Magazine article National Defense

Securing Nuclear Weapons

Magazine article National Defense

Securing Nuclear Weapons

Article excerpt

The threat of nuclear terrorism is urgent enough that the United States government ought to be taking immediate steps to address it, according to a report by Harvard's Kennedy School of Government.

Matthew Bunn, an author of "Securing Nuclear Weapons and Materials: Seven Steps for Immediate Action," noted that, "In all the second guessing about what people knew and should have done before September 11, it became clear that most of the warnings were not specific enough to have prevented the action. Whereas in the nuclear era, we do have information, and we know where our vulnerabilities are.

"We know that Bin Laden sees the acquiring of weapons of mass destruction as a religious duty. There is court testimony from al Qaeda operatives about their efforts to buy highly enriched uranium, and there is evidence of other attempts to buy nuclear materials from the former Soviet Union.

"We have made communications intercepts, and we have seized from Al Qaeda safe houses, crude nuclear weapons designs. …

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