While reading about Lockheed SR-71 on Wikipedia I was baffled by a piece of information regarding Robert McNamara's order to destroy tools used to create Blackbirds, which took place in 1968 (at the beginning of SR-71's service), to prevent them from falling into anyone's hands.
While post-production cleanup of tools by planes manufacturers seems like a normal process (why waste space, resources, taxes, etc.), it appears that creation of any parts was impossible. Although destruction of tools doesn't sound like a good idea to secure the technology (I somehow doubt the govt gave up on know-how and general knowledge - as for what can happen B-2's history can be a notable example), I'm still wondering:
- Were all the tools indeed destroyed? If so, how were the planes maintained for all those years?
- Were in said order any remarks regarding destruction of knowledge?
- Why weren't the tools reconstructed after a few years?
- That order sounds like a really bad idea - was there any legitimate reason for it?