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Saturday, November 20, 2004

Pondering the Nightmare

Smash has opened up a discussion about what comes after we get nuked. I agree with him that a nuclear attack will happen in the US within the next 10 years. I had believed that well before 9/11, and the only thing about 9/11 that surprised me was the method of attack. Let me assure you as a former US Customs Special Agent, that there are places on the Southwest border where fissile material could be smuggled with a low probability of detection.

John Kerry was not lying when he said that less than 5% of shipping containers are searched upon entry into US ports. Intelligence analysis and investigative targeting account for the searches that are conducted. Certain companies that have a solid track record and a low percentage of contraband shipments that come from nations that are minimally threatening do not have there containers searched ... ever. Eventually one of these companies is going to be successfully infiltrated, and the nightmare will occur. Or perhaps it will be a dirty Customs inspector or two that are recruited by "narcotics smugglers" to bring in a load of cocaine for $10k a load. The smugglers will cross a few test loads to ascertain the security of their arrangement, and then ... boom!

To be perfectly frank, I yearned to see mushroom clouds over half a dozen arab/muslim capitals around the world in the days following 9/11. I credit the President for his very measured and successful response to the attack, but if he were to preside over a nuclear event in the US I think that his response would be commensurate. I am not sure that the US would have any obligations with regard to the minimization of collateral damage to persons and structures during the retaliation from a nuclear attack.

I hesitate to elaborate further on my personal feelings, and I ask my readers who feel obliged to comment to keep your remarks in a strategic rather than emotional vein. I want to open up a forum for legitimate discussion, not a place for people to vent their retaliatory fantasies.