The Worry of Nuclear Terrorism in Asia (Revelation 8)

The development comes after Indian authorities arrested five people who were selling the radioactive material. PHOTO: REUTERS

Pakistan voices concerns over ‘attempted sale of uranium’ in India

Published: July 12, 2018

The development comes after Indian authorities arrested five people who were selling the radioactive material. PHOTO: REUTERS


ISLAMABAD: Pakistan on Thursday voiced concerns after certain individuals were reportedly arrested in India for their involvement in selling uranium, a highly radioactive material used in nuclear facilities.

“Pakistan is deeply concerned about the reported incident involving the attempted sale of uranium in the black market,” Foreign Office spokesperson Dr Muhammad Faisal told reporters in Islamabad.

“We are looking forward to the results of further investigations. The report raises several questions about nuclear security and or/interest of criminal groups and individuals in uranium and their motivations,” the spokesperson added.\Pakistan’s reaction came just days after Indian authorities arrested five people from Kolkata who had come there to sell one kilogramme of uranium.

Officials, who spoke on condition of anonymity, also pointed out that such incidents had happened in the past in India. But the western countries, however, did not consider such incidents seriously.

Meanwhile, the spokesperson strongly denounced Indian forces for what he called their continued oppression in held Kashmir.

The spokesperson said that the recent fact-finding report by the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) vindicated Pakistan’s stance on Indian Occupied Kashmir.

“The report is a reflection of Pakistan’s repeated calls to the international community to put an end to the brutal use of pellet guns, indiscriminate firing, use of human shield and promulgation of draconian AFPSA and SPA laws that are making lives of Kashmiris in IoK a living hell,” he maintained.

“We call upon the international community to take cognisance of the human rights situation as well as the report, and immediately call upon India to stop the bloodshed and give Kashmiris their just right to self-determination through a UN-mandated plebiscite,” he stressed.

On Afghanistan, Faisal said Pakistan had been saying all along that there was no military solution to the conflict.

“Others who were insistent to resolve the issue through military means are also arriving at the same conclusion, which is a good omen for the people of Afghanistan who have suffered immensely from the merciless conflict,” he added.

“We urge all sides including the Taliban to renounce kinetic options and join the peace and reconciliation process to end the brutal conflict in Afghanistan.”

The Reason for Babylon the Great’s “Space Force”

4How America Planned to Win a War Against Russia: Nuke the Satellites

What could possibly go wrong?

by David Axe

In 1962, U.S. president John F. Kennedy was in a bind. He was eager to negotiate a nuclear test ban with the Soviet Union. But the Soviets had recently shattered a three-year test moratorium and now Kennedy was under pressure to respond with a display of strength.

One eventual result was America’s Cold War nuclear satellite-killer — a missile that could lob an atomic warhead into Earth’s orbit and fry enemy spacecraft. So-called Program 437 was active between 1963 and 1975 and remained a secret for a full year.

Bowing to pressure from his more hawkish advisers, Kennedy approved the Project Starfish atmospheric nuclear tests.

The tests had an interesting and frightening side effect, as the Stimson Center’s Michael Krepon  wrote:

At least six satellites were victimized by Starfish Prime: the British Ariel I, the U.S. Traac, Transit 4B, Injun I, Telstar I and the Soviet Kosmos 5. The most famous victim of Starfish Prime’s electromagnetic pulse effects was Telstar, which enabled the transmission of images across the Atlantic, just as the British music invasion of the U.S. airwaves was building.

Before the Beatles scored their first number-one hit and transfixed viewers on the  Ed Sullivan Show , another British band, The Tornados, topped the U.S. charts with Telstar, an instrumental inspired by the satellite. Telstar was dying from nuclear effects while it was #1 on the  Hit Parade .

The Pentagon was thrilled at the accidental proof that a nuclear device exploding in the high atmosphere could knock out spacecraft. Now America had a way of shooting down Soviet satellites. U.S. Air Force lieutenant colonel Clayton Chun described the resulting Program 437 in a paper for the Air University Press in 2000:

he Air Force was able to rapidly cobble together an operational system out of deactivated missile components, existing launch pads, and a space tracking system to create the capability to use nuclear antisatellite weapons in a direct ascent mode to destroy orbiting space vehicles. …

[Air Force] Secretary [Eugene] Zuckert’s operational concept for the program incorporated two bases, Johnston Island and Vandenberg [Air Force Base]. The Johnston Island site provided launch pads for two Thor [anti-satellite] boosters on continuous alert. The Air Force would use Vandenberg AFB as the support and training facility for Johnston Island.

The Air Force planned to airlift Thor boosters, crews, nuclear weapons and support equipment to Johnston Island as needed. As envisioned by Zuckert and others, the location of Johnston Island, west southwest of Hawaii, would allow the Air Force to intercept a hostile satellite before it reached the continental United States.

The Air Force established the 10th Aerospace Defense Squadron to operate the satellite-killers and conducted a series of non-nuclear tests.

In 1964, the Pentagon revealed the program to the public. But there were problems, Chun explained:

The use of an atomic weapon to kill an enemy satellite might inadvertently signal the start of a nuclear war. The U.S. might launch such an attack suspecting that the Soviets were launching a surprise strategic attack from space. The USSR in turn might react by launching an all-out nuclear offensive thinking the United States was preparing for a nuclear first strike.

Even if an ASAT mission were successful and did not start an all-out nuclear war, the residual radiation and EMP effects likely would have had unintended consequences. For example, such an ASAT attack might accidentally destroy friendly satellites as had happened during the Starfish Prime test.

Wear and tear and funding cuts took their toll on the Thor missiles, and in 1975 the Pentagon shut down Program 437.

Columbia University Warns Of Sixth Seal (Revelation 6:12)

Earthquakes May Endanger New York More Than Thought, Says Study

A study by a group of prominent seismologists suggests that a pattern of subtle but active faults makes the risk of earthquakes to the New York City area substantially greater than formerly believed. Among other things, they say that the controversial Indian Point nuclear power plants, 24 miles north of the city, sit astride the previously unidentified intersection of two active seismic zones. The paper appears in the current issue of the Bulletin of the Seismological Society of America.

Many faults and a few mostly modest quakes have long been known around New York City, but the research casts them in a new light. The scientists say the insight comes from sophisticated analysis of past quakes, plus 34 years of new data on tremors, most of them perceptible only by modern seismic instruments. The evidence charts unseen but potentially powerful structures whose layout and dynamics are only now coming clearer, say the scientists. All are based at Columbia University’s Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, which runs the network of seismometers that monitors most of the northeastern United States.

Lead author Lynn R. Sykes said the data show that large quakes are infrequent around New York compared to more active areas like California and Japan, but that the risk is high, because of the overwhelming concentration of people and infrastructure. “The research raises the perception both of how common these events are, and, specifically, where they may occur,” he said. “It’s an extremely populated area with very large assets.” Sykes, who has studied the region for four decades, is known for his early role in establishing the global theory of plate tectonics.

The authors compiled a catalog of all 383 known earthquakes from 1677 to 2007 in a 15,000-square-mile area around New York City. Coauthor John Armbruster estimated sizes and locations of dozens of events before 1930 by combing newspaper accounts and other records. The researchers say magnitude 5 quakes—strong enough to cause damage–occurred in 1737, 1783 and 1884. There was little settlement around to be hurt by the first two quakes, whose locations are vague due to a lack of good accounts; but the last, thought to be centered under the seabed somewhere between Brooklyn and Sandy Hook, toppled chimneys across the city and New Jersey, and panicked bathers at Coney Island. Based on this, the researchers say such quakes should be routinely expected, on average, about every 100 years. “Today, with so many more buildings and people, a magnitude 5 centered below the city would be extremely attention-getting,” said Armbruster. “We’d see billions in damage, with some brick buildings falling. People would probably be killed.”

Starting in the early 1970s Lamont began collecting data on quakes from dozens of newly deployed seismometers; these have revealed further potential, including distinct zones where earthquakes concentrate, and where larger ones could come. The Lamont network, now led by coauthor Won-Young Kim, has located hundreds of small events, including a magnitude 3 every few years, which can be felt by people at the surface, but is unlikely to cause damage. These small quakes tend to cluster along a series of small, old faults in harder rocks across the region. Many of the faults were discovered decades ago when subways, water tunnels and other excavations intersected them, but conventional wisdom said they were inactive remnants of continental collisions and rifting hundreds of millions of years ago. The results clearly show that they are active, and quite capable of generating damaging quakes, said Sykes.

One major previously known feature, the Ramapo Seismic Zone, runs from eastern Pennsylvania to the mid-Hudson Valley, passing within a mile or two northwest of Indian Point. The researchers found that this system is not so much a single fracture as a braid of smaller ones, where quakes emanate from a set of still ill-defined faults. East and south of the Ramapo zone—and possibly more significant in terms of hazard–is a set of nearly parallel northwest-southeast faults. These include Manhattan’s 125th Street fault, which seems to have generated two small 1981 quakes, and could have been the source of the big 1737 quake; the Dyckman Street fault, which carried a magnitude 2 in 1989; the Mosholu Parkway fault; and the Dobbs Ferry fault in suburban Westchester, which generated the largest recent shock, a surprising magnitude 4.1, in 1985. Fortunately, it did no damage. Given the pattern, Sykes says the big 1884 quake may have hit on a yet-undetected member of this parallel family further south.

The researchers say that frequent small quakes occur in predictable ratios to larger ones, and so can be used to project a rough time scale for damaging events. Based on the lengths of the faults, the detected tremors, and calculations of how stresses build in the crust, the researchers say that magnitude 6 quakes, or even 7—respectively 10 and 100 times bigger than magnitude 5–are quite possible on the active faults they describe. They calculate that magnitude 6 quakes take place in the area about every 670 years, and sevens, every 3,400 years. The corresponding probabilities of occurrence in any 50-year period would be 7% and 1.5%. After less specific hints of these possibilities appeared in previous research, a 2003 analysis by The New York City Area Consortium for Earthquake Loss Mitigation put the cost of quakes this size in the metro New York area at $39 billion to $197 billion. A separate 2001 analysis for northern New Jersey’s Bergen County estimates that a magnitude 7 would destroy 14,000 buildings and damage 180,000 in that area alone. The researchers point out that no one knows when the last such events occurred, and say no one can predict when they next might come.

“We need to step backward from the simple old model, where you worry about one large, obvious fault, like they do in California,” said coauthor Leonardo Seeber. “The problem here comes from many subtle faults. We now see there is earthquake activity on them. Each one is small, but when you add them up, they are probably more dangerous than we thought. We need to take a very close look.” Seeber says that because the faults are mostly invisible at the surface and move infrequently, a big quake could easily hit one not yet identified. “The probability is not zero, and the damage could be great,” he said. “It could be like something out of a Greek myth.”

The researchers found concrete evidence for one significant previously unknown structure: an active seismic zone running at least 25 miles from Stamford, Conn., to the Hudson Valley town of Peekskill, N.Y., where it passes less than a mile north of the Indian Point nuclear power plant. The Stamford-Peekskill line stands out sharply on the researchers’ earthquake map, with small events clustered along its length, and to its immediate southwest. Just to the north, there are no quakes, indicating that it represents some kind of underground boundary. It is parallel to the other faults beginning at 125th Street, so the researchers believe it is a fault in the same family. Like the others, they say it is probably capable of producing at least a magnitude 6 quake. Furthermore, a mile or so on, it intersects the Ramapo seismic zone.

Sykes said the existence of the Stamford-Peekskill line had been suggested before, because the Hudson takes a sudden unexplained bend just ot the north of Indian Point, and definite traces of an old fault can be along the north side of the bend. The seismic evidence confirms it, he said. “Indian Point is situated at the intersection of the two most striking linear features marking the seismicity and also in the midst of a large population that is at risk in case of an accident,” says the paper. “This is clearly one of the least favorable sites in our study area from an earthquake hazard and risk perspective.”

The findings comes at a time when Entergy, the owner of Indian Point, is trying to relicense the two operating plants for an additional 20 years—a move being fought by surrounding communities and the New York State Attorney General. Last fall the attorney general, alerted to the then-unpublished Lamont data, told a Nuclear Regulatory Commission panel in a filing: “New data developed in the last 20 years disclose a substantially higher likelihood of significant earthquake activity in the vicinity of [Indian Point] that could exceed the earthquake design for the facility.” The state alleges that Entergy has not presented new data on earthquakes past 1979. However, in a little-noticed decision this July 31, the panel rejected the argument on procedural grounds. A source at the attorney general’s office said the state is considering its options.

The characteristics of New York’s geology and human footprint may increase the problem. Unlike in California, many New York quakes occur near the surface—in the upper mile or so—and they occur not in the broken-up, more malleable formations common where quakes are frequent, but rather in the extremely hard, rigid rocks underlying Manhattan and much of the lower Hudson Valley. Such rocks can build large stresses, then suddenly and efficiently transmit energy over long distances. “It’s like putting a hard rock in a vise,” said Seeber. “Nothing happens for a while. Then it goes with a bang.” Earthquake-resistant building codes were not introduced to New York City until 1995, and are not in effect at all in many other communities. Sinuous skyscrapers and bridges might get by with minimal damage, said Sykes, but many older, unreinforced three- to six-story brick buildings could crumble.

Art Lerner-Lam, associate director of Lamont for seismology, geology and tectonophysics, pointed out that the region’s major highways including the New York State Thruway, commuter and long-distance rail lines, and the main gas, oil and power transmission lines all cross the parallel active faults, making them particularly vulnerable to being cut. Lerner-Lam, who was not involved in the research, said that the identification of the seismic line near Indian Point “is a major substantiation of a feature that bears on the long-term earthquake risk of the northeastern United States.” He called for policymakers to develop more information on the region’s vulnerability, to take a closer look at land use and development, and to make investments to strengthen critical infrastructure.

“This is a landmark study in many ways,” said Lerner-Lam. “It gives us the best possible evidence that we have an earthquake hazard here that should be a factor in any planning decision. It crystallizes the argument that this hazard is not random. There is a structure to the location and timing of the earthquakes. This enables us to contemplate risk in an entirely different way. And since we are able to do that, we should be required to do that.”

New York Earthquake Briefs and Quotes:

Existing U.S. Geological Survey seismic hazard maps show New York City as facing more hazard than many other eastern U.S. areas. Three areas are somewhat more active—northernmost New York State, New Hampshire and South Carolina—but they have much lower populations and fewer structures. The wider forces at work include pressure exerted from continuing expansion of the mid-Atlantic Ridge thousands of miles to the east; slow westward migration of the North American continent; and the area’s intricate labyrinth of old faults, sutures and zones of weakness caused by past collisions and rifting.

Due to New York’s past history, population density and fragile, interdependent infrastructure, a 2001 analysis by the Federal Emergency Management Agency ranks it the 11th most at-risk U.S. city for earthquake damage. Among those ahead: Los Angeles, San Francisco, Seattle and Portland. Behind: Salt Lake City, Sacramento, Anchorage.

New York’s first seismic station was set up at Fordham University in the 1920s. Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, in Palisades, N.Y., has operated stations since 1949, and now coordinates a network of about 40.

Dozens of small quakes have been felt in the New York area. A Jan. 17, 2001 magnitude 2.4, centered in the Upper East Side—the first ever detected in Manhattan itself–may have originated on the 125th Street fault. Some people thought it was an explosion, but no one was harmed.

The most recent felt quake, a magnitude 2.1 on July 28, 2008, was centered near Milford, N.J. Houses shook and a woman at St. Edward’s Church said she felt the building rise up under her feet—but no damage was done.

Questions about the seismic safety of the Indian Point nuclear power plant, which lies amid a metropolitan area of more than 20 million people, were raised in previous scientific papers in 1978 and 1985.

Because the hard rocks under much of New York can build up a lot strain before breaking, researchers believe that modest faults as short as 1 to 10 kilometers can cause magnitude 5 or 6 quakes.

In general, magnitude 3 quakes occur about 10 times more often than magnitude fours; 100 times more than magnitude fives; and so on. This principle is called the Gutenberg-Richter relationship.

Antichrist Exiles America’s Prime Minister

Iraq’s Sadrist Movement says alliance with Maliki is ‘out of the question’

The political bureau of Sadrist Movement leader Muqtada al-Sadr said an alliance with leader of the State of Law Coalition Nouri al-Maliki in order to form a new government was “out of question.”

Sadr’s office said Maliki bears legal responsibility for what happened in Mosul and other Iraqi cities when they fell in ISIS’s hands since he was prime minister and commander-in-chief of the armed forces.

They added that selecting ministers is subject to specific regulations and mechanisms, and hinted that the decision to hand over Maliki a ministerial portfolio in the upcoming cabinet will not be the decision of the Sairoon Alliance.

Earlier this month, Sadr called on political blocs via Twitter to cut all discussions on the election results and the cabinet formation process with the US and other countries as this process is purely an Iraqi affair.

He also called on political blocs to keep away from forming sectarian and ethnic alliances and voiced his willingness to create an atmosphere of cooperation to form an alliance that goes beyond partisan and sectarian quotas.

Sadr also called for holding discussions with neighboring countries regarding providing essential services like water and electricity especially amid the heat wave Iraq is going through and the power cuts in most governorates, instead of holding political talks to form the cabinet.

Last Update: Thursday, 12 July 2018 KSA 15:00 – GMT 12:00

Trump and the Iranian Horn (Daniel 8)

As President Trump heads to Helsinki, the North Koreans call him names, and the Iranian regime leaders run from demonstrators throughout the land.  These are elements of the global war against us, and we continue to deal with it as a series of separate challenges rather than a world war, to our ongoing detriment.

The president loves to talk about winning, but he does not appear to have a winning strategy. He seems to be sticking to his plan to mount pressure on our foes in Iran and North Korea, mostly by hitting them with more and more sanctions. Meanwhile he will try to convince Putin to abandon the mullahs in Syria, perhaps easing sanctions on Russia in return.

I don’t think that will work.  I do not know of any case in which sanctions have compelled an enemy to make a significant policy change.  Our enemies are totalitarians or authoritarians who are quite prepared to see their people suffer rather than bend to Trump’s wishes.  Indeed, it may well be that tyrants actually want their people to suffer for the greater glory of the regime.

That surely seems to be the case in Iran, a committed enemy of America. Iranians are very badly off, and their misery will only increase for the rest of the year.  Conditions there are awful.  The currency is in free fall, every major social/economic/political indicator is negative, and they are—right now—running out of water.  And it’s hot as hell.  The anti-regime uprising throughout the country may have had economic causes once upon a time, but that moment has passed.  Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei now faces a political rebellion, and he has no conceivably winning strategy.  The rebellion will continue, and the numbers are against him;  probably 85-90 percent of the country detests him and his   They know they are suffering because of regime policies, and they know that only the overthrow of the Islamic Republic has a chance of changing things.

Does Trump know this?  He may have bought in to the pidgin Marxist view that regimes fall when they fail economically.  Ergo, he may think that ratcheting up sanctions will ensure the end of the regime.  If so, the world wouldn’t have regimes like those in North Korea, Cuba, Venezuela, Nicaragua and, increasingly, Russia and Turkey.  Yet there they sit.

Revolutions are not desperate acts, they are acts of hope.  The Iranian people need support, but I don’t see any evidence that Trump et. al. intend to provide it. We need to talk to the revolutionary leaders, both directly and via our broadcasters. Yet the long-awaited shakeup at places like VOA-Farsi, RFE and RL has not taken place, and I don’t see any signs that it’s imminent.  This is part of what appears to be Trump’s inability to staff out his administration.  Who is running Iran policy?  Perhaps it’s Jared Kushner, as so often when Middle East issues are on the line.  If so, he needs to work even harder.  To be sure, positive change is under way in some areas.  Anthony Ruggiero is a great appointment at NSC’s Asia (aka North Korea) slot.  And I am told that the terrific Victoria Coates will have a key post on ME policy.  And cheers for the appointment of Fred Fleitz as Bolton’s chief of staff.

As we stick with our sanctions, the Iranians kill with greater frenzy.  Regime assassins are in action in Europe, North Africa, and Saudi Arabia.  Sometimes we bomb their forces in Syria, but Assad—an Iranian/Russian puppet—seems to be gaining strength.  In the Islamic Republic itself, repression expands.  The most recent outrage is the arrest of a dancing girl.

Nonetheless, Iran is a classic case of a revolutionary situation, and it wouldn’t surprise anyone if the regime were overthrown today or tomorrow.  Do we have a plan for that?  It would be good for Pompeo to speak to the Iranians about revolution, and show signs of supporting them.  He could link his remarks to the appalling German move to send cash to the regime, an action that makes me shudder, as its effect is to pay the world’s greatest sponsor of terrorism to send assassins to the West.  Including here.

I do not doubt that Khamenei would approve an effort to kill Trump.  He would love that.  I rather suspect that his agents have acted against us here in the homeland.  Things like forest fires.

Which brings us back to Helsinki.  Trump would like the Russians to throw the Iranians out of Syria.  What does Putin want?  I doubt he’ll play.  After all, he’s in Syria because the Iranians were losing, and begged him for help.  Will he now betray them?  I don’t think so, even if the mullahs fear it.  The North Korean insults suggest to me that the enemy alliance thinks they can gull Trump, and don’t need to do him any favors.

We’ll know soon enough.