When the Cold War reached its peak, the United States flirted with the idea of using backpacks to carry small sized nuclear weapons for tactical strikes. Backpack nuclear weapons are also called special atomic demolition munitions. They were seriously considered by US policy makers as a weapon against the Warsaw Pact countries. They are now a matter of concern since they can be used by people planning terrorist attack. They are currently on exhibit at the National Atomic Testing Museum, one of the most intriguing Las Vegas museums.
There were numerous reports that supported the belief that they can easily be transported across borders. One such report was made in 1997 when Russia purportedly lost at least 100 nuclear backpacks. But what else do we know about them? Here are the most interesting details as outlined in a Foreign Policy report by Grady and Rawnsley.
The US Adapted Nuclear War as Means to Counter Soviet Advances
The United States embraced the use of nuclear weapons to fight the Eastern Bloc. They were small, yet they could cause more damage than the Hiroshima bombs. Elite members of the US Army, Navy, and Marines were given special training to use the said nukes.
Members of the Defense Industry Wrongly Believed that Nuclear Weapons Were Similar to Traditional Ones, Only Bigger
One proof of this ridiculous belief was the atomic demolition munitions (ADMs) which were originally used to block the path of enemy soldiers. Tests showed some radioactive contamination so they were never actually used. However, they can be seen in one of the many educational museums Las Vegas.
SADM Missions Were Presumed Suicidal and Teams Tasked to Do Them Were Aware of That Fact
SADM strikes require Green Light teams to infiltrate enemy lines while carrying nuclear weapons. They then have to set it, wait for explosion, then escape.
The world came so close to using nuclear weapons. That thought is absolutely spine-chilling. Even at present, it remains to be one of the most debated subjects. Even kids are intrigued by these ammunition that a trip to Las Vegas is never complete without setting foot at the National Atomic Testing Museum. Each visit is like stepping inside a history text book and experiencing the historic nuclear events firsthand. It is one of the most jaw dropping museums in Las Vegas. Come and see mannequins being blown to pieces. Check their website to help you plan your visit.