Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Divine Comedy ~ who names these god-damned things anyway? 

Apparently it ain't Karl Rove or Hal Lindsey or Marvin Olasky or Terry Southern... apparently...

The Washington Post's William Arkin has an answer:
NICKA assigns each Defense Department command and agency a series of two-letter alphabetic sequences, requiring each “first word” of a nickname to begin with a letter pair. In the NICKA then, the Defense Threat Reduction Agency, formerly the Defense Special Weapons Agency is assigned the "DI" letter block, from which they derive names for their activities: Dial, Diamond, Digger, Dimming, Dipole, Direct, Dingo, Divine and others, hence Divine Strake.

Though the current Joint Chiefs regulation relating to NICKA name assignments is classified, we know that a nickname must consist of two separate words, the first beginning with the two letter block assigned to the entity, the second a random word selected by the command or agency. [...]

More on the naming process (and other stuff too...) See: WaPo / Weapons Test or Divine Provocation?

SUMMARY of information on Divine Strake (and what it may mean with respect to future weapons research and planning):

Andrew Lichterman (Disarmament has an update/clarification/summation of the mish-mash of conflicting information concerning Divine Strake. Much of which you will find referenced here in previous posts (over the last 2-3 days) and the links therein. For a followup read:

The “Divine Strake” low-yield nuclear weapons simulation: government denials and responses

Lichterman's post concludes:
In an upcoming post, I will address the relationship between the Divine Strake test, other weapons research, and the reports regarding U.S. planning for possible nuclear weapons use against Iran.

Previous posts on this page concerning Divine Strake - scroll down page or use these links:
4 April 12, Divine Strake blast halted
4 April 11, Divine War on Terra
4 April 9, Divine Strake and earth penetrating weapons...
4 April 9, Nuke-You-Lar Strategery"

- - - - -

UPATE: Research, Planning and Iran - where we've been and where we are going

(From comments) - Andrew Lichterman writes:
A post regarding the relationship between the Divine Strake test, other weapons research, and the reports regarding U.S. planning for possible nuclear weapons use against Iran now is up at Disamrament

Read in full: “Divine Strake” and the talk of a nuclear attack on Iran
by Andrew Lichterman (excerpt follows):

Despite all of this, debate over U.S. nuclear weapons programs and policies inside the Beltway and in the mainstream media has largely been limited to a narrow spectrum of questions, focusing mainly on bombs and warheads, how they are produced and maintained, and on stopping this or that particular proposal for a modified bomb or warhead. The fact that planning and technology development for a new generation of strategic delivery systems is ramping up remains largely invisible, even though the way those programs develop likely will determine the nature of the future nuclear arsenal as much or more than debates over how warheads should be produced or maintained. Changes in the way that nuclear strikes are planned and executed, from new software for strike planners to new communications systems, are well underway, supported by the kind of testing of which “Divine Strake” is only one part.

And if half of what Seymour Hersh reports this week in the New Yorker, we now are faced with a serious debate within the government over whether to use nuclear weapons in a war of aggression, against a country that has not attacked us or its neighbors. What mainstream discussion there has been in recent years about nuclear weapons has focused largely on technical issues and an abstract, backward-looking emphasis on the “uselessness” of new nuclear weapons capabilities for a vision of deterrence which, if it ever really existed, those in power have decisively left behind. Uninformed by any sustained debate in the mainstream about the fundamental moral and legal legitimacy of the uses actually envisioned for nuclear weapons, the public is poorly prepared for the crisis we now face. Americans may wake up some day in the coming years responsible for an unprovoked nuclear attack, and have no idea how they got there.

Detailed post which looks at the changing research, development, planning - testing and capabilities - and rationale for use of not only conventional weapons but nuclear arsenals as well. Take some time and read it all.



Far out on the desert to the north dustspouts rose wobbling and augered the earth and some said they'd heard of pilgrims borne aloft like dervishes in those mindless coils to be dropped broken and bleeding upon the desert again and there perhaps to watch the thing that had destroyed them lurch onward like some drunken djinn and resolve itself once more into the elements from which it sprang. Out of that whirlwind no voice spoke and the pilgrim lying in his broken bones may cry out and in his anguish he may rage, but rage at what? And if the dried and blackened shell of him is found among the sands by travelers to come yet who can discover the engine of his ruin? ~ Cormac McCarthy Blood Meridian

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