James Kunetka To Present Lecture Titled ‘Groves And Oppenheimer: Friends Or Foes’ Mar. 14 At Fuller Lodge

James Kunetka/Courtesy photo


Historian James Kunetka, a familiar face around the Los Alamos Historical Society and author of The General and the Genius, will present a lecture titled “Groves and Oppenheimer, Friends and Foes?” on March 14 in Fuller Lodge.

Kunetka, who grew up in Los Alamos after his father joined the Laboratory in 1948, has authored three popular books on America’s nuclear weapons development. 

The General and the Genius: Groves and Oppenheimer – The Unlikely Partnership that Built the Atomic Bomb, brought out in 2015, chronicles the extraordinary wartime relationship between two multifaceted, talented men who not only built and delivered the world’s first nuclear weapon but together established organizational and management practices that survive today as the bedrock of large scientific and technical programs.  

Oppenheimer: The Years of Risk, released in 1982, re-examines Robert Oppenheimer’s complex public life, from the creation of the Los Alamos Laboratory in 1943 through nine turbulent postwar years until 1954, when he was dismissed from public service as a risk to national security.

City of Fire: Los Alamos and the Atomic Age, 1943-1945, released in 1979, was the first mainstream history to focus the Manhattan Project narrative specifically on the individuals and dramatic scientific achievements at America’s World War II secret weapons laboratory. 

Also to his credit are two novels set in Los Alamos, Shadow Man and Parting Shot.

This lecture will be at 7 p.m. in Fuller Lodge and is sponsored by Enterprise Bank and Trust.