Monday, May 10, 2004

Dirty Bomb Watch

As you can probably guess, I think some kind of radioactive attack is inevitable, maybe in the US, maybe in Europe, maybe in the Mid-East. (Jordon narrowly averted a recent plot to use a massive bomb and poison gas that aimed to kill "80,000 people.") Apparently there is so much radioactive material used in medical facilities and various industrial sites that it cannot all be guarded or cataloged, much less accounted for.

In case you weren’t keeping up, last week Ukrainian officials caught three people trying to sell 350 pounds of cesium-137.

The LA Times has an article on this subject today. (registration is required but it's free) Here's a quote.
A computer simulation by the Federation of American Scientists found that detonating a device containing 1.75 ounces of cesium in Lower Manhattan would distribute radioactive fallout over 60 square blocks.

Immediate casualties would be limited to people hurt by the blast, but the simulation suggested that there would be cases of radiation sickness and that relocation and cleanup costs would reach tens of billions of dollars.
Sleep well.

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