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Highly Enriched Uranium (HEU) a target for smuggling

the world should phase out the civilian use of HEU, which is still used to fuel more than 100 research reactors around the world, many with minimal security measures in place.

Nuclear smuggling: The expert view, Insider thieves are the new nuclear threat. Protect the materials and prevent the terrorism,  Matthew Bunn,  guardian.co.uk,  7 November 2 The dark netherworlds of nuclear smuggling still pose a terrible danger to us all. Terrorists are seeking nuclear weapons and the materials to make them. Unfortunately, it doesn’t take a Manhattan Project to make a crude nuclear bomb – numerous government studies have warned that a sophisticated terrorist group might pull it off, if they could get enough nuclear material.

And with bits of highly enriched uranium (HEU) continuing to show up in the hands of hustlers and smugglers, the obvious question is: of which iceberg are we seeing the tip?
controlling the essential ingredients of nuclear weapons – plutonium and HEU, neither of which occur in nature – offers a choke point on the pathway to the bomb. If we can keep terrorists from getting these materials, we can prevent nuclear terrorism…….

Over time, the world should phase out the civilian use of HEU, which is still used to fuel more than 100 research reactors around the world, many with minimal security measures in place. Overcoming complacency is the key to success.

Many policymakers and nuclear managers around the world wrongly dismiss the danger, arguing that since they have never had an incident at their facility there is no need to upgrade security, and that in any case terrorists could not possibly make a nuclear bomb. They are wrong. Al-Qaida‘s nuclear bomb programme was in earnest, and progressed as far as carrying out explosive tests in the desert in Afghanistan before the 9/11 attacks. Nuclear security measures around the world are demonstrably insufficient to cope with the capabilities and tactics terrorists and thieves have already used in non-nuclear attacks…..

November 8, 2010 - Posted by | 2 WORLD, secrets,lies and civil liberties, Uranium | , , , , , ,

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