More than seventy years ago, the deadly power of the atomic bomb was rebranded as the peaceful atom. It was considered to be the new source of power. Nuclear energy was modern. The United States was at the forefront of technological development. Many countries like France made it pretty clear that Nuclear energy was its salvation! Everybody in the electric-utility business is suddenly deciding, “Wow, we need nuclear power, too!”. But from the beginning, the peaceful atom was dogged by safety concerns.
The Three Mile Island tragedy basically made clear that accidents could easily happen – in fact, serious accidents. In its early days, Nuclear power was considered to be the future. But various accidents like the one at the Chernobyl power plant placed a big question mark against this technology. This led to a paradigm shift amongst the common public. Common people were found to be in favor of Greenpeace.
This technology was economically so complex, so difficult, so tricky – it’s kind of pulled down by its own dead weight. Thus, today nuclear power is fighting to survive! According to experts, there is no nuclear renaissance. It’s all a fairy tale fabricated by propaganda. Loved, hated, and impossible to ignore – the atom has changed our world.
In the aftermath of WWII, everyone was talking about the awesome and terrifying capabilities of nuclear fission. A speech titled Atoms for peace given by then-President Eisenhower at the United Nations became quite famous. In the speech, he stressed how Nuclear fission could be used for peace and prosperity to the world. Immediately after his speech quickly became internationalized. The propaganda surrounding this spread even more quickly.
Artifacts, prototypes of Nuclear power plants were made. Various heads of states, including that of India, visited the US to see this prototype. These attracted attention from all over the world. Tourists from every corner traveled all the way across to see these artifacts. The exhibit in west Berlin was visited by over a quarter of a million people, including thousands from the Soviet Zone.
The then Japanese government promoted this event more than any other country on the face of the earth. They tried to spread their propaganda that they are the good guys trying to whitewash the odor created by Hiroshima and Nagasaki. The public was being encouraged to look on the bright side.
Was all this propaganda? Or was it a policy? The answer is: It depends on how one views the situation.