Testers And Protesters

In Nevada, nuclear explosions are both a livelihood and a threat

As a senior drilling inspector at the Department of Energy's Nevada Test Site, Rufus Moore usually pays scant attention to the antinuclear protesters who often appear at the perimeter of the top-secret patch of desert 65 miles northwest of Las Vegas. The 1,350-sq.-mi. site in the Nellis Range has absorbed hundreds of underground blasts as the U.S. has fine-tuned its nuclear arsenal. For Moore, 54, a cigar-chomping veteran of hundreds of such tests, nuclear deterrence and superpower peace depend on the results. "The minute we stop testing, we're in trouble," he says. "I'm not just saying this because it's my livelihood....

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