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cargo off the roads as quickly as possible. People are rotated between crews and assignments to counter the natural tendency for informal relaxation of procedures or, worse, the opportunity for formation of an insider conspiracy. The cost of the entire transportation operation, including chartered rail shipments that are conducted in a manner almost identical to truck convoys, is now about $17 million a year. Crane confidently predicts that his transportation division will grow larger in the years ahead. The U.S. has an estimated 30,000 nuclear weapons deployed around the world. About 10,000 of these are “strategic” weapons in the megaton range, the kind that could be delivered by missiles or B-52s to destroy, say, Moscow. The rest are smaller “tactical” weapons in the kiloton range, many of them based in Western Europe. The radioactive components of these weapons gradually decay and become less reliable, so they are replaced periodically. Consequently, DOE is moving thousands of nuclear weapons a year, even when the overall numbers in deployment remain constant. In addition, nuclear weapons mu* be brought back to the factory periodically for testing, modification or replacement by more advanced designs. Pat Crane says the country is entering a period when much more of this work will be done, when shipments will increase. At the same time, he predicts that the transportation system is likely to remain very much as it is today. Probably it will become more computerized and will utilize new defensive gadgets that emerge from DOE’s ongoing research program, but no major revisions are anticipated. Is the system adeqtiate? Crane has no doubts. He proudly points out that his couriers have never been attacked and have never lost a gram of material entrusted to them. They have never even had an accident resulting in the release of radiation. Well-informed independent evaluations on the adequacy of the system are virtually non-existent, however. Because the details of the operation are so highly classified, outsiders lack the information they need to perform a thorough analysis. A study commissioned by the Ford Foundation in 1971 considered a somewhat related issue, the possibility of theft of weapons-grade nuclear material from the U.S. nuclear power industry. In the final report, au thors Mason Willrich and Theodore Taylor outlined the requirements for a transportation system considerably tougher than those employed by the AEC for moving nuclear weapons at that time. DOE’s system today seems to exceed the measures recommended by Willrich and Taylor. Still, DOE’s current procedures have never been subjected to the most realistic test of all, an actual assault by determined adversaries. Opinions on the performance of the system are based on simulations, training exercises, and incidents like the overturned trailer outside Fort Collins last December. On that occasion, at least, everything appeared to work as intended. And the difficulty in recovering the SST indirectly confirmed an important feature of the system, the extraordinary effort and lengthy period necessary to move an immobilized nuclear shipment. A Coloradan who received his degree in geology at the Colorado School of Mines, the writer was a soldier in Vietnam and ran the Straight Creek Journal in Colorado five years before it folded from financial problems. His research for this article was supported by the Alicia Patterson Foundation. He is one of the foundation’s 1981-82 fellows. Bentsen, 9 Other Texas Demos Support Reagan Budget Slashes Washington, Austin The Texas delegation in Congress split bitterly over the Reagan budget slashing, but a 14-10 majority of the House members from Texas, including nine of the Democrats, backed Reagan while Democratic Senator Lloyd Bentsen of Texas was siding with the Republican President on the cuts almost three times as often as not. The Senate began voting on Senate Concurrent Resolution 9, the budgetslashing, in late March. Neither Bentsen nor Republican Senator John Tower of Texas participated in the debates very much. Democrats tried, with little success and little help from Bentsen, to restore some of the cuts. As Tower voted reliably with Reagan, Bentsen did so also, but unreliably. As the Senate agreed to SCR 9 by a vote of 88-10, Bentsen and Tower voted aye together. Between March 26 and April 2, on selected Democratic amendments seek6 MAY 29, 1981 store funds to various programs, with Tower voting no every time, here is how Bentsen voted: For restoring funds for veterans’ medical services, Social Security minimum benefits, and childhood immunization programs; Against restoring funds for child nutrition programs; the Strategic Petroleum Reserve; grants to needy students in higher education; elementary and secondary education; elementary and secondary education again, low-income energy assistance, Urban Development Action Grant programs, preventive and community and health programs, and urban mass transit programs \(the Chafopment Administration; Small Business Administration programs; the Solar Energy and Energy Conservation Bank and the alcohol fuels loan program \(the and prevention; youth training programs; the National Science Foundation, trade adjustment assistance, Conrail, and the National Science Foundation; trade adjustment assistance to benefit workers adversely affected by imports; unemployment compensation; the welfare reform demonstration programs of the Department of Labor; low-income fuel assistance, again; and vocational education. On the 34 amendments proposed, Bentsen voted with Republicans 25 times and with Democrats nine times. So that none might miss the point, his staff told reporters he voted for $1.4 billion more in budget cuts than the Senate approved. Meanwhile, on the House side, the Democrats’ majority leader, Jim Wright of Fort Worth, was playing a double game that doubled back on him. As later came out, Wright and Cong. Charles Wilson, Trinity, worked hard to get the House Democrats’ caucus to accept, as a Democratic member of the budget committee, Cong. Phil Gramm,