Terrorism Assess the Likelihood of a Terrorist Term Paper

Pages: 12 (5520 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: 1+  ·  Level: College Senior  ·  Topic: Terrorism

Terrorism

Assess the likelihood of a terrorist group use of CBRN weapons

There is a high and rising probability of the usage of the chemical, biological, radiological, or nuclear -CBRN weapons by majority of terrorists even though certain established terrorist groups are expected to remain restricted by such aspects like being alien to the weapon and its dubious political usefulness. The possible danger caused by CBRN weapons in the hands of terrorists is observed with increasing anxiety by both government and society following the current highly destructive terrorist events. Al-Qaeda and other concerned terrorist gangs persist to show their knack in large-scale killing of human beings through the use of CBRN i.e. chemical, radiological and nuclear arsenals.

Renowned persons in the U.S., has been expressive in their claim that a terrorist CBRN assault is looming. Bill Clinton, President of the United States declared in a January 1999 featured writing in the New York Times that there are increased chances that a terrorist gang would unleash a chemical weapon in the land of America in the coming few years. Senator Sam Nunn declared that the danger of terrorist assault on the cities of America through CBRN has attained a stage where a daring and strong endeavor is necessary. This is an obvious and current threat to the American citizens that needs an opportune reaction. According to FBI Director Louis Freeh who stated in 1997 purchase, propagation, endangered or real use of weapons of mass destruction -WMD by a terrorist gang or persons constitutes one of the serious dangers to the United States. Richard Lugar -the Presidential candidate took a sequence of costly television spots during the year 1999 to exhibit the serious danger caused by nuclear terrorism.

The most common flourishing agents caught in inquiries are the biological toxin ricin and the bacterial agent anthrax. In the year 2000, 90 of II 5 biological intimidations examined by the FBI warned about the use of anthrax. Of specific worry is the surfacing of groups, such as apocalyptic religious cults, right-wing extremists, and ad-hoc extremist Islamic groups. There has also been information of fresh or revived curiosity by a number of established international terrorist groups that includes the Palestinian Islamic Jihad, Hizballah, the Algerian Armed Islamic Group (GIA), Egyptian Islamic Jihad, Hamas, Sikh and Chechen terrorists, the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK), the Khmer Rouge, and the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE).

The arrival of the CBRN assaults has been informed by the terrorists. During the year1998, Nasser Asad Al-Tamini belonging to the Palestinian Islamic Jihad spoke in a veiled manner regarding his gang's possible use of biological weapons. Ramzi Ahmed Yousef might have tried to get hold of chemical weapons before the 1993 World Trade Centre bomb attacks. Aum Shinrikyo gang belonging to Shoko Asahara evidently did not have any trouble unleashing chemical agents if their sarin attacks in Tokyo in 1995 are any indication to this effect. In the United States right-wing gangs like the Minnesota Patriots Council and the Covenant, the Sword, and the Arm of the Lord that has initiated self-determining assaults by non-allied individuals like that by the Timothy McVeigh in Oklahoma City have amply exhibited that terrorist's use of the CBRN is likely.

Bin Laden who was alleged to be the key person behind the Sept. 11 attacks, expressed in open addresses that in his opinion it is a devout responsibility to purchase Weapons of Mass Destruction. An ex-CIA official announced that Al Qaeda was putting a great deal of efforts to acquire biological weapons. Facts point out that Al Qaeda put a refined proposal to make Weapons of Mass Destruction especially biological, declared Vincent Cannistraro, who was the chief of CIA antiterrorism action during the later part of 1990s. The attempts by global and local terrorists to get hold of WMD continues to be a major anxiety and main concern of the FBI as there is the possibility for wreaking extensive damage or fatality. Brian Michael Jetkins' warning to contemplate widely however concurrently apply prudence while evading the fine change of act from 'could to may occur' at the time of talking about the possible use of CBRN by the terrorists appears wise counsel for every prognostic researchers endeavoring to find out if traditional or CBRN assaults are more likely to happen.

2) Describe some of the possible effects of Chemical Biological, Radioactive and Nuclear (CBRN) weapons used by terrorist

The extremist groups like Al-Qaeda and its subsidiaries have wide choice of prospective mediums and delivery agents for facilitating chemical, biological, radiological, or nuclear-CBRN attacks. The objective of various terrorist organizations like Al Qaeda is to utilize various chemical, biological, radiological or nuclear weapons with a view to causing massacre. These instruments are capable of exerting widespread terror and cause mass casualties when applied in multiple simultaneous attacks. Many factors along with the technical expertise of those involved determine the success of the attempts of al-Qaeda and the number of potential mass causalities. However, most of the circumstances results in panic and disruption. The strategy of Al Qaeda to involve chemical weapons in their ensuing attacks were first brought out in a document obtained in summer 2002 which indicates that the group has rudimentary procedures for creating mustard agent, sarin and VX. The mustard is thought to be a blistering agent while the sarin and VX are taken to be the nerve agents that kill the humans in small amounts.

The radiological diffusion instrument normally used by terrorists has tremendous effects on health, environment and economy along with its political and social influences. The materials used by the terrorists for preparation of such type of explosives include, cesium-137, strontium-90 and cobalt-60- materials used in hospitals, universities, factories, construction companies and laboratories. Biological mediums available to al Qaeda for use include anthrax, a form of bacteria that can cause mass casualties, and botulinum toxin. The CIA emphasized that the instruments for producing botulinum have been identified in the manuals of the terrorists. The widely used pollutant weapon, ricin, is prepared from the common castor beans. There is no healing to the ricin poisoning once the toxin infuses into the bloodstream. The terrorists attempt to infuse ricin poisoning in foods and as a contact poison. However, there is no scientific evidence to prove that ricin can be infused into the intact skin.

The subsidiary agencies of al-Qaeda with several groups of mujahidin have tried to carryout 'poison plot' attacks in Europe with easily produced chemicals and toxins considered more appropriate for assassination and small scale attacks. Such agents exert mass annihilation and widespread panic when applied in multiple and simultaneous attacks. The biological warfare is propagated by the spray agents those have the highest potential impact. Mohammad Atta and Zacharias Moussaoui the leaders of September 11 have conveyed their inclination towards the use of crop dusters, increasing the concern for the aircraft to disseminate BW agents. The terrorists are inclined towards the use of several pollutant cyanide compounds. Applying the sodium or potassium cyanides, the white to pale yellow salts the food or drinks can easily be poisoned. The cyanide salts can easily be applied as a contact poison in combination with the chemicals for increasing skin infusion.

However, this may easily be detected in arousing suspicion among the people when they touch wet or greasy surfaces infected with the solution. The effectiveness of both Hydrogen cyanide (HCN) and cyanogens chloride is required to be released at a high concentration. This is possible only in case of an enclosed area. Hence, leaving the area or allowing scope for ventilation will considerably reduce the lethality of the agent. The exposure to cyanide results in nausea, vomiting, palpitations, confusion, hyperventilation, anxiety and vertigo that may lead to agitation, stupor, coma and death. The cyanides with high quantity result in immediate collapse. There medical treatment for such cases are also exists but required to be administered instantly in case of intensely affected victims. The skin contact with mustard at the beginning results in mild provocation of the skin and develops to be more severe yellow fluid-filled blisters.

Inhalation of mustard harms the lungs, poses hard to breathing, and death by suffocation in aggravated cases due to water formation in the lungs. The medication available for the sufferings from mustard-agent poisoning is considered to be very limited. The reactions of nerve agents include pinpoint pupils, salivation, and convulsions that may be fatal. The bacterium, Bacillus anthracis, causing anthrax is capable of exerting mass casualties. The symptoms in this case occur within one to six days after exposure and inclusive of fever, malaise, fatigue and shortness of breath. None seems to be inoculated against anthrax. The Botulinum toxin are considered efficient in case of small scale poisonings or vaporising attacks in confined localities like movie theatres etc. The toxin molecule is however seen to be much larger for being capable of infused into the intact skin.

3) of what value would CBRN weapons be for the terrorist?

Among the strong points of CBRN… [END OF PREVIEW]

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