green jerboa

Preparations for the fourth test were proceeding — named “Gerboise verte” or “Green jerboa” — when four French generals, unhappy about steps toward Algerian independence, launched a coup against the government of Charles De Gaulle. French scientists, the story goes, rushed the detonation of the device before the Revolt of the Generals acquired a working nuclear weapon. The putsch, of course, eventually failed.

It didn't quite work out like that. But read the whole thing.I like the detail that the bomb – the 'physics package' was transported to the site of the test in one of the scientists 2CV in case the official column got ambushed.

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