"AND COMING IN FROM AIRSHOW LEFT, THE BOEING EL GEE EM THIRTY GEE... MINUTEMAaaAAN MISSILE!!"
(insert sound effect of 40 tons of hellfire rushing past at 17,000mph)
If your hair wasn't singed, ears shattered or senses utterly shaken out of your mind (probably all three), it'd be the most amazing Air Show act EVER.
|Minuteman III Missile fly-by at an imaginary Air Show, your town, USA.|
(this would be soooo cool if wouldn't probably start our hair on fire...)
Bummer, though. It ain't gonna happen. Ever.
Bear with me for a few moments and have a look at the top drawing. It's as close as you'll EVER get to such a beast. In fact, (I've been told) it's the most accurate rendering of the currently deployed ICBM.
Kinda mysterious, eh? I mean, throw the portent of nuclear armageddon into any drawing and the hushed whistles and wide-eyes happen spontaneously.
However, there's something about this missile that is far more crucial—it's the people that make it work. And by 'work' I mean make sure that this brain-stopping piece of weaponry is safe and ready: The Missileers of the U.S. Air Force.
Take a deep breath because this is where "stuff" gets real.
In 1945, the nuclear genie was let out of the bottle and there's no way it can ever be put back inside. Ever. And don't even think about indicting the United States as some sort of atomic Dark Lord because "we" were simply first in a big race to pop the top.
We all want to believe that the world is ready to drop their fists, pick axes, pistols, bombs and nukes for a group-hug but for now, it simply isn't realistic. Humanity is evolving forward and one day, "we'll get there." But here, now, today, next year...we remain a vicious species with an extraordinary capacity to ruin each other.
Yet, one weapon has (ironically) done more to keep global peace than any other and you can thank the Missileers for that.
(still with me?)
Good. There's more to come.