War on Terrorism

Monday, November 10, 2008

CBR Weapons and WMD Terrorism News- November 10, 2008

Flu shots on the menu at Sandwich [MA] drive-through clinic
“Add a flu shot to the conveniences you can get at a drive-through. […] Officials hope to get patients in and out within 20 minutes without ever leaving their cars, Sandwich Health Director David Mason said. […] Patients getting a shot will park in a holding area for 15 minutes before they're allowed to drive away. The holding period is a requirement whenever flu shots are administered, Mason said. […] Initially, cities and towns were required to come up with dispensing plans to deal with a potential bioterrorism attack like anthrax, according to Mary Clark, director of the Emergency Preparedness Bureau for the state Department of Public Health. But the plans will also be useful in the event of a pandemic flu, Clark said.” (Cape Cod Times; 10Nov08; George Brennan)

Risk versus reward [biolab in
Galveston, TX]
Hurricane Ike was a vivid reminder of
Galveston's vulnerability as a home for the world's deadliest substances, but officials say [the] new center is secure […] Environmentalists and some Galveston community leaders have raised concerns about the $176 million, seven-story lab where researchers will study the world's deadliest viruses and bacteria, such as anthrax, Ebola and the plague. Yet, […] the building, with an exterior of precast concrete and hurricane-resistant windows, stands on 800 pylons that have been driven 120 feet into the ground to ensure stability. Two massive generators are housed 30 feet above sea level. The new lab, which should become fully operational by the middle of next year, was built next to a smaller biolab that opened on campus in 2004. Hurricane Ike left both labs unscathed.” (Houston Chronicle; 08Nov08; Eric Berger) http://www.chron.com/disp/story.mpl/health/6101518.html

For sale: Pfizer's
Terre Haute [IN] factory
“Nine months after halting production of its inhaled insulin and idling more than 600 workers at a plant near
Terre Haute, drugmaker Pfizer Inc. is putting the massive factory up for sale. […] The company has owned the plant for 60 years. Pfizer bought the facility from the U.S. government in 1948, which had built it to make materials for biological warfare, a project that was never completed. […] More than half of the property's buildings have been newly built to pharmaceutical standards.” (IndyStar; 10Nov08; John Russell) http://www.indystar.com/article/20081110/BUSINESS/81110032/1003

Arsenal: final disposal nears [AK]
“The fourth and final disposal campaign of stockpiled chemical weapons at the Pine Bluff Arsenal [AK] may begin as early as December. The destruction on an undisclosed number of one-ton containers of mustard agent […] will follow the June completion of a campaign by which more than 9,000 VX (nerve agent) landmines were destroyed. Previous campaigns included the disposal of nearly 20,000 VX rockets and more than 90,000 GB (nerve agent) rockets.” (Pine Bluff Commercial; 09Nov08; Wes Clement) http://www.pbcommercial.com/articles/2008/11/09/news/news2.txt

Army to begin destroying container that leaked GB [sarin]
Army officials this week will begin an operation to destroy a corroded container responsible for a large nerve agent leak at a chemical weapons storage site in Kentucky. Operation Swift Solution is scheduled to start Wednesday at Blue Grass Army Depot in Richmond. The container that leaked in August 2007 as well as two others that hold the deadly agent GB will be neutralized using a mobile unit from Maryland. […] Operation Swift Solution is a precursor to destruction of the larger stockpile of Cold War-era weapons stored at the depot. A current schedule has those weapons set to be destroyed by 2017.” (Kentucky.com; 10Nov08; Source: Associated Press) http://www.kentucky.com/471/story/587263.html

UAE ratifies international agreement on peaceful resolution of conflict
“The UAE today become a member of the Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA) following its ratification of the1907 international convention for the peaceful resolution of conflict. The UAE's ratified document to that effect was presented here by Ali Thani Al-Suwaidi, UAE Ambassador to the Netherlands and UAE's Permanent Representative to the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), to the head of the international convention department at the Foreign Ministry of the Netherlands here in Lahai. The UAE's membership brings to 109 the members of the PCA.” (Emirates News Agency; 06Nov08)

States complete radiation detection drill
“Authorities in nine states and the District of Columbia this week completed an extended exercise aimed at testing their combined ability to deal with a possible nuclear or radiological threat to the southeastern United States, the U.S.
Homeland Security Department said. The Oct. 23 to Nov. 5 exercise, Southern Exposure, ‘marked the culmination’ of the Southeast Transportation Corridor Pilot program, which was intended to boost regional nuclear detection and response capabilities through training, improved communications technology and emergency protocols. Local, state and federal officials in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi, Tennessee, Virginia, the Carolinas and the nation’s capital ‘participated in a coordinated threat stream that targeted military bases, activities and infrastructure, and some entities conducted multiple exercises during this period to evaluate the full suite of detection capabilities currently in place,’ according to a Homeland Security press release.” (Global Security Newswire; 07Nov08) http://www.globalsecuritynewswire.org/gsn/nw_20081107_5287.php

Tokyo conducts nation's first 'dirty bomb' drill
“The Tokyo Metropolitan Government on Friday conducted Japan's first drill against a ‘dirty bomb.’ The drill, conducted jointly with the
Metropolitan Police Department, the Ground Self-Defense Force and the Tokyo Fire Department, drew about 1,000 people to the international exhibition center at Tokyo Big Sight in Koto Ward. The drill was based on the assumption that radioactive materials were smuggled into Japan and detonated at an event hall. After the imaginary explosion, members of the GSDF and the fire department were deployed to the scene wearing protective suits to rescue the ‘victims.’” (Japan Times; 08Nov08; Source: Kyodo News) http://search.japantimes.co.jp/cgi-bin/nn20081108a9.html

Envelope with white powder forces evacuation of 3 floors of Burbank [CA] office building
“Three floors of a commercial office building in Burbank were evacuated Friday after an envelope containing an unidentified white powder was opened. The powder turned out to be harmless. […] A hazardous materials [team] sent to the scene determined the substance was not hazardous, after it was examined and tested negative for anthrax, police said.” (Daily News Wire Service; 07Nov08)

Terrorism News is prepared by the Chemical and Biological Weapons Nonproliferation Program of the James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies at the Monterey Institute of International Studies in order to bring timely and focused information to researchers and policymakers interested in the fields of chemical, biological, and radiological weapons nonproliferation and WMD Terrorism.

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