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NCJ Number: 62843 Find in a Library
Title: WHO WILL HAVE THE BOMB? (FROM STUDIES IN NUCLEAR TERRORISM, 1979, BY AUGUSTUS R NORTON AND MARTIN H GREENBERG - SEE NCJ-62842)
Author(s): T C SCHELLING
Corporate Author: G K Hall
United States of America
Date Published: 1979
Page Count: 15
Sponsoring Agency: G K Hall
Boston, MA 02111
Format: Document
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: NUCLEAR TERRORISM IS ADDRESSED IN THIS ARTICLE AS AN ASPECT OF INTER-STATE NUCLEAR PROLIFERATION RATHER THAN AS AN ELEMENT OF POLITICAL TERRORISM SINCE WEAPONS CONSTRUCTION IS BEYOND THE CAPABILITY OF TERRORISTS.
Abstract: WITH THE LIKELY WORLDWIDE GROWTH OF NUCLEAR ELECTRIC POWER, MOST COUNTRIES WILL EVENTUALLY HAVE ATOMIC REACTORS THAT PRODUCE PLUTONIUM AS A BYPRODUCT AND BE CAPABLE OF USING THEIR PLUTONIUM IN WEAPONS DEVELOPMENT. BY THE 1990'S MOST GOVERNMENTS WILL HAVE NUCLEAR WEAPONS IN THE SENSE THAT THEY WILL HAVE THE CAPABILITY TO MANUFACTURE THEM AT ANY TIME. A GOVERNMENT WHICH HAS NOT EXPLODED AN ATOMIC BOMB MIGHT BE ABLE TO PURCHASE OR BUILD AN ARSENAL OF SUCH WEAPONS. ALTHOUGH CRIMINAL OR TERRORIST GROUPS MIGHT NOT BE ABLE TO CONSTRUCT NUCLEAR WEAPONS, SUCH GROUPS COULD BE RECIPIENTS OF GOVERNMENT WEAPONS FROM COUNTRIES WILLING TO FLAUNT THE WORLD ORDER. SCENARIOS FOR NUCLEAR TERRORISM INCLUDE EXPLODING AN ATOMIC BOMB IN AN UNPOPULATED AREA AND THEN MAKING EXTORTION THREATS OF SUBSEQUENT BOMBINGS UNLESS DEMANDS ARE MET. TERRORISTS COULD ENHANCE PUBLIC FEARS WITHOUT RISKING PUBLIC WRATH BY CAREFULLY CHOOSING MILITARY OR INDUSTRIAL TARGETS FOR THEIR BOMBINGS. AN ESPECIALLY EFFECTIVE THREAT IS THAT OF NUCLEAR REPRISAL AGAINST SOME GOVERNMENT ACTIVITY, SUCH AS A CRIMINAL PROSECUTION OR A MILITARY EXPEDITION. ALTHOUGH NO INTERNATIONAL SAFEGUARD AGENCY COULD PREVENT ALL PROLIFERATION, TECHNICAL SYSTEMS HAVE DETERRED THE THEFT AND USE OF ACTUAL ATOMIC WEAPONS. NEVERTHELESS, WEAPONS COULD BECOME THE PROPERTY OF THE VICTORS IN A COUP. NO REFERENCES ARE PROVIDED. (TWK)
Index Term(s): Bomb threats; Bombings; Nuclear energy; Nuclear terrorism; Radioactive material; Revolutionary or terrorist groups
To cite this abstract, use the following link:
http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=62843

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