Neutralizing Nuclear Terror

Could Exotic Top-Secret Technologies Keep Us Safe?

In January 6, 2008, the Los Angeles Times ran a front-page article below the fold titled “How the U.S. seeks to avert nuclear terrorism.” Written by Ralph Vartabedian, the piece provided an unprecedented deep look into how the U.S. is organized to deal with a nuclear terrorism incident and what it would do, should a bomb be found.

The scale of the effort by the Department of Energy’s National Nuclear Security Administration’s (NNSA) Office of Emergency Operations (http://www. nnsa.doe.gov/emergency. htm) is somewhat reassuring, considering the unthink­able consequences if such a thing should go off. That, at least, is what the government wants us to think. “More than two dozen specialized teams” consisting of “as many as 2000 scientists and bomb experts” are involved. The primary effort, of course, is to catch the Bomb long before any threat is issued, but should it ever come to that, we are told the

U.S. has state-of-the-art nuclear bomb squads specifically trained and prepared to deal with the threat. Is it possible that the defensive measures available to the government could include such things as remote viewing, scalar weapons and Tesla technology? There are some who think so.

In the event of an actual terrorist Nuke emergency, one NNSA Office of Emergency Response NEST (Nuclear Emergency Strike Team) unit would jet to the scene from the NNSA 24-hour alert facility in Albuquerque, New Mexi­co. Another from the FBI.

The immediate question facing the agents would be: how could the nuclear device/dirty bomb be incapacitated. Later they will worry about hauling it to the Nevada Test Site for deep underground dissection and nuclear forensic analysis. But for now job-one is preventing it from going off. If those efforts don’t succeed, criminal investigation is the least of their worries. Thankfully, the government has some cards to play.

In a cryptic statement to the Times Bruce Goodwin, Lawrence Livermore Laboratory’s nuclear weapon chief, de­clared that his teams have “some really remarkable tools that can prevent nuclear function.” In other words, the gov­ernment has the means of preventing a nuclear device from going off. Reporter Vartabedian interprets this as “sug­gesting a device that can foil the arming system or perhaps even neutralize its basic operation.”

Further confirmation of the basic point came when NNSA posted the slightly delayed testimony of its Administra­tor, Thomas D’Agostino, before the House Committee on Armed Services, Subcommittee on Strategic Forces on Feb­ruary 27. In it, he explicitly referred to an NNSA capability in “supporting the DoD and FBI in emergency render-safe and post-event technical nuclear forensics.”

EOD—The Crash Course

EOD stands for Explosive Ordnance Disposal and, reduced to its simplest elements, comes down to either render­ing the device safe in place and destroying its explosive components offsite, or blowing it in place. Naturally, the lat­ter is not an option when nuclear material is involved. This is why the government’s ultimate plan is to haul the de­vice back to Nevada. Getting there, though, will require some “magic.” Somehow, that ticking bomb has to be switched off completely, and it’s not simply a matter of cutting the red wire or the blue wire, as typically dramatized by Hollywood.

The nature of the attack mounted on the device depends, in great part, on the perceived nature of the device itself. If it’s somebody’s known nuclear device, then that’s a huge help.

We know a lot about such devices, what makes them tick, how they’re put together, and so forth. Against such a threat, depending on its sophistication, many things can be done, to include carefully drilling into the casing and looking around with a tiny fiber-optic scope, even doing “surgery” inside the case.

When it gets really scary, though, is when it’s homemade, and equipped with who knows what boobytraps and backups. Our people play this “game” regularly, in which one side builds a boobytrapped fake bomb and the other tries to defeat it, but as Vartabedian’s article convincingly demonstrates, amateurs can cause the worst problems, cit­ing the infamous 1980 Harvey Hotel bomb as a case in point. There, a man bent on a foolproof extortion scheme built a 1000 lb. bomb equipped with so many anti-tamper features and backups it defeated the experts, doing major dam­age to the hotel when it went off during a failed attempt to neutralize it.

Can’t have that happening with a nuke! So, how do you stop a bomb from going off?

Conventional Means

Before the teams arrive, the area is thoroughly locked down and whatever evacuations will be made are mounted, either under cover story or via more straightforward means. Likewise, every possible bit of information is being col­lected and analyzed. Have we seen one of these before? If so, where? Who built it? Is it similar to another device? What do our experts make of it? Dare we approach it? Does the device appear to have anti-tamper features installed? Does it have sensors fitted? If so, what do we think they do? Has whomever placed the device made any statements about what’ll happen if we get near it? What have our own or anyone else’s intelligence services heard which might bear on this? Any prisoner interrogations which are relevant?

These and many more elements go into planning the takedown of the device. A simple bomb is one thing, one that goes boom if a robot comes near it, or one that detects that it’s being X-rayed is quite another. Knowing what to do, when to do it, and when not to take certain actions, are critical to success. Here are some tools:

Advanced Explosives

Any regular watcher of “Future Weapons” on the Discovery Channel should be familiar with Dr. Sydney Alford of Alford Technologies (www.explosives.net). A true genius with explosives, he’s come up with a number of devices which could be useful. One can burn a hole right through a mine or bomb’s steel case, burning up the explosive be­fore it can detonate. Okay. Not so good with the main device, but it might ruin the firing circuitry. On the other hand, if the device is plutonium—implosion based and requiring precision timers to collapse a hollow sphere—such a method could burn up the charges and dud the bomb. Another approach is more robust, designed to not only neu­tralize a car filled with explosives but make it easily dealt with by EOD teams. What’s ingenious here is that it relies on the incompressibility of water and uses that as a blade, propelled by a focused explosion, to slice through the trunk, rip apart the bomb, and hurl the pieces clear. A possibility, certainly for simple devices, on the order of a can full of atomic waste with some explosive intended to scatter it. While there likely would be contamination, it would be highly localized, and we’ve dealt with far worse many times. Hazardous Materials (HazMat) teams all over the country could handle the cleanup afterwards and are certified to do so.

Broadband Scanning

Before we get anywhere near that device, we will listen and watch across the entire frequency spectrum to see and hear what this device is emitting, if anything, and seek to learn the nature, character and structure of those emis­sions. Is it leaking radiation, broadcasting a proximity trigger signal, or both? Is it transmitting via any means, and if so, how and in what form? What do those emissions tell us about the device, its componentry, and how it’s put to­gether?

Jammers & Other Screening Means

Other tools of the trade consist of cell phone and radio jammers intended to prevent a detonation command from being received or to cause a device to detonate prematurely, as in a roadside bomb. Such jammers could be used in our case, but might play into the foe’s hands, instead of helping. A better approach might be to enclose the device in a Faraday cage (a grounded metal screen), preventing all standard radiofrequency and similar signals from reaching it. This protects against all but line-of-sight (LOS) triggering threats, such as infra red (IR) beams, laser beams and the like. Techniques for defeating them are well known and primarily involve breaking the line of sight with barrier ma­terial.

X-Ray/Gamma Ray Imaging

If circumstances permit, this can be a huge help to the teams, since it shows what components are where, how things are hooked together, etc. These techniques show what the device looks like internally. Shielding against X-rays isn’t difficult; shielding against gamma rays is much more involved. Shielding, though, isn’t an issue if the de­vice has proximity triggering or if the government agents can be convinced it does. Gamma ray imaging also involves more complicated protective arrangements for the imagers and those in the vicinity. Passive gamma ray detection, exploiting the bomb’s own emissions, would be used to help find it in the first place.

Passive Thermal Imaging

When getting close to the device or actively probing it with X-ray or gamma energy is out, thermal infra red (IR) can provide major assistance by showing internal details without contact of any sort by reading the heat differences between the various internal components and the background. This immediately reveals the locations of all the hot parts of the device, as well as those radioactively hot. Thermal imaging can be done from considerable distances, which may come in handy if we think the device is under visual surveillance or is boobytrapped.

When it comes to such a serious threat, the standard technical arsenal may not be good enough. Fortunately there are alternatives, but, so far, the government is not talking about them.

RV to the Rescue?

Could one possible secret weapon in the Emergency Response Teams’ arsenal be an officially “nonexistent capabil­ity” called Remote Viewing: projecting awareness through time and space to secure intelligence information. As de­tailed by Jim Schnabel in his 1997 book REMOTE VIEWERS: The Secret History of America’s Psychic Spies. Army Project Grill Flame remote viewers like Mel Riley and Joe MacMoneagle not only successfully imaged the interior de­tails of a Red Chinese thermonuclear device before a test occurred at the Chinese nuclear proving grounds at Lop Nor in 1979, but were also able to determine that the test had been a failure, with no primary detonation’s having oc­curred.

The applicability of RV to our problem is obvious, regardless of where in the Intelligence Community the now black capability resides. An even more exotic use of the technique would be to target the fusing directly by having the remote viewers seek to short it out. Modern microelectronics are extremely vulnerable to tiny amounts of current, and voltage potentials far greater than this have been demonstrated in doing things such as stopping a frog’s heart re­motely, something the great telekineticist Nina Kulagina did on March 10, 1970 in Leningrad of what was then the Soviet Union. She later demonstrated that she could remotely disrupt the functioning of a human heart inside its owner. For the full story, please see Chapter 3 of The New Soviet Psychic Discoveries, by Gris and Dick, particularly pages 72-73.

Fried Fusing, Anyone?

A less exotic way to dud a bomb, assuming it’s not nuclear hardened, as likely would be the case with a stolen do­mestic or foreign weapon, would be to kill its circuitry with the same phenomena a bomb detonation creates—EMP, Electromagnetic Pulse.

This is a powerful broadband energy burst which burns up unprotected circuits, leaving them dead afterwards.

Those of you who saw the TV miniseries “The Day After” saw what the nuclear version did, in the form of hun­dreds of cars with burnt out ignition systems and radios. These days, there are ways to do this without using a nucle­ar device, resulting in the acronym NNEMP, with the “NN” standing for “nonnuclear.” Indeed, the Swedes obtained such a weapon from the former Soviet Union and reportedly found it devastating when used against typical military electronics. (The details are here: http://www.tfd.chalmers.se/~valeri/EMP.html). That would be a one-time omnidi­rectional explosively pumped device.

Others, called HPMs, for High Power Microwave, or HERF, for High Energy RadioFrequency weapons, could be vehicle, helicopter or aircraft mounted and be fired repeatedly with great directional precision. Think of them as be­ing powerful versions of your microwave oven at home, but with very tight beams and no diffusers= radar ray gun. Even crude handheld versions of this technology have been shown to be terrifyingly effective against unprotected mi­croelectronics and computers. Colonel Walling’s HPM paper goes into great depth about HPMs. (http://www.globalsecurity.org/military/library/report/2000/occppr11.htm)

For a detailed discussion of how NNEMP bombs work, their effectiveness and the forms they could take, please see Carlo Kopp’s paper, “The Electromagnetic Bomb” at: http://www.globalsecurity.org/military/library/report/1996/apjemp.htm. NNEMP devices could very well dud the bomb, but electronics in the vicinity might never be the same. Compared to having several city blocks vaporized in, say, the heart of Manhattan, that might not matter much!

Hyperdimensional Meltdown?

By far, the most exotic solution identified, and one which fully meets the criterion of completely neutralizing the device, would be a scalar weapon of some sort. By scalar, we mean a Tesla-type electromagnetic transmitting device whose effects transcend normal 3-Space, to include the protective value of the aforementioned Faraday cage.

This means that we can instantaneously place energy into or remove it from the bomb itself, depending on the mode selected. This would include: sucking all the power out of the system, leaving it dead; melting the firing cir­cuits, causing the detonators to deflagrate or detonate low order. We could even melt the “pit,” the nuclear materials, themselves, fundamentally altering the critical alignments without which the bomb is just a radioactive blob. Re­member, we’re talking tiny, ultraprecise tolerances here. Alternatively, we could so thoroughly freeze the weapon that it simply couldn’t function at all.

For a simplified description of what scalar weapons are and how they work, please see Bill Morgan’s overview of Scalar Wars (http://www.prahlad.org/pub/bearden/scalarwars.htm). Those of you with greater curiosity and technical depth would do well to visit nuclear engineer/New Energy expert Tom Bearden’s site (http://www.cheniere.org/ ), pay­ing particular attention to the fact that scalar weapons have multiple modes through which nuclear weapons may be defeated and that suitcase scalar weapons apparently exist. These and many other pertinent details are discussed here: http://www.cheniere.org/images/weapons/index.html.

In this very threatening time, the good news is, there exists a solid scientific-technical basis for neutralizing ter­rorist nukes. Since we’d be remiss if we didn’t talk about that Hollywood scenario where someone steals one of ours, we should note that per the NNSA Administrator’s previously cited testimony, one significant aspect of the RRW (Re­serve Replacement Warhead) program discussed in his presentation is the upgrading of anti-tamper/unauthorized use features on reworked older U.S. warheads dating back to the 1970s. As he wryly noted, there’s a big difference be­tween the bare bones original Mustang and the fully tricked out modern version. What we had for security measures back then was good, but we can do it much better now. That is good news, indeed!

In preparing this, the writer contacted both Ralph Vartabedian, who provided valuable research suggestions, and John Broehm, NNSA’s Senior Advisor for Public Affairs, who kindly provided the NNSA Administrator’s testimony. The conclusions are the writer’s, though.

BY JOHN KETTLER

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