During 1950-1952 (Korean War Era), I was on active duty in the US Navy on Guam. As part of my additional duties, I was in charge of the Geiger Counters or radiation detectors which I kept stored in the Officer’s Quarters or BOQ. Atomic warfare was expected any day, so I made sure that they were always in working order and calibrated, and checked them out about once a month.
On November 3, 1952, I made my usual checks at the desk in my office which was about 5 feet away from the window screens. No air conditioning at that time. I took out the calibration rod furnished, which has a small bit of a radioactive source, to check out the counter. I put the counter on the low setting and got ready to place the calibration rod near the “windows” of the counter, but the needle was way over on the scale and the audible signal was clicking like mad, or almost a continuous sound. A single radioactive particle made a single click.
I thought the counter was malfunctioning; but when I sort of raised it up and put it nearer the window, the dial and sound increased still further. I then put it close to the screen, which was on the ground floor, and it went off scale. I knew it was not the counter, but that there was some radioactivity outside. I panicked.
I ran outside and the counter was still giving a high reading over the normal background noise (natural radioactivity or it getting hit by Cosmic Rays) and as I got closer to where the rain had run off the buildings, the ground was very hot. I bypassed the Chain of Command and ran about ½ mile to the Admiral’s office, who was in charge of the whole Comnavmarianas region.
I went into his reception area and spoke with the Flag Lieutenant (top aide), who just happened to be a friend of mine, and told him that the island was radioactive. I also told him I had not spoken with my immediate Commanding Officer due to the urgency. He told me to go wait outside in the corridor. A few minutes later, he came out and told me that I was to ignore the radioactivity and keep my mouth shut. PERIOD. I started to protest, but he told me to scram. I then knew something was very, very wrong. The old “cover-up.”
The saddest part of this story is that the Guamanians, for a large part, had only rainwater for drinking, especially out in the “boonies” or jungle, and they were drinking highly contaminated radioactive water and I could not tell them to stop nor would the Navy inform them not to do so. Madness.
The picture cleared up the next day or so, I forget exactly when it was announced that the “Hydrogen Bomb” had been detonated at Eniwetok. The military forced to admit it when that Japanese fishing boat, the “Lucky Dragon #3,” had been too close to the fallout and its crew was very sick from radiation. One of them died shortly, thereafter, from radiation burns. The rest were very sick but survived.
However, even when the military was forced to admit that it had detonated that bomb and it had thrown some quarter of a cubic mile of radioactive dust into the atmosphere, they still did not warn any of the Pacific Island natives not to drink the water but from coconuts or deep wells. How many died horribly from cancer later, will never be known. It was that dust which had drifted down over the whole Pacific which had “rained down” on Guam, which I detected. Why I was told to keep quiet then became clear.
Now very little information was ever released on this explosion. I did glean out a few facts that: 1. The H-Bomb was “very dirty.” That meant it created a lot of radioactive debris. 2. It was damn near a total disaster and far stronger than anticipated. 3. It was supposed to have worked by creating helium by fusion, but nothing was ever mentioned that any helium was detected. It worked all right, but not according to theory. Vast difference. This worried me and I had it in the back of my mind for over 35 years. I knew something had gone wrong, hence the cover-up.
It was not until I had worked on this manuscript and finally realized that thermofusion did not exist and that it was cold fusion which did, that the answer became clear. There was little, or practically no, fusion; but that fragmentation, which released untold number of neutrons.
When those neutrons are absorbed, they create radioactive elements and it was those elements in the coral dust and sea water from the explosion which spread over the Pacific, hence made it “very dirty.” Not to mention the bomb components, building it was housed in, and everything else within range which vaporized and added to the total radioactivity. Now we go into the present when I went to Washington, D.C. in late March of 1992, in order to testify (and that is another long story) against the Superconducting Supercollider. I stayed in a hotel. One morning, I met a man in the lobby who wanted to know where to go eat breakfast since our hotel had no restaurant in it. I offered to take him to one. Over breakfast, I told him who I was and he told me who he was and that he worked for the Federal Government on designing nuclear weapons. I told him a shorter version of this long one and my suspicions. He, of course, fell back on National Security, secrecy, etc.; but he did say, rather obliquely, “We are doing better now,” (more helium created) or words to that effect.
The upshot is that the H-Bomb will never be clean; and just increasing the helium yields, will not do much except keep a lot of people busy. It did result in the “clean” or neutron bombs.