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 Post subject: Re: A retired old work horse.
PostPosted: Thu Mar 30, 2017 7:27 pm 
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Did they ever bring down anything ? :?

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 Post subject: Re: A retired old work horse.
PostPosted: Fri Mar 31, 2017 3:40 am 
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Drones, and things that, if he told you about them, he'd have to kill you. :?: :)

Like the various nuclear devices, having them was enough of a threat that you didn't need to use them. Didn't they develop nuclear war-heads for them at one time? Ready to fight WWII again in the nuclear age.

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 Post subject: Re: A retired old work horse.
PostPosted: Fri Mar 31, 2017 6:18 pm 
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I know one brought down a GP medium tent over a hundred miles away once. :D

Not only for air defense, Hercs were pretty darn accurate surface to surface artillery too. :)

Yes. The standard round was a 1000-pound fragmentation warhead. We had nukes with a selectable yield from 2 to 40 kilotons too. You only have to get close with those.

(No Soviet aircraft ever dropped a bomb on US or NATO soil while the Hercs were around. They did their job.)


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 Post subject: Re: A retired old work horse.
PostPosted: Sat Apr 01, 2017 3:13 am 
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As I mentioned, the fear of aircraft from the Soviet Union was one of wave after wave attacking, like we had done in WWII. With the technology of the day, and the lack of GPS satellites, I'm certain that they expected them to fly, in formations like in WWII. A nuclear-tipped missile exploding close to those groups would have taken them out in wholesale lots. Wouldn't have been pretty if you were in one of the planes.

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 Post subject: Re: A retired old work horse.
PostPosted: Sat Apr 01, 2017 12:57 pm 
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This reminds me... I recently saw where, right after the B-29 program got going, the Soviets had a perfect rivet-for-rivet copy. Some wonder how they stole it. Others wonder why they were given it.

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 Post subject: Re: A retired old work horse.
PostPosted: Sat Apr 01, 2017 1:06 pm 
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I seem to remember that we lost a B29 in Soviet Occupied territory in the mid-1940's. It didn't crash as much as make an emergency landing. The crew was returned, but the bomber stayed. The biggest problem the Soviets has was one of being unable to reverse-engineer the electronics and other advanced for the time parts. They made a B29, what we would have considered an "export version". One that lacked the electronics suite. It flew, but was a shadow of the capabilities of the real plane. :!:

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 Post subject: Re: A retired old work horse.
PostPosted: Sat Apr 01, 2017 2:31 pm 
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So combining the diminished capability of the Soviet B-29 copy with the capability of nuclear-armed Hercs and I'm not seeing quite as much for folks to have been freaking out over.

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 Post subject: Re: A retired old work horse.
PostPosted: Sun Apr 02, 2017 2:17 am 
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Not exactly sure what all of that nuclear fall-out would have resulted in, though. Then, add in the development of ICBMs, with huge nuclear warheads to make up for less than pin-point accuracy, and the issue becomes one of bare survival. MAD was a workable strategy during the Cold War, but it was a bit hard on the populace.

We also have to remember that the Soviets embraced jet propulsion much more effectively than we did. Look at the early days in Korea, where the Migs were handing us our butts by shooting down the B29s, and their escorting fighters easily. It didn't last long, but it was telling.

In the beginning of the Cold War, nuclear war was considered winnable, by all sides. The population was trained to "minimize" the effects. Also remember that, prior to those days, aerial bombing of American soil wasn't something anyone worried about. That, alone emphasized a new, harsh, reality.

Born of war, the Nuclear Age also promised us cheap power, space flight using atomic power, medical uses to combat disease, cheap transportation power, and also the ability to combat aggression. Trouble was, the Soviets stole the ability to make the same nuclear power from us. With Stalin at the helm, it made for a situation resembling N.Korea of today. On steroids.

Looking back today, we have the luxury of 60 years of technological advances, and the ability to review documents of that era that were kept from public view due to "National Security".

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 Post subject: Re: A retired old work horse.
PostPosted: Sun Apr 02, 2017 4:49 am 
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'Stanger, the Hercules didn't come on line until 1958 or 1959 when the Soviets had already implemented a series of nice jet bombers. Their philosophy was one of superior numbers, not technology. By the early '60's they had pulled far ahead of us in rocket technology (ICBM's). Our defensive strategy then began shifting towards defending our cities from that threat. The Improved Hercules system (about 1963) was the only thing we had deployed that truly had anti-ballistic missile capability. Further advances in that arena (with Nike Sprint and his big brother Spartan) were never deployed, other than at one site in North Dakota, due to the SALT I and II treaties.

So as it turned out, Nike Hercules was really the only effective defense from Soviet ICBM's ever fully deployed around American cities. There were about 145 sites. The last two were deactivated in the spring of 1979 (Alaska and Florida). I was there.

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 Post subject: Re: A retired old work horse.
PostPosted: Sun Apr 02, 2017 6:53 am 
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Good info, Thanks !

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 Post subject: Re: A retired old work horse.
PostPosted: Sun Apr 02, 2017 10:05 am 
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While y'all were living through the earlier parts, I was born in '74 and grew up having nightmares about this stuff. A movie called "The Day After" didn't help. Those nightmares ended with the Soviet Union's collapse. While I know what my parents said about duck-and-cover drills, those were out by the time I recall. I really don't recall much talk about surviving a nuclear blast/fallout.

Y'all brought up a couple of points I hadn't thought of before, like the Soviet jets being better earlier, and the timeline on the Hercs vs Soviet jet bombers and ICBM's.

The end of the Nike Hercules program in '79... I started paying attention sometime in 1978-'80.

And I can tell I've gotten used to thinking in terms of fake news. Not saying it's all fake, or all the same. I mostly remember the 1980's three channels of news media going on-and-on-and-on about the U.S. Minuteman vs whichever version the Soviets had. That and how they ridiculed Pres. Reagan's "Star Wars" program.

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 Post subject: Re: A retired old work horse.
PostPosted: Sun Apr 02, 2017 12:43 pm 
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Watch "On The Beach", or "Alas, Poor Babylon" for some period views of disasters. Or, perhaps, Dr. Strangelove.

Despite today's attempts to re-write history in schools, America has endured a lot of circumstances where we weren't always the best and brightest in a particular endeavor. What we were, though, was a people who simply refused to back down. That was then, I'm not too sure about today.

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