“Crucial? Helpful? Practically nil?” Reality and perception of Britain’s contribution to the development of nuclear weapons during the Second World War

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Abstract

When, in March 1940, two Jewish emigré physicists, Otto Frisch and Rudolf Peierls, composed a memorandum on the technical feasibility of an atomic weapon, few would have envisaged the significance of this six-page document. The technical blueprint for an atomic weapon, at the time assumed to be well beyond the realm of the possible, was to have a significant impact on the Anglo-American nuclear relationship, as it enabled British and American scientists to discuss at eye-level, the direction of nuclear weapons development, as it moved from theory to implementation.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)19-40
Number of pages22
JournalDiplomacy and Statecraft
Volume33
Issue number1
Early online date6 Mar 2022
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2022

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 The Author(s). Published with license by Taylor & Francis Group, LLC.

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