The article is illustrated with five black and white photos and answers thirty-four questions as to whether or not a war with the Soviet Union can be avoided.
When these columns first appeared on the newsstands Berlin was undergoing it's third month of hardships as a result of a Soviet blockade (you can read about the Berlin Blockade here).
The Cold War began in 1945...
"There wouldn't be any warning.
Long-range Soviet bombers attempt to knock out our key industrial targets by atomic bombing. Some fly the 4,000, miles from Murmansk across the roof of the world to our East Coast; others strike from bases in Eastern Siberia at California and the Midwest... Simultaneously, organized sabotage breaks out in aviation plants, shipyards, power stations, etc., to complement the work of the bombers."
During the opening week of October, 1949 President Harry Truman announced that the Soviet Union had exploded its own nuclear weapon. Americans were deeply shocked and wondered aloud as to what this would mean - Would the peacetime draft call be doubled?
"...Russia had caught the U.S. flatfooted. For the first time in history every American looked straight down the gun barrel of [a] foreign attack."
The pace of the Cold War picked up soon after this event took place.
A news column that is appropriately drenched in the gravitas of the day because it announced that the short-lived age of "atomic security" that brought W.W. II to a close had come to an end. A new epoch had arrived at 11:00 a.m., September 23, 1949, when President Harry Truman announced
"We have evidence that within recent weeks an atomic explosion occurred in the USSR."
With nuclear bombs must come a nuclear strategy:
click here to read about that...
This article from February, 1950 goes on in some detail explaining why Americans should not be worried in the least about the fact that the Soviets now have atomic capability because the U.S. military has bigger and far more destructive bombs.
"A hydrogen bomb could cause damage almost without limit. The Nagasaki plutonium bomb affected an area of 10 square miles. The new weapon could destroy an area of 100, or 1,000 square miles."
When this article first went to print, American forces had been slugging it out on the Korean peninsula for the past six months - and the American people had genuine concerns about that dust-up snowballing into a much larger conflict. This article was written to remind them that mighty air armadas do not simply appear when necessary; they must be planned and budgeted. The author goes into great depth concerning all the impressive aircraft that was both available in limited numbers and on the drawing boards - but the military-industrial complex would need a lead time of 18 months to produce them in effective numbers.
"If we win this war or any part of it, it won't be due to the wisdom or foresight of our political leaders but to what U.S. industry has heretofore conclusively proved itself capable of - an outright production miracle."