Sunday, February 25, 2007
On Avoiding Future (Possible) Events
The more I hear about how unsecure Russia's nuclear materials are, the more it worries me.
How hard would it be for a terrorist organization to get hold of some of this material and make a crude nuclear device? I am guessing that with enough effort, it would be possible. Apparently, about 30 lbs of materials would be enough for a good-sized bomb. That is about the size of a bag of kitty litter. In other words, such a device would be very portable.
For some reason (politics and bureaucracy?) I don't see the US government doing very much about this problem. There is a private organization (with money provided by Ted Turner and Warren Buffett) that is setting an example and trying to clean up some of the spurious nuclear material. It is a good start. But the question is: can the cleanup be done quickly and effectively enough? My money is on "No". Sometime in the next 50 years or so, a nuclear terrorist strike on a major US city seems fairly likely. If you accept this premise, what should you do?
Here are some suggestions:
1) If you live in a major US city, move. Leave the city far behind if you can. If not, go far out to the suburbs, preferably the North, West or South, to try to avoid the fallout (in the US, the wind normally blows east).
2) If you live in the US and can leave the country, consider doing so. Where should you go? Go to a neutral country like Switzerland, or a small out-of-the-way country like Denmark or Sweden. Note: England is probably not the best choice, particularly near London.
3) I honestly cannot think of another good option unless you are very rich and powerful enough to influence the government of a major country that can do something about this. If so, please help... Or, you (we?) could organize many people and try to get the US or UK government to address this problem in a more urgent and effective fashion.
Some of the information used in this article was based on the following (very good) NY Times article: The Stuff Sam Nunn’s Nightmares Are Made Of
With that not-so-cheery thought, on to the quote for today !
"Politicians and diapers must be changed regularly, and for the same reason."
Until the next time, gentle reader, I remain,