What Does a Nuclear Bomb Explosion Feel Like?

The existential threat of nuclear war is no longer a Cold War memory. With nine countries armed with around 15,000 atomic bombs up to 53 times stronger than those dropped in the Second World War, the stakes are arguably higher. Ahead of the International Day against Nuclear Tests on August 29, we met up British atomic veterans who were present at test sites in Australia and the Pacific, to find out what it’s like to experience a nuclear bomb explosion up close. While most people know about the bombs dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, fewer are aware that an additional 2,000 atomic bombs were detonated after World War II and tested on hundreds of thousands of young soldiers to prepare them for nuclear war. Subscribe to MOTHERBOARD: /> Follow MOTHERBOARD Facebook: />Twitter: />Tumblr: />Instagram: />More videos from the VICE network:

These men have been kept in the dark and betrayed by their country. It saddens me to hear the effect on their children. I'm sure none of these men where compensated for their sacrifice.
Might Gai
What they experienced and went through is absolutely horrible
Simon Cote
These men have been victims of treason by the leaders who were in charge of them.
Rishabh Adhikari
It's true.. Nobody wins a nuclear war. No one.. And these men.. There's nothing left for them, they've suffered a lifetime and everyone they love have suffered that too. There kids, family.. Everyone of them had that expression on there faces, disappointed, disgusted, questions that never will be answered and a lifelong list of suffering.
When they talked about the men on the boat breaking down in tears from the sheer magnitude of the bomb, I had a real rush of emotion all of a sudden. Just imagining how terrifying seeing this thing up close is impossible; just understanding the power of this horrible weapon is beyond me. This sort of thing really just shows the blatant disregard for human life in war. Doesn't matter if you won or lost, or if no war ended up happening at all, authorities see fit to sacrifice the lives and happiness of millions of young people.
Rudy's Movie Reviews
Hearing their stories is heartbreaking. Thank you for allowing these men to share tell their stories.
Ryan Stone
I’m shocked, I have nothing but infinite respect for these gentlemen
Travis Miller
I studied the effects of radiation for many years. The lucky ones die in the blast. You would be obliterated before your brain processed any pain.
this should be shown in schools all over the world.
This is so fuckd up on so many levels. Infuriating listening to what these men went through and clearly continue to struggle with
Jason Ballsack
My heart melted when they started speaking. Legends
Imagine how horrifying it would be for these young men to see such a thing. They were probably brought out thinking they were just going to see some munitions or artillery testing, and then all the sudden they see their fucking bones through their hands and eyelids. They must of thought that they were about to die.
It feels like dead
ahmed siddique
Politicians can lie and be protected while troops are threatened with the OSA and left to suffer. Heads need to roll at the MOD and Whitehall!!!
The British conducted numerous Nuclear tests on Australian soil and the Radioactive plumes were tracked as they travelled across the country and cities. This was an experiment to examine the fallout dissipation over occupied areas and the Radioactive isotope accumulation in Children. The Radioactive isotopes were taken up by grazing cattle and ended up in milk which was given free to all school children during the 1950's and 60's.
Evan BOI
Government: "whops yea sorry about the no children thing and cant talk about it haha.." Vets wife: oml we cant have children Doctor: sorry for the news we cant find whats the problem tho do you know sir. Vet: um nope dont know anything about whats wrong maybe just because idk
Why were all those military boats so DAMN close?? They literally got covered in the explosion, holy hell man that seems way to close.
np 1993
Using nuclear weapons a is war crime. There is no justification for nukes.
Eddie Gooden
....this is just...I can't even find words for my feelings right now. My God.
So if the bomb doesn't kill you, it will kill your children. We could rename them hell bombs.
M c k y e !
They really need to show this exact video in schools
I think, from the sight of that first mushroom cloud, I might have said goodbye to my military career at that moment, and the consequences be damned.
stalin did 9/11
And who is responsible for that? These people got away again.
Samantha Jacobs
Bless them all! This generation will never have the respect an courage as they did!!
This makes me think if the government would actually be capable of doing an "inside job".
Steven Morahan
Once again, *TOTAL* betrayal by the cowards of the state. If our so-called leaders - or their offspring - were sent to *their* manufactured theatres of war, things would be very different. Great film, BTW.
Pranav Tripathi
"To say it was frightening, was an understatement" Damn
Miller Goon
Damn i feel everything just listen to them am just thinking how can u do this to ppl who volunteered to do right 💯😔
I think the message is Don't trust the government...Ever.
Kenny Martin
Shaaame on the government
Ryan *******
No joke if I saw a nuclear bomb coming super close and there is no where to go and no hope I would just flip off the nuke.
Yuri S
We should probably test future weapons on politicians. See how they feel about it, and then perform medical experiments on them as well.
I just have no words. I feel like the wind has been knocked out of me.
Everyone has a plan until you get punched in the face... nukes aren't a game anyone can play with.
Bob Downes
Incidentally, Weston Super Mare is aTown and not a village.
Ricardo Ramirez
This is terrifying to just hear about, I don’t want to even imagine being in their boots. Heartbreaking
Chris Bautista
Most of the videos I’ve watched they mention men being so afraid they call out for their mothers. It is just intriguing that some of us have a natural instinct to seek protection from our mothers, the ones that cares for us when we were young.
matthew wilkinson
I can even remotely explained how mad speechless and sorry I am
Tyler Middaugh
The energy of this video is so moving. I can't imagine the deep rooted pain and betrayal these men live with. We must eliminate these cruel bombs. We owe it to past, and future generations.
"You can see every bone and every blood vessel in you're body." That sounds interesting.
It's "nuclear" as in nucleus. Why does presenter keep saying "nucular"? Reminds of of Homer Simpson.
I live very close to Weston. This is a fantastic and eye opening documentary, keep up the good work!
Croaking Frog
Their own government did this to them? That is one of the most shameful things I have ever heard of.
"For a government to do that to their own people" Worse than that, Sir, for a government - successive governments, both Tory and Labour - to do that to their veterans. Shame on the lot of them. Thank you for your service, gentlemen. I hope you eventually get the recognition and justice you rightly deserve.
I can't even imagine sitting w/ your back to the blast eyes covered up and being able to see through all that as if looking at an xray !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!MIND BLOWING for me
Good also think after the Chernobyl series. Soviet Union wasn't only one holding (deadly) secrets from its people.
Abubakar Jahangir
Just speechless. The only thing i wish now is to be able to make the world free of these destructive weapons.
Bìānća Râe ッ
How to survive a nuclear bomb: Hold a camera and record it, the camera person never dies.
Just think what the Japanese people must have went through
A thermonuclear detonation flattens everything with no opposition and shines 70 time brighter than the sun for about 5 seconds and puts out more heat at the center of the explosion that the surface of the sun making something smaller than a car so powerful it’s almost as if your throwing a piece of the sun at the ground and giving it enough pressure to blast it outward
Eagle One
How many people know that the Australian government allowed the British government to test atomic weapons in AUSTRALIA using British and Australian troops Britain has NEVER apologised.
Another NPC
I get the message: don't trust the government and don't ever sign up for the army. In case of a draft, if need be make a point about going to jail rather than serving.
Lucas kincanyon
Came for a cool nuclear story, instead got gut punched from a dose of a reality...
Ferocious Mullet
My Father was involved in these tests in the RAF. He got cataracts and all sorts of skin lesions over the years. Was taken from us early in the form of Cancer which affected so many of these brave men. I myself got a form of cataracts only seen in people who have been exposed to ionizing forms of radiation in my mid 30's. Three of my siblings have also had cancers. as well as the same type of cataracts. About 20 years ago what was called the British Nuclear Veterans Testing Association at the time (Do not know if they still use this moniker or not) successfully sued the UK.gov and won their case. Nothing will ever put right the wrongs done to these and other men like them over the globe used by their respective states as guinea pigs for war mongerer's but at least the wrong doing was officially recognised.
Aziz Ibrahim
“ I’ve become death, the destroyer of worlds” - J. Robert Oppenheimer
What's that supposed to mean?
*When you type “send nudes” but it autocorrects to “send nukes”*
Johny Wesco
I just said "fffuuyucccckkkk" 4:32... I didn't expected this to come in
"in a village near bristol"... weston super mare lol
FlamingBlaze GAMING
They launch a ballistic powered Mega-Nuclear Missle that explodes quickly On the spot with High Explosion and radiation. IN WWII ALL the young heroic soldiers fight for the battle in World war and died 90's ago by the Nuke Detonation On Campaign.
Carlo Arpini
It literally made me cry and I felt guilty.. This really never has to happen again
Weston Super Mare is a town, not a village. Apart from that great video.
Herr Heltcel
A saying that I will always remember came from a Holocaust survivor who came to speak at my middle school, and he said "We cannot embrace each other with nuclear arms." I remember thinking of how profound that wordplay was, and it has yet to become irrelevant. I think about that a lot.
Kelly Smith
Is it me or did one of their eyes just glow
Is there more material from this documentary? I really want to see more.
Eli Jones
This video sure did start with a bang
I feel sick, can't believe they did this to their own people just to study them...
Thanks for putting this upload on you tube, DON'T LET THIS GENERATION AND THE NEXT FORGET THIS !......
gareth neill
This is so so sad! The whole institution is corrupt. Vile vile vile! God bless those men ✌
wow, a very insightful video and the respect to the men you gave, bravo to you too!
it's weird that mustard gas is banned for causing ''unnecessary suffering'' and being ''too violent for war'' but nukes are completely fine, yeah. nothing wrong with those.. ok seriously, nukes are basically just like mustard gas but with 100 000x times larger area effect, cause 100 000x times more casualties, 100 000x times more suffering to people, like pain thats lasting for months, years or even a whole lifetime! those who are unlucky enough to survive, will have 3rd degree burns all over their body, sometimes even loss of limbs! unborn children's lives will basically get fucked right over with all sorts of cancer, deformations and shit like that. and imagine the trauma from the survivors! and not to mention the radiation it causes. it can leave an area uninhabitable for decades or centuries! in my opinion, nukes are the most inhumane weapons to ever exist
Laurence Kim
grown men trained for combat crying for their moms even after knowing what they signed up for... wow
Your interviewing style is impeccable.
Power is evil, and that's all the government had their eyes on, was power.
Mighty One
Military need to wake up and not support war... peace 🙏
Andrew Slatsky
That’s sick as hell... this is why big government shouldn’t be trusted
Ismail Meškić My Last Name Is In My Name! xD
List of People I Hate: Kim Jong Un
Michael Williams
I really liked the music at the end wish I could get that (name)
motherboard what is your chipset? Z270?
Kelly Diver
Thanks for sharing this remarkable documentary. These lovely lads hold the key to our future. Their stories needs to be heard. This needs to be seen by every World leader. I have been terrified of nuclear weapons since I was 6 years old (sounds young, but I had a curious scientific nature! And my Dad was very honest)
Great documentary short! I hope you know, when you asked if the man had "talked to it with his mates" he paused to say "no." He can't admit it, but you can tell he had.
Facebook brought me here. The upmost respect for all of these men. I can’t even imagine being told you can never have children. So heartbreaking 😔
God Bless ALL of you Gentlemen, Heroes. Thank You.
Ronald Lopez
United kingdom .England...Great Britain..18500 have died reports just natural causes and cancer??oh God I lost respect..taking screenshots tell to the world..
Dropping these kinds of weapons will have a negative impact on the entire Earth. There is no us and them. The divisions are only in the mind. We share the same planet.
August Bedroske
I used to see nukes as awesome thing and totally ok in the right hand Now I see that there are no right hands and I have a totally new perspective of nuclear weapons
Mehran zahir
"I don't know with what the world war three will be fought, but I know that world war four will be fought with sticks and stones" Albert Einstein
this video should be 3 seconds long and just say "Nothing you die" and just end
Andrew Barley
You know how bad it was when sailors start crying for their mommy, no respect intended.
Qasim Al-Riyami
What a touching interview. Brave vets! Thank you for sharing motherboard.
These men are just so haunted. ): All the more reason for peace.
*Whether The Test Were To Blame Was Nearly In Impossible To Prove, But Amongst Vets & Their Families Anger Grew* ..
Maverick Malone
Trump prevented a war 🤦🏻‍♂️ change your intro and by the way-the Cold War still remains the highest than any other timeframe.
"it feels like burnding" - Ralph Wiggum
Roberta Richardson
How horrific for them. I burst into tears when he said 'some cried for their mum's' I have two sons. I imagined them at 18 yrs old. The flood of tears started. Bless each and every one of them. Shame on the UK and US for doing this to them. Thank you for making this video and posting. I had never heard of this happening before and shocks me to the core.
Broochana The Lad
“What does a nuclear explosion feel like?” not good
The Power Cosmic. Obviously these guys are more than just guinea pigs to their government. I'm sure they've collected data on all their attempts to have kids, what happened to the kids etc. It's been a lifelong study of the effects of nuclear detonation on people.
That's pretty messed up... But it's really nice to hear people talk about it!
big blu space boi
5:00 and 0:05 sounds like 2D from gorillaz when hes not singing ?
Chris Barajas
Am I the only one genuinely afraid by this? I’m not a man that ever scared but try putting yourself in their shoes while this happened I do not envy these men and hope the world does not end like this
never gone
“The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately sick; who can understand it?” Jeremiah 17:9