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Comment: Re:it always amazes me (Score 1) 341

by Beck_Neard (#49341449) Attached to: Feds Attempt To Censor Parts of a New Book About the Hydrogen Bomb

Iran wants diplomatic relations with the US. Many Iranians have fond memories of the period up to 1979. There had been a lot of sharing of culture. There was an 'America-town' in the city of Abadan.

But a military attack would change things. Despite the fact that ordinary Iranians have no animosity towards the US, if the US attacked, they'd fiercely defend their country no matter what.

By the way, we have to keep perspective here. The US is never going to attack Iran, and Iran is never going to attack Israel. This is all just routine saber-rattling for fun and benefit. The US and Iran pretty much agree that diplomacy is the most productive way forward. And it's entirely to be expected that Israel would try to incite a US attack on Iran, since they would lose nothing and gain everything. It would be the US that would lose lives and money. And Israel will _only_ attack Iran if it knows that America would follow it into the fray.

Comment: Re:it always amazes me (Score 1) 341

by Beck_Neard (#49341109) Attached to: Feds Attempt To Censor Parts of a New Book About the Hydrogen Bomb

> We invaded and defeated Nazi Germany and Japan and those were MUCH tougher enemies...

Again, at enormous cost in human life. You're not listening. Could the US defeat Iran, even without nukes? Of course, that's obvious. But the only realistic option (read: without too much bloodshed on the American side) is nukes.

Comment: Re:it always amazes me (Score 1) 341

by Beck_Neard (#49339041) Attached to: Feds Attempt To Censor Parts of a New Book About the Hydrogen Bomb

Iran is about 3 times larger than Iraq in size and 2x larger in population. Plus, Iraq's army basically had zero morale by the time of the invasion (this is why the US decided that invasion would be easy, and it was). In contrast the morale of Iranian troops is high. Yet another consideration is military doctrine. Iran's military doctrine is based on a fierce defensive position. They invest more in anti-aircraft tech, not aircraft. Iraq's anti-aircraft tech was basically either non-functional or obsolete. Iraq was easy pickings and everyone knew it. They had briefly become strong under US support during the early 80's but after the Iran-Iraq war they were devastated, and then a decade of US sanctions wore them down to the point that they were ready to be invaded.

Comment: Re:it always amazes me (Score 1) 341

by Beck_Neard (#49338951) Attached to: Feds Attempt To Censor Parts of a New Book About the Hydrogen Bomb

It wouldn't be as hard as France, but it would be much, *much* harder than Iraq. The US would win but there would be too many casualties. The only realistic option for attacking Iran would be nuclear bombardment. So the truth of the matter is that if the US decides to attack Iran, it would have to think very hard about if it wants to create another nuclear holocaust.

Comment: Re:it always amazes me (Score 1) 341

by Beck_Neard (#49338813) Attached to: Feds Attempt To Censor Parts of a New Book About the Hydrogen Bomb

> Remember, these guys

Which guys?

> get about one shot to get their test explosion right

Bomb design isn't just hammering a bunch of parts together. Every nation that has developed nukes has done so with the help of computer-aided design (yes, even in the 1950's). These days you can literally simulate a thermonuclear weapon on your laptop, if you have enough knowledge of the physics. And the physics knowledge you need isn't exactly secret either: http://www.amazon.com/Physics-...

> Maybe there's a paper that theorized that you could set a Dewar's flask of liquid hydrogen next to an A-bomb to get an H-bomb.

That's hilarious. You're *seriously* underestimating other countries if you think they'd have to rely on leaked information from US sources to build a thermonuclear bomb, and couldn't do it themselves. Russia did it themselves, and so did China. During the 80's, a number of US scientists visited China under the pretense of a 'scientific conference' on nuclear energy (their real reason was to suss out how far China was in their nuclear knowledge). The scientists reported being amazed by the level of scientific competence of the Chinese as relating to nuclear weapons. The US government had previously assumed that Chinese weapons technology was mostly a result of espionage. The results of the conferences proved otherwise.

Comment: Re:it always amazes me (Score 1) 341

by Beck_Neard (#49338667) Attached to: Feds Attempt To Censor Parts of a New Book About the Hydrogen Bomb

I envy your overly-simplistic view on the world. The reality is that information relating to nuclear weapons has complicated and often-undefined and arbitrary secrecy policies behind it. Look at, for instance, the United States vs. The Progressive case. That was the first time that anyone had released specific information about thermonuclear weapons to the public. Government lawyers tried to censor it but the court ruled against them and allowed the magazine to publish. In a private session (the details of which aren't public), the lawyers on both sides actually shared a huge amount of highly classified information relating to bomb design. It was directly due to the results of this session that the court decided that what The Progressive was publishing was not damaging to US security, since no one seriously pursuing nuclear weapons would find anything new in the article that they didn't already know.

By the way, the US government still does not formally acknowledge the existence of the Teller-Ulam design, even though everyone knows about it at this point. Yet, many details of the Teller-Ulam design *have* been made public (for instance, the existence of a radiation channel, something that only makes sense in that design). It's a contradictory situation.

Comment: Re:it always amazes me (Score 1) 341

by Beck_Neard (#49333995) Attached to: Feds Attempt To Censor Parts of a New Book About the Hydrogen Bomb

And to counter the Fed's stupidity, here is a link to a book that basically contains all the physics you need to know to get started on building your very own hydrogen bomb (written by a former Soviet hydrogen bomb designer, no less - I have no idea how the Soviets let him publish this stuff): http://books.google.co.nz/book...

(And if you're not sure about my claim, just ask, I'll gladly explain.)

Comment: Re:Tomy (Score 1) 112

by Beck_Neard (#49325681) Attached to: Bring On the Boring Robots

Which is bullshit, of course. If you're talking about 10 or 20 years in the future, maybe, but are we to believe that 100 years down the road (or 1000), we still won't have AI? And if that's not what the article meant, then please clarify what is meant by 'future', because for me 'the future' includes all time after the present.

Comment: Re:End the Fed! (Score 2) 165

by Beck_Neard (#49323295) Attached to: RMS Talks Net Neutrality, Patents, and More

From an interview on July 2005 about the housing bubble:

        INTERVIEWER: Tell me, what is the worst-case scenario? Sir, we have so many economists coming on our air and saying, "Oh, this is a bubble, and it's going to burst, and this is going to be a real issue for the economy." Some say it could even cause a recession at some point. What is the worst-case scenario, if in fact we were to see prices come down substantially across the country?

        BERNANKE: Well, I guess I don't buy your premise. It's a pretty unlikely possibility. We've never had a decline in house prices on a nationwide basis. So what I think is more likely is that house prices will slow, maybe stabilize: might slow consumption spending a bit. I don't think it's going to drive the economy too far from its full employment path, though.

Comment: Re:AKA as Database Syndrome (Score 2) 112

by Beck_Neard (#49263261) Attached to: Scientific Study Finds There Are Too Many Scientific Studies

This is extremely and wildly not true. The most basic part of doing literature review is following original sources and everyone I know does this. You have to, because reviewers pick this stuff up. Even when I couldn't find a pdf or physical copy of an original source, I'd still cite it. Also, you're fooling yourself if you think that just because something was done 30 years ago, there's no point in citing more recent sources. A lot of more recent work is nothing more than just repeating old ideas but with slight modifications that nevertheless reveal new insights. Finally, when writing a paper, there is no need to cite everything that has been done right back to ancient Greece. The audience of a scientific paper is assumed to be the scientific community which is already familiar with the body of work.

Hokey religions and ancient weapons are no substitute for a good blaster at your side. - Han Solo

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