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Tampering with history: varied understanding of Operation Mosaic

By Zeb Leonard


Two nuclear tests occurring off the Western Australian coast in 1956 were vital for Britain's understanding of the principles of the hydrogen bomb. Mastery of this technology was central in restoring cooperation between the United States of America and the United Kingdom. These experiments were highly influential in shaping the global security environment but have been overshadowed by commentaries exploring tests that occurred on the Australian mainland. During the Royal Commission into British Nuclear Testing in Australia of 1984 and 1985, there emerged a claim that the yield of one test was hidden from Australian officials. To this day, the yield of this test is debated, and the discrepancy in the figures cited is significant. This paper explores the significance of this test and the origins of contested claims as to its yield

Topics: MD Multidisciplinary, Cold War, McClelland Royal Commission, Nuclear testing, Strategic technology
Publisher: Routledge
Year: 2014
DOI identifier: 10.1080/14443058.2014.895956
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