House Committee on Armed Services Nuclear Proliferation ... - IDIA
R u t g e r s Mo d e l C o n g r e s s 7 states is a problem for the United States because the lack of transparency within other states. 26 1991: The End of the Cold War and New Nuclear Threats The monumental changes made by Mikhail Gorbachev brought about the demise of the Soviet Union. Although the end of the Cold War marked the end of a nuclear arms race between the United States and the Soviet Union, nuclear threats were still present. According to Melissa Fleming of the International Atomic Energy Agency, [W]hen the Cold War ended, thousands of highly knowledgeable scientists and engineers previously involved in the Soviet Union's weapons programme were laid off or found their incomes drastically reduced. Another legacy of the Cold War is the disturbing reports, albeit unsubstantiated, of missing nuclear weapons. 27 The collapse of the Soviet Union resulted in lack security and thousands of arms, including nuclear arms being sold on the black market. 28 The lack in nuclear security brings up risks of tactical nuclear weapons in the hands of terrorist organizations. 22 March 1997: Nuclear Summit between Clinton and Yeltsin U.S. President Bill Clinton and Russian President Boris Yeltsin reached an agreement in Helsinki, which would reduce nuclear arsenals as well as increase the security of nuclear arms. 29 The summit concentrated especially on the security of Russia’s nuclear arsenal. Since the fall of communism, Russia has suffered lax security standards and underpaid Russian troops have been caught selling weapons abroad. 30 Russia has suffered many accusations of stolen nuclear material since the end of the Cold War. 31 In the Summit, Yeltsin concentrated on putting up new security measures to ensure the safety of nuclear arms. 26 Center for Defense Information, “What if Terrorists go Nuclear?” Center for Defense Information, October 1, 2001. http://www.cdi.org/terrorism/nuclear.cfm (accessed October 21. 2008). 27 Fleming, Melissa, “Calculating the New Global Nuclear Terrorism Threat,” IAEA, November 1, 2001. http://www.iaea.org/NewsCenter/PressReleases/2001/nt_pressrelease.shtml. (accessed November 4, 2008). 28 Levi, Michael, On Nuclear Terrorism, (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 2007). 16. 29 Lippman, Thomas W, “ Clinton, Yeltsin, Agree on Arms Cuts and NATO,” The Washington Post, March 22, 1997. http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/inatl/longterm/summit/summit.htm. 30 Stern, Jessica, “Preventing, Portable Nukes,” The New York Times, April 10, 1996. LexisNexis. 31 Ibid.
R u t g e r s Mo d e l C o n g r e s s 8 December 2001: Nuclear Power Plant Inspection Reveals Security Lapses After a review by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, it was revealed that Indian Point Nuclear Power Plant lacked up-to-date security measures and needed to bolster their security on the plant. 32 The FBI recommended more rigorous inspection and testing of security mechanisms at the Indian Point plant, but stopped short of closing the plant until such time as reforms could be implemented. According to Paul Leventhal of the Nuclear Control Institute, this is especially troubling because “given the post 9/11 threat, we don't have the luxury of time for the FBI and the Nuclear Regulatory Commission to get their act together.” 33 The incident exposes the weaknesses in security at nuclear power plants in the United States. 8 May 2002: Dirty Bomb Plot Uncovered Chicago. 34 U.S. Citizen Jose Padilla was detained at O’Hare International Airport in During interrogation, it was revealed that Padilla as well as another al-Qaeda member plotted a dirty bomb attack that would have been set off in multiple locations in the Washington DC area. 35 The discovery of this plan and the lingering effects of September 11th made the United States aware of the possibility of a nuclear terrorism attack. May 2003: al-Qaeda Decrees the Use of Weapons of Mass Destruction In a fatwa, which is an Islamic religious decree, Radical Saudi Cleric Nasser al- Fahd decreed that the use of weapons of mass destruction is acceptable “if the infidels 32 Leventhal, Paul, “Kallstorm report make clear security lapses at Indian Point and the need to shut the plant down,” Nuclear Control Institute, December 13, 2001. http://www.nci.org/01NCI/12/kallstrom-pr.htm. (accessed November 11, 2008). 33 Ibid. 34 Stout, David, “US Indicts Padilla after 3 years in Pentagon Custody,” The New York Times, November 22, 2005. http://www.nytimes.com/2005/11/22/politics/22cnd-terror.html. 35 Smith, Greg B, “American Held in DC Nuke Plot Former street thug eyed dirty bomb hit,” Daily News, June 11, 2002. Lexis Nexis.