1 posts with the tag "Treasure Island"

The Navy’s Legacy on Treasure Island

USS Pandemonium at Treasure Island; photo courtesy US Navy All Hands magazine, July 1957

In the summer of 1946 the United States exploded two atomic bombs in the Bikini Atoll of the Marshall Islands—a small ring of islands 2,500 miles southwest of Hawaii—as part of a research project called Operation Crossroads. The event marked the beginning of the United States’ postwar regime of nuclear weapons tests, which ended only in 1992 and involved more than 1,000 nuclear weapons. Most weapons tests took place at the Nevada Test Site, northeast of Las Vegas. However, during the 1940s and 1950s, the US military exploded 67 nuclear weapons on the Bikini and Enewetak atolls of the Marshall Islands, which it had renamed its Pacific Proving Grounds: an outdoor laboratory where the military “tested” theoretical advances in its weapons technology. To produce the Pacific Proving Grounds as an empty landscape available for weapons testing, the United States first removed indigenous Bikinians, promising to return the island after the tests were done. Bikini remains uninhabited today.