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REPORT: Terrorism Experts See Risk of Nuclear Device Detonated in U.S.

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posted on Feb, 8 2005 @ 03:59 AM
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At a conference on the future of al Qaeda sponsored by Los Alamos National Laboratory last month, I posed a dark question to 60 or so nuclear weapons scientists and specialists on terrorism and radical Islam: How many of them believed that the probability of a nuclear fission bomb attack on U.S. soil during the next several decades was negligible -- say, less than 5 percent?

At issue was the Big One -- a Hiroshima-or-larger explosion that could claim hundreds of thousands of American lives, as opposed to an easier-to-mount but less lethal radiological attack. Amid somber silence, three or four meek, iconoclastic hands went up. (More later on the minority optimists. They, too, deserve a hearing.)

This grim view, echoed in other quarters of the national security bureaucracy in recent months, can't be dismissed as Bush administration scaremongering. "There has been increasing interest by terrorists in acquiring nuclear weapons," Mohamed ElBaradei, the Egyptian director general of the International Atomic Energy Agency, the world's chief nuclear watchdog, said in a recent interview, excerpts of which were published in Outlook last Sunday. "I cannot say 100 percent that it hasn't happened" already, he added, almost as an afterthought.

Source: Washington Post (free registration required)


The intent and desire by al Qaeda to detonate a nuclear device in America or another Western nation is clear, the only question is how easy would it be for them to carry this out. Anectodal evidence of missing Russian nukes and fissile material is very worrisome. We need to keep a vigilant eye on this type of extreme terrorism while not overlooking the possibility of devestating attacks carried out in more conventional ways, such as the 9/11 attacks.

[edit on 2/8/2005 by djohnsto77]




posted on Feb, 8 2005 @ 04:21 AM
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Very interesting, but why do you assume that it will be Russian bombs that are used?

USA has some missing bombs(sometimes referred to as broken arrows) which could also fall into the wrong hands. I think the terrorists would get much more satisfaction from using USA bombs on American soil. A good example would be the anthrax incident where the it turned out to be manufactured in America.

I also tend to think that if terrorists had nukes in their possesion they would have already used them, so you don't really have to worry about the terrorists. You should be more worried about who really carries out these so called terrorist attacks?



posted on Feb, 8 2005 @ 04:25 AM
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I just think with the collapse of the Soviet Union there may be less security around these nuclear bombs and the proximity of Russia to the Islamic states would make it easier for them acquire a nuclear bomb there. I don't mean to say that Russia is providing these weapons.



posted on Feb, 8 2005 @ 04:45 AM
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Originally posted by djohnsto77
I just think with the collapse of the Soviet Union there may be less security around these nuclear bombs and the proximity of Russia to the Islamic states would make it easier for them acquire a nuclear bomb there. I don't mean to say that Russia is providing these weapons.


It would be to embarrasing for Putin if Russain nukes fell into terrorists hands so security would be pretty tight.

Do you find it strange that the sponsor of the conference, Los Alamos National Laboratory, just happens to be responsible for design and maintenance of US weapons systems including intercontinental ballistic missiles?



posted on Feb, 8 2005 @ 06:20 AM
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Why am I not surprised to hear this? It's just a matter of time before the "big one" comes and takes out several hundred thousand people. It's wrong to just assume that it will come from Russia. They do have some suitcase bombs and other smaller nukes but they can be had by anyone with the right amount of money from countries other than Russia. I don't think Putin would be so careless as to relinquish control of these even though the country has been split apart. My worry would be that OBL would get his hands and diry nightshirt on one of these. It would be rather easy for him to get one ready made or to employ one who had the smarts to build one from scratch simply because he is not exactly poor.



posted on Feb, 9 2005 @ 12:41 AM
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it wouldnt be right to assume it would come from Russia, but that doesnt lower the probability any. lets not forget all the Russian military personnel that didnt get paychecks for some time a few years ago. if you were them & your family was starving what would you do?

I want to hear some cases of US broken arrows. I'm not saying it hasnt happened, just I havent heard any specific incidents...unless you count John Travolta
anyone got a number on these?



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