- Friend: Pistorius shot gun out car without warning
- States wrestle with developing, restricting drones
- Japan marks 3rd anniversary of tsunami disasters
- Ukraine’s Crimea seeks to become independent state
- Ex-Gov. Christie aides to judge: Quash subpoenas
- Rich Peverley collapses on Dallas Stars bench; game postponed
- Al Sharpton, Trayvon Martin’s parents rally against Fla. ‘stand your ground’ law
- Hillary Clinton campaign got illicit funds from D.C. scandal figure
- Obama administration backs off plan to cut prescription-drug program
- Tickets linked to stolen passports purchased by Iranian middleman
U.S. nuke spotters sent to China before games
Henry Sokolski, director of the Nonproliferation Policy Education Center, said the danger of nuclear terrorism is growing and the NEST teams are limited in dealing with the threat.
“We are entering a brave new world where nuclear energy for peaceful purposes literally is providing the fuel for terror,” Mr. Sokolski said. “Against this new security sore, NEST teams should be seen as a Band-Aid.”
The International Atomic Energy Agency stated in a staff report May 23 that the agency and China are working behind the scenes to “bolster the country’s security and minimize threats.”
“We have been working with the Chinese authorities over the last 18 months to add a radiological dimension to their existing security plans so that security for the Olympics is as comprehensive as possible,” Anita Nilsson, director of the IAEA’s Office of Nuclear Security, was quoted as saying in the report.
The IAEA is working to integrate planning for a radiological attack into existing security efforts for police, intelligence agencies and bomb squads. The IAEA is working with Chinese authorities on radiation detection, physical protection and emergency response.
“To guard and look after the Games and its visitors - as the Chinese are doing - is a responsible way of acting,” Ms. Nilsson said.
The agency said no specific radiological terrorist-threat information was issued.
The Beijing city government announced Tuesday that it will conduct its first exercise to test responses to a nuclear attack in preparation for the Olympics.
The drill will involve several Chinese agencies including police, fire and environmental responders, Chinese government official Shan Qingsheng told the state-run Xinhua news agency.
The drill will simulate the effects of a radiological bomb set off inside the Olympic stadium.
The dispatch of the nuclear team to China has raised concerns among some counterintelligence officials because of the past compromise of nuclear weapons secrets to China.
The CIA determined that China obtained through espionage details of every deployed nuclear warhead in the U.S. arsenal, and the FBI has failed to identify the source despite investigating for more than a decade.
Computer hard drives from a NEST laptop computer that contained nuclear weapons secrets used to disarm weapons disappeared from a Los Alamos National Laboratory vault in May 2000.
Since the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, countering nuclear terrorism was made a high priority for U.S. intelligence and law-enforcement agencies, based on intelligence reports that al Qaeda planned to assemble and use a radiological bomb in an attack in the United States.
In 2002, the FBI and NEST conducted joint monitoring of Muslim sites in Washington and five other cities looking for signs of a nuclear material, according to U.S. News & World Report.
About the Author
Bill Gertz is a national security columnist for The Washington Times and senior editor at The Washington Free Beacon (www.freebeacon.com). He has been with The Times since 1985.
He is the author of six books, four of them national best-sellers. His latest book, “The Failure Factory,” on government bureaucracy and national security, was published in September 2008.
- Inside the Ring: Pentagon reevaluating Obama's pivot to Asia
- Inside the Ring: All eyes on Moscow's military moves in Ukraine
- Inside the Ring: China readies for 'short, sharp' war with Japan
- Inside the Ring: U.S., China in war of words over South China Sea air zone
- Inside the Ring: China military on the rails
By David Keene
Conference showed that the values Reagan cherished still endure
- FCC targets black conservative in TV station fight
- Hillary Clinton campaign received funds from Jeffrey Thompson
- Kim Jong-un calls for execution of 33 Christians
- Senate Democrats, Republicans spar over restoring unemployment benefits
- EDITORIAL: Senate Democrats pointless all-night global warming talkathon
- CARNES: Kissinger's flawed and offensive analysis of Ukraine
- Atheists sue to remove 'Ground Zero Cross' from 9/11 museum
- Man with stolen passport on missing jet is asylum seeker
- Al Qaeda to launch English-language Web magazine 'Resurgence'
- Mitch McConnell on beating tea party: 'We are going to crush them'
Pope Francis meets his 'mini-me'
Celebrity deaths in 2014
Winter storm hits states — again