Operation Crossroads was a pair of nuclear weapon tests conducted by the United States at Bikini Atoll in mid They were the first nuclear weapon tests since Trinity in July , and the first detonations of nuclear devices since the atomic bombing of Nagasaki on August 9, The purpose of the tests was to investigate the effect of nuclear weapons on warships. The Crossroads tests were the first of many nuclear tests held in the Marshall Islands , and the first to be publicly announced beforehand and observed by an invited audience, including a large press corps.
Nuclear testing at Bikini Atoll
The Crazy Story of the Bikini Atoll Nuclear Tests | Smart News | Smithsonian Magazine
But why was this name so shocking? The United States soon came up with some very big plans for the little atoll of Bikini. After forcing the residents to relocate to another atoll, they started to prepare Bikini as an atomic bomb test site. Media coverage of the happenings at Bikini was extensive, and public interest ran very high. Who could have foreseen that even now — 70 years later — the Marshall Islanders would still be suffering the aftershocks from the nuclear bomb testing on Bikini Atoll? For more newsletters click here.
Atom Bomb, Bikini Atoll
The haute beachwear known as the bikini was named after a string of islands turned into a nuclear wasteland by atomic bomb testing. The Bikini Atoll—a series of limestone formations in the Pacific Ocean that comprise part of the Marshall Islands—is, or rather was, a tropical paradise. Between and , the United States military detonated several nuclear bombs in the area, wiping out plants and wildlife, and leaving behind a toxic wasteland. That tumultuous history is now preserved in haunting photos, diaries, papers and studies, assembled by the University of Washington into the Lauren L.
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