War on Terrorism

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Life changes, but U.S. still vulnerable

“In the five years since terrorists flew hijacked airliners into the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, Americans have accepted inconvenience, sacrificed personal liberties and paid billions of dollars for a security clampdown that touches virtually every aspect of their lives. And we're still not safe. …Some counterterrorism experts think it's only a matter of time before terrorists unleash weapons of mass destruction on an American city. With so much radioactive material available worldwide, some of it is bound to fall into terrorists' hands, said retired Air Force Gen. Eugene Habiger, the former commander of U.S. nuclear forces and the former head of nuclear security at the Energy Department. Gaps in port security could allow terrorists to smuggle a nuclear weapon into the country. Or they could assemble a ‘dirty bomb’ by using a conventional explosive to spew radioactive material. The government has done little to prepare for the possibility of a radioactive event. While the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has spent billions of dollars stockpiling medicines to treat anthrax, smallpox and nerve-gas victims, it's failed to buy experimental drugs that could help hundreds of thousands of potential victims of acute radiation exposure.” (Montgomery Advertiser; 11Sep06; Greg Gordon, Marisa Taylor, Ron Hutcheson)

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