Thursday, June 30, 2005

Ice Age Planning Step # 2 ACLU

Disclaimer: If the past is an accurate guide, wild swings in weather patterns over hundreds of years will foretell Earth's next ice age. Severe, widespread cold will then limit vegetation zones, herds and agriculture for around the next 100,000 years. Mankind will once again adapt to nomadic survival. While dire consequences are not expected in our lifetimes, early considerations are wise.

Ice Age Planning Step #2
Identify any ACLU lawyers in your nearest city now. They are great proponents of public service and well-versed in nuanced distinctions. These "specialists" will be indispensable in one of two ways. Fungi (mushrooms) will become a vital part of your ice-age nutrition pyramid when crop shortages develop. Identification of edible versus toxic look-a-likes should be left to the expertise of ACLU lawyers practiced as they are in nuanced distinctions. Of course, they will need to improve upon these skills by personally sampling fungi before others consume it. Those who possess inadequate nuance skills can be expected to "drop out" of your foraging parties. Those who claim they are not so interested in public service, afterall, or who claim mushroom allergies may be traded to distant tribes for more useful furs or pelts. CAUTION: Never attempt acculturation of ACLU types unwilling to eat mushrooms; their litigious attitude will generate unnecessary strife, divisions and chaos into your caravan for many generations. ACLU lawyers are generally urban dwellers who seek anonymity. Identify them with the help of your state's bar association or prison population. You have just solved your foraging problem!

Next week: Ice Age Planning Step #3

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Wednesday, June 29, 2005

Ice Age Planning Step #1 PETA

Disclaimer: If the past is an accurate guide, wild swings in weather patterns over hundreds of years will foretell Earth's next ice age. Severe, widespread cold will then limit vegetation zones, herds and agriculture for around the next 100,000 years. Mankind will once again adapt to nomadic survival. While dire consequences are not expected in our lifetimes, early considerations are wise.

Ice Age Planning Step #1
Surround yourself with PETA members now; they are kind to animals, preferring to consume grains and veggies. When the sudden food shortage arises, PETA members not only taste the best, they obviously make the healthiest choice. They do not harbor growth hormones and drugs found in regular, beef-fed humans and are most certainly free of Mad Cow disease. Cardiologists also claim grain-fed PETA activists have healthier nutritional profiles, including heart-healthful Omega 3 fatty acids. Fortunately, PETA members are organized and very easy to find just about everywhere. You have just solved your hunting and gathering problem!

Next week: Ice Age Planning Step #2

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Prison "Ships" Circa 2005?

EagleSpeak notes "US suspected of keeping secret prisoners on warships or maybe at Diego Garcia or maybe in submarines or in outer space or in a secret base inside a live volcano..."
Insiders, however, scoff at any notion of using scarce naval resources for GWOT captives and insist the rumors are quite baseless.

Instead, captives are being "shuttled about" in 6 cubic-yard, frontload dumpsters under the supervision of "hauling contractors," according to an unnamed, sanitation union official at one of the busiest docks. Although tracking systems are rather crude, not more than a few score of the captives have been lost to date, and it is hoped they will never be missed.

United Nations officials should be welcomed to randomly inspect such containers at will, where-ever, whenever, in each host country to assure humane prisoner treatment. Each vessel is equipped with a Quran and 10 days of MREs.

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Tuesday, June 28, 2005

Submarines, Always Silent, Always Strange T/F ?

A 1999 book by Richard Thompson called The Tiger Cruise relates the story of a Los Angeles class SSN, Norfolk destroyed by a tsunami, and an Iraqi mini-sub with Islamist terrorists enroute to the east coast to spread anthrax. Thompson (ex-navy) thanked USS Montpelier (launched Aug. 1991) CO Eyler and his crew for his own SSN orientation. Thompson's submarine thriller should not be confused with D. Morgan's 2001 book of the same name about terrorist pirates in Malasia and the destroyer USS Cushing.

After the first bombing of the WTC in Clinton's first term. (Feb. 1993)
True Lies the movie with future Gov. Schwarzeneger was released depicting Islamist jihad terrorists detonating a nuke in Key West, Florida (Jul. 1994)

After Tiger Cruise (Anthrax, Iraqi Islamist terrorists, tsunami, Norfolk) was published (1999):
1. A new US president, George W. Bush, was elected (Nov. 2000)
2. The WTC was re-attacked calamitously by radical Islamist terrorists (Sep. 2001)
3. Anthrax laced mail was sent to Florida, Washington, DC and other post offices (Oct. 2001-?)
4. After the UN fails to enforce its resolutions and Saddam fails to account for missing WMDs
the US lives up to its promise of pre-emptive strike on Sadaam's regime. (Mar. 2002)
5. Earthquake and tsunami strike Indonesia (Dec. 2004)
6. BRAC targets Groton Sub Base closure; Norfolk to get subs (May 2005)

"The reason truth seems stranger than fiction is because truth's precursor is often scenario analysis; the reason submarines are mysterious is because they are useful instruments for both stealth and deceptions."

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Monday, June 27, 2005

Cold Fusion Revival and The US NAVY

JUSTIN MULLINS reports for the IEEE SPECTRUM ONLINE today in Cold Fusion Back From the Dead - U.S. Energy Department gives true believers a new hearing
Excerpted:

The cold fusion story began at a now infamous press conference in March 1989. Stanley Pons and Martin Fleischmann, both electrochemists working at the University of Utah in Salt Lake City, announced that they had created fusion using a battery connected to palladium electrodes immersed in a bath of water in which the hydrogen was replaced with its isotope deuterium—so-called heavy water. With this claim came the idea that tabletop fusion could produce more or less unlimited, low-cost, clean energy.

Startling more than a few heads earlier this year, James Decker, the deputy director of the DOE's Office of Science, announced that he was initiating a review of cold fusion science. The department's own investigation in 1989 determined the evidence behind cold fusion was unconvincing. Clearly, something important happened to alter the department's oitlook.

For Peter Hagelstein, an electrical engineer at MIT who works on the theory behind cold fusion and who chaired the August 2003 conference, the quality of the papers was hugely significant. "It's obvious that there are effects going on," he says. He and two colleagues believed the results were so strong that they were worth drawing to the attention of the DOE.

THE FIRST HINT of a tidal change came in February 2002, when the U.S. Navy revealed that its researchers had been studying cold fusion on the quiet more or less continuously since the debate started. This work was carried out at the Space and Naval Warfare Systems Center in San Diego, where the idea of generating energy from sea water—a good source of heavy water—may have seemed more captivating than at other laboratories.

Many researchers at the center had worked with Fleischmann, a well-respected electrochemist, and found it hard to believe that he was completely mistaken. What's more, the Navy encouraged a culture of risk-taking in research and made available small amounts of funding for researchers to pursue their own interests. At San Diego and other research centers, scientists built up an impressive body of evidence that something strange happened when a current passed through palladium electrodes placed in heavy water.

And by 2002, a number of Navy scientists believed it was time to put up or shut up. A two-volume report, entitled "Thermal and nuclear aspects of the Pd/D2O system," contained a remarkable plea for proper funding from Frank Gordon, the head of navigation and applied science at the Navy center. "It is time that this phenomenon be investigated so that we can reap whatever benefits accrue from scientific understanding. It is time for government funding agencies to invest in this research," he wrote.

Then, last August, in a small hotel near the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, in Cambridge, some 150 engineers and scientists met for the Tenth International Conference on Cold Fusion. Over the years, a number of groups around the world have reproduced the original Pons-Fleischmann excess heat effect, yielding sometimes as much as 250 percent of the energy put in.

Stanislaw Szpak and colleagues from the Space and Naval Warfare Systems Command have taken infrared video images of palladium electrodes as they produce excess energy. It turns out that the heat is not produced continuously over the entire electrode but only in hot spots that erupt and then die on the electrode surface. This team also has evidence of curious mini-explosions on the surface.

Fleischmann, who is still involved in cold fusion as an advisor to a number of groups, feels vindicated. He told the conference: "I believe that the work carried out thus far amply illustrates that there is a new and richly varied field of research waiting to be explored."

I recall recently (reference: Senate LAWYERS Dash to Incur Global Warming Expenditures ) another M.I.T. Professor, Richard Lindzen, stated “Science, in the public arena, is commonly used as a source of authority with which to bludgeon political opponents and propagandize uninformed citizens." Looks like he could be right AGAIN!!!

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Wow! Dolphin Watercraft NEW

Remember the Segway, the self-balancing human transporter first revealed in December 2001? Segway was over-hyped, kept under wraps nearly a year and fizzled almost as fast as Cold Fusion (which may now be revived -see my post above). Well, this dolphin invention has not been hyped, you cannot buy one and by appearances every fun-loving, water sport would like to try it, if not own it.

What exactly is a Dolphin Watercraft? The positively buoyant, dolphin-shaped vessel uses forward momentum and fins to dive beneath and out of the water's surface. The idea was first patented by Tom Rowe of Tarco Research in 1992. A fully submersible watercraft that mimics the look and abilities of dolphins, the groundbreaking craft paved the way for the first Dolphin designed and built by Innespace Productions, also in 2001. It has been undergoing testing and refinement for the past three years. Sweet Virgin Angel is a fully functional, show ready watercraft, able to perform dives, huge jumps, barrel rolls, and other amazing acrobatics at 20-30 mph.

Innespace Productions was started in California in 1998 by Rob Innes and Dan Piazza, with the aim of providing thrilling aquatic demonstrations using our unique Dolphin watercraft.

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Sunday, June 26, 2005

President-Elect Ahmadinejad Cinches Iran Goals

In a May 14th post Tehran's Submarine Gambit: A Modernized Hunley? The Ali Ghadir, and Iran’s fledgling “nuclear industry were declared icons in Iran's competition to become Islam’s center of manufacturing excellence. Sold to terrorists and successful only once in damaging a supertanker, it would send global oil futures higher than anyone has yet dreamed and it would unite "dormant Islamic radicals" behind the banner of world hegemony. We are seeing the modern equivalent of the H. L. Hunley. Lets not forget the desperation behind such “fish-boats.” Iran is to the Muslim world what Alabama was to the Southern states. So, a non-comabtant like India's Seagall could become a modern Housatonic for Iran.

President-Elect, Ahmadinejad said earlier today (Sunday) he will continue Iran's nuclear program. "The Iranian nation is taking the path of progress based on self-reliance. It doesn't need the United States significantly on this path," he said. "We need it for the development of our country and we shall carry on with it."

Mr Ahmadinejad, 49, won 62% of the vote in Friday's presidential run-off poll. He will be Iran's first non-cleric president for 24 years when he takes office in August. "Moderation will be the policy of (my) popular government," he said. "Extremism will have no place in (my) popular government."

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Monday, June 20, 2005

Senate (LAWYERS) Dash to Incur Global Warming Expenditures

The latimescom reports in Global Warming Gains Higher Profile in Senate today that momentum is building in the Senate to begin addressing global warming.

"The fate of the burgeoning effort to tackle global warming appears to hinge on whether Republican Sen. Pete V. Domenici (ed. LLB, University of Denver, 1958) decides to cosponsor a relatively modest cap on greenhouse gas emissions proposed by his fellow New Mexican, Democratic Sen. Jeff Bingaman (ed. Stanford University School of Law, 1968). A joint statement by science academies from 11 nations, including the U.S., this month helped convince Domenici that there was now a consensus among scientists (ed. some consensus- see the last paragraph below) that human releases of heat-trapping gases threaten to increase temperatures and alter climate patterns...

House Republicans have declared opposition to any mandatory reductions in greenhouse gases, as has the White House, which argues that such limits would drive up energy prices and cost thousands of Americans their jobs.

Another alternative is a revised version of the bipartisan global warming legislation by Sens. John McCain (R-Ariz.) and Joe Lieberman (ed. Yale Law School, 1967) that garnered 43 votes last year."

Now, the National Academies' own doubletalk: (On one web page, they say) ..."the Academy and its associated organizations are private, not governmental, organizations and do not receive direct federal appropriations for their work." (On another web page, they finally admit) "The federal government funds about 85 percent of the institution's work." (ed. appropriations are controlled by Congress, folks; the NAS allows itself to be a poltical tool dominated by the Dem party. It will act in its own best interests, not ours).

As to a consensus among scientists, refer to "UPDATE: Global Warming: The Fraud You Can Understand" posted here June 15, 2005. There still is no cosensus among top scientists. Consider top scientist, M.I.T. Professor Lindzen, Alfred P. Sloan Professor of Meteorology, Department of Earth, Atmospheric and Planetary Sciences (Ph.D., '64, S.M., '61, A.B., '60, Harvard University), consultant to the Global Modeling and Simulation Group at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center, and a Distinguished Visiting Scientist at California Institute of Technology's Jet Propulsion Laboratory? Dr. Lindzen stated “Science, in the public arena, is commonly used as a source of authority with which to bludgeon political opponents and propagandize uninformed citizens."





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Sunday, June 19, 2005

WHEN WILL WE GET OSAMA BIN LADEN? AIN'T DEAD YET, AFTERALL?

TIME's Timothy J. Burger reported on his interview with Porter Goss, director of the Central Intelligence Agency, today in TIME's From the Magazine online: 10 Questions For Porter Goss. Some excerpts:

IT SOUNDS LIKE YOU HAVE A PRETTY GOOD IDEA OF WHERE HE IS. WHERE? "I have an excellent idea of where he is. ....when you go to the very difficult question of dealing with sanctuaries in sovereign states, you're dealing with a problem of our sense of international obligation, fair play. We have to find a way to work in a conventional world in unconventional ways that are acceptable to the international community. "

Reader's Comment #1: If we are hit again in our homeland, Osama can kiss his butt goodbye.

COULD AL-QAEDA HIT US AGAIN? "Yes, it could. Certainly the intent is very high. And we are trying to stay ahead of their capability. And so far, I think we have done pretty well carrying the war to them.."

Reader's Comment #2: The likelihood of another Al-Qaeda attack on American soil is no more than 5% (1 chance in 20, or less).

COULD THE U.S. GO TO WAR AGAIN BASED ON FALSE INTELLIGENCE? "I would not agree to surmise that America has gone to war based on false intelligence. I would say that the right question is: Should America be checking out threats to America? The answer is yes. And will we find some threats were more talk than real? Yes, we will."

Reader's Question #3: What was the CIA doing before 9/11 with all of the taxpayer dollars it spent? Why would taxpayers believe more of their hard earned dollars should ever go to the government? How ineffective are other government agencies, if the CIA was a disaster at preventing disaster?

note: After 60 years as the spearhead of American intelligence, the CIA director no longer attends National Security Council (NSC) meetings routinely. John Negroponte, the new director of National Intelligence, has taken that chair. Goss and Negropinte, however schooled together at Yale.

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Wednesday, June 15, 2005

UPDATE: Global Warming: The Fraud You Can Understand

To update related March 24-27, 2005 postings, USA TODAY reports Evidence is underwhelming -Don't give into global alarmists, whose intents are questionable.

James M. Inhofe's report is a short article well worth the reading. Some highlights:
Despite the lack of a scientific consensus to warrant such measures, climate change alarmists — in the heat of the summer for the scariest effect — are promoting mandatory caps on carbon dioxide emissions in the USA. It's a classic case of “ready, fire, aim.”

Wharton Econometrics Forecasting Associates estimates that the costs of implementing Kyoto would cost an American family of four $2,700 annually. Two international leaders once described Kyoto's intent. Margot Wallstrom, the European Union's commissioner on the environment, said Kyoto is “about leveling the playing field for big businesses worldwide,” and French President Jacques Chirac called it “the first component of an authentic global governance.”

MIT professor Dr. Richard Lindzen sums up the current state of affairs best: “Science, in the public arena, is commonly used as a source of authority with which to bludgeon political opponents and propagandize uninformed citizens. … A fairer view of the science will show that there is still a vast amount of uncertainty — far more than advocates of Kyoto would like to acknowledge.” Based on that uncertainty, our constituents hardly need “global governance,” but they do deserve responsible governance at home.

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Tuesday, June 14, 2005

Update: USS America Probably Sunk Terrorist Plot

Here is an update to my May 21st post.
In review, CV-66, or USS America was intentionally sunk as planned as a result of 25 days of explosive studies. Another reason for the sinking: USS America by virtue of her symbolic name alone was a prime terrorist target. The Navy's purposeful sinking of the vessel, in addition to providing invaluable data for carrier design improvements, DENIED A TARGET OF OPPORTUNITY TO THE TERRORIST MENACE. Ongoing US security costs - zilch. Terrorist costs - substantial: what to do with the Philadelphia cell, now breached, and how long to find and plan to attack as suitable a replacement target?

And, the update: Leader of Philadelphia Mosque Convicted. A local religious leader was convicted Tuesday of using political connections to obtain illegal loans, donations and municipal contracts. Shamsud-din Ali, 67, the leader of a Philadelphia mosque, was accused of leading a criminal enterprise that generated tens of thousands of dollars through extortion, bribery and political connections. Ali will likely face at least four to five years in prison when he is sentenced Sept. 19, said Assistant U.S. Attorney Frank Labor. According to prosecutors, Ali and his wife, Faridah, used the Muslim school they ran as a private piggy bank, soliciting donations and public education funds for adult education classes that were never held. Ali, formerly known as Clarence Fowler, served six years in prison for killing a minister during a robbery, but the conviction was overturned in 1976. As his racketeering trial got under way, he pleaded guilty to four counts of income tax evasion for not filing returns from 1998 to 2001. Remember, follow the money trail. To Ali we sing the submariners hymn!

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What's Wrong With This Report ?

What's wrong with the BBC News' report that "Submarine sends underwater e-mail"?
Its conclusion: "It was also the first time a submerged and moving submarine was able to communicate without giving away its position by surfacing or raising an antenna."

The Benthos equipment used sound energy transmitted from acoustic modems to send e-mails from USS Dolphin off the coast of California to San Diego and other underwater modems. While cruising 400 feet Dolphin transmitted data up three miles to a relay buoy then to land.

WillyShake and Bubblehead had posted news of PULSNET (persistent littoral undersea surveillance network) last month, the system to replace SOSUS regionally. Well Benthos also makes remotely operated vehicles (ROVs) and their improved e-mail-relay technology sounds like a natural component of a new littoral networking system (or a red herring).

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Thursday, June 09, 2005

My Online Book Challenge

My ghost shipmate (who served aboard the same submersible hull as I in different years and hopefully, better radiation levels) bothenook asked me to accept his book challenge, which our fellow blogger and aviation outlander, Skippy-san, duplicated more recently. I am happy to oblige both gentlemen and in helping Amazon.com's free advertising campaign, this once:

1) Number of books you own: Over 250 (ain't goin' through my garage or attic for dusty stuff)
2) Last book bought: The Complete Idiot's Guide to the Mafia (as gift for Ibrahim)
3) Last book I read: State Of Fear (Crichton uses research and references)
4) Five books that mean a lot to me:
I Heard You Paint Houses (autographed, controversial)
The Merchant of Prato
Silent Victory
Free To Choose
Critical Path and The History of Pi (tie)

Challenge will be passed to 5 in due course, starting with Casius and Ibrahim.

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Wednesday, June 08, 2005

Whispered Security Updates

The following (emphasis added) was lifted from an anonymous comment to Bubbleheads blog The Stupid Shall Be Punished today discussing "Downing Street Memos":

"No one who served in submarines should ever have to be disabused over transparency in government. How can there have been so many secrets on boats that many in the crew never knew where they were going, where they had been, or what had really been done? Limited secrecy from the public is necessary precisely because we have an open society, which envelopes both our self-avowed enemies and still undisclosed enemies. Surely, there are more state secrets regardless of administration, than there were operational secrets on any one boat. The variable is how we trust a given administration to react to knowledge before them. Sitting on his hands is not the current president's policy, thank God. The strategy for winning the war on Islamic terror has not and should not be shared with any public. We will be dosed, one campaign at a time. Iraq may well be the last invasion, but it will depend on what Islamic radicals decide. The price they will have to pay to attack America again is becoming clearer to them and the rest of muslim world. Our winning hand is non-combative, but we would never have gotten to the point of playing it without first demonstrating Bush's pre-emptive defense doctrine (as often as it takes) and waiting for the muslim world to take a responsible position (how long depends on them). "

This brought back a flood of memories. The writer, in my opinion, is correct about security and compartmentalized secrecy. We lived in a James Bond environment where at times we might know Bond's true identity, at times we would not, and sometimes we were outright deceived (you figured that out later, didn't you?). Most of us are still fine with rationale for compelling secrecy. Some lifelong civilians, however, accept no inconvenience whatever, particularly one as abstract as security. For such voters (D-US), subliminal advertising banned in grocery stores has been replaced with propaganda droned by politicians demanding transparency in government (those, D-US who do not release their own military or tax records, for instance). Well, there are still upper echelon secrets whispered only to those who really need to know. Ask yourself, do you get the president's daily intelligence briefing? Well then, you are probably not on the even shorter list of whispered, security "updates" either.

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Tuesday, June 07, 2005

Uh Oh! Surface Warfare Took Their Bullets Out of Their Pockets?

From now on, surface warfare specialists will be issued one round each, which must be kept in their shirt pockets until removal is authorized by the high weapons officer. Making preparations to leave shipyard for sea trials after a $8,476,047 Drydocking Selected Restricted Availability (DSRA) at Norfolk’s Metro Machine shipyard, a guided missile destroyer fired a .50-caliber machine gun round striking a berthing barge at the neighboring pier. No one was on the barge or pier when the gun was fired Monday morning. The single round struck the side of the unoccupied barge and then hit two washing machines on board, without causing any injuries. Navy officials were investigating Monday's incident aboard the ARLEIGH BURKE - class of AEGIS guided missile destroyer USS Ross (DDG-71). The sailors involved have been relieved of weapons duties. Navy spokesman Paul Taylor did not know how many sailors were involved, but said two typically are assigned to the gun. Naval Criminal Investigative Service is also involved. The ship continued on its mission; Taylor was unsure of when it would return.

Obviously "USS Ross departing" is not relieved!

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Wednesday, June 01, 2005

Germany's Final U-boot Mission to Japan - Submarines always silent and strange

An interesting, well-documented book by historian and former navy diver Joseph Scalia tells of the U-234. The minelaying submarine was converted for secret transport to Japan. On 16 April, 1945 she departed Norway's Kristiansand harbor enroute to Japan with extremely important cargo (drawings, an Me-262 jet fighter in crates, 560kg of uranium oxide, several high ranking German experts on various technologies and 2 Japanese officers). While en route on May 4, 1945, Kapitänleutnant Johann-Heinrich Fehler received cease-fire orders and notice of Germany's surrender. Fehler changed course to Portsmouth, NH to surrender, but the Japanese officer's respected their own honor code committing suicide. Through research of U.S. Navy interrogation records, European and Japanese archives, and interviews with former U-234 crewmembers (Fehler lived until 1993) and other principals, Scalia recounts an amazing story from U-234's launch to her May 15th surrender to an American destroyer.

Among German's on board, the Messerschmitt designer would become project manager for the F-105 Thunderchief, and the Luftwaffe general who directed the 1939 aerial blitz of Poland and would be implicated in Hitler's 1944 assassination plot. Of course, there is interesting speculation over the uranium oxide's intended use and it's ironic, ultimate use. The book was published by the Naval Institute Press (April 10, 2000).

Yesterday, came interesting news from BBC NEWS. Drawing uncovered of 'Nazi nuke': Historians working in Germany and the US claim to have found a 60-year-old diagram showing a Nazi nuclear bomb. Researchers who brought it to light say the drawing is a rough schematic and does not imply the Nazis built, or were close to building, an atomic bomb. But a detail in the report suggests Nazi scientists were closer to that goal than previously believed. They hoped to combine a "mini-nuke" with a rocket," Dr Karlsch told the BBC News website. The German report contains an estimate of slightly more than 5kg for the critical mass of a plutonium bomb. This is close to a figure suggesting Nazi scientists had a grasp of nuclear fission.

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