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Command and Control Audiobook

Command and Control: Nuclear Weapons, the Damascus Accident, and the Illusion of Safety

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Publisher's Summary

A myth-shattering exposé of America's nuclear weapons.

Famed investigative journalist Eric Schlosser digs deep to uncover secrets about the management of America's nuclear arsenal. A groundbreaking account of accidents, near misses, extraordinary heroism, and technological breakthroughs, Command and Control explores the dilemma that has existed since the dawn of the nuclear age: How do you deploy weapons of mass destruction without being destroyed by them? That question has never been resolved - and Schlosser reveals how the combination of human fallibility and technological complexity still poses a grave risk to mankind. While the harms of global warming increasingly dominate the news, the equally dangerous yet more immediate threat of nuclear weapons has been largely forgotten.

Written with the vibrancy of a first-rate thriller, Command and Control interweaves the minute-by-minute story of an accident at a nuclear missile silo in rural Arkansas with a historical narrative that spans more than 50 years. It depicts the urgent effort by American scientists, policy makers, and military officers to ensure that nuclear weapons can't be stolen, sabotaged, used without permission, or detonated inadvertently. Schlosser also looks at the Cold War from a new perspective, offering history from the ground up, telling the stories of bomber pilots, missile commanders, maintenance crews, and other ordinary servicemen who risked their lives to avert a nuclear holocaust. At the heart of the book lies the struggle, amid the rolling hills and small farms of Damascus, Arkansas, to prevent the explosion of a ballistic missile carrying the most powerful nuclear warhead ever built by the United States.

Drawing on recently declassified documents and interviews with people who designed and routinely handled nuclear weapons, Command and Control takes readers into a terrifying but fascinating world that, until now, has been largely hidden from view. Through the details of a single accident, Schlosser illustrates how an unlikely event can become unavoidable, how small risks can have terrible consequences, and how the most brilliant minds in the nation can only provide us with an illusion of control. Audacious, gripping, and unforgettable, Command and Control is a tour de force of investigative journalism, an eye-opening look at the dangers of America's nuclear age.

©2013 Eric Schlosser (P)2013 Penguin Audio

What Members Say

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  •  
    Jeffrey Ander 09-05-16 Member Since 2016
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    "Incredible book."

    Loved the story, incredibly gripping. At the same time the book is also sobering with facts of so many close calls.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer Newton, MA United States 08-23-16
    Amazon Customer Newton, MA United States 08-23-16
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    4
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    "informative yet disturbing."

    Narrator, as usual was awesome, the storyline though informative was exhausting. I found that jumping around between the main disaster and the history was sometimes confusing.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Dori 08-15-16
    Dori 08-15-16 Member Since 2016
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    7
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    "Great book"

    Well written and well spoken. One of the last nonfiction books I listened to that was this duration lost my interest. But this kept it all the way through. very good book book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Laurel Honey Waterford, PA, US 08-11-16
    Laurel Honey Waterford, PA, US 08-11-16 Member Since 2016
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    "Eye opening"

    Incredible information with just the right amount of technology to still keep a non-technical person interested.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Bill 08-09-16
    Bill 08-09-16 Member Since 2016
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    "Simply Excellent"

    A wonderfully terrifying review of nuclear weapon development and proliferation that is as exciting as it is informative.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Autodoc 08-06-16
    Autodoc 08-06-16 Member Since 2016
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    "Scary good"

    Great story. Very scary how close we've come to nuclear disaster over the years. Recommend.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    plumber arizona 08-04-16
    plumber arizona 08-04-16 Member Since 2016
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    "Wow Who knew!"

    Well written and superbly spoken! Long but well worth the time it took to understand the nuclear defense of the Western world.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kenneth Freels Nashville, TN United States 08-03-16
    Kenneth Freels Nashville, TN United States 08-03-16 Member Since 2008
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    "holy cow! How did we survive!"

    Scott brick amazing on the read as always.

    amazing book. absolutely terrifying information. a must read for anyone interested in the cold war and the strategic air command.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jani 07-30-16
    Jani 07-30-16 Member Since 2015
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    "Fascinating and informative"

    Learned a ton about nuclear weapons and the cold war. Interesting structure but maybe too much detail in the main accident story.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Brandon Lincoln, NE, United States 07-28-16
    Brandon Lincoln, NE, United States 07-28-16 Member Since 2015
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    "Great story, well researched and insightful"

    loved it. addictive like few non fiction books. even as a cold war buff there was a great deal of information I didn't know. the author never grinds his politics in and does a great job capturing the feel of the different eras.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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