McMillan, Priscilla J.
Title THE RUIN OF J. ROBERT OPPENHEIMER AND THE BIRTH OF THE MODERN ARMS RACE.
Publisher Viking, New York, 2005, first edition.
Seller ID 24544
373 pp, large 8vo (9 1/4" H), hard cover in dust jacket. ISBN 0670034223 B&w photographs. "On April 12, 1954, the nation was astonished to learn that scientist J. Robert Oppeheimer faced charges of violating national security. The brilliant lead er of the Manhattan Project had been cast into disgrace overnight. Was the arrogant genius, the charismatic head of the team that had developed the atomic bomb and ended World War II, really a traitor? In this riveting narrative, (the author ) d r a w s on newly declassified documents, unpublished manuscripts, private correspondence, and decades of unique interviews with the major characters in the story to present, at long last, the truth about the downfall of America's most famous - an d f am ou sl y enigmatic - scientist. (The book) focuses a laser on those fraught years from 1949 to 1955, to chronicle the firestorm that surrounded Oppenheimer and the entire atomic enterprise in the years just after the war. These were the yea rs th at saw po wer shift from the scientist who had created the bomb, and were increasingly afraid of it, to the politicians who wanted to use it for their own purposes. A cabal of hard-line Air Force officials, anti-Communist politicians, a nd r iva l sc ien tist s ca me together to seize control of U.S. nuclear policy and build ever more deadly weapons aimed at the Soviet Union. One ambitious, relentless man - Edward Teller - used this opportunity to support his own ominous rise to a uthor ity, to p romo te th e fou nding of the Livermore laboratory as a challenge to Los Alamos, and to redirect national resources into development of the controversial hydrogen bomb. He knew that only one man had the vision and abilities to thwa rt him : the magne tic O ppenhe imer, who led a group of like-minded and farsighted liberal scientists advocating arms control. Teller found the perfect allies in Lewis Strauss - a highly partisan Republican banker and businessman, and a key figur e in th e incr easingl y poli titcize d Atom ic Energy Commission - and in William Borden, a young congressional assistant. One breathtakingly beautiful Washington spring, in secret hearings in a rundown building off the Mall, as the nation's gaze was focu sed on the Army -McCart hy heari ngs, St rauss, Borden and Teller sprang their trap." Minor wrinkling at bottom of spine. Dust jacket has very minor edge wrinkling. Near Fine/Near Fine