[Beowulf] Re: "hobbyists"

Kilian CAVALOTTI kilian at stanford.edu
Thu Jun 19 11:00:28 PDT 2008

On Thursday 19 June 2008 10:11:18 am you wrote:
> > To add some more OT stuff to this thread, I don't think a nuclear
> > weapon has ever been used (or even considered being used) to kill
> > troops on a battlefield.
> look up "tactical nukes".  These were the USA's only hope of
> defending Europe from a Soviet ground invasion.

Well, what would have been the effect of launching nuclear weapons to 
defend Europe in case of a Soviet invasion? They would have been either 
launched to where the Soviet troops actually were, ie, on Europe, with 
the main effect of wiping up the countries they were supposed to 
protect. Not so appealing.

Or, and it's probably the most plausible scenario, they would have been 
aimed to USSR, and likely to major cities, where they would have killed 
mostly civilians, not troops. With the hope that the Soviet government 
would withdraw from Europe.

That's why I think nuclear weapons are hardly a mean to kill military 
troops on a battlefield. I concede that tactical nukes are still 
weapons, and that the main purpose of a weapon is to hurt your ennemy. 
But not only: building and showing off bigger weapons can also be a way 
to frighten him, hoping that it will be enough to dissuade him to 


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