In This Review

The Cult of the Atom: The Secret Papers of the Atomic Energy Commission

The Cult of the Atom: The Secret Papers of the Atomic Energy Commission
By Daniel Ford
273 pp, Simon and Schuster, 1982
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An impressively documented and disturbing account of the ways in which the Atomic Energy Commission and its successor, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, have placed the goal of rapid development of nuclear-generated electrical power ahead of safety. Here is a tale of unfounded optimism, suppressed warnings and widespread incompetence. The author, a leader of the Union of Concerned Scientists, obtained access to AEC files through the Freedom of Information Act.