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Status Brief

Developmental Milestones/Developments to Date:

Current Assessment/State of the Field:




Betts, Richard. “The New Threat of Mass DestructionForeign Affairs. 26. January/February 1998

  1. ”The importance of the different types among WMD has shifted. Biological weapons should now be the most serious concern, with nuclear weapons second and chemicals a distant third.” – page 27
  2. ”The most troubling conclusion for foreign policy as a whole is that reducing the odds of attacks in the United States might require pulling back from involvement in some foreign conflicts. American activism to guarantee international stability is, paradoxically, the prime source of American vulnerability.” – page 28
  3. ”Rolling along in what some see as a revolution in military affairs, American forces continue to make unmatched use of state-of-the-art weapons, surveillance and information systems, and the organizational and doctrinal flexibility for managing the integration of these complex innovations into ‘systems of systems’ that is the key to modern military effectiveness.” – page 28
  4. ”The primary risk is not that enemies might lob some nuclear or chemical weapons at U.S. armored battalions or ships, but it is that they might attempt to punish the United States by triggering catastrophes in American cities.” – page 30
  5. “Biological weapons have received less attention than the others, but probably represent the greatest danger.” – page 30
  6. ”The 1993 Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC) requires the United States to destroy its stockpile.” – page 31
  7. ”One simple fact should worry Americans more about biological than about nuclear or chemical arms: unlike either of the other two, biological weapons combine maximum destructiveness and easy availability.” – page 32
  8. ”A host of minor measures can increase protection or recovery from biological, nuclear, or chemical effects. Examples are stockpiling or distribution of protective masks; equipment and training for decontamination; standby programs for mass vaccinations and emergency treatment with antibiotics; wider and deeper planning of emergency response procedures’ and public education about hasty sheltering and emergency actions to reduce individual vulnerability.” – page 37

Chemical, Military, WMD, CWC, Biosurveillance, U.S. Foreign Policy


Yang, Yu-Chu, “Chemical Detoxification of Nerve Agent VX“, Accounts of Chemical Research, Vol. 32, Issue 2, No. 2.

  1. “The nerve agent VX can be chemically detoxified via two major classes of selective chemical reactions under ambient conditions-nucleophilic substitution with exclusive P−S bond cleavage (e.g., using aqueous peroxycarbonate) and hydrolysis initiated by oxidation at sulfur (e.g., using aqueous peroxymonopersulfate).”
  2. “VX reacts with water or hydroxide with cleavage of both P−S and P−O bonds, and the thioic acid (3a) produced from P−O cleavage is almost as toxic as VX and is unreactive with anionic nucleophiles except under extreme conditions.”
  3. “Only limited success has been achieved with catalytic hydrolysis for VX. Most model compounds do not adequately simulate the unique and versatile reactivities of VX, and one must be cautious in inferring simulant data to VX.”

Chemical, WMD


Brennan, Richard et al. “Chemical Warfare Agents: Emergency Medical and Emergency Public Health Issues.Annals of Emergency Medicine, Volume 34 Issue 2. 191. August 1999

  1. ”Although it is prudent not to overstate the risk posed by chemical warfare agents (CWA), the proliferation of chemical, biological, and nuclear weapons (weapons of mass destruction [WMD]) was recently recognized by the US Congress as the most serious threat to national security.” – page 191
  2. “Risks to civilian populations include terrorism, military stockpiles, military use, and industrial accidents involving chemicals used as CWAs.”
  3. “To ensure that American cities and communities are appropriately prepared for a terrorist attack with a chemical, biological, or nuclear weapon, Congress passed The Defense Against Weapons of Mass Destruction Act of 1996 (WMD Act).” – page 192
  4. ”CWAs are broadly classified as nerve agents, vesicants, pulmonary agents, and cyanides (formerly bloody agents).” – page 194
  5. ”Their clinical effects, and their comparative advantages as weapons, vary according to their physiochemical characteristics, toxicity, and primary site of action.” – page 194
  6. ”Relevant issues in disaster preparedness for an incident involving a CWA include education and training of emergency personnel, disaster planning, public education, deployment of specialized teams, and stockpiling of appropriate antidotes.” – page 195
  7. ”The federal response to terrorism consists of 2 components: crisis management and consequence management. The lead federal agency for crisis management is the FBI and the lead federal agency for consequence management is FEMA.” – page 198
  8. ”Recent trends in terrorism, the production and transport of industrial chemicals, and the aging of the military stockpile have increased the risk that civilians may be exposed to CWAs.” – page 202
  9. “Principles of emergency response and medical treatment include levels of response, command and control, personal protective equipment, assessment, demarcation of the contaminated area, agent detection and identification, triage, decontamination, preparedness of the emergency department, protecting the public, medical treatment and antidotes, poison control centers, and surveillance.

Chemical, WMD, Public Health, Military, Japan, Sarin, CWC, Chemical Surveillance


Benjamin, Georges C. “Chemical and Biological Terrorism: Planning for the WorstPhysician Executive Volume 26 Issue 1. 80. January/February 2000.

  1. Chemical or biological terrorism is the use of pathogenic microbes or toxins derived from plants, animals, microbes, or chemical agents to achieve terror.” – page 80
  2. ”Chemical and biological weapons, like nuclear weapons, are categorized as weapons of mass destruction (WMD) because of the high number of potential victims that can result from their use.” – page 80 *
  3. ”While any chemical can be weaponized, the chemical agents traditionally of concern fall into four categories: nerve agents like sarin, which create an anticholinergic-like syndrome; vesicants like mustard gas, that cause a blistering or burn-like syndrome; cyanide, which interrupts aerobic metabolism; and riot control agents such as mace, which generally cause incapacitation.” – page 80
  4. ”Biological agents act like chemical agents but have a slower onset of action. Agents of concern include Ricin.” – page 81
  5. ”The ideal bioweapon is hard to detect from the usual microbial flora, has person-to-person spread, and is easy to aerosolize. There are two groups of organisms of public health concern: those that cause a high morbidity or a high mortality.” – page 81
  6. ”Examples of high morbidity organisms include salmonella, cholera, or E. coli. The number of highly toxic organisms is fortunately quite low and includes anthrax, smallpox, and the viruses that cause hemorrhagic fevers, plague, brucellosis, and tularemia.” – page 81
  7. “Clues that biological terrorist events have occurred include an unexplained increase in respiratory cases or deaths, or dead and dying animals. Epidemiological clues include diseases with the wrong mode of transmission, which occur in an inappropriate geographic distribution or infect a new or novel population.” – page 81
  8. “Components of a biological/chemical terrorism disaster plan: plan how to identify the threat; develop an effective public health disease surveillance system; link the public health system and the traditional medical care delivery system; develop command and control systems; determine hospital bed availability; define disease containment, isolation, and quarantine procedures; plan how to obtain extra life support equipment such as respirators; plan how to train clinical staff to identify high-risk unusual diseases; ensure non-clinical staff are trained on the management of suspicious packages and mail; identify experts; plan simple handling and transport; plan how to communicate high risk information; manage medical examiner cases; and maintain a crime scene.” – page 81
  9. ”Effective disease control strategies such as case finding, decontamination, prophylaxis and vaccination, and quarantine must be defined.” – page 82

Chemical, WMD, Bioterrorism, Public Health, Military, Sarin, Japan, Ricin, E. coli, Cholera, Salmonella, Anthrax, Smallpox, Hemorrhagic fever, Plague, Brucellosis, Tularemia, Prophylaxis, Vaccination, Quarantine


Seto, Yasuo, “The Sarin Gas Attack in Japan and the Related Forensic Investigation.” Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons. 14. June 2001.

  1. ”Lethal nerve gas attacks in the city of Matsumoto in 1994, and in the Tokyo subway system in 1995, led to the deaths of 19 people, as well as to a large number of injuries.” – page 14
  2. ”Aum Shinrikyo was established by Shoko Asahara, and it disseminated a unique doctrine that taught that one could kill another human being who continues to commit evil deeds, and is thus destined to go to hell. After failing to win support in the 1989 general election, the cult transformed itself into a terrorist group that produced arms in toxic gases.” – page 14
  3. ”While expanding its influence in Japan, Aum also set up branch offices overseas in the United States, Germany, and Sri Lanka.” – page 14
  4. ”Two days after the Sarin incident in Tokyo, a simultaneous raid of Aum facilities was launched by 2,500 police in connection with the imprisonment of a notary public manager who had died while being detained.” – page 15
  5. ”Using established forensic toxicological techniques, it was found that during the Matsumoto incident, Sarin gas was sprayed to murder the local court judges, but nearby residents also became exposed to the toxins.” – page 16
  6. ”In the Tokyo subway Sarin incident, the cult decided to use Sarin in trains on three subway station lines, all of which stop at Kasumigaseki station near the Matsumoto Police Department. The perpetrators boarded the subway trains with plastic bags containing Sarin, and released the gas by prodding the bags open with the metal tips of umbrellas.” – pages 16, 17

Chemical, Bioterrorism, Sarin, Japan, Law Enforcement, Organizations/Groups, WMD


Thom Shanker, “U.S. Tested A Nerve Gas In Hawaii“, November 01, 2002, The New York Times, [http://www.nytimes.com/2002/11/01/us/us-tested-a-nerve-gas-in-hawaii.html?src=pm]. Last Checked 20 September 2011

  1. “According to the reports, released today by the Deployment Health Support Directorate, a branch of the Pentagon office of Health Affairs, the Army detonated warheads filled with Sarin in the forest reserve in April and May of 1967.”
  2. “The goal of the test, named Red Oak, Phase 1, was to ‘evaluate the effectiveness of Sarin-filled 155-mm artillery projectiles and 115-mm rocket warheads in a tropical jungle environment,’ the report states.”
  3. “Pentagon officials said 46 exercises were conducted by the Deseret Test Center, based at Fort Douglas, Utah, from 1962 to 1973. Today’s release brings to 41 the number of tests whose reports have been declassified.”
  4. “The tests were not conducted to study the effects of chemical and biological weapons on human health. Instead, those on land were to learn more about how chemical and biological weapons would be affected by climate, environment and other combat conditions. Tests at sea were intended to gauge the vulnerability of warships and how they might respond to attack.”

Chemical, WMD, Military, Sarin


Oppenheimer, AndyCBRN Weapons: The Growing ThreatNATO’s Nations & Partners for Peace, Volume 48 Issue 3. Pages 14-23. 2003

  1. “Before and since the September 11 attacks, evidence has mounted that terrorist groups and terrorist-sponsoring nations are developing or acquiring CBRN capabilities.” – page 16
  2. “North Korea created an international crisis in late 2002, when an official admitted to a US envoy that his country had restarted a programme to produce highly enriched uranium (HEU)” – page 16
  3. “The crisis gathered pace when North Korea withdrew from the nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty (NPT); expelled inspectors from the United Nations-backed International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA); and announced it had restarted its nuclear reprocessing plant at Yongbyon to produce plutonium.” – page 16
  4. “The world’s attention is now on Iran, on which pressure is mounting from not just the US, but also from the UN, the EU, and Russia, to sign an Additional Protocol to the NPT to allow the IAEA more access to Iran’s nuclear sites.” – page 16
  5. “…Iranians continue to insist that they are developing a nuclear power industry only, claiming it needs to save its vast oil reserves for export.” – page 16
  6. “The actions of North Korea and Iran threaten to consign the NPT to history if they continue in their current nuclear direction.” – page 17
  7. “Iran also has a well-established CBW (chemical and biological weapons) programme… it has stocks of up to 2,000 tonnes of weaponized CW agents, including choking, blister, and blood agents. The US believes that Iran has also produced the nerve agent Sarin.” – page 17
  8. “Syria is believed to have one of the developing world’s most extensive CW programmes, having allegedly received CW assistance and chemical agents from Egypt in the 1970s, and by 1986 had an indigenous capability to produce and weaponise sarin and VX nerve agents, and mustard blister agent.” – page 17
  9. “Unlike several of its Arab neighbors (Iran, Iraq, and Libya), Syria has never tested CW.” – page 17

NPT, WMD, Export Control, Iran, North Korea, Syria


Stellman, Jeanne, et al., “The Extent and Patterns of Usage of Agent Orange and Other Herbicides in Vietnam.” Nature, Vol. 422, 681. April 17, 2003.

  1. ”Herbicides including Agent Orange were sprayed by the United States forces for military purposes during the Vietnam War (1961-1971) at a rate more than an order of magnitude greater than for similar domestic weed control.” – page 681
  2. ”Herbicide mixtures, nicknamed by the colored identification band painted on their 208-liter barrels, were used by the United States and Republic of Vietnam forces to defoliate forests and mangroves, to clear perimeters of military installations, and to destroy “unfriendly” crops as a tactic for decreasing enemy food supplies. The best known mixture was Agent Orange” – page 681
  3. ”Agent White was less satisfactory than Agent Orange because several weeks were required for defoliation to begin. Agent Blue was the agent of choice for crop destruction by desiccation throughout the entire war.” – page 682
  4. ”Although Agent Purple is, indeed, likely to have been more highly contaminated with tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin (TCDD), it is also likely that the mean TCDD levels in Agent Orange were far higher for much of the herbicide use.” – page 684
  5. ”Large numbers of Vietnamese civilians appear to have been directly exposed to herbicidal agents, some of which were sprayed at levels at least an order of magnitude greater than for similar US domestic purposes. Other analyses being carried out by us show large numbers of American troops also to have been directly exposed or to have served in recently sprayed areas.” – page 686
  6. ”NAS-1974, a comprehensive study carried out by The National Academy of Science, found the HERBS file, a chronological record which contained flight path coordinates of Air Force spraying missions, to be a powerful tool for studying exposure to herbicides.” – page 686

Military, Public Health, Chemical, Food Supply, WMD


Davis, Jim, “The Looming Biological Warfare StormAir & Space Power Journal, Volume 17, Issue 1. 57. Spring 2003.

  1. ”Until very recently, the lack of focus on this subject (biological warfare) has resulted in a lack of appropriate funding and accountability.” – page 58
  2. ”Unless we focus appropriate dollars and develop a coherent national plant to prepare for and prevent such actions, the United States will likely suffer an enormous economic loss that could even lead to our demise as a superpower.” – page 58
  3. ”A belief in one or more of at least six false assumptions or myths helps explain why individuals, including senior civilian and military leaders, do not believe that a mass-casualty biological warfare (BW) attack will occur.” – page 58
  4. ”Myth one: there never really has been a significant BW attack” – page 58
  5. ”Even before the fall 2001 anthrax terrorism in the United States, incidents of BW and bioterrorism have occurred on multiple occasions.” – page 58
  6. ”Today, more countries have active biological warfare programs than at any other time in history, which increases the likelihood that BW will be used again in the future.” – page 58
  7. ”Myth two: The United States has never been attacked by a BW agent” – page 59
  8. ”Myth three” you have to be extremely intelligent, highly educated, and well-funded to grow, weaponized, and deploy a BW agent” – page 59
  9. ”Dr. Tara O’Toole, deputy director for the Center for Civilian Biodefense Studies at Johns Hopkins University, believes we have probably crossed over the threshold from ‘too difficult’ to accomplish to ‘doable by a determined individual or group’” – page 59
  10. “Much of the technical information is readily available on the internet, in libraries, and through mail order channels that provide ‘how-to’ manuals.” – page 59
  11. ”Myth four: biological warfare must be too difficult because it has failed when it has been tried” – page 59
  12. ”Myth five: there are moral restraints that have kept and will keep BW agents from being used” – page 60
  13. ”Morality can be marshaled as a reason both to limit BW use and to advocate mass killings – depending on the decision maker’s values and perspectives” – page 60
  14. ”Myth six: the long incubation period required for BW agents before onset of symptoms makes BW useless to users” – page 60
  15. ”There have already been multiple BW attacks, and to a savvy weaponeer, the incubation period can be used as an advantage rather than a disadvantage.” – page 60
  16. ”There are two primary motivations that might drive an adversary to attack the United States with a BW agent. The first motivation is to gradually ‘erode US influence’ as a world superpower. The second is categorized as ‘revenge or hate’” – page 61
  17. ”The author believes that there are three most likely BW scenarios the United States and its allies might face in the future: an agroterrorist event against the United States, a BW attack on United States and allied troops in the Middle East, and/or a bioterrorist attack against a large population center in the United States or an allied state.” – page 61
  18. ”Such myths continue to inhibit the adequate funding of US and allied biodefense” – page 66

Military, Anthrax, Plague, Smallpox, Tularemia, Sarin, Japan, Iraq, Iran, Nonproliferation, WMD


Christian Science Monitor, “Russia’s Mountain of WMD”, 18 February 2004, Vol. 96, Issue 57

  1. “‘Nunn-Lugar’ program to dismantle, destroy, and secure weapons of mass destruction in the former Soviet Union.”
  2. “Since 1991, all of the nuclear weapons from Ukraine, Kazakhstan, and Belarus  have been removed; 6,252 nuclear warheads have been deactivated; and more  than 20,000 scientists employed in WMD have found peaceful work.”
  3. “But it leaves more than 7,000 warheads to go, and hundreds of metric tons of highly enriched uranium and plutonium to properly secure.”
  4. “Most of the 40,000 tons of chemical weapons – much of it in suitcase-size shells – has yet to be destroyed.”
  5. “Some critics, noting the administration’s decreased budget request for 2005, argue that more funding would speed things up.”
  6. “Serious bureaucratic delays are stalling efforts, preventing allocated money from being spent.”

Russia, Ukraine, Belarus, WMD


Fiorill, Joe, “U.S. Promises New WMD Detection Capabilities Within a YearGlobal Security Newswire. February 23, 2004 [http://www.nti.org/gsn/article/us-promises-new-wmd-detection-capabilities-within-a-year-1255/] Last Checked October 6, 2013

  1. “WASHINGTON — The United States will over the next year develop new capabilities for detecting nuclear material in shipping containers and a new generation of biological- and chemical-agent detectors, U.S. Homeland Security Secretary Tom Ridge said today.”
  2. “They included greater cooperation with business; better interoperability of communications and other emergency management equipment; better citizen preparedness; and a more standardized, integrated picture of the terrorist threat and of the level of vulnerability to attack around the country.”
  3. “”Over the year,” he said, “Homeland Security will be buttoning up our lab coats a little higher and committing to specific goals ― developing new capabilities for detecting the presence of nuclear materials in shipping containers and vehicles and developing next-generation biological and chemical detectors, ones uniquely sensitive enough to redirect air flow to allow evacuation of buildings if a dangerous pathogen is detected.””
  4. “Ridge predicted “real-time nationwide connectivity between all 50 states and territories” within the year, including “cyberconnectivity” within three months; a secure videoconferencing network in all governors’ offices by July; an integrated national database of critical infrastructure by December; and the expansion of the Container Security Initiative, which currently provides increased scrutiny of shipping containers at 17 foreign ports, to 10 more such ports within the next 12 months.”
  5. “Ridge named the WMD detection programs as his top priorities for the department’s Science and Technology Directorate.”

Container Security, WMD, CSI, Homeland Security


Editors, “OECD Urges Tighter Container SecurityGlobal Security Newswire. June 14, 2004. http://www.nti.org/gsn/article/oecd-urges-tighter-container-security/ Last Checked October 6, 2013

  1. “A comprehensive international strategy for container security is needed to keep terrorists from tampering with cargo or setting up their own trade identities to ship dangerous materials, according to a report released last month by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development.”
  2. ““Although elements of such a framework are emerging in different countries, regions and segments of global industries, a fully integrated approach has not been implemented anywhere in the world yet,” the report says, according to the CalTrade Report.”
  3. “The weakest link in the transportation chain is container security during inland transport, according to the report, Container Transport Security Across Modes.”
  4. “The report also concludes that the threat of weapons of mass destruction being delivered through an anonymous shipping container “has risen above other terrorist-linked threats to containerized transport and has become a principal driver of international transport security policy since 2001.””
  5. “The report focuses on two particular terrorist attack scenarios: a hijacking in which terrorists intercept and tamper with a delivery; and a “Trojan horse” situation in which terrorists adopt false identities in order to move dangerous shipments.”
  6. “The organization recommends establishing “clear container handling rules; increasing security at rail yards, road stops and loading facilities; sealing containers with high-security mechanical seals; and other measures to minimize security risks.”

Container Security, WMD


Scrivo, Karen, L, “GAO Evaluates Programs Targeting Cargo OverseasGlobal Security Newswire. March 12, 2004. http://www.nti.org/gsn/article/gao-evaluates-programs-targeting-cargo-overseas-1488/ Last Checked October 12, 2013.

  1. “WASHINGTON — Spurred by the security concerns of a bipartisan group of lawmakers, the GAO has launched an investigation into the effectiveness of two Bush administration initiatives aimed at targeting suspicious overseas cargo before it reaches U.S. ports.”
  2. “The investigation comes as the Homeland Security Department is asking Congress to approve a $25 million increase for the Container Security Initiative, which is designed to screen U.S.-bound cargo in foreign ports, and $15.2 million more for the Customs Trade Partnership Against Terrorism program, which seeks to help importers and ocean freight companies improve security.”
  3. “Several lawmakers, including Senate Governmental Affairs Chairwoman Susan Collins and Governmental Affairs Investigations Subcommittee Chairman Norm Coleman (R-Minn.) have told the GAO they are concerned that the programs may not be doing enough to block terrorists from sneaking nuclear or bio-chemical weapons and other dangerous materials aboard ships bound for busy U.S. ports.”
  4. “The delegation discovered a low percentage of containers were actually inspected, according to one participant on the trip. At Hamburg, U.S. Customs personnel were miles away from the port and their foreign counterparts. Because the CSI program is voluntary, foreign port inspectors can refuse requests by Customs officials for further scrutiny of suspicious freight containers, this source said.”
  5. “Under the CSI program, officers from the Homeland Security Department’s Customs and Border Protection Bureau work with their foreign counterparts at participating ports overseas to target high-risk cargo containers.”
  6. “Since CSI has been operational — not many containers have been checked, according to Stephen Flynn, an expert on transportation security at the Council on Foreign Relations. This is due in part to the department’s limited resources, the program’s dependence on the host country’s friendliness and concerns about “crying wolf” too often, he said.”
  7. “Decisions to inspect containers are often based on the cargo manifests, whether the container comes from troubled parts of the word or an unknown shipper or is accompanied by bungled paperwork, Flynn said. Cargo manifests can be very unreliable and terrorists know who the trusted shippers are, he said.”

Container Security, CSI, WMD


Prosser, Andrew, et. al, “The Proliferation Security Initiative in Perspective,” June 16, 2004, http://www.cdi.org/pdfs/psi.pdf

  1. “PSI states remain secretive about the methods being employed and the number of actual interdictions being carried out.”
  2. can board vessels “flying a given country’s flaf at sea” that participates in the initiative
  3. the power to stop and seize in high seas is “virtually non-existent”, can stop ships flying own flag and those that aren’t flagged
  4. internal waters, authority diminished in territorial seas
  5. “freedom of navigation on the high seas is limited in situations of slave trading, piracy, illicit narcotics trafficking, and unauthorized broadcasting, while innocent passage is inalienable ‘so long as it is not prejudicial to the peace, good order, or security of the coastal state.”
  6. “where a suspected WMD cargo is transported under the flag of a foreign state that does not wish to grant PSI member countries permission to board its ship, PSI participants will usually not have the authority to act.”
  7. “states not bound by an international treaty prohibiting the transfer of WMD technologies are permitted to transport mass destruction weapons cargoes”
  8. “interception of WMD transfers at sea might be viewed as consistent with UNSC resolutions”
  9. If a country opposes the initiative, PSI operations cannot be carried out

PSI, UNSCR 1540, Nonproliferation, WMD, Law Enforcement, ship boarding agreements


Byers, Michael, “Policing the High Seas: The Proliferation Security Initiative”, The American Journal of International Law, Vol. 98, No. 3 (July, 2004), pp. 526-545.

  1. “Much of PSI involves nothing more than the consistent and rigorous application of existing rights under national and international law. Concurrently, the initiative promotes the development of new legal authorities by way of bilateral and multilateral treaties.” Pg. 528
  2. “A ship may be forcibly boarded on the high seas if it is reasonably suspected of engaging in piracy or the slave trade; lacks a flag (i.e., a single country of registration); or is broadcasting in an unauthorized manner toward, or is registered in, the state that wishes to board.” Pg. 527
  3. “Ships flagged by non-consenting states may be searched when in foreign harbors if reasonably suspected to be carrying armaments that have not been declared.” Pg. 531
  4. “In certain circumstances, customary international law might already allow for the high seas interdiction of suspected WMD or missile-laden vessels flagged by non-consenting states. These circumstances could arise when the vessel posed an imminent threat, either to the interdicting state or to a third state that requested the interdiction.” Pg. 532
  5. “The problem of non-consenting states such as North Korea will remain, leaving those wishing to take high seas action against vessels flying such flags with three options: securing a United Nations Security Council resolution that authorizes interdiction; claiming that the vessels pose a threat that falls within the scope of an existing, or evolving, customary international law right of preemptive self-defense; or simply violating international law.” Pg. 528
  6. “States may choose to breach the rules without advancing strained and potentially destabilizing legal justifications. By doing so, they allow their action to be assessed subsequently, not in terms of the law, but in terms of its political and moral legitimacy, with a view to mitigating their responsibility rather than exculpating themselves.” Pg. 543

PSI, Law Enforcement, WMD, North Korea


Winner, Andrew C., “The Proliferation Security Initiative: The New Face of Interdiction,” The Center for Strategic and International Studies and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, THE WASHINGTON QUARTERLY, Spring 2005, 28:2, pp. 129-143.

  1. “PSI employs different tools and focuses on the interdiction of WMD-related items in the transport phase.”
  2. deterrence, denial of shipments causing to seek other, more difficult methods of obtaining WMD’s.
  3. PSI ship boarding agreements based on narcotics ship boarding agreements.

PSI, WMD, Interdiction, Nonproliferation


Cotton, James, “The Proliferation Security Initiative and North Korea: Legality and Limitations of a Coalition Strategy”, Security Dialogue, Vol. 36 Issue 2, pg. 193-211, June 2005.

  1. “Under current norms, the export of missiles by non-MTCR (Missile Technology Control Regime) countries to non-MTCR recipients does not violate any international agreements or obligations.” Pg. 197
  2. “The PSI lacks sufficient basis in international law to legitimize the interdiction of alleged North Korean WMD and weapons shipments on likely shipping routes.”  Pg. 208
  3. “The vessels in question will most likely be North Korean flagged and will avoid state jurisdictions where these activities may be subject to challenge.” Pg. 197
  4. “If the USA comes to determine that the threat posed by North Korean proliferation is now so great that it cannot await changes to international law or specific UN endorsement, Washington may well seek the backing of a like-minded coalition for more stringent action.” Pg. 204
  5. “It is not yet possible to reconcile the ambitious intentions of the PSI with current international law and practice. Further cooperation with key states will be necessary, and a specific UN Security Council endorsement will be required.” Pg. 201
  6. “If it is supposed that the PSI is especially applicable to North Korea, then any program to restrict the movement of goods in and out of North Korea would require the active cooperation of China and South Korea, given the extensive use of Chinese ports and railways by North Korean commercial entities, and also the extensive and poorly regulated inter-Korean trade.” Pg. 196
  7. “The formation of a truly effective PSI coalition would require the full participation of South Korea. This is the case not only for reasons of geography and because US air and naval units would most likely need to operate from or use bases in South Korean territory, but also because since 2000 South Korea has emerged as North Korea’s most important trading partner and because there have even been some tentative agreements between Seoul and Pyongyang to permit shipping from the North to use South Korean territorial waters.” Pg. 206-207
  8. “Only with regime change in Pyongyang will the danger North Korea poses both to the USA and to world order be removed. This is held to be the case since ‘rogue’ regimes do not necessarily operate according to the conventional canons of deterrence, nor can they be trusted not to pass WMDs to terrorists.” Pg. 205

PSI, Jurisdiction, WMD, North Korea, South Korea, China



  1. “Al-Qa’ida documents recovered from a training camp in Afghanistan show interest in a variety of biological agents and mentioned plague, anthrax, cholera and tularemia.”
  2. “To determine threat, we examine an actor’s capability and intent. We assess capability based on factors such as the actor’s level of skill or knowledge, their ability to acquire a biological agent, the materials necessary to grow the agent and their capacity to effectively disseminate a biological agent. For intent, in addition to the actor’s desire to simply use biological weapons, we discern which agents they are more likely to pursue, their preferred method of deployment and which targets they intend to attack.”
  3. “Last month one of our analysts provided some of the Committee members with a classified briefing on the specifics of the current bioterrorist threat to the Homeland.  I will not be able to revisit this classified threat assessment in this open forum but we would be happy to provide this information to additional members in a closed session.”
  4. “On occasion, we require quick access to information that does not reside within IA. In these cases, our analysts are supported to the Biodefense Knowledge Center (BKC)—a 24×7 support cell based at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory and sponsored by the S&T Directorate. The BKC possesses vast repositories of biological technical information and is able to access SMEs from around the country, such as the U.S. Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases (USAMRIID), the U.S. Army Medical Research Institute for Chemical Defense (USAMRICD), and the Armed Forces Medical Intelligence Center (AFMIC), in support of a tasking from IA. The BKC compiles the appropriate information and relays it to our analysts who integrate the information into their finished intelligence analysis.”
  5. “Our analysts regularly collaborate with other intelligence agencies, particularly NCTC, DIA, FBI, and CIA.  We also work with experts from government, academic, and private institutions and partner with scientists who keep us abreast of their potential areas of concern and the trends they see.  Interaction with outside public and private sector institutions keeps us well-informed of new and emerging technology that may be exploited or misused by malicious actors.  For example, IA recently hosted a workshop on emerging biotechnologies and the future biological threat.  This provided a forum for non-governmental experts to provide IA with information of which they believe we should monitor.”
  6. “Our analysts are broadly focused and access a wide array of information in gathering source material for our assessments. They use all-source intelligence, scientific and technical information, terrorist profiles, historical trends, and open source information such as media reports and scientific journal articles.”
  7. “We keep current on foreign State biological weapons program developments as these activities may have implications for future terrorist events. We look at the intent of the enemy, their capabilities, potential scenarios, and attack vectors. Working with counterterrorist experts in the Community, we develop link charts on potential associates here in the United States of operatives abroad who may have received training in WMD capabilities or have knowledge of WMD programs.”
  8. “we assessed the implications of the H2N2 influenza shipment in which a U.S. contractor sent a highly virulent strain of influenza to hundreds of laboratories worldwide. We also recently published an Information Bulletin advising State and local Law Enforcement officials of
    indicators of covert anthrax production. Generally, our products fall into two categories: threat assessments and feasibility assessments.”
  9. “Threat Assessments. Threat assessments are written on known actors and are based on specific intelligence. To determine threat, we examine an actor’s capability and intent. We calculate capability based on factors such as a particular actor’s level of skill or knowledge; their ability to acquire a biological agent and the materials necessary to grow the agent; and their capacity to effectively disseminate a biological agent. For intent, we consider more than just an actor’s desire to use biological weapons. We attempt to discern which agents they are more likely to pursue, their preferred method of deployment, and which targets they intend to attack.”
  10. “Feasibility Assessments. Intelligence is never complete or all-knowing and we cannot wait until intelligence is received in order to consider plausible scenarios or the impact of a particular technique or technology on a bioterrorist’s capability. To move beyond this limitation, IA, in partnership with S&T, conducts assessments of biological processes, emerging technologies, and techniques and determines their feasibility for use in a bioterrorism event.  These assessments include indicators that will help to identify if a particular scenario begins to unfold so we can prevent or disrupt events before they occur. In conjunction with the feasibility assessment, we are producing unclassified excerpts with the indicators which are distributed widely to local, State, Federal officials as well as the private sector to enhance awareness in the field and to increase suspicious activity reporting and trigger investigations where necessary.”
  11. “IA also has produced several bioterrorism-specific ‘‘red team’’ products, which explore issues from a terrorist’s perspective using nongovernmental experts and creative thinkers. These topics have included terrorist use of genetically modified food and recombinant DNA technologies to damage the U.S. food supply; possible terrorist exploitation of a U.S. flu vaccine shortage; and the safety and security impacts of a pandemic influenza outbreak.
  12. “Under the BioShield legislation, DHS is charged with assessing current and emerging threats of chemical, biological, radiological, and nuclear agents; and determining which of such agents present a material threat against the United States population. S&T, supported by IA, has been conducting Material Threat Assessments (MTAs) and Material Threat Determinations (MTDs) in order to guide near term BioShield requirements and acquisitions.”
  13. “MTAs … are speculative and represent a best estimate of how an adversary may create a high-consequence event using the agent/weapon in question. Currently, MTAs are drafted by the S&T and IA provides comments on the assessment before it is provided to HHS. In our review, we ensure that the assessment reflects what IA assesses is the general capability of terrorist groups that are pursuing biological weapons.”
  14. “MTAs result in an estimate of the number of exposed individuals, the geographical extent of the exposure, and other collateral effects. If these consequences are of such a magnitude to be of significant concern to our national security, the Secretary of DHS then issues a formal Material Threat Determination to the Secretary of HHS, which initiates the BioShield process. To date, one MTA has been completed for anthrax and MTAs for plague, botulinum toxin, tularemia, radiological devices and chemical nerve agents are underway and an MTA for viral hemorrhagic fevers will be initiated next month. MTDs have been approved for four agents: smallpox, anthrax, botulinum toxin, and radiological/nuclear devices.”
  15. “IA, in cooperation with NCTC and the FBI, is providing WMD outreach briefings around the country. These briefings outline the terrorist WMD threat, including descriptions of the types of weapons used and indicators and warnings aimed at increase awareness and reporting. In the near future, we hope to expand these briefings to other audiences such as academia and the private sector to further increase awareness and reporting.”
  16. “IA will be playing a key role in supplying current intelligence to the National Biosurveillance Integration System (NBIS) operations center once it begins operation later this summer. NBIS will fuse information on human, plant, and animal health with environmental monitoring of air, food, and water systems. This information will be integrated with threat and intelligence information to provide real-time situational awareness and identify anomalies or trends of concern to the Homeland Security Operations Center.”

Project Bioshield, Al-Qaeda, Information Policy, Academia, Lab Safety, Flu, Vaccination, Law Enforcement, WMD, Plague, Anthrax, Biosurveillance, Nuclear, Radiological Surveillance, Cholera, Tularemia


Steiner, Wes, et al., “Detection of Aqueous phase Chemical Warfare Agent Degradation Products by Negative Mode Ion Mobility Time-of-Flight Mass Spectrometry [IM(tof)MS]Journal of the American Society for Mass Spectrometry. 241. January 18, 2006. http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S104403050500961X

  1. ”Chemical warfare agents (CWA), by convention, are classified as lethal nerve, vesicant, blood, or pulmonary agents” – page 241
  2. ”In general, CWA hydrolysis and degradation products have been found to exhibit a higher degree of stability and persistence in the environment than their corresponding parent agents.” – page 242
  3. ”The improvement of ion mobility orthogonal time-of-flight mass spectrometer [IM(tof)MS] development greatly expands the capacity of IM(tof)MS technology to significantly decrease the potential for false positive responses when screening for CWA.” – page 242
  4. ”The main advantage of IM(tof)MS technology over IMS or MS technology alone is its ability to provide rapid 2-D data acquisition spectra with the capacity to electronically couple and decouple CID to generate ion fragmentation patterns.” – page 244
  5. ”It was possible to clearly determine each of the parent ions, respective collision induced dissociation (CID) fragments, signal intensity, mobility drift, and mass flight times produced from within a single experimental run.” – page 244

Chemical, WMD


Perman, Ben, “Provide the Capability for Interdiction Operations”, U.S. Naval Institute Proceedings, Jan2006, Vol. 132 Issue 1.

  1. “Despite the catastrophic consequences of WMD and the asymmetric nature of their threat, maritime powers such as the United States have a unique opportunity to gain the upper hand, because all WMDs will probably be on board a commercial vessel at some point during the proliferation cycle.”
  2. “International law and the economic forces that drive international shipping (and, by extension, smuggling) lead to the conclusion that the most effective locations to focus interdiction operations are areas where all elements of jurisdiction intersect.”
  3. “High seas interdiction operations, however, are tactically complex, demand excellent intelligence, require large commitments of resources, and may lack sufficient authority and jurisdiction to withstand legal review.”
  4. “One possible limitation is that, without detailed intelligence, the boarding team is not aware of any one item, or situation, that indicates the presence of weapons of mass destruction.”
  5. “Equipping all boarding teams with a common detection and analysis suite will overcome this limitation and provide an additional arena for overt intelligence collection.”
  6. “Boarding teams should be equipped with modern, accurate spectrometers that can discriminate between most radionuclides and can provide the on-scene commander with the data required to make informed decisions.”
  7. “If the threat of WMD entering the United States is from maritime shipments, it is clear that some effort must be made to provide boarding teams with simple detection kits.”

PSI, WMD, Jurisdiction, Biodetection


Auerswald, David P., “Deterring Nonstate WMD Attacks,” Political Science Quarterly, Volume 121, Number 4, 2006, pg 543-569.

  1. “For deterrence to work against an individual, a terrorist or crime group, or a nation-state, you must either increase the costs that the entity has to pay, or decrease the benefits they get, should they change their behavior.” * “PSI is both defensive and deterrent in nature.”
  2. “UNSC Resolution 1540 makes it a global crime to traffic in WMD materials or delivery systems, demands improvements in border controls and internal security over WMD materials, and sets the legal framework for future interdiction and punishment.”

WMD, Biodefense, PSI, UNSCR 1540, deterrence by denial and punishment


Borman, Matthew. “Implementation in the Export Administration Regulations of the United States’ Rescission of Libya’s Designation as a State Sponsor of Terrorism and Revisions Applicable to IraqFederal Register, Volume 71, Issue 169. 51,714. August 25, 2006

  1. ”The Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) is amending the Export Administration Regulations (EAR) to implement the June 30, 2006 rescission of Libya’s designation as a state sponsor of terrorism.” – page 51714
  2. ”This action is the latest in a series of steps taken by the U.S. Government to reflect the improvement in the bilateral relationship since Libya’s announcement in December 2003 that it was renouncing terrorism and giving up its weapons of mass destruction programs.” – page 51714
  3. ”On April 29, 2004, BIS published an amendment to the EAR that allowed for the licensing and authorization of the export or reexport of dual-use items to Libya.” – page 51714
  4. ”On May 15, 2006, the President submitted a report to Congress certifying that Libya had not provided any support for international terrorism during the preceding 6 months and that Libya had provided assurances that it would not support future acts of international terrorism.” – page 51715
  5. ”Items controlled only for anti-terrorism (AT) reasons on the commerce control list (CCL) will no longer be subject to a licensing requirement for export or reexport to Libya, except for the end-use and end- user requirements.” – page 51715
  6. ”Under the terms of the revisions in regards to Iraq, items covered by eight ECCNs which previously required a license for export or reexport to Iraq, or transfer within Iraq, for AT reasons now require a license for export or reexport to Iraq, or transfer within Iraq, for Regional Stability (RS) reasons.” – page 51716

Export Control, U.S. Foreign Policy, WMD, Libya, Iraq


Hillen, JohnDefense Trade ControlsDISAM Journal of International Security Assistance Management, Volume 28, Issue 2. 83-88. Winter 2006.

  1. “The following are excerpts of the address to the 18th Annual Global Trade Controls Conference November 3, 2005” – page 83
  2. “We are here today at this conference to talk about export controls, which are nonproliferation in action.” – page 83
  3. “It is clear that combating the twin threats of terrorism and proliferation will be one of the central tasks of the new century… All our energies must be bent to prevent this sort of situation.” – page 83
  4. “Enemies of modernism and open societies are on the move. They are constantly changing their tactics, locales, modalities, technologies, command structures, and methods of procurement” – page 83
  5. “This year, two Iranians, Mahoud Seif and Shahrazed Mir Gholikhan, were indicted in a U.S. court and convicted in an Austrian court for attempting to smuggle Generation III night vision goggles to Iran.” – page 83
  6. “This year, dual Lebanese-Canadian citizen Naji Antoine Khalil pled guilty in a U.S. court to attempting to export night vision equipment and infrared aiming devices to Hizballah.” – page 83
  7. “This year, Colombian citizen Carlos Gamarra-Murillo pled guilty in a U. S. court to brokering and exporting defense articles without a license.” – page 83
  8. “One of the responsibilities of the Bureau of Political Military Affairs … is to conduct a program to destroy Man-portable Air Defense System (MANPADS) to keep them out of terrorist hands” – page 83
  9. “Defense export controls are an integral part of our broader security agenda, whether it is the global war on terrorism, preventing the spread of weapons of mass destruction, or bolstering regional stability around the globe.” – page 84
  10. “First and foremost, we’re responded to these complexities in part through more aggressive compliance efforts” – page 85
  11. “Where the export control sins aren’t sufficiently serious to require criminal prosecution, we can resort to civil enforcement actions.” – page 85
  12. “We also encourage industry to self-report violations uncovered by their internal compliance programs, and last year we received 396 of these voluntary disclosures, more than one a day, every day, including Christmas”
  13. “… we have instituted an expedited licensing procedure for the urgent needs of our Coalition partners in Afghanistan and Iraq” – page 85
  14. “One step we have taken to meet this growth is our new system for fully electronic defense trade, which is making our export licensing process faster, simpler, and more efficient” – page 86
  15. “Not only has defense trade become more complex, but the nature of what is being exported has become more sophisticated as well. For the most part, “defense articles” used to mean weapons themselves and their component parts. But today the most sensitive defense exports don’t necessarily go “bang.” – page 86
  16. “Given the increasingly global nature of defense trade, a key element of our defense export policy is to strengthen international export controls, which is also a major pillar of our broader nonproliferation policy” – page 87

Export Control, Nonproliferation, WMD, Military, Compliance, Industry


Forden, Geoffrey, “How the World’s Most Underdeveloped Nations Get the World’s Most Dangerous Weapons,” Technology and Culture, 2007, pp. 92-103.

  1. “Iraqi biological weapons administrative infrastructure relied on its own mytoxin experts, who encouraged first research and then production.”
  2. “According to the Iraq Survey Group’s ”Comprehensive Report”, the Iraqis began research on the powerful nerve agent VX in 1985 with a literature search for published work on its synthesis and production.”
  3. “In 1975, the Sunday Times of London revealed that the British patent office had, a number of years earlier, approved and published the formula and method of synthesis for a whole family of organophosphate chemicals, including VX.”
  4. “A machinist can just as easily learn to operate a flow-forming machine by making a tuba horn as a rocket nuzzle; a technician can learn to control a fermenter to brew a vaccine as well as a pathogen; producing a nerve agent is not so different from producing a pesticide. As such beneficial knowledge spreads–and no one would deny a developing country the right to produce vaccines or refine its own agricultural chemicals–it will become that much easier for proliferators to find the necessary population of skilled workers already within the country.” *”We still need our supply-side-oriented nonproliferation regimes to try to prevent crucial technologies from being shipped to countries that might abuse them.”

Tacit Knowledge, A.Q. Khan, Dual Use, Bioterrorism, WMD, Synthetic Biology, Open Science, Developing Countries


Hodgkinson, Sandra L. et.al, “Challenges to Maritime Interception Operations in the War on Terror: Bridging the Gap,AMERICAN UNIVERSITY INTERNATIONAL LAW REVIEW, Washington College of Law, 22 Am. U. Int’l L. Rev. 583, 2007.

  1. MIOs- Maritime interception Operations – to deter, deny, disrupt movement of terrorists and terrorist related materials
  2. maritime interdiction as “anticipatory self-defense”
  3. PSI – more than 75 participating nations
  4. “PSI does not specifically establish any boarding authority and does not provide participating states with any new legal authority to conduct interdictions in intl waters”
  5. SOSAN incident helped in the development of PSI – Spanish forces found “fifteen scud missiles” along with the reported cement on a North Korean ship; brought to the attention of Spanish forces
  6. “PSI was officially announced by President Bush on May 31, 2003 in Krakow, Poland”
  7. BBC China – German owned ship – thousands of “gas centrifuge components that can be used to enrich uranium” were found and recovered; brought to attention of US and British intelligence, components recovered in Italy
  8. Post October 2003 – US has formed bilateral boarding agreements with 6 nations

Nonproliferation, PSI, WMD, Law Enforcement, Interdiction


Song, Yann-Huei, “The U.S.-Led Proliferation Security Initiative and UNCLOS: Legality, Implementation, and an Assessment”, Ocean Development & International Law, 38: 101-145 (2007).

  1. “UNCLOS, which is considered ‘[a] Constitution for the Oceans,’… has been praised as the most comprehensive political and legislative work ever undertaken by the United Nations.” (pg.102)
  2. “There is nothing in UNCLOS that explicitly prohibits the possession or transportation of ‘WMD, their delivery systems, and related materials’ by a foreign-flagged vessel.” (pg115)
  3. “‘PSI requires participating countries to act consistent with national legal authorities and relevant international law and frameworks,’ which includes the law reflected in the Law of the Sea Convention.’” (pg.113)
  4. “Three major factors should be considered in determining if a PSI interception is permissible under international law: first, the nature of the cargo transferred or transported by the intercepted vessel; second, the location where the interception action takes place; and third, the nationality of the intercepted vessel.” (pg.114)
  5. “In order to legally intercept WMD-related cargos, PSI participating countries must present reasonable evidence showing that the WMD-related cargoes are being transferred or transported to and from ‘states and non-state actors of proliferation concern’ and will be used for nonpeaceful purposes.” (pg.115)
  6. “An interdiction is legal under UNCLOS if the vessel that is being interdicted flies the flag of the interdicting country or flies the flag of a state that consents to the interdiction.” (pg.118)
  7. “It would also be legal for a PSI participating country to stop a vessel flying no flags or more than one flag in its national waters or international waters.” (pg.118)
  8. “Interdictions can be undertaken in different maritime zones, including internal waters, territorial sea, archipelagic waters, contiguous zone, straits used for international navigations, EEZs, and the high seas.” (pg.116)
  9. “There are other international treaties, regimes, and frameworks that can be relied on if interdiction actions against suspect vessels that carry or transport ‘WMD, their delivery systems, and related materials’ to and from ‘states and non-states of proliferation concern’ are necessary.” (pg.125)
  10. “The United States maintains that the PSI Statement of Interdiction Principles are consistent with the UN Security Resolution 1540, operative paragraph 10 which ”’calls upon” all States, in accordance with their national legal authorities and legislation and consistent with international law, to take cooperative action to prevent illicit trafficking in nuclear, chemical or biological weapons, their means of delivery, and related materials.’” (pg.113)
  11. “The legality of an interdiction action must be examined on a case-by-case basis.” (pg.122)

Law, WMD, Law Enforcement, PSI, UNSCR 1540


Wald, Matthew, L., “Hiring of Soviet Scientists Has Strayed From Aim, Audit Says,” NYT, Jan. 24, 2008, pg. A4.

  1. biosecurity program-program to hire former weapons scientists in Russia
  2. some weren’t weapons scientists
  3. unintended effect of indirectly supplying Iran with nuclear technology
  4. concern over helping Russia surpass us in science

Biosecurity, Department of Energy, Russia, Iran, Nuclear, State Department, GAO, WMD, Global Nuclear Energy Partnership


Kaliadin, Aleksandr, “In Search of an Effective Coercive Strategy to Deter Weapons of Mass Destruction,” Russian Social Science Review, Vol. 49, no. 2, March-April 2008, pp. 77-93.

  1. “The PSI (Proliferation Security Initiative) aims at keeping proliferators away from the materials necessary for developing WMDs and their delivery systems by monitoring the trade routes used for proliferation and intercepting suspicious cargoes.”
  2. “Mohamed ElBaradei, director general of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), believes that the ‘black market’ in nuclear technologies and materials has become a reality and exists outside the effective control of either the IAEA or the leading special services.”
  3. “(NPT) does not impose sanctions on member states …(BWC) also has no statement on sanctions …(CWC) were not designed to curb proliferation among nonstate structures.”
  4. “An essential flaw of the nonproliferation treaties is that they stipulate no mechanisms for the physical prevention of the activities they ban.”
  5. “The Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs announced its decision to support the PSI on 31 May 2004, on its first anniversary.”
  6. “(UNSCR) Resolution 1540, …helps establish the necessary legal foundations for PSI-related activities. …its key statements and its messages are in line with PSI’s principles.”
  7. “During the first half of the year (2004) PSI participants conducted ten exercises: five at sea, three in the air, and two on the ground.”
  8. “The highly sensitive information on which PSI operations must be based will demand a qualitatively new (and unprecedented) level of cooperation between Russian and U.S. state agencies.”
  9. “Russian … first greeted the initiative (PSI) with restraint, even with skepticism and distrust.” {further discussion on Russian perspective excluded}
  10. “Russia faces complex challenges in balancing the requirements to promote WMD nonproliferation against the need to develop the nuclear and other branches of industry that manufacture and export dual-use goods and technologies and to reassess its regional geopolitical interests.”
  11. “It is vital to Russia’s interests that its strategic stability not be undermined by its neighbors acquiring nuclear arms while Russia is reducing its own strategic offensive weapons–for economic and technical reasons, among others.”

PSI, NPT, BWC, CWC, UNSCR 1540, Dual Use, WMD, Russia


McNerney, Patricia A., “Conference on Global Perspectives of the Proliferation Landscape: An Assessment of Tools and Policy Problems” M2 PRESSWIRE, June 10, 2008.

  1. WMD’s as “the major security threat of the 21st century”
  2. challenge to get rid of the networks that supply these weapons
  3. challenge to interdict

WMD, PSI, UNSCR 1540, Nonproliferation


Schmitt, Eric, “Panel Fears Use of Unconventional Weapon,” NYT, A 11, Dec. 1, 2008. http://www.preventwmd.gov/report/

  1. “An independent commission has concluded that terrorists will most likely carry out an attack with biological, nuclear or other unconventional weapons somewhere in the world in the next five years unless the United States and its allies act urgently to prevent that.”
  2. “the Congressionally mandated panel found that with countries like Iran and North Korea pursuing nuclear weapons programs, and with the risk of poorly secured biological pathogens growing, unconventional threats are fast outpacing the defenses arrayed to confront them.”
  3. “The report is the result of a six month study by the Commission on the Prevention of Weapons of Mass Destruction Proliferation and Terrorism.”
  4. “[recommendations include] improved bioforensic capabilities, and strengthening international organizations, like the International Atomic Energy Agency, to address the nuclear threat.  It also calls for a comprehensive approach for dealing with Pakistan.”
  5. “The report calls for conducting a major review of the program to secure dangerous pathogens and tighten oversight of high-containment laboraties.”

Bioterrorism, WMD, Biosecurity, Nonproliferation, Iran, North Korea, Pakistan


Townsend, Mark, “Terrorists try to infiltrate UK’s top labs: The security services have intercepted up to 100 suspects posing as postgraduate students who aim to acquire weapons material and expertise,” The Observer, online November 2, 2008

  1. ”Dozens of suspected terrorists have attempted to infiltrate Britain’s top laboratories in order to develop weapons of mass destruction, such as biological and nuclear devices, during the past year.”
  2. ”The security services, MI5 and MI16, have intercepted up to 100 potential terrorists posing as postgraduate students who they believe tried accessing laboratories to gain the materials and expertise needed to create chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear weapons, the governments has confirmed.”
  3. ”Extensive background checks from the security services, using a new vetting scheme, have led to the rejection of overseas students who were believed to be intent on developing weapons of mass destruction.”
  4. ”A spokesman for Universities UK, which represents vice-chancellors, said the security scheme had so far proved effective.  He added: ‘It is important to protect the UK from people who may wish to use technology and materials here inappropriately.’”

WMD, Law Enforcement


Martin, Timothy, “Drawing Lines in the Sea“, U.S. Naval Institute Proceedings, December 2008, Vol. 134 Issue 12, p58-62.

  1. “PSI is a cooperative although informal arrangement, without a formal treaty. All states party to this arrangement agreed to the 2003 Statement of Interdiction Principles (SIP), which gives guidance on the interception of vessels under accepted international law as laid out in the 1982 United Nations Convention on Law of the Sea (UNCLOS). Participating states agree to abide by these principles, but the SIP does not authorize states to conduct interdictions at sea.”
  2. “Determining what cargo is ‘reasonably suspected’ is likely to be contestable, as many states reserve the right to ship military, nuclear, and other material by sea, and there is nothing in UNCLOS that specifically prohibits the transport of WMDs through international waters.”
  3. “To determine acceptable measures for law enforcement and interdiction in international waters requires that common perceptions exist regarding the level of threat, and that the national interests of states have been considered.”
  4. “Vessels registered or flagged to a particular state retain that state’s sovereign protection. So when authorities interdict a suspicious vessel, they must pay attention to these limitations, or risk being accused either of violating a foreign state’s territorial jurisdiction, or breaching international conventions on freedom of the seas.”
  5. “International agreements greatly accelerate the process by which law enforcement officials from one state can board suspect vessels flying the flag of another, especially when the flag state is unable to exercise control over the vessel due to its location or other factors, or maintain contact with suspect vessels entering national waters and airspace.”

PSI, Law Enforcement, WMD, Military


Gerald J. FitzgeraldChemical Warfare and Medical Response During World War I,” American Journal of Public Health 2008;98(4):611-625.

  1. “The first large-scale use of a traditional weapon of mass destruction (chemical, biological, or nuclear) involved the successful deployment of chemical weapons during World War I (1914–1918).” P.611
  2. “Defined today as “man- made, supertoxic chemicals that can be dispersed as a gas, vapor, liquid, aerosol (a suspension of microscopic droplets), or adsorbed onto a fine talcum-like powder to create ‘dusty’ agents,” chemical weapons remain a viable public health threat for civilians and soldiers across the globe.” P.612
  3. “On August 31, 1917, the Gas Defense Service (later known as the Gas Defense Division) was formally organized within the Army Medical Department under the auspices of the Office of the Surgeon General to carry out gas mask research and manufacture.” P.616
  4. “Between the 1918 armistice and 1933, several international conferences were held to try to limit or abolish chemical weapons; these included the Washington Conference (1921–1922), the Geneva Conference (1923–1925), and the World Disarmament Conference (1933).” P.621
  5. “At present, the United States maintains a large and sophisticated arsenal of chemical and nerve agents for tactical and strategic use.” P.622

Chemical, WMD, Public Health


Asada, Masahiko, “Security Council Resolution 1540 to Combat WMD Terrorism: Effectiveness and Legitimacy in International LegislationJOURNAL OF CONFLICT AND SECURITY LAW, Oxford University Press, 2009.

  1. desperate need for nuclear security
  2. each state should make certain acts punishable by law with penailties equal to the crime
  3. problems with creating a national treaty to combat terrorism, proliferation of WMDs.

Law Enforcement, WMD, UNSCR 1540, Nonproliferation


National Institute for Public Policy, “The Proliferation Security Initiative: A Model For Future International Collaboration,” 2009. Comparative Strategy, Volume 28, no. 5: 395-462.

  1. “one of the most important measures of PSI’s actual impact is its record of successful interdictions.”
  2. A former senior US gov’t official told the authors that PSI partners had conducted about 50 PSI interdictions–as of 2009
  3. BBC China incident — PSI “ensured that it happened as quickly, smoothly, and effectively as possible.”
  4.  PSI strengths: “enhances participants’ awareness of proliferation threat and their commitment to take action against it,” improves information sharing, develops counterproliferation capabilities
  5. Jean Francois-Rischard: 4 criteria of success by global issues networks = speed, redefining legitimacy on a global scale, diversity, and compatibility with traditional institutions
  6. PSI meets all of these criterion

PSI, Nonproliferation, WMD


Sferopolous, Rodi, “A Review of Chemical Warfare Agent (CWA) Detector Technologies and Commercial-Off-the-Shelf Items.Defense Science and Technology Organization. March 2009

  1. ”An ideal detector can be described as one that can detect both Chemical Warfare Agents (CWA) and Toxic Industrial Chemicals (TIC) selectively within an acceptable time; sensitive enough to detect agent concentrations at or below levels which post a health risk, and not be affected by other factors in the environment. As yet, the ‘ideal’ detector is not a commercial reality.” – Executive Summary
  2. ”Whilst Chemical Agents (CA) can cause serious injury or death, it is the method and accuracy of their delivery that determines the severity of the damage.” – page 2
  3. ”TICs are another class of CA that are less deadly than conventional CWAs, but pose a greater threat because they are more easily accessible in large quantities and are widely used in the manufacturing or primary material processing (mining and refining) industries.” – page 6
  4. ”Most detectors are designed to respond only when a threat is directly imminent and therefore tend to ‘detect to respond’ or ‘detect to react’ rather than ‘detect to warn.’” – page 10
  5. ”Individual Personal Equipment (IPE) is still utilized as the main form of protection against a chemical weapons attack as it has been proven to provide effective protection for an individual whilst the agent is neutralized or eliminated.” – page 10
  6. ”With increasing threats of terrorism, the roles of CA detectors are also increasing in civil emergency responses.” – page 10
  7. ”At present, the most challenging aspect for detection and identification of CAs is the differentiation of the agent of interest from another chemicals already present in the environment.” – page 11
  8. ”Environmental conditions, such as temperature, humidity, wind, dust and contamination concentration in the air, can affect the performance of a detector. It is crucial that during the selection process it is determined if a detector is able to operate effectively in the intended environment.” – page 14
  9. ”Ion Mobility Spectroscopy (IMS) based detectors are the most commonly deployed detectors for chemical monitoring by the military.” – page 16
  10. ”Existing IMS-based field detectors include Chemical Agent Monitor (CAM), Advanced Portable chemical Agent Detector (APD 2000), Multi-IMS, Rapid Alarm and Identification Device-Monitor (RAID-M), IMS-2000, GID-3 also known as Automatic Chemical Agent Detection Alarm (ACADA), SABRE 4000, and the Lightweight Chemical Detector (LCD).” – page 20
  11. ”Flame Photometry Detectors (FPD) are deployed in military forces and civil agencies worldwide, however they are more commonly found integrated with a gas chromatograph (GC) in the laboratory. To date, GC-FPD has been one of the most useful methods in determining the CWA concentrations in samples sent to a laboratory for confirmation analysis.” – page 32
  12. ”Existing FPD based field detectors include the French AP2C monitor, the updated AP4C version, and MINICAMS.” – page 34
  13. ”For field applications, Infra-Red (IR) Spectroscopy based detectors are used to determine whether a sample contains targeted chemicals rather than being used to identify them.” – page 38
  14. ”Existing IR based detectors include the M21 detector, Joint Service Lightweight Standoff Chemical Agent Detector (JSLSCAD), MIRAN SapphIRE Portable Ambient Air Analyzer, AN/KAS-1 and AN/KAS-1A Chemical Warfare Directional Detectors, TravelIR HCI, HazMat ID, and the IlluminatIR.” – page 43
  15. ”Raman Spectroscopy is a light scattering technique based upon the knowledge that when radiation passes through a transparent medium, any chemical species present will scatter a portion of the radiation bean in different directions.” – page 52
  16. ”Existing Raman spectroscopy based field detectors include the FirstDefender and the FirstDefender XL.” – page 54
  17. ”Surface Acoustic Waves (SAW) sensors operate by detecting changes in the properties of acoustic waves as they travel at ultrasonic frequencies in piezoelectric materials.” – page 57
  18. ”Existing SAW based field detectors include the HAZMATCAD, ChemSentry 150C, CW Sentry Plus, SAW MINICAD mk II, and the Joint Chemical Agent Detector (JCAD).” – page 59
  19. ”Colorimetric detection is a wet chemistry technique formulated to indicate the presence of a CA by a chemical reaction that causes a color change when agents come into contact with certain solutions or substrates.” – page 65
  20. ”Photo Ionization Detectors (PID) are typically used in first responder scenarios to give preliminary information about a variety of chemicals as they can detect vapors given off by certain inorganic compounds that other detectors may not. They only provide suggestive, not definitive, information about whether a site has been compromised.” – page 75
  21. ”Existing PID field detectors include MiniRAE 2000, MiniRAE 3000, ppbRAE, ppbRAE 3000, ppbRAE Plus, MultiRAE Plus, ToxiRAE Plus, and the TVA 1000B Toxic Vapor Analyzer.”- page 77
  22. ”Flame Ionization detectors are general-purpose and non-selective, therefore they respond to any molecule containing carbon-hydrogen bonds.” – page 86
  23. ”Existing FID field detectors include the Photovac MicroFID Handheld FID.” – page 87
  24. ”Current detection capability is somewhat limited, as such there is a need for further research into the development of technologies which are aimed at building improved detectors to accurately provide advanced warning of a CA release.” – page 89

Chemical, Military, Chemical Surveillance, Public Health, Emergency Response, WMD


Lieggi, Stephanie; Sabatini, Richard, “Malaysia’s Export Control Law: A Step Forward, But How Big?,” 10 May 2010, NTI http://www.nti.org/e_research/e3_malaysia_export_control_law.html Last Checked 1 August 2011.

  1. “In April 2010 . . . the Malaysian government announced that it had enacted the Strategic Trade Act, intended to strengthen Kuala Lumpur’s ability to curb the export and transshipment of WMD related materials.”
  2. “Critics have consistently accused Malaysia of giving insufficient attention to its nonproliferation-related trade controls. This is a serious problem because proliferating states and non-state actors are known to seek out and take advantage of weak links in the global security chain in order to procure sensitive WMD-related technologies. Inadequate strategic trade controls can provide states and terrorist organizations ample opportunity to acquire components used in chemical, biological and nuclear weapons with little risk of being caught.”
  3. “Economic prosperity and development have tended to trump concerns about potential illicit trafficking issues in Malaysia, and elsewhere in Southeast Asia.”
  4. “The popularity of Malaysian ports noticeably increased after the port of Dubai in the UAE—previously the transit point of choice for Iranian and Pakistani based traffickers—increased its transshipment controls under pressure from the United States and other international partners.”
  5. “Iranian entities in particular appeared to be transshipping sensitive goods through Malaysia as a means to route them to Tehran without arousing the suspicion of the original supplier.”
  6. “Malaysia has been far from alone in its reluctance to impose stronger nonproliferation-related trade controls. Throughout Southeast Asia, attempts to implement UN Security Council Resolution (UNSCR) 1540 have met resistance or lukewarm interest.
  7. “Malaysia—along with most Southeast Asian states—submitted its national report to the 1540 Committee in 2004.”
  8. “The Malaysian report showed a weak and disjointed system without a significant unifying law, and little understanding of the importance of transshipment and brokering controls.”
  9. “The report also stated that Malaysia lacked a comprehensive WMD export control system and that export control laws and regulations were primarily “based on economic reasons.”
  10. “Despite strong international concern regarding the overall efficiency and effectiveness of its trade control system at the time, Malaysia’s 1540 report did not reference any weaknesses within its system. Specifically, Malaysia asserted in its initial report that it “does not require assistance in implementing” UNSCR 1540 but indicated a willingness to consider requests from other states for assistance.”
  11. “The limited implementation of UNSCR 1540 in Southeast Asia and elsewhere derives from insufficient financial and technical resources.”
  12. “Malaysia long perceived export and transshipment control requirements as largely negative, potentially resulting in lessened economic progress and development.”
  13. “[I]n the last few years, Malaysia has shown more interest in cooperating internationally on strategic trade controls. Malaysia and the United States have worked through the State Department administered Export Control and Related Border Security Assistance (EXBS) to help Malaysian officials draft effective regulations and establish a workable licensing system.”
  14. “Malaysia has also been a regular participant in the Japanese government sponsored Asian Export Control Seminar. In 2008, the German Federal Office of Economics and Export Control, which implements the European Commission’s assistance projects related to export controls, identified Malaysia as an important partner within its outreach program.”
  15. “Despite this interaction with foreign partners, Malaysia’s new export control system was slow to get up to speed. Highlighting the continued problem of lax transshipment controls in the Malaysian system, allegations of illegal Malaysian involvement in exports of sensitive dual-use items to Iran emerged in 2008.”
  16. “Since taking office last year, Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak has sought to create warmer relations with the United States and recognized that Malaysia’s lax nonproliferation-related trade controls was a serious impediment to bilateral relations.”
  17. “The new Strategic Trade Act outlaws the shipment of weapons of mass destruction related materials through Malaysian territory and represents a significant step towards fuller compliance with UNSCR 1540.”
  18. “The new legislation, which was drafted with the support of U.S. experts and officials, was one of the numerous “house gifts” that countries brought to Washington during the summit showing their support for President Obama’s efforts in this area.”
  19. “The law authorizes the appointment of a Strategic Trade Controller to establish and coordinate a more unified licensing system for trade in strategic materials. The law further extends the control of the system over strategic items being transshipped through Malaysian ports, and creates a basis for controlling brokering activities of Malaysian entities.”
  20. “Under the Strategic Trade Act, prison sentences of no less than five years and considerable fines have been set for those designated as violators of the law.”
  21. “Given the critical importance of exports of high-tech goods to Malaysia’s economy, many within the domestic system will remain reluctant to block shipments without clear proof that the goods in question are destined for a weapons purpose—a very difficult standard to meet.”

Export Control, UNSCR 1540, WMD, Biosecurity, Malaysia


Matishak, Martin, “House Lawmakers Look to Strengthen Security at U.S. Biolabs“, 11 June 2010, Global Security Newswire, http://gsn.nti.org/gsn/nw_20100611_4895.php, Last Checked 7 October 2010

  1. “Members of the U.S. House Homeland Security Committee yesterday unveiled their version of legislation aimed at overhauling security at the country’s biological research facilities and enhancing federal efforts against the threat posed by weapons of mass destruction.”
  2. “That panel concluded that an attack involving a weapon of destruction is likely to occur somewhere in the world by 2013 in the absence of significant security improvement. It further determined a biological strike was more likely to occur than a nuclear or chemical attack because of the prevalence of deadly pathogens and other disease materials around the globe.”
  3. “‘Our legislation concerns all weapons of mass destruction threats but will give special emphasis to the emerging threat of biological weapons,’ Representative Bill Pascrell (D-N.J.), one of the bill’s co-sponsors, said during a press conference on Capitol Hill. He said the proposal ‘offers an extensive blueprint to address the greatest catastrophic risk we face.’”
  4. “Pascrell said panel members had consulted with scientists from U.S. laboratories as well as others in the biodefense field and concluded that the Agriculture and Health and Human Services departments are the best equipped to perform inspections and evaluations of disease research facilities.”
  5. “The Homeland Security Secretary would be charged with producing biennial ‘bioterrorism risk assessments’ that identify and assess evolving biological risks to the country.”
  6. “The National Intelligence Director would receive the authority to coordinate with other federal offices to develop and implement strategies for countering biological and other WMD threats and expand efforts to create a ‘national cadre’ of experts to support biodefense efforts.”
  7. “The Health and Human Services Department would be required to develop and implement a national strategy for distributing medical countermeasures in the event of a WMD crisis.”
  8. “The Secretary of State must work to address biosecurity in international forums such as the United Nations, the World Health Organization and the Biological Weapons Convention. Specifically, officials should support sharing of information among nations regarding biological attacks and events with major health consequences.”

Biodefense, WMD, Bioterrorism, Biosecurity, Biotechnology


EditorBill seeks to bolster U.S. ability to fight bioterror.”, Homeland Security Newswire, 24 June 2010 http://homelandsecuritynewswire.com/bill-seeks-bolster-us-ability-fight-bioterror Last Checked 9/26/2010

  1. “Representatives Peter King (R-New York) and Bill Pascrell (D- New Jersey) last week introduced HR 5498 — the Weapons of Mass Destruction Prevention and Preparedness Act of 2010 — described as a “comprehensive approach to improving America’s biodefense capabilities” — to bolster the U.S. defenses against future bioterror attacks.”
  2. “Nick Rees writes that a house panel was told last week by experts on biological agents that efforts made by the government to allow information sharing and interagency collaboration as a means of addressing bioterrorism has failed to date. HR 5498 aims to reverse that trend by, in part, requiring the director of national intelligence to produce and administer a National Intelligence Strategy for Countering the Threat from WMD…”
  3. “This bill addresses the full-range of homeland security considerations associated with the WMD threat — it not only authorizes programs to enhance our nation’s prevention, deterrence, and preparedness capabilities but also bolsters our diction, attribution, response and recovery capabilities”
  4. “Biosecurity and biodefense stakeholders would see their relevant intelligence and information sharing techniques integrated nationally by DHS under the legislation. Additionally, DHS would be called on to coordinate with other federal agencies to create biennial bioterrorism risk assessments.”
  5. “Participation in the National Biosurveillance Integration Center, which currently only carries voluntary interagency participation, would become mandatory under the bill, bringing together disparate agencies from the medical, public health and environmental fields, among many others.This participation would ensure that data on biothreats would be made available to not only federal but also local agencies.”

Homeland Security, Biodefense, WMD, Bioterrorism, Biosecurity, Biosurveillance


Reuters, “Iranian scientist leaves United States, Iran says: Tehran claims CIA kidnapped nuclear researcher who turned up Tuesday in Washington,” July 14, 2010, http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/38237441/ns/world_news-mideastn_africa

  1. “An Iranian nuclear scientist who disappeared more than a year ago and mysteriously turned up in Washington is on his way back to Iran via a third country, Iran’s foreign ministry spokesman was quoted as saying by Iranian semi-official news agency ISNA.”
  2. “Tehran says Amiri was kidnapped by the CIA. He turned up Tuesday at the Iranian interests section of Pakistan’s embassy in Washington D.C. saying he wanted to return home immediately.”
  3. “Iran, which is locked in a standoff with the West over its suspected pursuit of nuclear weapons, has repeatedly accused the CIA of abducting Amiri, who worked for Iran’s Atomic Energy Organization.”
  4. “A man identifying himself as Amiri has variously said in recent videos that he was kidnapped and tortured; that he was studying in the United States; and that he had fled U.S. agents and wanted human rights groups to help him return to Iran.”
  5. “The mystery surrounding Amiri fueled speculation that he may have information about Iran’s nuclear program sought by U.S. intelligence. In March, ABC News reported that Amiri had defected and was helping the CIA.”

Iran, Nuclear, WMD, Scientist


Yong, William, “Scientist Says U.S. Wanted to Swap Him for Hikers,” NYT http://www.nytimes.com/2010/07/19/world/middleeast/19iran.html?ref=world July 18, 2010, checked July 19, 2010.

  1. “American intelligence officers, most of whom would speak only on condition of anonymity because of the sensitive nature of the case, have described Mr. Amiri as a long-term informant. They said he provided details about how Malek Ashtar University in Tehran, where he worked, had become the covert headquarters for the organization responsible for designing nuclear weapons and warheads that could fit atop an Iranian missile.”
  2. “During that time, Mr. Amiri said, the United States arranged for him to attend a university in Virginia and supplied him with a driver’s license and Social Security number, although, he said, he had not requested either document.”

Iran, Academia, Scientist, Nuclear, WMD


Grossman, Elaine, “Pentagon Pulls $1B from WMD-Defense Efforts to Fund Flu Vaccine Initiative,” August 27, 2010, Global Security Newswire. http://gsn.nti.org/siteservices/print_friendly.php?ID=nw_20100827_5297 Last checked September 2, 2010.

  1. “The U.S. Defense Department has shifted more than $1 billion out of its nuclear, biological and chemical defense programs to underwrite a new White House priority on vaccine development and production to combat disease pandemics, according to government and industry officials.”
  2. “The planned funding reduction ‘terminates essential CBRN [chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear] defense programs … required to meet high priority service needs, prevent casualties and protect against CBRN incidents,’ according to a Pentagon budget document drafted in early August.”
  3. “Amoretta Hoeber, a defense consultant and chair emeritus of the NBC Industry Group, said in an interview this week, ‘that if the funding reductions result in shutting down production lines for any highly specialized WMD defense items, it is unclear how quickly the industry could reconstitute its manufacturing capability in the event that a new threat emerged.’”
  4. “President Barack Obama noted the initiative in his Jan. 27 State of the Union address, saying it would ‘give us the capacity to respond faster and more effectively to bioterrorism or an infectious disease — a plan that will counter threats at home and strengthen public health abroad.’”
  5. “The new initiative includes both Health and Human Services (HHS) and Pentagon plans for constructing ‘Centers for Innovation in Advanced Development and Manufacturing,’ to help small biotechnology companies innovate new vaccines and field them more rapidly. The modern facilities would also be capable of large-scale production of vaccine stocks during a public health emergency involving ‘emerging infectious diseases or unknown threats, including pandemic influenza,’ the HHS report states.”
  6. “Meanwhile, the Pentagon is left with deep budget cuts in a number of its WMD-defense efforts, and it remains unclear whether funds to backfill those project accounts will be identified, even after the fiscal 2012 budget request is delivered to Congress.”

Vaccination, WMD, Biodefense, Bioterrorism, Emergency Response, Biotechnology, Pandemic


Lieggi, Stephanie; Shaw, Robert; and Toki, Masako. “Taking Control: Stopping North Korean WMD-Related ProcurementBulletin of the Atomic Scientists, Volume 66, issue 5. Pages 21-34. September 2010

  1. “Last year, when two Japan-based traders were convicted for attempting to illegally transport sensitive materials, a larger story unraveled – one that illuminated North Korea’s efforts to obtain technology related to weapons of mass destruction (WMD).” – page 21
  2. “Historically, the country acquired much of its WMD-related technology and training from abroad, particularly China and the Soviet Union. Today, North Korea’s procurement network employ a sophisticated mix of front companies, brokers, and transshipment strategies.” –page 21
  3. “Since the early 1950’s, North Korea has both legally and illegally sought to acquire advanced technology and commodities from Japanese entities to improve its military capability.” – page 22
  4. “Pyongyang’s (capitol of North Korea) missile business has developed into an important source of revenue – ranging from #300 million to $1.5 billion annually, according to some estimates – and North Korea has traded missile technology with many countries, including Pakistan, Iran, Syria, and Yemen.” – page 23
  5. “The export violations incidents in Japan involving Toko Boeki and Tadao Morita occurred after the U.N. Security Council passed resolutions in July and October 2006 sanctioning North Korea, and after Tokyo consequently expanded its list of items under embargo to Pyongyang.’ – page 23
  6. “…Japans ‘catch-all’ controls, which mandate a license requirement for certain destination countries if an export is likely to support development of WMD, even if the item is not specifically mentioned on domestic controls list” – page 23
  7. “In early 2009, police in Kanagawa, a suburb of Tokyo, raided the offices of trading company Toko Boeki after the firm attempted to export a magnetometer (a device used to measure magnetic fields) to Myanmar in September 2008 and again in January 2009.” – page 23
  8. “Japanese authorities determined a magnetometer to be a useful tool in the development of magnets critical to the operation of some missile guidance systems, and police suspected a link to North Korea’s missile development programs” – page 23
  9. “The investigation led to the June 2009 arrest – and eventual indictment – of Toko Boeki’s founder and president, Li Gyeong Ho, for his attempts to dodge Japan’s catch-all controls.” – page 23
  10. “Li pleaded guilty and received a prison sentence of two years, matching the request of the prosecutors. However, the sentence was suspended for four years, highlighting Japan’s problem with lenient sentences for proliferation-related offenses. Additionally, Li’s company, Toko Boeki, was fined about $68,000 (6 million yen)” page 25
  11. “In addition to the criminal penalties, Japan’s Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) imposed a complete seven month export ban on both Li and his company.” – page 25
  12. “In May 2009, police in Hyogo, a suburb outside Kyoto, arrested Chong Rin Chae (Tadao Morita), a South Korean resident, for attempting to illegally export two tanker trucks from Japan to North Korea via South Korea.” – page 25
  13. “In July 2009, Morita pleaded guilty to export control violations involving the tanker trucks and the luxury goods and was sentenced to a suspended three-year prison term. His company was also assessed a fine of approximately $55,000 (5 million yen).”- page 26
  14. “In January 2010, six months after Morita’s criminal conviction, METI also imposed a 16-month export ban on Morita and his company” – page 27
  15. “Since METI’s 2002 implementation of catch-all controls, the Japanese government has strengthened legal and administrative provisions specific to curbing the spread of WMD – a process accelerated by North Korea’s recent nuclear and missile tests.” – page 27
  16. “Last year, Japan amended its Foreign Exchange and Foreign Trade law, which increased the maximum penalty for export control violations from five to seven years. If a violation involves WMD-related items, however, then the maximum penalty is 10 years” – page 27
  17. “The use of front companies and transshipment destinations reveals a network continuously evolving in response to U.N. sanctions and increased nonproliferation-focused export controls of supplier countries like Japan” – page 30

Export Control, Japan, North Korea, WMD, Military, Nonproliferation, UN


EditorPentagon shifts $1 billion from WMD-defense efforts to vaccine development“, Homeland Security Newswire, 1 September 2010 http://homelandsecuritynewswire.com/pentagon-shifts-1-billion-wmd-defense-efforts-vaccine-development Last Checked 9/19/2010

  1. “The U.S. Defense Department has shifted more than $1 billion out of its nuclear, biological, and chemical defense programs to underwrite a new White House priority on vaccine development and production to combat disease pandemics, according to government and industry officials.”
  2. “The planned funding reduction ‘terminates essential CBRN [chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear] defense programs … required to meet high priority service needs, prevent casualties and protect against CBRN incidents.'”
  3. “An additional $442 million was trimmed through efficiency reductions mandated by Defense Secretary Robert Gates, for a total of $1.5 billion cut from the counter-WMD account over the five-year period, according to the draft memo.”
  4. “Defense Department projects under the budget-cutting ax include the development and acquisition of biological and chemical detection systems; gear to decontaminate skin and equipment after exposure; systems to coordinate military operations in a chem-bio environment; and protective clothing for military personnel entering toxic areas.”
  5. “‘By diverting $1 billion from nonmedical [chem-bio] defense programs to this medical vaccine facility on top of the OSD efficiency cuts, Weber threatens to return the military forces to a state of unpreparedness that we haven’t seen since 1996,’ said one longtime defense analyst, referring to the Office of the Secretary of Defense.”
  6. “the memo reportedly has since been superseded by another, more limited plea, which instead seeks restoration of less than one-third of the eliminated WMD-defense funds. The subsequent document also omits mention of the high-priority White House vaccine project, sidestepping what might be regarded as implicit internal criticism of the Obama funding priority on the Medical Countermeasures Initiative…”

Homeland Security, Biodetection, Biosecurity, WMD


Reuters, “Iran has material for 1-2 atom bombs: ex-IAEA aide” September 6, 2010, http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSTRE67P20L20100826 7

  1. “In theory, it is enough to make one or two nuclear arms. But to reach the final step, when one only has just enough material for two weapons, does not make sense,” Heinonen said in the interview carried out just before he left office.”
  2. “Top Pentagon officials told the U.S. Congress in April that Iran could produce enough highly enriched uranium for a single nuclear weapon in as little as a year — but would probably need three to five years to assemble, test and deploy it.”

Iran, Nuclear, WMD


Broad, William, A., “Lawyers Look to Exploit a Scientific Error,” NYT, A18, September 24, 2010 http://www.nytimes.com/2010/09/24/science/24scientist.html

  1. “The spying indictment filed late last week against a former Los Alamos scientist contains evidence of tape-recorded conversations, clandestine meetings, confidential places for the transfer of documents and a pattern of false statements.”
  2. “Federal prosecutors charged the scientist, P. Leonardo Mascheroni, and his wife, Marjorie, with trying to sell classified nuclear information to a foreign power. The two were arraigned Monday in Albuquerque and pleaded innocent. If convicted, both face up to life in prison.”
  3. “According to the indictment, Dr. Mascheroni told an F.B.I. agent posing as a Venezuelan spy that a secret nuclear reactor could be constructed underground for ‘enriching plutonium,’ the fuel of most nuclear arms.”
  4. “The mistake could prove inconsequential legally, since the Department of Justice could file what is known as a superseding indictment, which adds or corrects information in the original charges. The erroneous phrase would then be removed.”
  5. “The technical error is particularly embarrassing, some lawyers said, because of the bungled case that federal prosecutors brought against Wen Ho Lee, another former scientist at the Los Alamos National Laboratory, in 1999. In that case. Dr. Lee was charged with mishandling nuclear weapon secrets with the intention of aiding a foreign power. But the criminal case unraveled after defense lawyers zeroed in on factual errors, procedural missteps and conspicuous gaps in the evidence.”

Law Enforcement, Misconduct, Scientist, Nuclear, WMD


Editor, “DHS Gives New York $18 Million for Radiation Detection System“, Homeland Security Newswire, 23 September 2010 http://homelandsecuritynewswire.com/dhs-gives-new-york-18-million-radiation-detection-system Last Checked 25 September 2010

  1. “DHS handed New York $18.5 million on Wednesday to keep the city’s prototype dirty-bomb detection system running.”
  2. “City cops and nearby police departments think it is vital, and have mounted a major coordinated effort to make it work, spending more than $70 million on the effort.”
  3. “New York lawmakers had to battle the Obama administration for the money, putting it in the federal budget last year after homeland security officials stripped it.”
  4. “The operation is run out of an operations center in the city, featuring more than 4,500 pieces of radiation detection equipment, many equipped with GPS locators.”
  5. “It is all aimed at sniffing out a nuke or dirty bomb before it can get across a bridge or tunnel and be detonated in the city.”
  6. “Terrorism experts warn that the Holy Grail for violent extremists is getting their hands on a weapon of mass destruction. Even a dirty bomb, which does little explosive damage, could be devastating to the city and economy if it contaminates vital areas with radiation.”

Homeland Security, Biodetection, Biosecurity, WMD, Bioterrorism


Editors, “Experts Meet Ahead of Naval Drills in S. Korea“, 13 October 2010, Washington Times, http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2010/oct/13/experts-meet-ahead-naval-drills-s-korea/ Last Checked 13 October 2010

  1. “South Korea launched its participation Wednesday in a U.S.-led coalition to intercept ships suspected of spreading weapons of mass destruction, risking the anger of rival North Korea, one of the countries targeted by the program.”
  2. “Seoul said last year it was joining the maritime web after the North conducted its second atomic test.”
  3. “South Korea was hosting a seminar Wednesday among 15 participating nations in the southeastern city of Busan, to be followed Thursday with naval interdiction drills involving South Korea, the United States, Australia and Japan in international waters between South Korea and Japan.”
  4. “The drills also come amid lingering tension on the divided Korean peninsula following the deadly sinking in March of a South Korean warship blamed on Pyongyang.”
  5. “North Korea long has warned it would consider Seoul’s participation in the Proliferation Security Initiative as a declaration of war against the North.”

PSI, South Korea, North Korea, WMD


Eschenfelder, Chip, “Lockheed Martin Completes Preliminary Design for Next Generation Long-Range Surveillance Radar”, 21 October 2010, Global Security Newswire http://www.lockheedmartin.com/news/press_releases/2010/102010_LM_3DELRR.html Last Checked 21 October 2010.

  1. “The U.S. Air Force has approved Lockheed Martin’s preliminary design for its next-generation mobile, long-range surveillance and ballistic missile defense radar.”
  2. “The Three-Dimensional Expeditionary Long-Range Radar (3DELRR) will serve as the principal ground-based sensor for long-range detection, identification, tracking, and reporting of aircraft and missiles for both the Air Force and the Marine Corps.”
  3. “‘The new radar’s open architecture will allow it to easily adopt emerging technology, expanding the system’s viability well beyond the typical 20-year life of today’s sensor systems,’ said Mark Mekker, director of Lockheed Martin’s ground-based surveillance radar.”
  4. “Once deployed, 3DELRR will be the primary ground-based sensor for the Air Force’s Joint Forces Air Component Commander through the Ground Theater Air Control System and the Marine Air-Ground Task Force Commander through the Marine Air Command and Control System.”
  5. “The radars operate in some of the harshest remote locations around the world, from the Arctic Circle to the jungles of the Amazon.”

Military, WMD


Shachtman, Noah, “Wikileaks Show WMD Hunt Continued in Iraq – With Surprising Results”, 23 October 2010, Wired http://www.wired.com/dangerroom/2010/10/wikileaks-show-wmd-hunt-continued-in-iraq-with-surprising-results/, Last Checked 24 October 2010.

  1. “WikiLeaks’ newly-released Iraq war documents reveal that for years afterward, U.S. troops continued to find chemical weapons labs, encounter insurgent specialists in toxins, and uncover weapons of mass destruction.”
  2. “American forces came across a ‘house with a chemical lab … substances found are similar to ones in lesser quantities located a previous chemical lab. The following day, there’s a call in another part of the city for explosive experts to dispose of a ‘chemical cache.’”
  3. “An armored Buffalo vehicle unearthed a cache of artillery shells ‘that was covered by sacks and leaves under an Iraqi Community Watch checkpoint. The 155mm rounds are filled with an unknown liquid, and several of which are leaking a black tar-like substance.’ Initial tests were inconclusive. But later, ‘the rounds tested positive for mustard.’”
  4. “American troops found at least 10 rounds that tested positive for chemical agents.”
  5. “Remnants of Saddam’s toxic arsenal, largely destroyed after the Gulf War, remained. Jihadists, insurgents and foreign (possibly Iranian) agitators turned to these stockpiles during the Iraq conflict — and may have brewed up their own deadly agents.”
  6. “The more salient issue may be how insurgents and Islamic extremists (possibly with the help of Iran) attempted to use these lethal and exotic arms.”
  7. “In WikiLeaks’ massive trove of nearly 392,000 Iraq war logs are hundreds of references to chemical and biological weapons.”
  8. “There was more evidence of a major and modern WMD program than the American people were led to believe.

Chemical, WMD, Military, Iraq


Editors, “U.S., Jordan Commence Operations to Prevent Nuclear Smuggling at Port of AqabaNational Nuclear Security Administration Last accessed November 11, 2 10 http://www.nnsa.energy.gov/mediaroom/pressreleases/portofaqaba11.04.10

  1. “The National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) today announced the successful installation and commencement of operations of radiation detection equipment at the Port of Aqaba in Jordan.”
  2. “The specialized equipment, which scans loaded sea containers moving through the terminal for the presence of potentially dangerous nuclear and other radioactive materials, was installed as part of NNSA’s Megaports Initiative in partnership with the Jordan Nuclear Regulatory Commission (JNRC).”
  3. “NNSA has now equipped more than one-third of its goal of 100 large seaports worldwide.”
  4. ‘“Our partnership at the Port of Aqaba underscores a continued, shared commitment to combat the illicit transfer of nuclear and other radioactive material,” said NNSA Administrator Thomas D’Agostino. “With the start of operations at this port, we have now successfully installed detection equipment at one-third of the largest ports in the world, bringing us one step closer to implementing President Obama’s nuclear security agenda.”

PSI, Nuclear, WMD


Katz, Lee, “Counterproliferation Program Gains Traction, But Results Remain a Mystery”, 10 December 2010, Global Security Newswire http://gsn.nti.org/gsn/nw_20101208_8526.php, Last Checked 10 December 2010.

  1. “The U.S.-led Proliferation Security Initiative has recently gained key allied help in the ongoing battle to curb North Korea and other would-be proliferators. However, details of its contribution to the global effort to stem the spread of weapons of mass destruction remain a closely held secret.”
  2. “South Korea has stepped up its participation to become a major partner in the initiative.”
  3. “October PSI naval exercises in South Korean waters along with a conference last month in the critical region have bolstered the program’s efforts to deter or intercept the illicit movement of unconventional weapons. The situation has so rattled North Korea that the regime warned any actual interception of one of its ships would be considered an act of war.”
  4. “Still, critics say that some vital nations, including China, a major power that has been linked to WMD material proliferation, are absent from the program.”
  5. “Beijing fears that signing on to the program would imply ‘you would allow the U.S. to undertake such actions as necessary in your waters. And that’s the last thing that China wants.’”
  6. “China says its refusal to participate is based on the fact that it considers PSI interdictions illegal under international law.”
  7. “While President Obama has taken a different approach on nuclear and other issues than his predecessor, both the Obama and Bush administrations have promoted the Proliferation Security Initiative as a way to globalize the fight against WMD proliferation.”
  8. “Obama administration officials say the Proliferation Security Initiative is part of a global effort that includes U.N. Security Council Resolution 1540, aimed at denying terrorists access to WMD materials. There is an active Resolution 1540 committee at the United Nations to monitor nonproliferation efforts.”
  9. “The Obama administration’s aim is to make the program ‘an enduring effort’ without adding an international bureaucracy, according to the Pentagon official. ‘There’s a need to maintain the voluntary and flexible nature of what everybody signed up to,’ he said, ‘while providing some leadership.’”
  10. “Of the PSI participants, 21 member states form the core of the organization called the Operational Experts Group. These include: Australia, France, Japan, Russia, Singapore, the United Kingdom and United States. South Korea joined the leadership group last month, adding impetus to an experts group meeting in Japan.”
  11. “A joint report by the Defense and State departments to Congress obtained by Global Security Newswire says ‘the U.S. government anticipates participating in seven to 12 U.S.-hosted and foreign hosted’ PSI-related exercises in fiscal 2011-2013.”
  12. “By having nations practice seizing material, PSI exercises such as the recent trials in South Korea can hold value for future WMD challenges. ‘These guys get out there and work together,’ Joseph said. ‘You have Australian and Japanese and now South Korean vessels working alongside American ships. You build important and lasting relationships that way.’”
  13. “Yet the initiative’s actual effectiveness and cost of is hard to measure. The clandestine nature of actual PSI operations along with its loose organization makes it hard for even its supporters to point to actual results or specific dollar costs.”
  14. “With caveats on the difficulty of pinning down actual costs, the report projects PSI spending at slightly less than $1 million dollars annually. Projected spending ranges from $900,000 to $996,000 per year from fiscal 2011 to 2013.”
  15. “‘Quite frankly, there’s no single budget line for PSI,’ said a Pentagon official. ‘A lot of the activities … are sort of integrated with other budgets.’”

PSI, WMD, UNSCR 1540, South Korea, China, North Korea


Broad, William, J., “U.S. Rethinks Strategy for the Unthinkable,” NYT, December 15, 2010.  Last checked December 16, 2010 http://www.nytimes.com/2010/12/16/science/16terror.html?src=me&ref=general

  1. “Officials say they are moving aggressively to conduct drills, prepare communication guides and raise awareness among emergency planners of how to educate the public.”
  2. “The new wave is citizen preparedness. For people who survive the initial blast, the main advice is to fight the impulse to run and instead seek shelter from lethal radioactivity. Even a few hours of protection, officials say, can greatly increase survival rates.”
  3. “A nuclear blast produces a blinding flash, burning heat and crushing wind. The fireball and mushroom cloud carry radioactive particles upward, and the wind sends them near and far. The government initially knew little about radioactive fallout. But in the 1950s, as the cold war intensified, scientists monitoring test explosions learned that the tiny particles throbbed with fission products — fragments of split atoms, many highly radioactive and potentially lethal.”
  4. “The Department of Homeland Security financed a multiagency modeling effort led by the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in California. The scientists looked at Washington, New York, Chicago, Los Angeles and other big cities, using computers to simulate details of the urban landscape and terrorist bombs.  The results were revealing. For instance, the scientists found that a bomb’s flash would blind many drivers, causing accidents and complicating evacuation.  The big surprise was how taking shelter for as little as several hours made a huge difference in survival rates.”
  5. “If people in Los Angeles a mile or more from ground zero of an attack took no shelter, Mr. Buddemeier said, there would be 285,000 casualties from fallout in that region.  Taking shelter in a place with minimal protection, like a car, would cut that figure to 125,000 deaths or injuries, he said. A shallow basement would further reduce it to 45,000 casualties. And the core of a big office building or an underground garage would provide the best shelter of all.”
  6. “Soon after Mr. Obama arrived at the White House, he embarked a global campaign to fight atomic terrorism and sped up domestic planning for disaster response. A senior official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, said the new administration began a revision of the Bush administration’s handbook to address the issue of public communication.”
  7. “‘The most lives,’ the handbook said, ‘will be saved in the first 60 minutes through sheltering in place..”

Emergency Response, Nuclear, Decontamination, WMD


Editors, “China Could Consider Nuclear First Use, Documents Indicate” 5 January 2011, Global Security Newswire http://gsn.nti.org/gsn/nw_20110105_3850.php Last Checked 5 January 2011

  1. “Defense analysts in the United States have for more than three years asserted that there are indications that China might be rethinking its policy of no first use.”
  2. “Official Chinese records indicate the nation’s armed forces would weigh the use of nuclear weapons against a nuclear-armed country attacking its cities or critical infrastructure.”
  3. “Beijing would first warn the opposing power of a possible nuclear response through television, the Internet or other communication channels.”
  4. “The People’s Liberation Army’s Second Artillery Corps, which oversees China’s strategic nuclear force, ‘will adjust the nuclear threat policy if a nuclear missile-possessing country carries out a series of airstrikes against key strategic targets in our country with absolutely superior conventional weapons.’”
  5. “Targets that could draw such a response include any of China’s leading urban centers or its atomic or hydroelectric power facilities, according to the documents. Any strikes posing an existential threat to the Chinese government could also merit a nuclear retaliation.”
  6. “The Second Artillery Corps ‘must strictly follow’ the orders of the Communist Party’s Central Military Commission and “must not adjust” its nuclear stance independently.”

China, WMD, Nuclear, Military


Gupta, Rinkoo D. et al.Directed evolution of hydrolases for prevention of G-type nerve agent intoxication” Nature Chemical Biology, 09 January 2011, http://www.nature.com/nchembio/journal/v7/n2/full/nchembio.510.html Last Checked 11 October 2011

  1. “Combining random mutagenesis and combinatorial exploration of mutations in key active-site positions26 with high-throughput screens based on sorting by FACS of double-emulsion droplets yielded dramatic improvements in the catalytic efficiency of rePON1 for both isomers of the fluorogenic cyclosarin surrogate CMP-coumarin.”
  2. “Driven by the need to engineer variants that detoxify the actual threat agents, we also developed a direct screen based on a competition between AChE, the nerve agent’s physiological target, and the assayed detoxifying PON1 variant.”
  3. “The advantages of using a catalytic scavenger are manifested in the differences in survival and intoxication symptoms between mice pretreated with the evolved variant 4E9 and mice pretreated with the conventional atropine-oxime treatment—atropine plus 2-PAM aims to minimize the damages of the organophosphate, whereas rePON-4E9 neutralizes the agent before it even reaches its target.”
  4. “Our evolved variants and the newly developed screens provide the basis for engineering PON1 prophylactics against other G-type nerve agents.”

Chemical, WMD


Nikitin, Mary, “Proliferation Security Initiative (PSI)” 18 January 2011, Congressional Research Service.

  1. “Requirements for participation appear to be fairly weak. This language may have been in part a result of early resistance to the idea of PIS in the international community, in particular hesitancy over sovereignty and free passage issues, as well as U.S. policymakers’ intention to keep the arrangement informal and nonbinding.” Pg. 2
  2. “When a merchant ship registers under a foreign flag to avoid taxes, save on wages or avoid government restrictions, it is called a flag of convenience (FOC).” Pg. 3
  3. “FOCs are of particular concern for proliferation reasons because of looser government regulations over their shipments and the case with which ships can switch from one registry to another to avoid trafficking.” Pg. 3-4
  4. “Cargos can be seized in ports if they violate the host state’s laws, hence the focus on strengthening domestic laws.” Pg. 4
  5. “The boarding agreements may allow for boarding, but not necessarily cargo seizure.” Pg. 4
  6. “A key gap in the PSI framework is that it applies only to commercial, not government, transportation. Government vehicles (ships, planes, trucks, etc.) cannot legally be interdicted.” Pg. 4
  7. “The Joint Chiefs argued for ratification, explaining that the convention (UNCLOS) ‘codifies navigation and over flight rights and high seas freedoms that are essential for the global mobility of our armed forces.’” Pg. 6
  8. “Another focus for PSI has been the targeting of proliferation finance. On June 23, 2006, 66 PSI states participated in a High Level Political Meeting in Poland, which focused on developing closer ties with the business community to further prevent any financial support to the proliferation of WMD.” Pg. 5
  9. “The 2005 Protocol to the Convention for the Suppression of Unlawful Acts Against the Safety of Maritime Navigation (SUA) would require states to criminalize transportation of WMD materials and their delivery vehicles. This protocol also ‘creates a ship boarding regime based on flag state consent similar to agreements that the United States has concluded bilaterally as part of the Proliferation Security Initiative.’” Pg. 6
  10. “U.N. Security Council Resolution 1540, passed in April 2004, requires all states to establish and enforce effective domestic controls over WMD and WMD-related materials in production, use, storage, and transport; to maintain effective border controls; and to develop national export and trans-shipment controls over such items, all of which should help interdiction efforts.” Pg. 6
  11. “While UNSCR 1540 was adopted under Chapter VII of the UN Charter, the resolution did not provide any enforcement authority, nor did it specifically mention interdiction or PSI. Early drafts of the resolution put forward by the United States had included explicit language calling on states to interdict if necessary shipments related to WMD. However, over China’s objections, the word ‘interdict’ was removed and was changed to ‘take cooperative action to prevent illicit trafficking’ in WMD.” Pg. 6
  12. “UN Security Council 1874 does establish procedures for the required interdiction of WMD and other weapons going to or from North Korea. The PSI mechanism may assist countries in coordinating these actions.” Pg. 6
  13. “The State Department has said that participating in PSI is a way for states to comply with their obligations under UN Security Council Resolutions 1718, 1737, 1747, 1803, and 1540.” Pg. 6

PSI, WMD, State Department


Editors, “U.S. Fears Chinese Firms Selling WMD Materials to Iran, North Korea” 3 February 2011, Global Security Newswire http://gsn.nti.org/gsn/nw_20110203_8986.php Last Checked 5 February 2011.

  1. “Recently leaked U.S. cables detail Washington’s worries that Chinese firms in recent years had exported goods to Iran that could be used to produce weapons of mass destruction.”
  2. “U.S. intelligence believed a Chinese branch of a German company had provided Iran with a test chamber usable in missile development.”
  3. “The United States also urged China to look into a possible shipment to North Korea of material usable in chemical warfare materials.”
  4. “Israeli intelligence officials were also worried that French car companies could unknowingly assist Iran’s WMD production program.”
  5. “China insisted that a shipment of weapon-sensitive sodium sulfide was bound for Armenia, despite open-source indications that the material was being delivered to Iran.”
  6. “The Bush administration was sufficiently worried that Chinese weapons and equipment were reaching Iran that the State Department in September 2008 launched a concerted diplomatic campaign to press Beijing to better administer controls on weapon sales to Tehran.”
  7. “The United States provided information to Italy, Spain and six other ‘key allies’ in order to ‘persuade China to enforce its export control laws more effectively’ and to ‘aggressively implement’ U.N. Security Council resolutions on trade in weapons and related goods.”

PSI, Export Control, China, Iran, North Korea, WMD


Lake, Eli, “US Concerned About Security for Mustard Gas, Chemicals” 23 February 2011. Washington Times. http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2011/feb/23/us-concerned-about-security-for-mustard-gas-chemic/.

  1. “US military and intelligence officials are closely watching Libya‘s stockpiles of mustard gas and their precursor chemicals as the North African country descends further into civil war.”
  2. Estimate of 14 tons of mustard gas in Libya
  3. “You could see a scenario where [Libyan dictator Moammar] Gadhafi takes troops away from these [stockpiles],” a Senate aide monitoring the situation in Libya said. “He could be pulling his security forces off of his missions, and bring them to Tripoli and Benghazi and other towns he needs to secure to hold on to his regime and, as a result, these facilities will be unguarded.”
  4. Mustard Gas – use in warfare is banned under the 1925 Geneva Protocol and the 1993 Chemical Weapons Convention.
  5. “Jamie Fly, executive director of the Foreign Policy Initiative, said that even though the OPCW notes that Libya‘s chemical weapons cannot be delivered in bombs, “this is still a major concern because there are terrorists who may want to get their hands on these weapons and, given the current state of chaos in the country, we need to be worried these chemical agents could fall into the wrong hands.”

WMD, Bioterrorism, Chemical


DPA, “Gadhafi May Use Chemical, Biological Weapons Against Libya Unrest” 25 February 2011. Haaretz. http://www.haaretz.com/news/international/gadhafi-may-use-chemical-biological-weapons-against-libya-unrest-1.345603.

  1. “Muammar Gadhafi may resort to using biological and chemical weapons as a last resort amid the country’s escalating and violent unrest.”
  2. “Former justice minister Mustafa Abdel Galil told the broadcaster Al Jazeera that Gaddafi had those weapons and would not hestitate to use them against civilians.”
  3. Libya – believed to have 9.5 tons of mustard gas

WMD, Bioterrorism, Chemical, Libya


DeYoung, Karen and Lynch, Colum, “US Ratchets Up Pressure on Gaddafi” 26 February 2011. Washington Post. http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2011/02/25/AR2011022506704_2.html?hpid=topnews?hpid=topnews&sid=ST2011022602703

  1. threats of death
  2. “I rule you or I kill you.” – Gadaffi
  3. “President Obama accused Gaddafi and his government of taking ‘extreme measures against the people of Libya, including by using weapons of war, mercenaries, and wanton violence against unarmed civilians.”

WMD, Bioterrorism, Chemical


Editors, “Toward a solution to nerve agent exposure: Chemist uses supercomputers to test reagents for new treatments” 5 April 2011. ScienceDaily, http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/04/110405122338.htm Last Checked 9 Oct. 2011.

  1. “Hadad’s study is focused on the identification of compounds that would return an appropriate alkyl group to the aged nerve agent/AChE molecule, thus allowing treatment with oximes to provide for complete recovery.”
  2. “The project is investigating common OP nerve agents Tabun, VX, VR, Sarin, Soman, Cyclosarin and Paraoxon, all of which take on a similar molecular structure upon aging.”
  3. “”Computational studies of the interaction of the alkylating compounds with AChE were used to provide insight for the design of selective reagents,” Hadad explained. “Ligand-receptor docking, followed by molecular dynamics simulations of the interactions of alkylating compounds with aged OP-AChE, was carried out in conjunction with experimental studies to investigate the binding of alkylating compounds to AChE. These results were then used to suggest interactions that aided in the orientation of alkylating compounds for maximal efficacy.”

WMD, Chemical


Editors, “U.N. Presses Countries to Enact Anti-WMD Measures” 21 April 2011, GSN http://gsn.nti.org/gsn/nw_20110421_6052.php, Last Checked 21 April 2011.

  1. “A U.N. Security Council measure adopted without dissent on Wednesday presses governments to comply with a 2004 resolution demanding domestic efforts to prevent ‘nonstate actors’ from obtaining weapons of mass destruction.”
  2. “The Wednesday declaration renews for one decade the authorization for the Security Council panel charged with overseeing execution of Resolution 1540.”
  3. “The body aids governments in preparing relevant legislation, overseeing security for potential WMD ingredients and guarding against their transfer to other states, and bolstering police measures and protective efforts at border crossings.”
  4. “The 2004 resolution requires U.N. states to enact domestic measures to prevent rogue actors from producing, obtaining, or moving weapons of mass destruction, associated goods and their delivery systems.”
  5. “Wednesday’s Resolution 1977 ‘sharpens the tools’ of the 1540 implementation panel.”
  6. “The mandate, originally scheduled to lapse on Monday, is now set to remain in effect through April 25, 2021.”
  7. “All 192 U.N. member nations should meet the requirements of Resolution 1540, and governments that have not submitted a declaration on their efforts to comply with measure should take the step ‘without delay,’ the Security Council stated.”
  8. “The White House praised the Wednesday resolution and noted a $3 million Obama administration pledge to support committee activities.”

UNSCR 1540, Law, Nonproliferation, WMD, PSI


Berkshire, Miller J., “The Importance of UNSCR 1540,” 21 June 2011 The Diplomat, http://the-diplomat.com/flashpoints-blog/2011/06/21/the-importance-of-unscr-1540/ Last Visited 3 August 2011.

  1. “[T]he UN Security Council adopted an important resolution (UNSCR 1977) this spring extending the mandate of UNSCR 1540 an additional 10 years until 2021.”
  2. “The Council also decided to implement a formal comprehensive review on the status of the resolution’s implementation after five years.”
  3. “South African Ambassador to the United Nations Baso Sanqu chairs the 1540 Committee, which has a mandate to report on the implementation status of the resolution.”
  4. “The Committee’s last comprehensive update, dubbed the Heller report after former 1540 chairman Claude Heller, was released in December 2010.”
  5. “The report recommended that the Security Council extend 1540 for an additional 10 years, with a potential to review every five years . . . [m]odeled . . . after the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, which has a review conference every five years.”
  6. “Heller also advocated that the Committee focus greater attention on biological weapons proliferation, an area that has thus far been marginalized compared with nuclear and chemical weapons prevention.”
  7. “It seems at first glance that Heller’s recommendations have been adopted by the UNSC, but the proposal on the review conference has yet to be institutionalized (despite the decision to hold one in 2016).”
  8. “Moreover, the new resolution doesn’t provide a tangible mandate for increased attention to biological weapons. Despite this, Interpol has recently stressed it will commit more resources to fighting bioterrorism.”
  9. “A great deal of effective work has been done since 2004 in response to the resolution’s unprecedented requirements. The ‘G-8 Global Partnership Against the Spread of Weapons and Materials of Mass Destruction has effectively contributed a tremendous amount of state-to-state assistance in preventing terrorist acquisition of WMD and related materials through the provision of expertise and financial backing of projects in areas such as nuclear security, chemical weapons destruction and biological weapons non-proliferation.”
  10. “The International Atomic Energy Agency and the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons have also continued to help out by providing capacity building programs to developing countries, which often have abysmal infrastructures protecting such sensitive materials.”

UNSCR 1540, WMD, Nonproliferation, Biosecurity, Nuclear, Chemical


Montoro, Carmen et al. “Capture of Nerve Agents and Mustard Gas Analogues by Hydrophobic Robust MOF-5 Type Metal–Organic Frameworks” 14 July 2011, JACS, http://pubs.acs.org/doi/full/10.1021/ja2042113#references Last Checked 29 September 2011.

  1. “In this communication, a series of observations and data analyses coherently confirms the suitability of the novel metal–organic framework (MOF) [Zn4(μ4-O)(μ4-4-carboxy-3,5-dimethyl-4-carboxy-pyrazolato)3] (1) in the capture of harmful volatile organic compounds (VOCs).”
  2. “In addition, it selectively captures harmful VOCs (including models of Sarin and mustard gas, which are chemical warfare agents), even in competition with ambient moisture (i.e., under conditions mimicking operative ones).”
  3. “To further strengthen the importance of 1, its performance in the capture of harmful VOCs has been compared with those of well-known materials, namely, a MOF with coordinatively unsaturated metal sites, [Cu3(btc)2] and the molecular sieve active carbon Carboxen. The results of this comparison show that coordinatively unsaturated metal sites (preferential guest-binding sites) are ineffective for the capture of VOCs in the presence of ambient moisture.”
  4. “For an atmosphere containing 50% humidity at 298 K, the water/Sarin ratio should be maintained above the 100–200 range. Hence, only hydrophobic adsorbents like Carboxen or 1 with Kr(DIFP/H2O) > 200 would be effective in maintaining sufficiently low DIFP levels. In contrast, [Cu3(btc)2], with Kr(DIFP/H2O) = 1.2, would be not useful for Sarin removal under ambient conditions.”

WMD, Chemical


Dininny, Shannon, “Last of Northwest’s chemical weapon stockpile destroyed” 26 October 2011. The Associate Press. http://www.bendbulletin.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20111026/NEWS0107/110260399/1009/NEWS01&nav_category=NEWS01 Last Checked 26 October 2011.

  1. “The Umatilla Chemical Depot in Hermiston once stored 12 percent of the United States’ chemical weapons, including deadly VX nerve agent and blistering mustard agent.”
  2. “Work to begin incinerating the weapons began seven years ago to meet a 2012 deadline imposed by the 1997 Chemical Weapons Convention, an international treaty.”
  3. “The completion of work there whittles the number of U.S. storage sites to three: Pueblo, Colo., Richmond, Ky., and the Deseret Chemical Depot in Tooele, Utah, which once held 40 percent of the U.S. stockpile but is expected to complete incineration in January. Once the Utah site completes operations, 90 percent of the U.S. stockpile will have been destroyed.”
  4. “The stockpile of deadly GB nerve agent, or sarin, and VX nerve agent already have been destroyed at the site. On Tuesday, workers incinerated the last of 2,635 ton-size containers of mustard agent, which causes blisters on skin, scars on the eyes and inflammation in airways.Incinerators heat the chemicals and their containers to thousands of degrees, then run the exhaust through pollution-removing filters and afterburners.”
  5. ““For decades, the residents of Eastern Oregon have been living next door to some of the most dangerous weapons the world has ever known, so dangerous that the world agreed they should be destroyed. Now they have been,” U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., said in a statement.”

WMD, Chemical


Editors, “U.N. Official: Undeclared Chemical Agent Sites Identified in Libya” 27 October 2011, Global Security Newswire, http://gsn.nti.org/gsn/nw_20111027_8018.php Last Checked 27 October 2011.

  1. “The Qadhafi regime in Libya possessed facilities with chemical munitions or warfare agents that were not declared to the international organization assigned to ensure the elimination of such toxic materials, the Associated Press quoted the United Nations’ lead envoy to the North African state as saying on Wednesday”
  2. “Libya joined the Chemical Weapons Convention in 2004, declaring close to 25 metric tons of mustard blister agent, nearly 1,400 metric tons of precursor materials and more than 3,500 unloaded munitions, according to the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons.”
  3. “The nation has been believed to still hold roughly 9 metric tons of the blister agent.”
  4. “The United Nations is working to ensure cooperation between Libya’s transitional government and other groups on securing sensitive materials in Libya, which include a stock of raw uranium, envoy Ian Martin told the U.N. Security Council.”
  5. “”While [Transitional National Council] forces appear to be controlling all relevant chemical and nuclear material sites, centralized command and control remains a concern,” said Martin, who heads the U.N. mission to Libya.
  6. “It has become clearer that there are additional sites with previously undeclared chemical weapons or materials that the government is about to formally declare” to the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons.The Netherlands-based organization said on Thursday it could not comment on Martin’s statement.”

WMD, Chemical, Bioterrorism, Libya


Editors, “Libyan chemical weapons stockpile intact: inspectorsReuters. Nov. 4th, 2011.

  1. “An OPCW inspection team found that the full stockpile of sulfur mustard and ingredients for making chemical weapons were intact at the Ruwagha depot, in southeast Libya, it said”
  2. “The abandonment or disappearance of some Gaddafi-era weapons has caused international concern that such firepower could erode regional security if it falls into the hands of Islamist militants or rebels active in North Africa. Some fear they could be used by Gaddafi loyalists to spread instability in Libya”
  3. “U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon Wednesday said the United Nations would send experts to Libya to help ensure nuclear material and chemical weapons did not fall into the wrong hands.”

Biosecurity, Biodefense, Bioterrorism, Nuclear, Organizations/Groups, Chemical, Developing Countries, Biosafety, WMD, Libya


Webb, Sara and Lawrence, Janet, “Libyan chemical weapons stockpile intact: inspectors” 4 November 2011, Reuters, http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/11/04/us-libya-weapons-idUSTRE7A33RO20111104 Last Checked 8 November 2011.

  1. “Libya’s stockpiles of sulfur mustard agent and chemicals used to make weapons are intact and were not stolen during the uprising that toppled Muammar Gaddafi, weapons inspectors said Friday.”
  2. “However, The Hague-based Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) said the Libyan authorities had advised it on November 1 that further stocks of what are believed to be chemical weapons had been found and that Libya would make a new declaration of its stocks soon. An OPCW inspection team found that the full stockpile of sulfur mustard and ingredients for making chemical weapons were intact at the Ruwagha depot, in southeast Libya, it said.”
  3. “The former Libyan government declared 25 metric tons of bulk mustard agent and 1,400 metric tons of precursor chemicals used to make chemical weapons, the OPCW said. It also declared more than 3,500 unfilled aerial bombs designed for use with chemical warfare agents such as sulfur mustard and three chemical weapons production facilities.”
  4. “The inspectors returned at the invitation of the new Libyan government and with its full cooperation,” the OPCW said, adding they would return to complete the destruction as soon as the facility was up-and-running again.”The OPCW will continue to work with the Libyan authorities to verify and destroy any newly declared stocks,” it said.”
  5. “The abandonment or disappearance of some Gaddafi-era weapons has caused international concern that such firepower could erode regional security if it falls into the hands of Islamist militants or rebels active in North Africa. Some fear they could be used by Gaddafi loyalists to spread instability in Libya.”
  6. “The New York-based Human Rights Watch last month urged Libya’s ruling National Transitional Council (NTC) to take action on large numbers of heavy weapons, including surface-to-air missiles, it said were lying unguarded more than two months after Gaddafi was toppled in a civil war. U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon Wednesday said the United Nations would send experts to Libya to help ensure nuclear material and chemical weapons did not fall into the wrong hands.”

WMD, Chemical, Libya


Spencer, Richard, “Turkey investigated over chemical weapons claim” 6 November 2011, Telegraph, http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/europe/turkey/8872807/Turkey-investigated-over-chemical-weapons-claim.html Last Checked 8 November 2011.

  1. “The activists are circulating gruesome pictures of some of the 24 rebels, from the PKK guerrilla group, killed in the Kazan Valley in air raids that began on October 19. Blackened and dismembered, the corpses lie in a morgue in a nearby town with weeping relatives nearby.”
  2. “Their allegations have forced their way into the open in Turkey, which is usually fiercely nationalist when it comes to accusations of abuse by the Kurds, whose campaign for autonomy is a long-running sore. The prime minister, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, made a public denial of them as a “slander” while on his recent trip to the G20 summit in Cannes.”
  3. “The activists say the only explanation for the type of burns exhibited is that some chemical agent was used. Their claims has now been raised by MPs from the legal pro-Kurdish party, the BDP, and taken up by the Turkish Human Rights Association (IHD). “One of our branches in the area has acted to investigate whether chemical weapons were used or not,” a spokesman said from IHD headquarters in Ankara. He said chemical samples had been taken from plants in the area, as well as from clothes from the bodies of 13 of those killed.”
  4. “The statements of both the relatives and eyewitnesses imply the use of chemical weapons. The bodies were completely burned,” the local IHD branch chairman, Ismail Akbulut, said. “This allegation definitely has to be investigated.” He said villagers had been told not to drink local water for two to three days.”
  5. “It would not be the first time the Turkish authorities had been accused of resorting to chemical weapons – a particularly sensitive issue because of the massacre of thousands of Kurds with mustard gas by the Iraqi regime of Saddam Hussein in the late 1980s.”
  6. “The PKK attacks have also been followed a series of arrests of Kurdish intellectuals and BDP members across the country.”
  7. “Mr Erdogan was asked about the claims by reporters travelling with him to Cannes. “This is slander,” he said. “The operations in the Kazan Valley were carried out by our Air Force. The [bodies of] PKK members who were killed in the caves are currently in the Forensic Medicine Institute in Malatya, where everything is proceeding according to the law, down to the DNA tests.”A spokesman for the Turkish foreign ministry also said: “We reject these claims.”

WMD, Chemical


Warrick, Joby, “IAEA Says Foreign Expertise Has Brought Iran to Threshold of Nuclear CapabilityWashington Post. 6 November 2011.

  1. “Intelligence provided to U.N. nuclear officials shows that Iran’s government has mastered the critical steps needed to build a nuclear weapon, receiving assistance from foreign scientists to overcome key technical hurdles, according to Western diplomats and nuclear experts briefed on the findings.”
  2. information on “a former Soviet weapons scientist who allegedly tutored Iranians over several years on building high-precision detonators of the kind used to trigger a nuclear chain reaction.”
  3. Iran said to have conducted weapons related research post 2003
  4. intent to gather all ingredients to build a weapon if they so choose
  5. claim to info gathered/purpose in order to generate electricity
  6. “Albright said IAEA officials, based on the totality of the evidence given to them, have concluded that Iran “has sufficient information to design and produce a workable implosion nuclear device” using highly enriched uranium as its fissile core.”
  7. obtained design info on the “R265 generator. The device is a hemispherical aluminum shell with an intricate array of high explosives that detonate with split-second precision. These charges compress a small sphere of enriched uranium or plutonium to trigger a nuclear chain reaction”

Iran, Bioterrorism, Biosecurity, Nonproliferation, Nuclear, WMD


Foy, Paul, “US Army destroys Nazi stockpile of nerve agent” 10 November 2011, Boston.com, http://www.boston.com/news/nation/articles/2011/11/10/us_army_destroys_nazi_stockpile_of_nerve_agent/, Last Checked 15 November 2011.

  1. “The nation’s largest chemical weapons depot has destroyed its final stockpile of nerve agent — a 4,100-pound supply seized by U.S. troops from Nazi Germany.”
  2. “The Deseret Chemical Depot says the Nazi nerve agent had been stored in bulk containers since the end of World War II.”
  3. “The Army depot in Utah’s west desert is ending a 15-year campaign of destroying a variety of chemical weapons. Only small supplies of other chemical agents remain to be incinerated, and that job is expected to be completed by early next year.”
  4. “The stockpiles are being destroyed under an international treaty to rid the world of chemical weapons.”
  5. “The Deseret Chemical Depot, 45 miles southwest of Salt Lake City, once held more than 40 percent of the nation’s chemical weapons.”

WMD, Chemical




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