AID AND COMFORT
By Geoff Metcalf
June 5, 2009
“We live in a dirty and dangerous world. There are some things the general public does not need to know, and shouldn’t. I believe democracy flourishes when the government can take legitimate steps to keep its secrets and when the press can decide whether to print what it knows.” --Katherine Graham
Despite the charade of Obamafication ‘Change’, the world remains a very dangerous place. There are groups of people who want to do very bad things to you, me, and our country. Terrorist have, have tried, and will continue to attempt atrocities in various forms whenever, wherever, and however they can.
Thus far, as a product of luck and skill we have been able to avoid a repeat of a 9/11 type tragedy. However, bin Laden and his ilk maintain a major ‘Jones’ for inflicting ‘some’ kind of bad something (chemical, biological, nuclear or explosive). The bad guys don’t have to be lucky or good but once…we have to both lucky and diligent all the time.
Therefore, when it is reported that the “US ‘Mistakenly’ Releases Nuclear Site List” it is cause for major concern, notwithstanding the “aw shucks/no big deal” protestations of our incompetent, malfeasant government wags…it IS a big deal.
Reportedly, the government “accidentally posted on the Internet a list of government and civilian nuclear facilities and their activities in the United States”. That is bad. However, it pales in comparison to the government official’s blather that “the posting included no information that compromised national security.” BULLFEATHERS!
In early May, President Obama sent a 266-page document to Congress. Supposedly, the list was required by law and will be provided to the International Atomic Energy Agency (who should have already had the data).
Damien LaVera, a spokesman for the National Nuclear Security Administration, said, "While we would have preferred it not be released, the Departments of Energy, Defense, and Commerce and the NRC all thoroughly reviewed it to ensure that no information of direct national security significance would be compromised." None of the sites on the list are directly part of the government’s nuclear weapons infrastructure.
So what? The report does include locations better left unpublished:
Details of a storage facility for highly enriched uranium at the Y-12
complex in Tennessee
• Some sites at the Washington state Hanford site.
• Nuclear reactors at the Westinghouse Electric Company in Pittsburgh, Pa. This facility is currently working on research into what happens when there are accidents with the nuclear reactors
The list provides a comprehensive list of potential targets to bad guys regardless of whether the locations are in the nuke infrastructure or not.
The offending document had been posted on the Government Printing Office Web site, but has since been removed. Why, if it was no big whoop (as LaVera) claimed, was there a hindsight need to remove it? Simple…it never should have been posted in the first place because it offers a roadmap of potential targets to would-be bad guys.
As for that “infrastructure” crack, the document includes both government and civilian nuclear facilities, including details and location of the nation's 103 commercial nuclear power reactors.
Sun Tzu, in "The Art of War" says, “If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles. If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat. If you know neither the enemy nor yourself, you will succumb in every battle.”
Based on performance, it appears this administration knows not itself or the enemy. When it comes to dissemination of any nuclear data to a broad public, the best (and only preferred) policy is to use the “Mushroom” approach…keep them in the dark and feed them horse excrement.
Steven Aftergood, director of the Federation of American Government’s Project on Government Secrecy says, there are "zero" national security implications to the publication of this document. He claims, "This is not a disclosure of sensitive nuclear technologies or of facility security procedures. It is simply a listing of the numerous nuclear research sites and the programs that are under way. And so it poses no security threat whatsoever." Unless or until some terrorist group scrutinizes the list to triage a risk analysis of what and where so as to launch an attack.
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Protestations to the contrary notwithstanding, bad guys seeking either targets or resources for construction of a ‘dirty bomb’ can, have and will target ANY facility. Hospitals and universities which have nuclear material for research or medicine have been and remain vulnerable.
To ‘Mistakenly’ release Nuclear Intel is an epic ‘whoops’ which cannot be undone by purging a url.