ARMED FORCES: Death in the Neighborhood

Before the 526th AAA Missile Battalion installed batteries of Nike-Ajax missiles in northern New Jersey three years ago, the Army carefully explained that the 21-ft. TNT and shrapnel projectiles were virtually accident-proof. A missile battery, said the Army, was no more dangerous a neighbor than a gas station. Last week the gas-station blew up. Installing a trigger modification on one of the 526th B Battery Nikes near Leonardo, N.J., ordnance technicians accidentally detonated the missile. Explosion and flame touched off seven more Nikes squatting on adjacent pads, blew or burned ten men to death, showered a three-mile radius with...

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