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Marshall Islands and Atomic Bombs Essay

Marshall Islands and Atomic Bombs Essay

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The Marshall Islands is an island country, which is located in the Pacific Ocean near the equator. It is slightly in the west of the International Date Line. It is part of the larger Micronesia. It has a population of about 38,480 people, who are spread out over its 29 coral atolls. It shares maritime boundaries with Wake Island to the north, Federated States of Micronesia to the west, Kiribati to the south-east, and Nauru. The capital is Majuro (Barker, 2004).

Before the Marshall Islands involvement with atomic bombs, the colonists had begun settling in the area during the 2nd millennium BC. The first European exploration was in the 1520s. The first to set sight to a troll was Spanish explorer Alonso de Salazar. It was in August 1526. Other English and Spanish ships expeditions followed. Its name stemmed from John Marshall in 1788. Years later during the Cold War, the U.S. tested 67 nuclear weapons there.

The Marshall Islands' Pacific Proving Grounds was the location for the atomic bombs. It was there that they tested the Castle Bravo, which was the code name for the largest nuclear test that the U.S. had ever conducted. They yielded a total of 108,496 kilotons. It led to the destruction of the Island of Elugelab. The United States Atomic Energy Commission in 1956, regarded the Marshall Islands as the most contaminated place in the world. The health effects from that period still linger (Niedenthal, 2001).

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