Another reason to worry about nuclear power

A blog commenter of mine recently pointed me to a comic story about Iran’s nuclear power plants being hit with by a malware attack that resulted in their computers play AC/DC music at full blast.  The Iranian’s have no shortage of enemies and this is not the first cyber attack on their systems.

US policy makers worry about this man’s nuclear program

The worry here is that the same people who are assuring US Americans that these types of attacks are impossible in this country are the people who assured us that the Three Mile Island partial meltdown was impossible and we could never have a reactor compromised by flooding (as we saw with Fort Calhoun last summer).   These are people who are paid to lie to you and they are people the mainstream media turn to every time they need an opinion about the safety of nuclear power.

Let’s assume you are a cash strapped terrorist.  Your country or region or family has been destroyed by the US’s persistent attacks around the globe.  You want to strike back at the US and you want to hit hard, maximizing the damage for the smallest investment.  9/11 has made the use of commercial jet liners as weapons basically impossible.  Security is way too tight to repeat that trick.  So where do you turn?

Pre-deployed nuclear weapons” is what many critics of nuclear reactors call these facilities.  What if you could get your hacker friend to break into the reactors computer and turn off some key component would cause an accident.  A big enough accident at Indian Point (outside NYC) or Calvert Cliffs (outside Death City) would be a huge win for you and some type of justice for your people.

To be clear, i dont want these things to happen.  And my analysis is the US foreign policy is an enemy making machine and this is part of the threat we look at for continuing these policies.  9/11 changed this country (mostly in bad ways), but it ended the notion that big high visibility attacks on civilians sparked by foreign nationals cant happen here.  The question is what will the next one look like?

Pessimists are either pleasantly surprised or right.

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About paxus

a funologist, memeticist and revolutionary. Can be found in the vanity bin of Wikipedia and in locations of imminent calamity. buckle up, there is going to be some rough sledding.

3 responses to “Another reason to worry about nuclear power”

  1. Kip Gardner says :

    I can’t fault a single piece of your analysis, although I do wonder how and when this might happen. Terror attacks on the US have not really happened since 9/11, and I think that’s in part to a lack of resources to do anything significant. For instance, I’ve said for years that with the increasing number of severe drought years, it would take relatively little effort (and would be very easy to plan & execute in secret) to start a massive and extensive series of wildfires in the West that would overwhelm the country’s firefighting capacity, yet nothing of the sort has ever been attempted to my knowledge. Our imperialist foreign policy definitely accounts for the overwhelming percentage of the efforts against us, but for some reason it’s not currently happening here. Counterterrorism efforts (and I have a friend involved in that work) accounts for some of that, but why have we not seen more in recent years?

  2. paxus says :

    @Kip – i am only guessing, but it could well be that massive US military interventions in the Middle East and elsewhere do actually shift the playing field for strikes against the US. With our military attacking you in your home country, intl attacks on the US seem exotic and symbolic, when what you want is something real and effective. This was the essence of the Bush Doctrine, fight them over there so we dont have to fight them here. Of course what this really turned out to be was, try to make a land grab for oil, piss off lots of people, attack neighboring countries using predator drones even if these countries had nothing to do with the 9/11 attacks. And claim you are making the world safe for democracy.

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