or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb
Directed by Stanley Kubrick, a psychotic general at a SAC base orders a nuclear attack on the Soviet Union and does his best to keep anyone from stopping it. The President meets with top advisors in the War Room and tries to prevent the nuclear war.
A narrator tells how for at least a year the Soviet Union has been hard at work on an ultimate weapon or doomsday device at a test site shrouded in fog located below the Arctic peaks of the Zhokov Islands.
At an Air Force base at night Captain Lionel Mandrake (Peter Sellers) takes a call from Brigadier General Jack Ripper (Sterling Hayden) who is smoking a cigar and asks if he recognizes his voice to emphasize it is important. He asks if the wing command is holding at the fail-safe point, and Mandrake says yes. Ripper says he is putting the base on condition red and wants it flashed immediately to all sections. He says it is not an exercise because it looks like they are in a shooting war. Ripper says he was ordered to seal his base tight. He tells Mandrake to transmit plan R to the wing. He asks if it is that serious, and Ripper says it is. Ripper wants all private radios to be impounded immediately so that they cannot issue instructions to saboteurs. He has arranged for the Air Police to have a list of all owners, and he wants them all collected without exception. He orders Mandrake to report back to him after he has done that. Ripper hangs up, and a warning siren is heard.
The narrator explains that America’s Strategic Air Command keeps B-52 bombers airborne 24 hours a day to guard against a nuclear attack. Each B-52 can deliver nuclear bombs with the explosive power of 50 megatons of TNT which is 16 times the explosives of all the bombs used by all sides in World War II. These bombers are based in America and are deployed from the Persian Gulf to the Arctic Ocean. They are all two hours from their targets inside Russia.
On a B-52 plane the pilots are looking at a Playboy magazine and playing with cards. They hear an alarm, and the communications officer looks up the Top Secret code and reports that they have been ordered to make Wing Attack Plan R. The pilot Major “King” Kong (Slim Pickens) tells him to stop horsing around, but the officer says he got it from the code book. King says it is the stupidest thing he ever heard and says something must be wrong. He goes back to check it out, and they double check today’s code book. He orders him to get a confirmation from base. Lt. Lothar Zogg (James Earl Jones) asks King if it could be a loyalty test to see who will go ahead when they get the order, but King says no one has ever been given the go order before. He says they would not give it unless the Russkies had already clobbered Washington. The radio officer says that the base confirmed the order. King says this is a battle with the Russians, and he puts on his cowboy hat. He speaks to the crew about nuclear combat and says the folks back home are counting on them. This is so important that they may get promotions.
In a bedroom Miss Scott (Tracy Reed) is lying on a bed in a bikini when the phone rings. General “Buck” Turgidson (George C. Scott) tells her to answer it, and she says he can’t come to the phone. She learns it is Freddie and says they were working on his paper work. She says who is calling, and Buck tells her to have him call back. She reports that he said it can’t wait. She finds out what it is and tells Buck that they detected a plane involved in a Wing Attack Plan R. He comes out of the bathroom and asks Freddie if he is sure. Buck tells him to call Elmo and Charlie and stand by in condition red, and he will get back to him. He hangs up and says he is going over to the War Room. She says it is three in the morning, and he says the Air Force never sleeps. She says she is not sleepy either. He tells her to start her count-down, and he will be back for the blast off.
From his office Ripper speaks by a microphone to his men on the base about how the Commies have no regard for human life. This means that they must be extremely watchful. He warns that the enemy may even come in the uniforms of their own troops. They must not allow them to enter this base. He gives them three simple rules. First, trust no one unless he is known to you personally. Second, anyone or anything that comes within 200 yards of the perimeter is to be fired upon. Third, if in doubt, shoot first and asks questions afterwards. It is better to have a few accidental casualties than to lose the base. These rules are not to be changed without his permission. In the last two years he has been their commanding officer, and they will not let the nation down.
King is given an envelope with the R attack profile. Inside are envelopes with orders for each officer. King orders them to use the emergency code prefix so that they cannot receive any other transmissions. They set the code prefixes and lock them. They switch receiver circuits to CRM Discriminators and check auto destruct circuits. He says their primary target is the ICBM complex at Laputa, and he gives the target reference. They are to use a 30-megaton nuclear device fused for airburst at 10,000 feet. The 20-megaton nuclear device will be used if the first malfunctions. The secondary target is the missile complex seven miles east of Borchov with a fused airburst at 12,000 feet.
Mandrake comes into Ripper’s office and lets him hear his transistor radio playing civilian music. He says the planes will be within Russian radar in twenty minutes. Ripper reminds him he ordered all radios on the base impounded, but Mandrake says he was impounding it when he switched it on and found the stations broadcasting. Ripper locks his office door and goes back to his desk chair and tells Mandrake that he has no special prerogatives and must obey his orders. Mandrake says they don’t want to start a nuclear war unless they have to and asks Ripper if he agrees with that. Ripper tells him to sit down and turn off the radio. Mandrake turns off the radio but does not sit down as he suggests he should issue an order to recall the planes immediately. Ripper says the planes will not be recalled. Mandrake says that is an odd point of view. He says that if a Russian attack was in progress, they would not be hearing civilian broadcasts. Ripper lights a cigar and asks if he is certain of that. Mandrake says if there is no Russian attack in progress, and if his Plan R attack was carried out … he thinks there must be something dreadfully wrong somewhere. Ripper tells him to take it easy and make him a drink of a grain alcohol and rain water and help himself to what he wants. Mandrake salutes and says it is his duty as an officer in the Royal Air Force to issue the recall code on his own authority to bring back the wing. He asks to be excused and finds the doors locked. Mandrake asks him for the recall code, but Ripper says he is the only one who has it and will not give it to him. Mandrake says he must insist. Ripper moves a folder revealing a pistol, and Mandrake asks if he is threatening him with a gun. Ripper says while they are chatting there, a decision is being made by the President and the Joint Chiefs at the War Room in the Pentagon. When they realize there is no possibility of recalling the wing, the only course of action open to them will be total commitment. Ripper asks if he knows what Clemenceau said about war, and Mandrake says no. He said war was too important to be left to the generals. When he said that fifty years ago, Ripper believes he might have been right; but today Ripper believes that war is too important to be left to politicians. He says they do not have the time, the training, or the inclination for strategic thought. Ripper says he can no longer sit back and allow Communist infiltration, indoctrination, and subversion and the international Communist conspiracy to sap and “impurify” all our precious bodily fluids.
In a room in the Pentagon with large screens used to project maps is a large circular table with military officers and civilian leaders sitting around it. President Merkin Muffley (Peter Sellers) asks if everyone is there, and Mr. Staines (Jack Creley) says that the Secretary of State is in Vietnam, the Secretary of Defense is in Laos, and the Vice President is in Mexico City; but they can establish contact with them if necessary. The under-secretaries are all there. The President asks General Turgidson what is going on. He explains that about 35 minutes ago the commanding General Ripper at Burpelson Air Force Base issued an order to the 34 B-52s of his wing which were involved in a special exercise. He says it appears that the orders called for them to attack their targets inside Russia. The planes are armed with nuclear weapons with an average load of 40 megatons each. He points to the map displayed which shows a map of the Soviet Union with the planes approaching from the north, east, and southwest. Then he indicates the targets as they light up inside Russia. He says the planes will begin to penetrate Russian radar cover within 25 minutes. Muffley says he finds this hard to understand because he was under the impression that he is the only one authorized to order the use of nuclear weapons. Turgidson says that is right, but he says it is beginning to look like General Ripper exceeded his authority. The President agrees with that and says it is far beyond the point he thought possible. Turgidson says he is forgetting the provisions in Plan R which is an emergency war plan. He explains that under this emergency war plan a lower commander can order nuclear retaliation after a sneak attack if the normal chain of command has been disrupted. He reminds the President that he approved this after Senator Buford complained about their deterrent lacking credibility. Plan R was intended to be a retaliatory safeguard. Muffley questions the safeguard, and Turgidson admits that the human element may have failed them, but the idea was to discourage the Russians from thinking they could knock out Washington as part of a general sneak attack and escape retaliation because of lack of command and control. Muffley assumes that the planes will return automatically once they have reached their fail-safe points; but Turgidson says the planes were holding at the fail-safe points when they got the order to go. They did not need a second order and are on the way to their targets. Muffley asks why he did not radio the planes countermanding the go code. Turgidson says they are unable to contact the planes. The President asks why, and Turgidson says that in Plan R once the go code is received, the normal SSB radios in the aircraft are switched into the CRM 114 in order to prevent the enemy from issuing fake or confusing orders. He says CRM 114 cannot receive any message unless it is preceded by the correct 3-letter prefix code. Muffley asks if he is telling him that he is unable to recall these aircrafts. He admits that is the case. They are trying all 17,000 combinations of the three-letter codes, but that will take two and a half days. The President asks how long before the planes will reach Russian radar, and Turgidson says eighteen minutes. Muffley asks if he is in contact with General Ripper; but Turgidson says no because he has sealed off the base and cut off all communications. Muffley asks where he got all this information. Turgidson says that Ripper called Strategic Air Command Headquarters shortly after he issued the go code. He has the transcript and could read it. The President tells him to read it.
Turgidson reads that General Ripper said that they are on their way in, and no one can bring them back. He recommended that they get the rest of SAC in after them; otherwise we will be destroyed by red retaliation. His boys will give them the best start with 1,400 megatons, and “you as sure as hell will not stop them now.” He said they should get going because there is no other choice. We will prevail by God in peace and freedom from fear and “in true health through the purity and essence of our natural fluids.” He asked for God’s blessing and hung up. Turgidson says they are still trying to figure out the meaning of the last phrase. Muffley says there is nothing to figure out because the man is obviously psychotic. Turgidson reserves judgment on that. Muffley says when he instituted the human reliability tests, he assured him that something like this would never occur. Turgidson says it is not fair to condemn the whole program because of a single slip-up. Muffley says he wants to speak to General Ripper on the telephone personally, but Turgidson says that is impossible. Muffley says he is becoming less interested in what Turgidson thinks is possible.
President Muffley asks General Faceman if there are any Army units near Burpelson, and he checks. Turgidson answers his phone and tells Miss Scott that he told her never to call him there. His President needs him now, and he tells her it is not only physical. He says he plans to marry her. Staines asks the President what he thinks about civil defense. Faceman says the 23rd Airborne Division is stationed seven miles away. Muffley orders Faceman to order them to enter the base and put General Ripper in phone communication with him. Turgidson says that under condition red the base is sealed and is to defend itself against any attempt to penetrate them. He says that any attempt would certainly meet with very heavy casualties. Faceman says his boys can push them aside without too much trouble. Turgidson asks the President if he could make one or two points, and he is given permission. He says first that their chances of recalling those planes is quickly being reduced to a very low probability. Second, the Russians will soon be making radar contact with the planes. Third, they will strike back with everything they have. Fourth, if we have not done anything to suppress the retaliatory capabilities, we will suffer annihilation. Fifth, if we immediately launched an all-out attack, we would have a good chance of “catching them with their pants down.” He says we have a 5-1 missile superiority and could assign three missiles to each enemy missile and still have an effective reserve force. He says sixth, in an unofficial study we made of this situation, we found that we would destroy 90% of their nuclear capabilities. Therefore we would prevail and would suffer acceptable civilian casualties from the badly damaged remaining forces. Muffley says it is the avowed policy of our country never to strike first with nuclear weapons. Turgidson says that General Ripper has already invalidated that policy, but Muffley says that was not an act of national policy, and we still have other options. Turgidson says they are rapidly reaching a moment of truth for our nation and the world. The truth is not always pleasant; but now we must choose between two post-war environments, one with 20 million killed and the other with 150 million killed. Muffley says he is talking about mass murder, not war. Turgidson replies that he is saying they would suffer only 10 or 20 million dead. Muffley says he will not go down in history as the greatest mass murder since Adolf Hitler. Turgidson says it might be better if he was concerned more about the American people than with his image in the history books. Muffler says he has heard enough from him. Staines tells the President that they have the ambassador upstairs, but he is having a fit about the MPs. Muffley tells him to have him brought down there right away. Turgidson asks if that is the Russian ambassador, and if he asks if he is to be admitted into the War Room. He warns him that would be a serious breach of security and that he would see the big board. Muffler says that is precisely the idea, and he orders Staines to get Premier Kissoff on the hot-line.
On the B-52 King is going over their list of supplies and he says a guy could have a good weekend in Vegas with all that stuff.
Ambassador Alexi de Sadesky (Peter Bull) is ordering his breakfast of poached eggs and asks for Cuban cigars. Staines says they were told they may not be able to contact Kissoff for two hours, but Sadesky tells them a phone number to try and says he is a man too. Turgidson calls Kissoff a degenerate, atheistic Commie, and he argues with Muffley. Staines says they are trying the number. Turgidson and Sadesky start wrestling, and Muffley tells them they can’t fight in the War Room. Sadesky says the general tried to plant a camera on him, but Turgidson says he was taking pictures. Muffley takes the disguised camera and says it is outrageous. Staines says they are getting him on the line.
On a road an Army officer sees military trucks arriving, and he orders his men to start shooting at them. The convoy stops during the battle.
In Ripper’s office Mandrake and Ripper hear the shooting.
Muffley tells Sadesky to tell Kissoff that he will enter the conversation only if Muffley says something untrue. They give him a phone. Sadesky speaks in Russian, and he warns Muffley that he thinks Kissoff is drunk. The President asks Dmitri to turn the music down a little and says he can hear him fine now. Muffley says they talked about the possibility of something going wrong with the hydrogen bomb. He explains that one of their base commanders went funny in the head and did a silly thing. He ordered his planes to attack his country. He asks him to let him finish. He asks why he thinks he called him. He assures him it is a friendly call. He says they will not reach their targets for another hour. He says he wants to give them information on the targets and the defensive systems of the planes. He hopes they can recall the planes; but otherwise we will help the Russians destroy them. He asks whom he should call and gets the name of the place and asks about the phone number. Kissoff said he would call first. They argue over who is sorrier than the other. He says Sadesky is there and lets him talk to Kissoff. Sadesky talks in Russian and then puts the phone down. Sadesky says they are mad fools, and Muffley asks what is wrong. Sadesky says they have a doomsday machine that will destroy all human and animal life on Earth.
Ripper sits down next to Mandrake and puts his arm around him and asks if he ever saw a Commie take a drink of water. Mandrake says no. Ripper says they drink vodka and never water. Ripper says they have a good reason. Mandrake asks what he is getting at. Ripper says water is the source of all life. He says humans need pure water to refresh their bodily fluids. Mandrake laughs. Ripper says he drinks only distilled water and rain water and asks if he has heard of fluoridation of the water. Mandrake says he has, but he does not know what it is. Ripper says that fluoridation is the most monstrous Commie plot they have ever had to face. The gunfire breaks windows in the office and knocks out the lights. Ripper shouts they are doing nice shooting and gets a golf bag and takes out a machine gun. He asks Mandrake to help him with the belt of bullets, but he says he does not have experience with them. Ripper tells him to feed him the belt, but Mandrake says the string in his leg is gone, making him lame.
Sadesky is explaining that the doomsday machine will create so much radioactive fallout that in ten months the Earth will be as dead as the moon. Turgidson says that he understands that the fallout will be down to a safe level after two weeks. Sadesky says he never heard of Cobalt-Thorium G which has a radioactive half-life of ninety years. He says their machine will produce a radioactive cloud that will encircle the Earth for 93 years. Turgidson calls that a “load of Commie bull.” Muffley gets up and goes over to Sadesky asking if Kissoff is threatening to explode this weapon if they do not call off their attack. Sadesky says no; the doomsday machine is designed to explode automatically if an attempt is made to untrigger it. Turgidson tells Muffley this is a Commie trick and that they are getting ready to clobber us. Muffley tells Sadesky this is madness and asks why they would build such a thing. Sadesky says some of them fought against it; but in the end they could not keep up in the arms race and space race and the peace race. Their people grumbled for nylons and washing machines. He says the doomsday machine cost much less than they were spending on defense in a single year. They learned that the Americans were working along similar lines, and they were afraid of a doomsday gap. Muffley says that is preposterous because he would never approve of anything like that. Sadesky says their source was the New York Times.
Muffley asks Dr. Strangelove (Peter Sellers) if they have anything like that. Strangelove moves in his wheelchair to them while explaining that in his opinion this idea was not a practical deterrent for reasons that are now obvious. Muffley asks if he thinks it is possible that they could have built such a thing. Strangelove says the technology is within the means of even the smallest nuclear power and requires only the will to do so. Muffley asks how it can be designed to be triggered automatically and not be stopped. Strangelove says that is essential because of the purpose of this machine which is designed to put into the mind of the enemy the fear of attacking. Because the automated and irrevocable decision-making process excludes human meddling, the doomsday machine is terrifying. Turgidson wishes we had one of those doomsday machines. Muffley asks how it is triggered automatically, and Strangelove explains that the bombs are buried and connected to a gigantic complex of computers. The specific conditions are programmed into a memory bank. Turgidson asks Staines about Strangelove’s name, and Staines says he changed it from his German name. Strangelove says the whole point of a doomsday machine is lost if you keep it a secret, and he asks why they did not tell the world. Sadesky says it was going to be announced at the Party Congress on Monday because the Premier likes surprises.
At the SAC base soldiers are battling by the sign “Peace is our profession.” Ripper shoots his machine gun through his windows. He and Mandrake crawl on the floor as Mandrake helps him with the ammunition belt. Mandrake asks if they would be better off away from the flying glass. Ripper tells him they are also planning to fluoridate salt, flour, fruit juices, milk, and ice cream. He says fluoridation began in 1946 without the choice of the individual. Mandrake asks when he first developed this theory. Ripper says he became aware of it during the physical act of love as a profound sense of fatigue, and a feeling of emptiness followed. He interpreted these as a loss of essence. He says it has not recurred. He does not avoid women, but he denies them his essence.
Soldiers shout for a cease fire and come out of a building. In his office Ripper says his men must have surrendered. Mandrake asks Ripper to look at him and see how vital he is. He says he drinks a lot of water. He swears to him that there is nothing wrong with his bodily fluids. Ripper asks if he was ever a prisoner of war, and Mandrake admits he was and that he was tortured by the Japanese. Ripper asks if he talked, and Mandrake says no. Ripper says the clowns are going to give him a good going over to get the codes from him. Mandrake advises him to give him the code so that they can fight them together. Ripper says he believes in life after death and that he will have to answer for what he has done. Mandrake hopes he will give him the code. Ripper goes in the bathroom, and a shot is heard.
On the B-52 the radar officer perceives a missile coming toward them and advises evasive action. He says the missile is closing. King alters the flight, and the radar operator says the missile is deflecting. The missile detonates, and they experience the explosion and work to put out the fires. They are on emergency power. King asks for full power. They get the fires out and continue the flight.
Mandrake is looking at crosswords written by Ripper and tries to figure out the code letters. He hears a gun shot that unlocks the door, and Col. “Bat” Guano (Keenan Wynn) comes in with a rifle. He tells him to put up his hands and asks about his suit. Mandrake says it is an RAF uniform and that he is Ripper’s executive officer. Guano asks where Ripper is, and Mandrake says he is dead in the bathroom. Guano looks in the bathroom and whistles. Mandrake says he has a good idea of what the recall code is and that he has to get in touch with headquarters immediately. Guano tells him to keep his hands up. Mandrake says he has figured out that the code probably has the letters P O E because of “peace on earth” and “purity of essence,” but Guano keeps telling him to put his hands on his head. Mandrake asks if he knows that Ripper went mad and ordered an attack on the Soviets. Guano asks what he is talking about. Mandrake picks up the red telephone that is connected to SAC as he tells Guano what he is doing. He finds the phone is dead and says they probably shot it away in their ridiculous fighting. Guano says he has been wasting too much time on him and orders him to walk outside.
The damaged B-52 is still flying, and the radio operator says the radio gear is all out. The navigator has calculated their fuel loss and says they could still take out their primary and secondary targets, but they would not be able to make it back to a base or a neutral country. They could ditch at the weather ship tango delta. King says they are flying low and will not be spotted on a radar screen.
In the hallway Mandrake asks Guano what he thinks is going on there. Guano thinks he is a “prevert.” Mandrake explains that the President wants to talk to General Ripper who is dead. He is Ripper’s second in command. He points to a telephone box and says the line may work. Guano asks if he wants to talk to the President, and Mandrake says he has to talk to him. He tells him to put his gun away and stop this stupid nonsense. He warns him that a court of inquiry will demote him. Guano says okay, and Mandrake goes in the phone booth. He asks the operator and says where he is calling from and asks for a person-to-person call to the President of the United States. He says he does not have enough change and asks to make it a collect call. He says they won’t accept the call and asks Guano for 75 cents. He asks for a station-to-station call, but he still lacks 20 cents. He tells Guano to shoot the Coke machine to get some coins. Guano warns him that he may have to answer to the Coca-Cola company. He shoots the machine, and coins come out along with Coke in his face.
In the War Room they hear the announcement from SAC that the recall code OPE has been recognized by elements of the wing. Four missions have been reported destroyed by the enemy, and all the others have recognized the recall code. Turgidson whistles and suggests they all bow their heads in thanks for their deliverance. He prays and thanks God for delivering them from the forces of evil. Staines says Premier Kissoff is calling again, and he is very angry.
The plane is flying low, and they calculate their remaining fuel.
Muffley tells Dmitri there must be some mistake. Muffley tells them that according to their air staffs one of the planes has not turned back and is headed for the missile complex at Laputa. Turgidson says that one of the four planes reported destroyed was targeted for Laputa. Muffley learns that only three planes were shot down, and the fourth may only have been damaged. Turgidson suspects that Kissoff may be lying about the fourth plane so that they can clobber us. Muffley asks Dmitri if this plane’s bombs would set off the doomsday machine, and he asks if he is sure. Muffley tells Dmitri that they will have to get that plane, and he apologizes for them flying so low which they are trained to do. Muffley says they should be able to get one plane when they know what its targets are. He advises him to put everything he has into those two sectors.
On the B-52 the navigator says they are losing more fuel than he thought. King asks for the nearest target of opportunity, and the navigator says they might reach target 384 and still make it to the weather ship. King tells them to go to that target.
Muffley tells Dmitri they are in this together, and he keeps the line open. He asks Turgidson if that plane may get through. Turgidson says if the pilot is sharp, he can bring that plane in low. Muffley asks if he has a chance, and Turgidson realizes he does.
The navigator tells the pilot they are nearing the target. The bombardier says he is ready. They set the bomb-fusing circuits and the bomb-arming. They change the detonator to set it for zero altitude. King orders them to release the first and second safety switches. He orders them to check the bomb-door circuits, and the bombardier says they are not functioning. King orders emergency power. King tells him to operate the manual over-ride. The bombardier says the doors still show a negative function. King orders him to fire the explosive bolts but the bombardier says the circuits are dead. King says he is going below, and he climbs down to get the doors open. He enters the bomb bay below the two bombs. He sees loose electric wires sparking and climbs on one of the bombs. The bombardier gets ready. They are seven miles from the target. King is working on reconnecting the wires. The distance is down to three miles, and they see the target. King gets the bomb door open and shouts. The bomb is dropped, and King is riding it and shouting. The hydrogen bomb explodes.
Dr. Strangelove tells the President that he would not rule out the possibility of saving a nucleus of human specimens at the bottom of deeper mine shafts. He says the radiation would not penetrate there, and they could develop living space. Muffley asks how long they would have to stay down there. Strangelove makes calculations and says about one hundred years. He says nuclear reactors could provide power almost indefinitely. Greenhouses could provide plant life, and animals could be bred and slaughtered. He says they would have to make a quick survey of the mines, but he estimates that about a hundred thousand people could be saved. Muffley says he would not have to decide who goes there. Strangelove says it would not be necessary because a computer could select people based on youth, health, sexual fertility, intelligence, and necessary skills. He says they should take their top government and military people to foster the required principles of leadership and tradition. He tries to control his arm which saluted. He says they would breed and have much time with little to do. He says with ten females to each male they could repopulate within twenty years. Muffley asks if they would be so grief-stricken that they would envy the dead and not want to go on living. Strangelove says no, and he hits his right arm with his left. He says those alive would have nostalgia for those left behind and a spirit of bold curiosity for the adventure ahead. His right hand tries to strangle him while his left tries to stop it. Turgidson asks if this would mean abandoning monogamy. Strangelove admits this is so. Each man will be required to do prodigious impregnation, and so the women should be selected for their sexual attractiveness. Sadesky says it is a good idea, and Turgidson tells the President they should look at it from the military point of view so that the Russians will not stash weapons to take over later. Staines agrees and says they might try a sneak attack to take over their mine-shaft space. Sadesky is walking away, and he takes pictures. Turgidson makes this argument to the President and says they must not allow a mine-shaft gap. Strangelove stands up and says he has a plan and tells his Führer that he can walk.
Hydrogen bombs are exploding in various places during the song “We’ll Meet Again.”
This farcical tragedy satirizes the insanity of the nuclear arms race that has created the capability of destroying the human species in a nuclear war. The right-wing John Birch Society spread a rumor that fluoridation of water was a Communist plot, but it is still done by many societies to prevent tooth decay. Many of the procedures of Strategic Air Command were in operation when this film was made, and the acronym for deterrence policy of Mutually Assured Destruction is MAD.