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When I Was a Child I Read Books

When I Was a Child I Read Books

By Marilynne Robinson

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Tag: Nuclear


Hey, Iran, What’s All the Plutonium For?

International inspectors have found unexplained plutonium and highly enriched uranium traces in an Iranian nuclear waste facility and have asked Tehran for an explanation.

  • We’re guessing that Ahmadinejad isn’t trying to power a time machine, like the one from “Back to the Future” (above).

  • Posted on Nov 14, 2006 READ MORE


    Square, Category Page

    N. Korea Agrees to Return to Nuclear Talks

    A stunner in this: “Pyongyang had refused to return to the talks until the United States separately negotiated an end to a crackdown on North Korea’s counterfeiting of U.S. currency. But that demand disappeared today…” -WashPo

    Posted on Oct 31, 2006 READ MORE

    Putin and Kim

    Putin Urges ‘Goodwill’ Toward North Korea

    During a nationally broadcast town hall-style address, Russian President Vladimir Putin pitched a more open stance in dealing with North Korea: “You must never push one of the participants in talks into a corner.”

    Posted on Oct 25, 2006 READ MORE

    Mohamed ElBaradei

    Truthdigger of the Week: Mohamed ElBaradei

    Truthdig salutes Mohamed ElBaradei, the head of the U.N.‘s nuclear agency, who warned the world that up to 30 more countries could soon possess the technology necessary to produce nuclear weapons.

    Posted on Oct 20, 2006 READ MORE

    Rpbert Scheer

    Truthdig Podcast: Robert Scheer on Iraq After America and More

    This week Truthdig Editor Robert Scheer looks at Elbaradei’s nuclear prophecy, Iraq after US withdrawal and Stan Goff’s “Reflecting on Rumsfeld.”

    Posted on Oct 20, 2006 WATCH & LISTEN

    Videocast: Robert Scheer on nukes, Iraq after America, and Rumsfeld

    This week Truthdig Editor Robert Scheer looks at Elbaradei’s nuclear prophecy, Iraq after withdrawal and Stan Goff’s “Reflecting on Rumsfeld.”

    Posted on Oct 20, 2006 READ MORE

    Riding the Nuke

    Hypocritical U.S. Nuke Plan Advances

    At the same time America is lecturing N. Korea and Iran about abandoning their nuclear weapons programs, the U.S. is pressing ahead with plans to build a new stockpile of 2,200 deployed nuclear weapons.

    Posted on Oct 20, 2006 READ MORE

    The End of the World as We Know it

    Mohamed El Baradei cautioned on Monday that as many as 30 nations could rapidly develop nuclear weapons. The International Atomic Energy Agency chief warned that countries are “hedging their bets” by developing peaceful nuclear programs that could provide the necessary technology and material for weaponization.

    Posted on Oct 17, 2006 READ MORE

    Andy Borowitz: Mel Gibson Acquires Nuclear Weapon

    The satirist reports on an addition to the nuclear club far more dangerous than North Korea.

    Posted on Oct 16, 2006 READ MORE

    U.N. Security Council

    It’s Official: North Korea Sanctions

    The U.N. Security Council voted unanimously to impose sanctions against North Korea in light of its recent nuclear test.  Though financial and military aid is restricted, the sanctions do not allow for military action, and skeptics question how effectively the rules will be enforced.

    Posted on Oct 15, 2006 READ MORE

    Videocast: Robert Scheer on North Korea, Iran and More

    In the latest installment of the Truthdig Podcast, Robert Scheer offers his take on North Korea’s nuclear test, negotiations with Iran, a possible victory for the Dems and much more.

    Posted on Oct 12, 2006 READ MORE

    Bush and Clinton

    Bush Blames Clinton Again

    George W. Bush, retreating to familiar ground, has blamed the Clinton administration for North Korea’s nuclear arsenal.  But the official who brokered the Clinton-era deal with North Korea called the idea “ludicrous,” and defended his efforts.

    Posted on Oct 12, 2006 READ MORE

    Joe Conason: Bush Bluster Fails to Halt Nuke Threat

    America’s invasion of Iraq has made predictable impressions on Iran and North Korea: Only military power, underscored by the actual possession of nuclear weapons, can guarantee survival against a superpower bent on regime change.

    Posted on Oct 11, 2006 READ MORE

    North Korea Threatens Another Explosion

    North Korea’s No. 2 leader, Kim Yong-nam, threatened a second nuclear test if the U.S. refuses to back down: “If the United States continues to take a hostile attitude and apply pressure on us in various forms, we will have no choice but to take physical steps to deal with that.”

    Posted on Oct 11, 2006 READ MORE

    Kim Jong Il
    Mike Luckovich

    Robert Scheer: Dear Leader Brings It On

    Right-wingers want to blame Bill Clinton for North Korea’s nuclear provocation, but it was the wannabe cowboy in the Oval Office who goaded the Hermit Kingdom’s leader into a Cold War-style bout of nuclear brinkmanship.

  • UPDATE: Jimmy Carter,  former emissary to N. Korea, calls for resumption of negotiations with Pyongyang
  • McCain rips Clinton’s N. Korea policy (read or watch)

  • Posted on Oct 10, 2006 READ MORE

    Kim Jong Il

    Atomic Test Highlights Bush Failure

    North Korea’s evident test of a nuclear device speaks to a failure of diplomacy long in the making, but Democrats have justifiably laid much of the blame on Bush, whose Iraq fixation and disinterest in nonproliferation have proved disastrous.

    Posted on Oct 10, 2006 READ MORE

    Jon Stewart

    ‘Daily Show’ on CNN’s Hysteria

    Jon Stewart took CNN to task on Monday over the frenzied tone of its North Korea nuclear test coverage.  With little to offer in the way of fact and 24 hours of programming to fill, the news network turned instead to conjecture and doomsday prophecy, prompting this observation from Stewart: “CNN:  It’s 99.9 percent what they don’t know.”

    Posted on Oct 10, 2006 WATCH & LISTEN

    Iran's nuclear missile
    AP Photo/Vahid Salemi

    Chris Hedges: Bush’s Nuclear Apocalypse

    The former Middle East bureau chief for The New York Times and author of the bestseller “War Is a Force That Gives Us Meaning” reports on Bush’s plan for Iran, and how a callous war, conceived by zealots, will lead to a disaster of biblical proportions.

    Posted on Oct 9, 2006 READ MORE

    N. Korea Reports Nuclear Test

    North Korea claimed it successfully tested a nuclear weapon last night, fulfilling a promise made last week.  Pyongyang had planned the underground test in response to what it called “U.S. hostility.”

  • Text of North Korea’s announcement

  • Posted on Oct 8, 2006 READ MORE

    That Must Be Some Tasty Fish

    The South Korean military fired warning shots at North Korean soldiers who may or may not have been attempting to fish at a stream in the demilitarized zone.  The incident illustrates a rise in tensions between the two nations as North Korea prepares to conduct its first test of an atomic weapon.

    Posted on Oct 7, 2006 READ MORE

    N. Korea Plans Nuclear Test

    North Korea said it will conduct a nuclear test, a key step in the manufacture of atomic bombs, but also said it’s committed to disarmament—suggesting that the whole thing is a bargaining ploy.
    So, Iraq has suspected facilities related to weapons of mass destruction and we invade? But North Korea announces it’s building a bomb and Condi Rice shoots off a press release?

    Posted on Oct 4, 2006 READ MORE

    Daniel Ellsberg

    Daniel Ellsberg: Time to Drive Out the Bush Regime

    The man who gave the world the Pentagon Papers delivers an impassioned plea to a new generation of activists to heed the lessons of Nixon and even Hitler when taking stock of the Bush administration’s nuclear ambitions.

    Posted on Sep 16, 2006 READ MORE

    Right-Wing Watch: Tehran, Ho!

    Washington Post columnist Charles Krauthammer strongly suggests that America needs to launch an aerial strike on Iran’s nuclear facilities within the next year.

  • The calculus he uses to weigh this decision is insidious—in that some of it is actually honest.

  • Posted on Sep 15, 2006 READ MORE

    United Nations: U.S. Making Inflated Iranian Nuke Claims

    A United Nations committee is bitterly complaining that parts of a U.S. House report on Iran’s nuclear capabilities are “outrageous and dishonest.”
    Brain teaser: Name the last Middle Eastern country which America dubiously claimed was developing nuclear weapons, and whose name starts with the letters I-R-A…

    Posted on Sep 14, 2006 READ MORE

    Science City on Maui's Haleakala
    Peter Scheer

    Here We Go Again

    Donald Rumsfeld paid a visit to a missile defense interceptor site on Sunday, and managed limited praise for the failure-ridden program.  The Bush administration, which deployed the system before testing was complete, has plans for expansion with a new base in Europe.

    Posted on Aug 29, 2006 READ MORE

    Nuclear city
    Illustration: Karen Spector

    Tad Daley: Watered-Down Terror

    “Liquids on a Plane” may have caught our attention, but the real terror threat is nuclear, as a newly released report makes so apocalyptically clear. An analyst with the Nobel Prize-winning outfit Physicians for Social Responsibility lays out the progressive case for staving off nuclear holocaust.

    Posted on Aug 22, 2006 READ MORE

    Iran Denies Inspectors Access to Nuclear Facility

    Tehran’s move was apparently unprecedented in the history of the country, and the nation’s supreme religious leader declared that Iran will not give up its nuclear technology.

  • Check out Time’s Joe Klein on how America’s disastrous foreign policy has led to an emboldened Iran.

  • Posted on Aug 21, 2006 READ MORE

    Explosive Opportunity

    Posted on Aug 2, 2006 ENLARGE

    Robert Scheer: Bush Should Channel Nixon in North Korea

    Truthdig’s editor in chief argues that President Bush could defuse the nuclear standoff with North Korea by coddling its attention-starved leader—similar to what Nixon did with China. “Hell, Bush might even empathize with Kim’s desire to escape from the shadow of a father from whom he inherited his crown.”

    Posted on Jul 11, 2006 READ MORE

    Blofeld and Kim Jong-Il
    Blofeld:; Jong-Il:

    Andy Borowitz—Kim Jong-Il: I Want to Be Villain in New Bond Film

    “The question ‘What does Kim Jong-Il really want?’ was definitively answered today when the mercurial North Korean dictator offered to abandon his nuclear weapons program in exchange for the role of the villain in the new James Bond film.”

    Posted on Jul 8, 2006 READ MORE

    mushroom cloud

    America and Iran: Three Nuclear Ironies

    The United States is apparently considering the use of nuclear weapons to keep Iran from obtaining nuclear weapons. How can we contemplate nuking people who might nuke people to show that nuking people is wrong? A veteran nuclear weapons expert at Physicians for Social Responsibility unpacks the apocalyptic irony.

    Posted on Jul 7, 2006 READ MORE

    N. Korea Is Seen as Wanting to Grab Nuclear Spotlight From Iran

    Stephen Hadley, Bush’s national security advisor, told reporters about North Korea’s missile launch, “Obviously, it is a bit of an effort to get attention, perhaps because so much attention has been focused on the Iranians.”

  • This reminds us of a classic Andy Borowitz article a few years back that said something to the effect of “Kim Jong Il Wants to Know What It Will Take for America to Bomb His Country and Put It on the Map.” Can anyone find that link?

    Posted on Jul 5, 2006 READ MORE

  • Seymour Hersh

    Sy Hersh: War Planners Have No Hard Targets in Iran

    The investigative journalist par excellence tells CNN that many higher-ups in the Pentagon have grave concerns about the White House’s military designs in Iran.

    Posted on Jul 4, 2006 WATCH & LISTEN

    While the GOP Frets Over Nonexistent Flag Burning…

    A brutal dictator in North Korea threatens our country with an “annihilating strike and a nuclear war” in response to America’s rhetoric over N. Korea’s possible missile launch (which was probably a hoax anyway).

  • Keep in mind that Sen. Orrin Hatch said that passing the flag-burning amendment was “the most important thing the Senate could be doing.” Good to know the Republicans really have their eye on the ball.

    Posted on Jul 3, 2006 READ MORE

  • Sy Hersh: Military Reeling Over Bush’s Iran Plans

    The inestimable Seymour Hersh delivers another can’t-miss update on Bush & Co.‘s plans to strike Iran. Hersh points out that even more so than about Iraq, we are clueless about Iran’s capabilities, and many military planners are seething that the White House is taking Iran’s nuclear capabilites for granted.

  • Summarized version of article
  • Full-text version

  • Posted on Jul 2, 2006 READ MORE

    Iran: Incentive Package a ‘Step Forward’

    The six-nation incentive package aimed at halting Iran’s uraniam enrichment appears to have some purchase in Tehran. But don’t start celebrating. The Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei again vowed that Iran would never back down on its nuclear program.
    This is also bad news for Cheney and Rumsfeld: The appearance of diplomatic progress will make a future U.S. invasion all the tougher to justify.

    Posted on Jun 16, 2006 READ MORE

    Classic Scheer Interviews From ‘Playing President’

    In a 1980 interview between George H.W. Bush and then-L.A. Times reporter Robert Scheer, Bush revealed his belief in a winnable nuclear war—which many observers think lost him the Republican nomination to Ronald Reagan. Check out this interview and many more in Scheer’s new book “Playing President.”

    Posted on Jun 15, 2006 READ MORE

    Vanity Fair cover
    From Vanity Fair

    Vanity Fair: Niger Yellowcake Forgery May Have White House Ties

    Vanity Fair’s Craig Unger reports that the Italian Secret Service likely concocted the Saddam-Niger forgery to bolster Bush’s case for war. The article raises questions about the involvement of a prominent White House-connected neocon in the “black ops” campaign.

    Posted on Jun 7, 2006 READ MORE

    Wen Ho Lee

    Robert Scheer: Media Failed Its Duty in Lee Case

    Five of the largest U.S. newspapers shirked their journalistic responsibility by covering up the government’s outrageous smear campaign against Los Alamos nuclear scientist Wen Ho Lee. 

    Posted on Jun 6, 2006 READ MORE

    Iran Turns Down Direct Talks Offer

    Iran has rejected an offer by America and five other world powers to extend a series of rewards in exchange for Iran’s abandonment of its nuclear program.

    Posted on Jun 3, 2006 READ MORE

    Iran and the Dixie Chicks
    Mike Luckovich

    Iran Deal: Good Faith or Another Charade?

    Even though the U.S. and five other countries have offered Iran a series of rewards for giving up its nuclear program, Bush and Cheney have given the world ample reason to be skeptical that the White House has any intention of settling this issue diplomatically. (And we’re not alone in this sentiment.)

    Posted on Jun 2, 2006 READ MORE

    Was Bush’s Offer to Iran Designed to Fail?

    That’s the provocative question posed by this N.Y. Times article. “It became obvious to Mr. Bush that he could not ... consider military strikes on Iranian nuclear sites unless he first showed a willingness to engage Iran’s leadership directly over its nuclear program and exhaust every nonmilitary option.”
    Has a decision to hit Iran already been made? Are we seeing a charade like the one before the Iraq war?

    Posted on Jun 1, 2006 READ MORE

    Mahmoud Ahmadinejad
    AP Photo / Mehr News, Sajjad Safari

    U.S. Prepared to Join Direct Talks With Iran

    Sec. of State Rice said America will join Europe in direct talks if Iran suspends its programs to enrich uranium and reprocess spent nuclear fuel. It’s a dramatic about-face, and comes a mere three weeks after the Iranian president sent a personal letter to Bush—the first direct communication between the two countries in over 20 years.

    Posted on May 31, 2006 READ MORE

    Iran Presses For Direct U.S. Talks On Nukes

    Iranian officials are furiously working diplomatic back channeles to open a dialogue with the U.S. (Apparently the Iranian’s president’s 18-page letter to Bush opened the floodgates.)
    The significance of this? For 25 years Iran has enforced a taboo against making overtures to “The Great Satan.”

    Posted on May 24, 2006 READ MORE

    Mahmoud Ahmadinejad
    AP Photo / Mehr News, Sajjad Safari

    Iranian Leader Invites Bush to Join in Theocracy

    President Ahmadinejad, in his somewhat rambling letter to Bush, encourages him to abandon democracy in favor of theocracy. (Sam Harris might observe that America wouldn’t have far to go in that respect.) The Iranian leader also criticized Bush’s use of secret CIA prisons, and mentioned the nuclear issue only indirectly.

  • N.Y. Times article on the letter
  • The translated letter in full
  • Condoleezza Rice dismisses the letter

    Posted on May 9, 2006 READ MORE

    Randi Rhodes

    Nuclear Showdown in Nevada

    The government will detonate a massive amount of conventional explosives to figure out the math on a tactical nuclear weapon—perhaps to be used on Iran, warns Air America host Randi Rhodes.

    Posted on Apr 20, 2006 WATCH & LISTEN

    America’s Gas Pump

    Posted on Apr 19, 2006 ENLARGE

    Iran Oil

    Robert Scheer: Bush’s Nutty Nuclear Braggadocio

    “A once swaggering president, who so convincingly wielded a bullhorn and modeled a flight suit, now has assumed the pretzel pose of a supplicant attempting to cajole our old enemy in Tehran into dropping its nuclear ambitions while simultaneously initiating talks with Iran aimed at bailing us out in Iraq.”

    Posted on Apr 18, 2006 READ MORE

    Bush Rattles Nuclear Saber on Iran

    Bush tells reporters “all options are on the table” when asked if he is planning a nuclear strike against Iranian nuclear facilities. Meanwhile, Iran’s president vowed that his nation would “cut off the hand of any aggressor.”

    Posted on Apr 18, 2006 READ MORE

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