Essays: Why the Marshall Islands’ nuclear history still matters today

By Rose Gottemoeller, Sally Clark | May 25, 2022

As America celebrates Asian Pacific Islander Heritage Month this May, Rose Gottemoeller, former undersecretary of state for arms control and international security, remembers the painful history of Castle Bravo—the largest and most catastrophic US nuclear weapons test conducted in the Marshall Islands during the Cold War—and urges the United States to finish the compact extension with the three island nations to contain China’s growing influence in the Pacific.

In a second essay, Sally Clark, a former Peace Corps volunteer, recollects her discovery of the bewildering toll on the Marshallese and the environment caused by the 67 nuclear weapons tests the United States conducted between 1946 and 1958 at the Bikini and Enewetak atolls—and asks for an apology and justice.

—François Diaz-Maurin

 

A current security imperative: the US role in the Marshall Islands

As America celebrates Asian Pacific Islander Heritage Month this May, a former undersecretary of state for arms control and international security remembers the painful history of Castle Bravo—the largest and most catastrophic US nuclear weapons test conducted in the Marshall Islands during the Cold War—and urges the United States to finish the compact extension with the three island nations to contain China's growing influence in the Pacific.

Nuclear tragedy in the Marshall Islands

In this personal essay, a former Peace Corps volunteer recollects her discovery of the bewildering toll on the Marshallese and the environment caused by the 67 nuclear weapons tests the United States conducted between 1946 and 1958 at the Bikini and Enewetak atolls—and asks for an apology and justice.


As the Russian invasion of Ukraine shows, nuclear threats are real, present, and dangerous

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Ahimsa Porter Sumchai MD

The Hunters Point Community Biomonitoring Program has conducted urinary biomonitoring screenings capable of detecting up to 35 toxic and nutrient elements on residents and workers at the Hunters Point Naval Shipyard and Treasure Island where an estimated 100 ships exposed to fat man plutonium bombs during the 1946 Operations Crossroads testing in the Bikini Atoll of the Marshall Islands. In April of 2022, as a guest of Dr. Terry Marshall, the leadership of the Hunters Point Biomonitoring Foundation toured the world renown Lawrence Livermore Center for Accelerator Mass Spectrometry in a step towards implementation of our Plutonium Screening Initiative led… Read more »