Windows on the World of Raymond Plank
Founder, Apache Corp

Vol. 2015 No. 3


Why?  The war alternative is ghastly but not unthinkable.  It deserves, however to be thought about.  So, here goes.

“Little Boy” was the name of the bomb that destroyed Hiroshima in August 1945; nuclear blast “Fat Man” was a plutonium bomb, which though missing Nagasaki by 1½ miles did a thorough job.  It so happens that on the day of Hiroshima our B-24’s flight had been cancelled.  Its cousin the B-17 flew like an airplane, but carried a 6,000-pound bomb versus 8,000 pounds of TNT at somewhat higher speed. 

Joe Sharpe was a close friend who called me “Planko.”  I had been his best man.  Joe, who had been flying “The Hump” an unarmed transport, had been transferred to Naha, Okinawa.  As he walked through the door, we hugged; he invited me to fly to Naha for lunch.  East of Naha the war continued full blast.  We were beginning our landing approach when a Japanese Zero rapidly approached us, but suddenly turned away, no doubt headed as a Kamikaze suicide plane, hoping to crash into one of the many American warships east of Naha, of which the only partially surviving building was a shattered church with a cross on top.   The rest of Naha was rubblized.  At lunch Joe and I decided we would fly at 10,000 feet toward Japan, and test our theory, which proved to be correct.  Our altitude was to be high enough to deal with the curvature of the earth and determine whether a B-29 might be dropping a second bomb that day.  As we drew closer, I sighted a rapidly rising smoke cloud, and then the cloud began to rise and spill over into its mushroom shape.  We were awed.

Present nuclear technology is between a hundred and a thousand times more lethal than that available in August 1945, seventy years earlier.  Need I add more? 


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A number of persons have asked me, whether oil was found in lakes or ponds far beneath the earth’s surface, so why did we need to fracture at all?  Obviously those questions come from states void of oil or gas i.e. Iowa, Minnesota or Wisconsin.  Their expertise seems limited to the gas pump and airplanes that fly above them. 

On the way, the energy industry might make more than “A Small Difference” by linking the peaceful products they produced with the shoppers who buy them. 

A few examples:

Walmart, for example, carries 142,000 items in their stores, half or more of which utilize oil & gas derivatives.  Walmart’s parking lots, as well as all other parking lots are derived from oil.  Most carryout bags come largely from plastic.  Our roofing shingles used are increasingly oil based, representing perhaps millions to billions of pounds. 

In 2012, the worldwide production of new cars hit a new record: 60 million plus vehicles, all using plastic components.  In the U.S. alone in that same year, cars on the highways were 254 million - all using plastic.  The U.S. rose to the #1 position in the world based upon our availability of oil and natural gas. 

Now our task is to spread to those seeking electricity, linked together by peaceful products.  If you would like to help, we could start by asking candidates for elected office to reference the importance of peace in their campaign.

Thank you and may God bless,

Raymond Plank