I know the Soviets made tons of crazy stuff back in the 20th century, but this is beyond insane: They blasted an entire forest and the adjacent land with the help of nuclear explosions to carve a canal. Atomic terraforming makes so much sense, doesn't it?
The United States also conducted Plowshare experiments in the 1960s and 1970s. Plowshare was the technical name of the use nuclear explosives for peaceful construction purposes. You know, like bloody nuclear fracking. Yes, sometimes scientists and engineers can be real idiots too, especially when paid by politicians and corporations.