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Whoops, Apocalypse! October 18, 2012

Author: Beach Combing | in : Contemporary
Whoops, Apocalypse!

***Dedicated to Andy the Mad Monk, who suggested this topic*** When, 6 August 1945, the pilot Paul Tibbets revved up Enola Gay on the island of Tinian everyone on the ground held their breath. Since the bomb, Little Boy, had arrived  those in the know had understood that should it accidentally explode most human life […]

Llewellyn Thompson: Champion of the World June 20, 2012

Author: Beach Combing | in : Contemporary
Llewellyn Thompson: Champion of the World

Beach has pioneered on this blog ‘hinge moments’, those instances when world history changes. In any list of these moments, the Cuban Missile crisis is a must, because this is, of course, the closest the human race has come to mutually assured destruction. But what moment within the missile crisis was the key one? Almost […]

Electrifying Sheep June 3, 2012

Author: Beach Combing | in : Contemporary, Modern
Electrifying Sheep

Beachcombing has a terrible secret. He is not very good at science. Yes, he receives emails about astronomy and nuclear physics, aviation and genetics on a daily basis. But, while being fascinated, he understands almost none of what he reads there. In the autumn of his years it is simply too late to put this […]

Oleg Penkovsky, Six Breaths and World Destruction May 31, 2010

Author: Beach Combing | in : Contemporary
Oleg Penkovsky, Six Breaths and World Destruction

    Beachcombing has never quite known what to make of Oleg Penkovsky, the most important double agent run by MI6, indeed by any power in the Cold War. Was he self-seeking? A traitor? A hero? These are puerile questions: he was probably all three. But now for a curiosity that is more amenable to […]