Lifting The Shadow

Lifting the Shadow

60 minutes | CBC | 2000

Lifting the Shadow

Long after the end of the Cold War, the United States and Russia still have enough nuclear weapons on “hair trigger” alert to destroy all life on Earth. Why? It’s a question being asked by old cold warriors and by the teens in the new nuclear abolition movement; yet a question that never penetrates the underground bunkers where America’s nuclear soldiers patiently await commands to launch a global holocaust.

LIFTING THE SHADOW visits both the peaceniks and the nuclear warriors to frame the incredible story of General George Lee Butler. As commander of the Strategic Air Command, Butler was the highest ranking commander of America’s nuclear forces under President George H. Bush, who took office just as the Cold War ended. A nuclear warrior since 1957, Butler’s final mission was to dismantle the weapons of Doomsday. When politics prevented that from happening, he abruptly switched “sides’, to join the peaceniks in the movement to ban nuclear weapons.