Iran, Nuclear Energy and Weapons, and Common Sense

Imagine Iran detonating one of these puppies over a major U.S. city:


This is a picture of a nuclear fission detonation taken just a few milliseconds after detonation.  The mottled surface is the pressure front of the expanding fireball, traveling at a rate of roughly 112,000 mph (50 km per second).  The temperature is over 20,000 deg Kelvin, caused by superheated compression of the air at the front of the pressure wave.  That’s more than 100 times the temperature of the surface of the Sun.  Nothing survives when it’s that close, not even solid rock.  The conical spikes on the bottom are “rope tricks,” caused by x-ray vaporization of the guy wires and instrument cables attached to the detonation tower.

Keep in mind this is a relatively small, 10-20 kiloton device.  The warhead pictured to the right is capable of 10 times that energy W80_nuclear_warheadand destructive power, yet it’s less than 1 foot in diameter and less than 1 yard in length.  It was first produced in 1981.  It was designed for deployment on cruise missiles and according to Wikipedia, it’s “the warhead used in the majority of nuclear-armed US Air Force ALCM and ACM missiles, and their US Navy counterpart, the BGM-109 Tomahawk.”

Fortunately, Iranian technology is nowhere near that good, so theirs would be significantly larger.  Unfortunately, their best scientists were educated in America’s best institutions of higher learning, thanks to the uber-left entrenched in the education possessing the strange talent of being both technologically brilliant in their specialized areas of learning while remaining incredibly stupid about more pressing issues, like whether or not an ideologically dogmatic nation-state is trying to kill us, and whether it would be a wise idea to give them even the slightest edge towards succeeding.

As Benjamin Netanyahu recently noted, Iran isn’t building nukes Benjamin-Netanyahuand ICBMs to reach Israel.  They already have missiles capable of reaching Israel.  They’re building them to reach the U.S., for whom they have avowed death and destruction for the last 35+ years.

This link takes you to NukeMap, a tool you can use to determine the fireball radius, air blast radius, and thermal radiation radius of typical nuclear detonations where you live.  If detonated over the Statue of Liberty in New York City, the world’s smallest nuclear weapon, the 20 t (not kt — just ton) Davy Crockett would destroy the monument and kill everyone on the island twice over, first by heat, and a second time by radiation.

If we increase the yield by a thousand times to 20 kt, the “Fat Man” bomb used on Nagasaki, and move the location to St. John’s Cemetary, halfway between Brooklyn and Queens New York, it will kill as many people as soldiers were injured in Viet Nam, and injure a quarter of a million people.

Increasing the yield yet again to that of the previously pictured device, more than a quarter of a million people will die, and more than a million will be injured.  Given the fact that terrorists usually don’t put all their marbles in one basket (witness the 4 planes used during the 9/11 attacks), I would expect 5 such devices detonated simultaneously in our major cities, and close to 1.5 million people dead and nearly 6 million injured.  The monetary and property damage would make 9/11 look like a pinprick in comparison.  Here’s what that the destruction radius of just one device would look like:

Now, consider this question from Fortune:  “Everyone agrees the Iran nuclear deal is historic. But the real question is: Historic in what way?  Will the agreement avert military strikes against Iran’s facilities, while also keeping a nuclear weapon out of Tehran’s hands, as President Obama argues?  Or is the deal “historic” like the Munich Agreement of 1938, in which British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain appeased Adolf Hitler? Are we naively enabling a terror-supporting regime to become a nuclear power and setting off a nuclear arms race in the Middle East? That’s what most Republicans, some Democrats and Israeli leaders say.”  Source:  Easton, N. (2015, July).  What the Iran nuclear deal really means.  Fortune.  Retrieved from

I don’t know about you, but I’m inclined to believe that a nation-state with a long and strong history of sponsoring terrorism should NEVER be allowed anywhere near anything “nuclear,” regardless of their acclaimed purpose.  If they want energy for the generation of electricity, let them go with wind, solar, and fossil fuels like most nations around the world.

And before anyone says, “but they need nuclear power,” consider this:  “Iran has the second largest proved gas reserves in the world after Russia, with 33.6 trillion cubic metres, and third largest natural gas production in the world after Indonesia, and Russia. It Iran - More than Half Sun-drenched Desertalso ranks fourth in oil reserves with an estimated 153,600,000,000 barrels.  It is OPEC’s 2nd largest oil exporter and is an energy superpower.”  Furthermore, fully half their nation is sun-drenched desert, absolutely ripe for the use of solar power.

Iran has ABSOLUTELY ZERO “need” for nuclear energy.  They have enough fossil fuel to last them 1,000 years, and enough sunlight to last them for 5 billion years (when the Sun is expected to have exhausted its stores).  They also have access to water and mountains along two long shore fronts, so they can store daytime energy overnight using hydroelectric storage.  Long before then, however, the world will have perfected nuclear fusion, which will long outlast the Sun itself.

Again, the mere thought of allowing Iran to have any nuclear facilities whatsoever, is incredibly, blitheringly idiotic.  While that may change in a thousand years, I wouldn’t count on it.  It hasn’t changed in the last 1,400.