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not just our weapons program, but also military decisions as to the types of forces that will be needed and how best to build them. These things are all part of the studies now going on in the AEC and the Department of Defense.
HYDROGEN BOMB DEVELOPMENT
Mr. THOMAS. Mr. Dean, I have a clipping here that appeared on September 22, 1951, in the Star. The headline says "Hydrogen bomb unlikely, Dr. Millikan believes," and this interview apparently was made by a representative of the Associated Press at Dayton, Ohio, on September 22. It reads as follows:
Dr. Robert A. Millikan, Nobel prize-winning physicist, said yesterday he thinks it unlikely man can find a way to "trigger off” the hydrogen bomb.
"I should be foolish if I denied the possibility, but I don't think it likely,” Dr. Millikan said during a visit to Wright-Patterson Air Force Base here.
To explode the hydrogen bomb, man will have to find a way to duplicate temperatures and pressures around the sun, Dr. Millikan said.
"It is a good deal of assumption” that conditions approaching those necessary can be created, he declared.
Dr. Millikan, professor emeritus of physics at the California Institute of Technology, also said, "I do not think we are as far along as some seem to think in recent reports I do not know what reports he is referring to"on atomic and hydrogen research.” He added that he was pessimistic about possible peacetime uses of atomic energy, citing excessive cost and rarity of material.
Is Dr. Millikan now associated directly or indirectly as an employee or consultant of the Atomic Energy Commission or in any of the laboratories of contractors working with and for the Atomic Energy Commission?
Mr. DEAN. He is not, Mr. Thomas.
Mr. DEAN. I do not think even during the Manhattan Engineering District days that he was associated with us.
Dr. Smyth. Not directly. He may have been on some top-level commands that considered some of the material, but I do not recall that he was even there.
Mr. THOMAS. Among scientists in the field of fissionable material and its related subjects, is the very learned doctor considered an authority in those fields ?
Dr. SMYTH. No. I certainly think he would not be considered an authority in those fields. His major work preceded the discoveries in nuclear physics, so far as I know. He has done very little in nuclear physics, and without access to a great deal of classified material his judgment would not be valid on those.
Mr. Thomas. Is his judgment faulty as far as he is quoted here in this Associated Press article I have just read—that man will have to find a way to duplicate temperatures and pressures around the sun?
Dr. SMYTH. I think he is faulty in two regards. I think he does not know enough to estimate exactly what conditions are required, nor does he know enough to estimate what conditions we can achieve. He has not had access to the necessary material.
Mr. THOMAS. Quoting the doctor a little bit further, the distinguished Nobel prize winner says, “I do not think we are as far along as some seem to think we are in recent reports.”
I wonder do you have any idea of what he is talking about therewhat the reports are.
Mr. DEAN. I do not know, unless-is he referring there, do you think, to peacetime power, or is be back on weapons again?
Mr. THOMAS. He is making a blanket statement there, referring to some recent reports.
Mr. DEAN. I do not know what those reports would be that he refers to.
Mr. THOMAS. Then he continues:
He added he was pessimistic about the possible peacetime uses of atomic energy, citing excessive cost and rarity of material.
Purely as a layman and listening to you gentlemen testify on the cost of this material and the scarcity of it and the difficulty of procuring it, would you say that the Nobel price-winning physicist had a point there, or again is his judgment a little faulty?
Dr. SMYTH. With regard to power?
Mr. THOMAS. Peacetime uses of atomic energy, citing excessive cost and rarity of material.
Dr. SMYTH. Let us go back to the question asked earlier. I do not know whether it ought to be on the record or not.
(Discussion off the record.)
Mr. THOMAS. As far as the practical, everyday workings of the Commission in carrying out their duties and functions is concerned, there is nothing in the immediate foreseeable future that leads you to believe you will be able to get fissionable material from the ground, water, air, or any other source that is presently available in abundance to us in the United States and other places, but we are going to have to depend upon those sources from whence we are getting them now and hope to get other sources, as hazardous, costly, and troublesome as it is to get this material?
Dr. SMYTH. As far as we can see in the immediate future, we will have to depend on uranium for this kind of power.
POSSIBILITY OF SAVINGS IN MILITARY BUDGET BY EXTENSIVE DEVELOPMENT OF ATOMIC WEAPONS
Mr. THOMAS. Several days ago there appeared an article in the Washington Post by Mr. Robert C. Albright, dated September 19, 1951, quoting from the chairman of the Joint Congressional Atomic Energy Committee. I quote from Mr. Albright's article in the Post in which he says
$6 billion invested annually in atomic weapons "can grant us a reprieve" from world war III.
I wonder if the Atomic Energy Commission agrees with that statement that $6 billion invested annually in atomic weapons can grant us a reprieve from world war III.
Mr. DEAN. That is a difficult one to answer. I would say this: If he thinks you can today take $6 billion
Mr. THOMAS. I am asking what the Commission thinks; not what the chairman of the Joint Congressional Atomic Energy Committee thinks.
Mr. DEAN. The results of such an expenditure today would not. begin to bear fruit for several years. Consequently, if World War III
were to come or is likely to come in the period between now and then, such an expenditure would not help you. You would have to depend on the present program and the rapidly expanding program which we have already discussed at length with this committee.
Mr. THOMAS. Has the Commission asked for $6 billion additional over and above your regular request, or even $1 billion over and above your regular request, to be invested in atomic weapons?
Mr. DEAN. We have not, Mr. Thomas, although this has been a matter of study between ourselves and the Department of Defense for a period of several months. We have to analyze what we would get with these expenditures, when we would get them, and how much of an impact on the economy of the country would be involved in the spending of an amount of money of that size.
Mr. Thomas. I will continue to read from the article, where it is quoting the chairman. The article says:
At the same time 30 to 40 billion dollars can be saved from presently estimated 60 to 80 billion dollar defense costs “that otherwise threaten to become the price of survival,” he told the Senate.
Do you have any basis in fact to substantiate that statement? Does the Commission have any basis in fact to substantiate the fact that you can save 30 billion to 40 billion dollars from the 1952 budget estimates for the armed services?
Mr. DEAN. I think we are competent witnesses on the question of what could be done with money put in the atomic energy program, but I do not think we are competent witnesses in our shop, any of us, to answer the question of what would be the effect of this on the military budget.
Mr. THOMAS. What is your opinion? Is it your opinion that by spending $6 billion now over and above your request you can save 30 billion to 40 billion dollars from the 1952 estimates of 60 billion to 80 billion dollars for national defense?
Mr. Dean. Having regard for my incompetence to answer that question, I would point out again the fact that since you cannot get any results, real, practical results, out of the plant and equipment that an expenditure of $6 billion would procure, for several years, I am a little dubious about what effect it could have on the 1952 budget for the Department of Defense.
Mr. THOMAS. Is not that a little bit of an understatement, Mr. Chairman, when you say you are dubious as to whether you could save 30 billion to 40 billion dollars on the 1952 budget? Do you think you could save it on the 1953 budget?
Mr. DEAN. You do not save this by spending 5 billion to 6 billion dollars today. You might have some savings come along in those years because of the increased amount of bombs that are coming out of our present expanded program which is going on at the present time. And it is going up at a very substantial rate, as you are aware. That is where the impact, it seems to me, would be felt.
Mr. THOMAS. Continuing with this newspaper article, in speaking about some resolutions that were about to be filed, it
says: The first resolution called for "all-out” concentration on atomic development and production.
Has the Commission advocated that-all-out concentration on atomic development and production?
Mr. DEAN. In one sense I think the Commission has been going on the assumption that our program is all-out. But our program has been limited, as you know, by the presently foreseeable ore. This has been the major limitation. Now, if the studies which are now being made between ourselves and the Department of Defense convince both agencies they could honestly recommend to the Congress a substantial expansion over and above our present one, we will certainly do it. And the ore prospects are,
good and would probably justify considerable plant expansion.
Mr. THOMAS. Continuing with this article, I quote: Saying “the sky is the limit” to the number and variety of atomic weapons the United States can produce for a few billion dollars, the Senate was told "he was proposing in a word 'an atomic Army and an atomic Navy and an atomic Air Force.'»
Is the sky the limit in the way of weapons which the Commission is able to produce at this time or in the foreseeable future?
Mr. DEAN. There are always limitations of ore. That is one limitation that is always with us. And, of course, it is an uncertain one, because you cannot see below the surface of the ground, and there are large areas that have not been explored that may have some promise. It is always a limitation and always an uncertainty.
Mr. Thomas. Has the Commission at any time advocated or proposed an atomic Army and an atomic Navy and an atomic Air Force?
Mr. DEAN. No, sir; although in our relations with the Department of Defense we have endeavored to keep the three services-and this is done on a day-to-day basis-aware of our developments so that they can be ready. For example, at the next test at Nevada it is proposed that about 5,000 troops will be out there and will be indoctrinated in the problems that arise when troops are near an atomic explosion. But that is just one illustration of the type of thing that might be referred to if you are talking about an atomic Army.
NEW ATOMIC WEAPON DEVELOPMENTS
Mr. THOMAS. Here is another article appearing in the Washington Star of September 26 by Mr. John A. Giles. I quote from that article:
“The Atomic Energy Commission,” said the Senator, “has in being or in development literally dozens of different types and kinds of special-purpose atomic weapons models."
He said 'the so-called wonder weapons” weren't just on paper but "down-toearth hardware, proven, demonstrated, or confirmed,” proof-tested or about to be.
I do not quite understand the distinction between “proof-tested” or “about to be.” What is your comment on that statement? Does the Atomic Energy Commission have in development literally dozens of different types and kinds of special-purpose atomic weapons?
Mr. DEAN. That is true.
Mr. DEAN. It is the "in development” now that I am talking to. They are being so developed and so designed that they would be effective.
Mr. THOMAS. How far away are they now from that point of perfection where you would feel safe in depending upon them to protect the United States against invasion or in war if we were engaged in an all-out war?
Mr. DEAN. The ones that are in the stockpile would undoubtedly be effective in the event we went to war tomorrow. By that, I mean very effective.
Mr. Thomas. You are referring to that instrument that we commonly call the “bomb” now, or are you referring to something new and different?
Mr. DEAN. Those are all atomic weapons; in that sense, they are all atomic weapons, but they are of different types, and there is already today some flexibility in the program which would permit other uses against military targets, and this will be increasingly so as the other members of the family of weapons enter the stockpile.
Mr. Thomas. Does the Commission agree with this statement; again reading from the article by Mr. John A. Giles in the Star of September 26 which reads as follows:
Recent publicity about new weaponsexplained Mr. Lovett-and I presume the Mr. Lovett here he is supposed to be quoting is the Secretary of Defense, Mr. Bob Lovett, new developments in warfare and optimistic statements on the military application of atomic energy have given the exaggerated impression that a quick, easy, and inexpensive security might be now at hand.
What have you to say about that?
Mr. DEAN. I do not think there is any quick and easy method of procuring total security. It is expensive.
Mr. Thomas. Mr. Lovett is quoted here as referring to atomic weapons and “new developments in warfare." Do you know of any such new developments in warfare in the application of atomic energy that would lead to any conclusion that for the expenditure of $6 billion, $10 billion, $15 billion, or $20 billion you could now avert World War III and save one-half of the national-defense budget for 1952, which, in all probability, before the year is finished will be about $95 billion?
Mr. DEAN. I think it is a question of timing. If you are going to replace
Mr. THOMAS. Well, you do not have much time to do some things in if you are going to save some $40 billion in 1952, because it is going to be over with, Mr. Chairman, in about 9 more months.
Mr. DEAN. I think the answer to that is a flat"No."
Mr. Thomas. Obviously that is the correct answer. I just do not want this committee to be thought of throughout the country that by failing to appropriate $6 billion we are not going to save $40 billion in the fiscal year 1952, nor do we want the country to think this committee is bringing on world war III when it is alleged that by the expenditure of $6 billion you could prevent world war III.
We just want to get this on the record.
Furthermore, you stated awhile ago you have not asked for $1 billion over and above your request, much less $3 billion, $4 billion, $5 billion, $6 billion, or any other amount. Is that true?
Mr. DEAN. That is very true. On the other hand, we do not want to make a rash request.
That is the reason. Some people might criticize us for spending so much time to make an evaluation of the expansion program, but, when you get out into those billions, we want to see where it is going, when it gets to you, and what the impact is going to be.