by Michael Kew
From “Coral Refuge, Ocean Deep,” Chapter 8
WOULD THEY DO IT IN PARIS?
It’s the second T-shirt I’ve seen today that poses this question, a lingering sting of animosity toward France’s three decades of nuclear testing in L’Archipel. France ignored a 1973 World Court request to stop the practice, sparking protest worldwide, including New Zealand’s delegation of a naval ship to the main atoll, and Peru’s severance of their French diplomatic relations.
Relentless global opposition to nuclear testing saw the French drilling bomb shafts beneath the lagoon in 1975. Rather than blasting motus in plain view, replete with ominous, “harmless” fallout, the endeavor cloaked the tests submarine.
[Above: Fletcher Chouinard on a virgin right-hander. Photo: Michael Kew]