wonderful array of speed designed weaponry for which Americans have lovingly paid taxes in order to assure a sense (or need) for safety. We’ve got amazing jets and more, all that can be thrust to the scene of any crime within minutes because, as 9/11 showed us, a few minutes are all it takes to destroy anything. Monuments can be destroyed before a president can even finish sharing a children’s story. Lives can be lost – not like lost and found – but as in dead – permanently gone.

    Yet, when 5 or 6 nuclear warheads are missing for hours –the event is played on the media like a Strauss Waltz! In the U.S., more importance is given to two men with badges playing footsie in a bathroom stall. The suspense turns out to be anti-climatic. Meanwhile actor Toby McGuire’s gets married and Spiderman saves the polo spurt shirt from moral disgrace once again.

    Personally I’m still waiting to hear why the misplaced nuke story originally claimed 5 warheads were missing and later changed to 6. Was one found hiding in the airplane’s commode? Or should I assume that the military news story published in both the Army and Navy Times used the same military counting system that reports war casualties? Is this the formula? 1-in-6 are not reported?

    Perhaps – I am indeed making too much out of a nuclear mistake. Every new technology has its bugs to kill and nuclear weaponry is certainly all about bug-killing logic. This recent mistake is simply one of many boring nuclear accidents in the U.S.

    Scores of nuclear bombs have been lost at sea. NORAD and other defense mechanisms have had many false alarms leading to the rallying of our deployment jets and more. Two hydrogen bombs were dropped on North Carolina in 1961. Why worry about those flying over head today?

    Many of these nuclear accidents are as absurd as this August’s fubar which is truly frightening.

    In 1980, an Air Force repairman working in a nuke silo drops a heavy wrench socket on a Titan II intercontinental ballistic missile that results in fuel leak. The leak continues undetected for 8 hours – until the fuel finally ignites. The exploding fuel blows the 740-ton silo door and catapults the missile’s nuclear warhead 600 feet.

    In 1984, Warren Air Force Base in Cheyenne, Wyoming, gets the message that one of its Minuteman III intercontinental ballistic missiles was about to launch from its silo due to a computer malfunction. To prevent the possible launch, an armored car was parked on top of the silo. That’s right – they attempted to stop the accident by parking a vehicle on top of a missile launch!

    In 2004, workers at a U.S. nuclear factory attempted to repair a cracked nuclear detonator with TAPE!

    These are just a few of numerous U.S. nuclear weapon mistakes but nuclear mistakes are made within ANY country attempting to utilize this weapon. Globally scores of warheads are missing. Forget official deployment’s risk – the nuclear accident rate alone has already lost enough weaponry to destroy the world several times over.

    Yet humans continue to build and rely upon them. And humans continue to lose them.

    It’s akin to legalizing drunk driving and when accidents occur, they receive the court order that the driver was not drinking enough. Order another round! It’s like making headlines out of presidential tear ducts when everyone knows we’re cutting poisonous onions.

    It’s totally crazy, totally suicidal – and obviously OUT OF CONTROL.

    George, we’ve stopped drinking too, for a few rounds at least, and here there are:

    This vote’s for you, Bud.


  7. Avatar Marie Walden says:

    Props to you, 13th, for calling for Bush’s impeachment. I do not, for the life of me, understand how we could justify impeaching Clinton for his hummer incident and let a mass murderer demolish the very foundations of our democracy with impugnity. This is fucking humiliating. We are like drunk pledges at a national frat party. George is the president of Alpha Omega. Cheney is in charge of hazing. Condi serves as the slutty little sister. We, having been forced to imbibe vast quantities of hyperbole, are powerless to stand up, let alone speak against our “brothers.”

    So there we lay….in a pool of our own drool while they draw on us with permanent markers and put our hands in warm water. If we ever wake up it will be to the embarrassing reality that we look like idiots and we’ve soiled ourselves. Certainly we can form a Panhellenic Council to revoke Alpha Omega’s charter. IMPEACH BUSH!

  8. Avatar The 13th says:

    This morning I read these weapons were also left in the staging area for hours, totally unsupervised, made safe only by bureaucratic snafus. Maybe I should adapt the government standard and send my tax returns to MasterCard. I’m tired of being the middle man anyway!

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