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Dec 13, 2011

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PJ Strupp

There are two problems with both the missile defense proponents and their detractors:

#1.) Any nuclear armed national or sub-national group wishing to attack the US with a nuclear weapon needs not a missile to deliver the weapon to the US. They can, very easily, walk a bomb over any unguarded spot on the US-Canadian border. A missile defense system would be a waste of time and money.

#2.) The EMP detractors, while quite possibly 100% correct on the unlikelihood of an effective EMP attack on US infrastructure, completely ignore an often overlooked truth concerning nuclear physics. That is: that a hydrogen bomb can be constructed to any size explosive power the designer wishes. For example, the most powerful nuclear weapon ever exploded was the Soviet "Tsar Bomba", expolded over the Arctic in 1961 and measuring an explosive power of about 57 megatons. But let's paint another scenario. Let's say that a radical Islamic group gets its hands on a nuclear device. They can then transport the device to somewhere in the central United States. Once there, they could--conceivably--add more hydrogen ion to the device to make it a 57 megaton bomb, just like "Tsar Bomba". Now let's take it a step further. Now let's say they make it a 570 megaton bomb. All they need to do is surround the explosive core with more hydrogen ion. Maybe they wish to contrcut a 5700 megaton device, or even a 57,000 megaton device. With the right materials, and well hidden warehouse to work in, they could build such a device, detonate it, and pretty much blow the United States off the world map. Is this likely? It wasn't likely 30 years ago that the US would ever allow the Iranians to develop nuclear weapons, and here they have done just that right before our very eyes.

So, while Gingrich's EMP scare may be a little far-fetched, there is another, similar scenario that is quite scientifically possible. Even if a powerful nuclear device leveled, say, just New York City, what would American life as we know it be like after that?

Not too pretty.

Dfens

Give me a break. The Democrats dominated the House for 50 years prior to Gingrich and the Republicans becoming the majority party in 1992. They were ousted amid all sorts of proven scandals, but you expect us to believe that they only appointed the best and brightest scientists, unlike Gingrich who only listened to those who told him what he wanted to believe? Then you adopt the global warming denier tactic of interviewing a scientist who isn't an expert on EMP, but he's a good guy and tells you what you want to hear, and you write a story about it. Nice job. How exactly do you procede when you write an independant hit piece? If all Gingrich has to worry about is the made up problems with his scientific views, then he might just as well start playing "hail to the chief" right now.

David Isenberg

Fine piece, except for the reference to a Batman movie.

Batman would never lower himself to such incredible fear-mongering.

j.r.

We need a different sort of hemp commission.

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