GBH Openvault

War and Peace in the Nuclear Age; Bigger Bang for the Buck, A; Your Defense (Part 2 of 2)

Part of War and Peace in the Nuclear Age.


Continuation of Your Defense, covers spending required for the military assistance program, including training; supply of weapons and equipment -- B-52s being assembled, convoys delivering equipment on land and at sea; and construction of barracks, hospitals. States that 'security is costly, but it's the price of liberty...' and that it is 'necessary to experiment continually.' Features surface-to-air Honest John missiles on parade, Thor and Jupiter IRBM test firings, Falcon air-to-air missile striking target, Sparrow supersonic air-to-air missile striking target, Redstone guided missile launch.

License Clip
War and Peace in the Nuclear Age
Bigger Bang for the Buck, A
Program Number



Your Defense (Part 2 of 2)

Series Description

The first atomic explosion in the New Mexico desert on July 16, 1945, changed the world forever. This series chronicles these changes and the history of a new era. It traces the development of nuclear weapons, the evolution of nuclear strategy, and the politics of a world with the power to destroy itself.

In thirteen one-hour programs that combine historic footage and recent interviews with key American, Soviet, and European participants, the nuclear age unfolds: the origin and evolution of nuclear weapons; the people of the past who have shaped the events of the present; the ideas and issues that political leaders, scientists, and the public at large must confront, and the prospects for the future. Nuclear Age highlights the profound changes in contemporary thinking imposed by the advent of nuclear weapons. Series release date: 1/1989

Program Description

For the destructive power they deliver, nuclear weapons are cheap and efficient. In the 1950’s the United States begins to rely on nuclear, rather than conventional, weapons for its defense.

As nuclear policy evolved during the Eisenhower Administration, three factors combined to produce a new American reliance on nuclear weapons: pressure to control the federal budget (the “bigger bang” argument); competition as each branch of the American military adapted nuclear weapons to its mission; and Soviet bluffs that fueled American fears about a “bomber gap” and later a “missile gap.” On October 4, 1957, Sputnik, the Soviet satellite that was the first to orbit Earth, shocked Americans and delighted the Soviets. A month later, the Soviets launched Sputnik 2 with a dog on board. Both the Soviets and the Americans knew that a booster capable of carrying a dog into space could also deliver a nuclear warhead across a continent in 30 minutes.



Asset Type

Stock footage

Media Type


Thor (Missile)
B-52 bomber
Jupiter missile
Armed Forces
War and Conflict
Global Affairs
Rights Summary

In perpetuity ; Public Domain Rights Holder: NAFB

Chicago: “War and Peace in the Nuclear Age; Bigger Bang for the Buck, A; Your Defense (Part 2 of 2),” 01/01/1958, GBH Archives, accessed December 2, 2023,
MLA: “War and Peace in the Nuclear Age; Bigger Bang for the Buck, A; Your Defense (Part 2 of 2).” 01/01/1958. GBH Archives. Web. December 2, 2023. <>.
APA: War and Peace in the Nuclear Age; Bigger Bang for the Buck, A; Your Defense (Part 2 of 2). Boston, MA: GBH Archives. Retrieved from
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