Constance Caraway P.I. ~ Episode 12

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Constance Caraway P.I. ~ Episode 12

He hands over the metal briefcase he has been holding on to tightly. It contains $50,000.

By the time they passed La Grange Road, Kamen had loosed his bow-tie and shed his coat. Beads of sweat formed on his forehead just thinking of the Libby ordeal.

“I see that you are upset. Let’s stop and get something to eat… There,” Constance points at the sign of CLANCY’S – a bar and diner. There is a Philips 66 Gas pump out front.

“Clancy’s,” Fanny thinks back fondly to a much earlier time. “Do you remember where we first met, Connie?”

“It was Yancy’s… How do you like this for karma?” she smiles widely.

Clancy’s: Food, Fuel and Fun; now you are talking Carol!” Eddie proclaims with enthusiasm.

Martin gives Constance a crooked look.

She whispers in his right ear, “He knows us as Carolyn and Sara, doesn’t know our real names and he thinks we are visiting a high school chum. We will clue him in only if we have to.”

He gives a “got it, a chum” nod at her. As much as they like Eddie, their level of trust is still set a cool medium.

Once inside, all fed and relaxed, Eddie steals Sara/Fanny away for a game of pool. A married man, all the way to his Polish roots, it has been a long while since he has been this far from home on a real adventure and to be in the company of good looking women… GOLDEN!

With the others in an adjacent recreation room, Martin takes advantage to have Carolyn/Constance off to the side. Up until this very moment, full disclosure financial details had not been finalized. He hands over the metal briefcase he has been holding on to tightly. It contains $50,000.

“Fifty thousand,” he identifies the stacks of Franklins therein, “I want you to know that the university and I are serious about bringing Willard Libby back to us safely and in one piece.”

Her “that will do nicely” nod of approval brings out the richness of her violet eyes, a glint reserved for special occasions.

In his own pragmatic, scientific and vexed state-of-mind, Martin David Kamen goes on to unravel the known threads in the mysterious cloth that has become a Manhattan Mystery, here in the outskirts of greater suburbs of Chicago Illinois.


Constance Caraway P.I.

Forever Mastadon


page 13 (end Ch. 1)

A Necessary Deterrent – WABAC to Alamogordo

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"Where is the WABAC Machine going to take us this time, Mr. Peabody?

“Where is the WABAC Machine going to take us this time, Mr. Peabody?

“Sherman My Boy, we are going to witness a scientific experiment that would change the course of history.”

July 16, 1945: US Explodes First Atomic Bomb (Trinity Test, Alamogordo)

July-16-1945-US-Explodes-First-Atomic-Bomb

Chilling History…

On July 16, 1945, Manhattan Project scientists held their breath as the clock ticked down to the first man-made nuclear blast in history.

Over a period of almost 6 years from its feeble first steps (3 years as a project in earnest), through 130,000 people working on the project and $2 billion taxpayer dollars the finest scientists in the world had developed methods of enriching uranium to a state where its nucleus could be split and creating plutonium, the 2 materials needed for the 2 different types of atomic weapons being considered.

The Crater of World Peace…

The uranium device would be a tube in which 2 chunks of enriched uranium would be launched at each other at  high speed by conventional explosives, causing a critical mass to form in the blink of an eye, triggering a nuclear blast.

The plutonium device would be a hollow ball of plutonium with precision explosives around the outside meticulously timed to blow up all at the same time causing the hollow sphere to implode, creating a critical mass in the blink of an eye and subsequently the desired nuclear blast.

(Note:  Obviously, the descriptions of how nuclear bombs work are greatly simplified and the above paragraph is paraphrased.)

President Roosevelt had been warned by Albert Einstein that Germany (and maybe Japan) would be working on developing nuclear weapons and that if the US and Allies did not want to get blown off the map, we better develop such weapons first.

At 5:30 am on July 16, 1945, the entire point of the Manhattan Project was on the line as a plutonium implosion device suspended 100 feet above the desert was exploded.  Although the nuclear physicists on the project were reasonable confident of their calculations, no one knew for sure how big the blast would be and whether or not the atmosphere would become part of the chain reaction, ending mankind.  When the brilliant fireball and mighty blast went off, the equivalent of 20,000 tons of TNT, it left a 250 feet wide crater in the desert (with sand fused to glass), a mushroom cloud 7 ½ miles high, and the blast could be felt 100 miles away.  People as far away as El Paso could hear the explosion.

The scientists and budget planners were right;  a practical bomb could be made, and it would be a city destroyer.  Now the question was, how and if to use it.  Despite some opposition, and some sentiment toward giving the world a demonstration over an unoccupied target, President Truman and his advisers decided Japan must have a city destroyed by an atom bomb to convince them to surrender.  The debate over whether or not this was necessary still rages today, with critics claiming the Japanese were on the brink of surrender anyway, and proponents saying that the terrible price paid to conquer Okinawa showed that an invasion of Japan would cost tens of thousands of American lives, probably hundreds of thousands.  Besides, the Soviets were poised to make a land grab of as much Japanese territory as possible, and US planners may well have intended to impress and intimidate the Soviets as much as the Japanese.

Less than a month after Trinity, 2 Japanese cities lay in smoking ruins, and over 100,000 Japanese were dead, and more were dying.

 

Unthinkable, Yet Necessary Deterrent