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1980. Countdown: Britain's Strategic Nuclear Forces by Air Vice-Marshal Stewart Menaul
1982. Treasures from the Tower of London: Arms and Armour by A. V. B Norman and G. M. Wilson



Menaul, Stewart. 'Countdown: Britain's Strategic Nuclear Forces', published in 1980 in Great Britain by Robet Hale in hardback with dustjacket, 188pp, ISBN 0709185928. Condition: Very good, clean & tidy condition with dustjacket. DJ has a touch of edge-wear. Price: £20.00, not including p&p, which is Amazon's standard charge (currently £2.75 for UK buyers, more for overseas customers)
1980, Robert Hale, hbk
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About this book/synopsis: In 1946, the Labour government made the decision that Britain should have nuclear weapons; a decision that was to have political repercussions for future governments. Small minorities in and out of government in future generations would also try doggedly to disrupt the build up of any British nuclear forces.

The author therefore tells the whole story of how in the early 1950s, Britain achieved what it set out to do, becomcing the third nuclear power in the world after the United States and the Soviet Union. British Scientists had made a notable contribution to the creation of the first atomic bomb in the great Manhattan project in the United States during the war, but when the war ended, the United States was reluctant to share the secrets of nuclear technology she had amassed during the years up to 1945. The British effort in designing and producing atomic and thermonuclear weapons and the creation of the famous V-bomber force as the delivery system, entirely from
national resources without outside help, has never been sufficiently acknowledged by the British public mainly because they just did not know about the heroic efforts involved in achieving this.

No loss of life or injury to any living animal was incurred by the design, production and testing of these devices. The tests themselves were carried out on Christmas Island in 1956/1957; and the British had to construct a suitable delivery system, which took the shape of The Valiant, Victor and Vulcan bombers, which performed this role from 1956 - 1968. These bombers were a triumph for British aircraft companies and the smooth and efficient operation of this force was admired all over the world.

The V-bomber force was actually phased out in 1968 because the US controversially cancelled its planned Skybolt missile; and so the responsibility of Britain's strategic nuclear force was handed over to the Royal Navy.

The book also deals with the cancellation of Blue Streak, Harold Wilson's about turn on the Nassau agreement and the cancellation of the TSR-2 aircraft with all the political intrigue associated with it.

About the Author: He served throughout WW2 with RAF Bomber Command with the last two years of this being in the Pathfinder force. In 1946, he was posted to the Air Ministry and in 1949 was appointed Wing Commander in charge of flying at RAF Waddington.

Returning to the Air Ministry, he took the position of Deputy Director of Bomber Operations with special responsibility for nuclear weapons and the V-bomber force. He was attached to the Nevada nuclear test site in 1954 and on his return from the US was given responsibility for planning the British series of tests in Australia and at Christmas Island.

He took a tour of duty in Aden and was appointed Senior Air Staff Officer at Headquarters Bomber Command, a post he held from 1961 to 1965. He retired in 1968, becoming Director General for the Royal United Services Institute for Defence Studies in London. He has written for many journals and magazines on defence issues. He has also frequently broadcast on television and radio.

Contents:
Foreword

1. Nuclear Decision
Britain decides to become a nuclear power- the political decision-making processes - production of fissile material - first nuclear device tested at Monte Bello 1952
2. Nuclear Strategy
Impact of nuclear weapons on strategy - conflicting views - RAF submits requirements for nuclear weapons and strategic bombers
3. The V-Bombers
The secrets of the jet engine transferred to Russia - the first British jet bomber - specifications for the V-bombers
4. The Nevada Tests
British observers witness whole series - invaluable experience for those planning British tests
5. Planning British Nuclear Tests
Preliminary planning for British tests. Operation mosaic at Monte Bello; Operation Buffalo at Maralinga and Operation Grapple at Christmas Island
6. The Tests
First series at Monte Bello 1956, two weapons tested - second series Maralinga, four weapons tested - first drop of a nuclear weapon from a British Aircraft - third series, Grapple, begins at Christmas Island - first thermonuclear tests
7. V-Bombers Operational
The V-Bomber force becomes operational - the 1957 Sandys Defence White Paper gives missiles priority - Thor missile introduced into Bomber Command - Blue Streak cancelled
8. Soviet Missile Threat
BMEWS - the Cuban Missile Crisis - the navy lobby in and out of Ministry of Defence - Mountbatten influence
9. Skybolt Saga
Kennedy's decision welcomed by Labour - Britain gets consolation prize of four Polaris submarines, missiles supplied by the United States
10. The Anti-Nuclear Campaign
The campaign of denigration against Bomber Command and nuclear weapons - Wilson's promises at the 1964 election
11. Labour Slashes Defence
Wilson's renege on vow to renegotiate the Nassau agreeement - multilateral nuclear foce - the tragedy of the TSR - 2 - intrigue in the Ministry of Defence - Labour slashes defence and withdraws from overseas commitments.
12. End of Bomber Command
The roles, equipment, communications and control systems of Bomber Command - handover to the navy in 1968 without ceremony or thanks to the men who served in the independent nuclear deterrent - the end of Bomber Command, Britain no longer has an independent nuclear deterrent
13. What of the Future?
Will there be a replacement for the Polaris force and if so what choices are open to Britain - the possibility of cooperation with France - would another Labour government opt out of the nuclear business altogether in deference to their left wing?

 

Books about nuclear weapons:

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Norman, A.V.B; and Wilson, G.M. 'Treasures of the Tower of London: Arms & Armour', published in 1982 in Great Britain by Lund Humphries, 131pp, ISBN 0946009007 with dusjacket. Sorry, sold out, but click image to access prebuilt search for this title on Amazon
1982, Lund Humphries, hbk
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  • Treasures of the Tower of London:Arms & Armour [top]
    Written by A.V.B Norman and G. M. Wilson (Catalogue Compilers)
    Colour photographs by Chris Ridley
    Design by Mafalda Spencer
    First published in 1982 in Great Britain by Lund Humphries, Ltd., London and produced for the Sainsbury Centre for Visual Arts, in hardback, 131pp, with dustjacket, ISBN 0946009007
    Paperback edition also published: 0946009015

Contents/synopsis: Some of the finest pieces from one of the world's great collections of arms and armour are depicted in this book, which covers the whole range of items in the Armouries collections from medieval swords and helmets to nineteenth century firearms. A considerable number of them come from the old Royal Armoury, and particularly from that formed by Henry VIII. Many were made for monarchs or for members of the court circle. All are linked by one factor: quality. They can and should be regarded as works of art in their own right and this is what the Exhibition and this book are all about: demonstrating that arms and armour may be viewed as works of art in their own right, triumphs of superb craftmanship and functional design. Not only is this book beautifully illustrated; for the first time in many cases it makes available detailed information about the individual pieces, their makers, their decorators and their owners. The Exhibition also marked the first time in the Tower of London's 900 year history that its treasures of arms and armour had been lent beyond its walls.

The information contained in this book is drawn from the manuscript inventory of the Armouries collection, which has been compiled and added to over the years, not least by the authors of this book: A. V. B. Norman, Master of the Armouries; and G. M. Wilson, Deputy Master of the Armouries. The book also includes introductory essays on the history of the Armouries and on the history of Arms and Armour.

Chapters:
Foreword by General Sir Peter Hunt
Introduction
Page 1. The history of the Armouries by Alan Borg
Page 5. Colour Plates
Page 21. The History of Arms and Armour
Looks at 1. Armour. 2. Swords 3. Staff Weapons. 4. Missile Weapons. 5.
Page 35. Catalogue
Page 121. Select Reading List
Page 125. Glossary

Illustrations (in order by which they appear)
Engraving of The Tower of London as seen from the River Thames by Wenzel Holler, 1640
page 2. View of the display of arms and armour known as 'the line of Kings' in the early years of the nineteenth century by Thomas Rowlandson (1756-1827)
Colour Plate 1. Tournament armour of the Emperor Maximilian I. German, about 1500
Colour Plate 2. Armour for combat on foot of King Henry VIII. English, about 1520
Colour Plate 3. Armour for the tilt of Robert Dudley, Earl of Leicester, English, about 1575
Colour Plate 4. Field armour of the future King Charles II, Dutch, before 1644
Colour Plate 5. Armour for light cavalry, British, about 1650
Colour Plate 6. Great helm, possibly English, third quarter of the 14th Century
Colour Plate 7. Parade helmet, probably Augsburg, about 1600
Colour Plate 8. Sporting crossbow, South German, early 16th Century
Colour Plate 9. Shield fitted with a lantern, Italian, about 1550
Colour Plate 10. Bronze cannon, probably Flemish, dated 1535
Colour Plate 11. Partizans, left of Lyons, about 1650; right of the French Royal Guard, about 1670
Colour Plate 12. Left: Holy-water sprinkler, English; Middle: Partizan, Italian; Right: Bill, Italian: early sixteenth century
Colour Plate 13. Parts of a sporting garniture made at Tula in Russia, about 1750
Colour Plate 14. Powder-flask, Italian, late 16th Century
Colour Plate 15. Detail of flintlock holster pistols by Pierre Monlong, London, about 1695
Colour Plate 16. Snaphance pistol, Lowland Scottish, dated 1619
Colour Plate 17. Wheel-lock pistol, probably French, about 1590
Colour Plate 18. Flintlock sporting gun, German (Alsace), dated 1646
Colour Plate 19. Flintlock pistol, North African, second half of the 18th Century
Colour Plate 20. Sword, probably German, about 1480
Colour Plate 21. Military backsword traditionally of Cromwell, British, about 1640
Colour Plate 22. Presentation Sabre of General Sir William Fenwick Williams, London, 1856
Colour Plate 23. Presentation sword of Vice Admiral Lord Collingwood, London 1806/7
Page 22. Engraving of the effigy of Sir Richard Pembridge (died 1375) in Hereford Cathedral, from T. & G. Hollis 'The Monumental Effigies of Great Britain', (London 1840-1842)
Page 24. Page from a manuscript fencing manual, South German, about 1300, showing the use of sword and buckler
Page 26. Soldiers preparing to shoot fire-arrows into a besieged castle from both crossbows and hand-guns, from a South German manual on the use of gunpowder, about 1450
Page 28. View of the riverside Wharf of the Tower of London, showing Traitors' Gate and the old War Office storehouses, from The Graphic (London). 15th August 1885.
Page 30. The display of arms and armour on the top floor of the White Tower at the end of the 19th Century, from The Graphic (London). 15th August 1885.
Page 33. King Philip I of Castille, and 'old' King Henry VII of England, from the fictionalised biography of the Emperor Maximilian. Der Weisskunig of about 1517.

Catalogue: Now follows a catalogue of 111 items, all with a b&w photograph and very detailed description including historical background and provenance:
1. Tournament armour (Rennzeug) of the Emperor Maximilian I
2. Armour for combat on foot of King Henry VIII. English, made in the Royal Workshop at Greenwich, about 1520, under the Master Armourer Martin Van Royne
3. Armour for the tilt of Robert Dudley, Earl of Leicester. English, made in the Royal Workshop at Greenwich, probably about 1575, under the Master Armourer John Kelte
4. Pikeman's Corslet and Pot, British, probably Greenwich, about 1625-30
5. Field Armour of the future King Charles II. Dutch, before 1644
6. Armour for Light Cavalry (harquebus armour). British, about 1650
7. Great helm. Possibly English, third quarter of the 14th Century
8. Visored basinet, German or North Italian, about 1370-1380
9. Open-faced helmet (sallet). Italian, Milanese probably by Domenico dei Barini known as Negroli, about 1490-1500
10. Open-faced parade helmet (burgonet). German, probably Augsburg, about 1600
11. Shield or round target with matchlock gun
12. Shield or round target fitted with a lantern. Italian, about 1550, the lantern probably about 1600
13. Sword, probably Italian, before 1432, possibly late, possibly late fourteenth century
14. Hand-and-a-half sword. Possibly English, early 15th Century
15. Hilt English, the blade German, Passau, early 15th Century
16. Sword, North European, probably German, about 1480
17. Sword. Swiss or Swabian, about 1500
18. Short sword ('cinquedea') and scabbard. North Italian, early sixteenth century
19. Hunting sword. British, early 17th Century
20. Military Sabre. Hilt British, probably about 1625-1630, the blade possibly Persian
21. Rapier. The hilt British, the blade possibly North Italian, by Vicenzio Ginam, about 1634-1650
22. Military backsword, British, about 1640
23. Rapier and scabbard. The hilt and scabbard British, the blade probably German about 1640-1655
24. Small-sword and scabbard. Hilt North European, the blade Germany, probably Solingen, dated 1651
25. Cup-hilted rapier. Italian, probably Brescian, about 1660-1670
26. Military sword of King George II. The hilt probably British, about 1700, the blade German, Solingen, by Johannis Brach
27. Horseman's Sword. The hilt British, probably London, between 1702 and 1714, the blade probably German
28. Hanger, with the hilt British, post 1717, the blade probably German
29. Basket-hilted-back-sword (claymore). Hilt British, Stirling, by John Allen II, about 1750, the blade probably German, Solingen
30. Small-sword and scabbard. The hilt British, London by Joseph Clare II, dated 1766-7, the blade probably German, Solingen
31. Hanger and scabbard of an officer of the Hudson's Bay Company. The hilt and scabbard are British from London, 1783/4, the blade probably German, Solingen
32. Cavalry sabre and scabbard. United States of America, about 1785
33. Military Dress Sword of King George III. The hilt British, London, about 1790, the blade probably German
34. Sword of an officer of Light Infantry. Probably British, made for the United States market, late 18th Century
35. Military dress sword and scabbard of the 1st Duke of Wellington. British, General Officer's dress pattern 1796, the blade German, Solingen
36. Presentation small-sword and scabbard of Lieutenant J. Allen. British, London, about 1800
37. City of London gold presentation small-sword and scabbard of Vice Admiral Lord Collingwood, British, London dated 1806/7
38. Presentation small-sword and scabbard of Sir Samuel Whittingham. British, London, 1825, the hilt by Thomas Prosser
39. Presentation sabre, scabbard and case of Sir William Fenwick Williams, British, London 1856, mounts by Antoine Vechte
40. Dagger and sheath mounts, probably North European, 15th Century
41. Rondel Dagger. European, possibly English, late 15th Century
42. Dagger, Spanish or Italian, about 1650
43. Pollaxe, European about 1500
44. Glaive, European about 1500
45. Lance Head, German, early 16th Century
46. Pollaxe, European, first half of the 16th Century
47. Partizan, Italian, early 16th Century
48. Partizan, Italian, early 16th Century
49. Corseque, Italian, early 16th Century
50. Three-grained staff, Italian, early 16th Century
51. Halberd, Italian, early 16th Century
52. Bill, English, 16th Century
53. Bill, Italian, early 16th Century
54. Holy-water sprinkler. Possibly English, early 16th Century
55. Spear. Possibly English, first half 16th Century
56. Pike, early 16th Century
57. Hunting spear. French or possibly Italian, about 1600
58. Partizan, Possibly Italian, about 1600; decorated about 1650, probably in Lyons
59. Partizan, French, about 1670
60. Breech - loading gun. Probably English, dated 1537
61. Wheel-lock pistol or short carbine. Probably French, about 1590
62. Snaphance pistol. English, about 1600
63. All-brass sporting gun. British, Dundee, dated 161?, the lock about 1700
64. Snaphance pistol. British, made in Lowland Scotland, 1619
65. Flintlock sporting gun, German, Alsace, dated 1646
66. Double-barrelled flintlock pistols. British, London, about 1660
67. Snaphance revolver. British, London, about 1680
68. All-steel flintlock sporting gun. Italian, Brescia, about 1680
69. Flintlock sporting gun. French, Paris, about 1685
70. Flintlock firework gun. British, London about 1690
71. Pair of flintlock holster pistols. British, London, about 1695
72. Flintlock sporting gun. British, London, dated 1721
73-76. Sporting garniture. Russian, Tula, parts dated 1752
77. Pair of flintlock holster pistols
78. Air pistol. British, London, about 1770
79. Cased flintlock repeating pistol. British, London about 1800
80. Presentation flintlock sporting gun. French, Versailles, 1802
81. Presentation flintlock carbine. French, Versailles, dated 1803
82. Breech-loading, centre-fire, double-barrelled sporting gun. French, Paris, about 1815. Barrel-maker: A. Renette?
83. Flintlock revolver. British, London, about 1825. E. H. Collier
84. Double-barrelled percussion shotgun. French, Paris, 1860. Barrell-maker: Leopold Bernard Cannionier a Paris
85. Cased presentation percussion target rifle, British, Edinburgh, 1861. Made by Joseph Harkom
86. Cased centre-fire howdah pistol. British, London, 1875. Made by Wilkinson & Son gun makers, Birmingham, England
87. Axe-pistol. Possibly Iberian or German, early 17th century
88. Cartridge-box. German, probably Brunswick, about 1575
89. Powder-flask. Italian, possibly Florence, late 16th century
90. Powder-flask. English, late 16th Century
91. Pocket set of gunmakers tools, British, London, about 1690
92. Bronze cannon. Probably Flemish, dated 1535, made by Maistre Denis
93. Small bronze gun and carriage. British, dated 1638, carriage mid-19th Century, cast by founder John Browne
94. Bow-stave. British, about 1545
95. Sporting crossbow. South German, early 16th Century
96. Cranequin. German, dated 1747
97-103. Weapons of the Board of Ordnance
98. Flintlock Cavalry Pistol. British, dated 1744. Made by Benjamin Willits
99. Flintlock Cavalry Carbine. British, about 1770.
100. Flintlock 'Short Land Pattern' musket
101. Flintlock 'Elliot's' Carbine. British, about 1785
102. Flintlock 'India Pattern' musket. British, about 1805
103. Socket bayonet. British, about 1800. Marked with the name of the sword-cutler and gunmaker Thomas Hadley
104. Complete Armour, from North India, 18th Century
105. Shield (dhal). Indian, Lahore, 19th Century
106. Sword (tulwar), scabbard, and baldrick. Indian, Sikh, early 19th Century
107. Matchlock gun. Indian, probably Lahore, late 18th Century
108. Powder-flask (barutdan) and pouches. Indian, late 18th Century
109. Turban helmet. Turkish or Egyptian, decorated in Persian style, about 1500.
110. Sword (qilij) and scabbard. Turkish, 18th Century
111. Flintlock pistol. North African, probably Algerian, second half of the 18th Century

1982, Lund Humphries, hbk

1984, University of Washington Press, pbk

1984, University of Washington Press, hbk

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