In an interview with an Australian journalist, Pakistani journalist Hamid Mir claims that al-Qaeda’s number 2 man, Ayman al-Zawahiri, told him that
al-Qaeda had purchased a 1 kiloton bomb off the black market. Officials are doubtful of this claim and summarize that we probably would not know of a
bomb unless it was used. The also stated that al-Qaeda was more likely to have a “dirty bomb” than an actual nuclear weapon.
WASHINGTON, March 22 (UPI) -- Weapons and non-proliferation experts doubt claims surfacing Monday from al-Qaida's number-two man that the
terrorist organization has acquired a nuclear weapon.
"My instinct is if they have one we would first find out when they used it," said Joseph Cirincione, a non-proliferation expert with the Carnegie
Endowment for International Peace. "What's the point of (boasting)?"
The bomb that al-Qaeda is claiming to posses would destroy everything within a half mile radius, and make the area uninhabitable for decades. It is
unlikely that they would have such a weapon, or tell us if they had one. Most likely they would detonate one to show their intent and prove force.
Then they would make demands and threaten to use other similar bombs.
Although the threat is unlikely, it is not to be ignored completely. The U.S. spends almost $30 million annually to keep about 30,000 Russian weapons
scientists employed in peaceful projects so that they will not be tempted by offers to sell nuclear secrets.
Related ATS Discussions:
Al Qaeda: We will destroy New York within 35 days
Question about suitcase nukes