New York Is Due For The Big One (Revelation 6:12)

New York – The Big Apple is due for the Big One.

earthquake5n-5-web

The trio of earthquakes that surprised New Jersey over the past month has seismologists wondering what’s next – and they say it doesn’t look good.

They call the geological fault lines crisscrossing Manhattan a perfect storm for a temblor that could topple older buildings, cause billions of dollars in damages and kill people citywide.

New York has survived at least three quakes measuring 5.0 on the Richter scale, but two of them hit back in the 1700s and the other centered on Coney Island in 1884, toppling chimneys.

The city should expect a jolt like that last one every 100 years, the experts warn – which means we’re overdue. Jersey’s recent baby quakes, which caused no damage and failed to rise above 3.0 in magnitude, may have been warning shots, they say.

A 6.0-magnitude quake could cause as much as $200 billion in damages, according to a 2003 study by the New York City Area Consortium for Earthquake Loss Mitigation.

The American Nuclear Horn (Daniel 7:7)

Joseph Cirincione: How big a nuclear arsenal do we really need?

If President Obama wants to use his last two years to further his agenda, here’s something he could do that would advance the cause of global security and save the country money: suspend plans to develop a new arsenal of American nuclear weapons.

Obama started his presidency with a sharp focus on reducing the world nuclear threat, and he had considerable initial success.

But by 2011, his plans to secure all nuclear materials from terrorists, stop new nuclear states and shrink global arsenals had slowed to a crawl. While his promised policies to reduce the role and numbers of nuclear weapons lagged, the Pentagon and Congress raced ahead with plans to buy a whole new generation of nuclear-armed submarines, bombers and missiles. Over the next few years, government actions could lock in spending on these new weapons programs for the next 50 years.

Unless something is done soon, we will lay out as much as a trillion dollars over the next few decades to replace our obsolete Cold War nuclear arsenal. We will buy thousands of new hydrogen bombs and mount them on hundreds of new missiles and planes. The Congressional Budget Office estimates that over the next 10 years alone, the government will lay out $570 billion for new nuclear weapons and related programs such as missile defense.

Proponents claim the spending is necessary to protect the nation’s security. But history shows that buildups like this trigger new arms races, inspiring other nations to match or exceed our capabilities.
Already, the Pentagon has submitted its wish list for the next budget to the president, and in coming weeks Obama will finalize the budget and submit it to Congress. This will be his “legacy” budget, as one senior defense official said. It will be his last big chance to change the country’s approach to nuclear spending.

The president should submit a budget to Congress that suspends spending on new nuclear weapon programs. Congress will object, of course, but that will prompt a long-overdue public conversation on nuclear policy.

In the absence of such a discussion, we risk unnecessary spending on an arsenal. We are, for example, about to commit to spending $350 billion to develop, produce and deploy a new fleet of 12 nuclear-armed submarines. But we have not yet determined whether we will need all — or any — of the 1,000 hydrogen bombs they will carry. And have we considered how other nations, including China, will react to the new subs?

Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus made the case to Congress this month for additional funding to build the submarine fleet, saying that without extra money, the new subs would “gut the rest of our shipbuilding program.” In making his case, he also noted that “we’ve got to have this debate now” over the cost of the nuclear triad. I agree with that part of his testimony wholeheartedly.

The Pentagon budget is about to be cut by tens of billions of dollars a year, as part of the fallout from the congressional budget collapse and the resulting sequester. This will begin to force choices. But contracts to update the nuclear arsenal have a head start, and unless we have a full discussion now, unnecessary programs may be locked in before the budget crunch fully hits.

Instead of blindly moving ahead, let’s determine our actual needs. Let’s fully examine whether modifying existing submarine designs might suffice. And while we’re at it, let’s talk about a range of other expensive nuclear weaponry on the drawing boards, including a new nuclear-armed penetrating bomber and a new standoff nuclear cruise missile.

Last year, Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., weighed in on the issue, asserting that the nation’s “nuclear forces are larger than needed for current military missions.” And she offered sensible advice: “It is time to think creatively about how to maintain a much smaller nuclear deterrent at an affordable cost.”

Who could disagree with that?
Joseph Cirincione is president of Ploughshares Fund and the author of “Nuclear Nightmares: Securing the World Before It Is Too Late.”

Russian Nuclear Horn Launches The Nuclear Triad (Daniel 7:7)

Russia plays nuclear war-games in Barents Region

topol-m_plesetsk

This Topol-M ballistic missile was launched from Plesetsk in Arkhangelsk region Saturday morning.

Nuclear triad

nuclear triad refers to a nuclear arsenal which consists of three components, traditionally strategic bombers, intercontinental ballistic missiles(ICBMs), and submarine-launched ballistic missiles (SLBMs). The purpose of having a three-branched nuclear capability is to significantly reduce the possibility that an enemy could destroy all of a nation’s nuclear forces in a first-strike attack; this, in turn, ensures a credible threat of a second strike, and thus increases a nation’s nuclear deterrence.

Source: Wikipedia

At 09:20 am (Moscow time), this silo-based Topol-M intercontinental ballistic missile was launched from Plesetsk in Arkhangelsk Oblast. A few minutes later, the dummy nuclear warhead hits its target on the Kamchatka Peninsula in Russia’s far eastern corner, the Ministry of Defense reports.

The Ministry adds that the Topol-M missile has an “extremely high accuracy of target destruction.”

Strategic bombers

On Friday, Norwegian F-16s were scrambled from Bodø airbase for the second time this week as a group of four Tu-95 strategic bombers were approaching from the northeast, Norway’s TV2 reports.

The bombers, flying out over the Barents Sea from Russia’s Kola Peninsula, were accompanied by four Il-78 tankers.

On Wednesday, a similar group of four strategic bombers and four tanker aircrafts were flying southbound along Norway’s northern coast. Six of the aircrafts turned around and flew north again over the Norwegian- and Barents Seas before heading home to Russia. The two last flew all the way south to outside Portuguese airspace before heading north again.

After scrambling fighter jets from Norway and Great Britian, NATO said in a statement that the Russian bombers pose a risk to civilian air traffic.

“The bomber and tanker aircraft from Russia did not file flight plans or maintain radio contact with civilian air traffic control authorities and they were not using on-board transponders. This poses a potential risk to civil aviation as civilian air traffic control cannot detect these aircraft or ensure there is no interference with civilian air traffic,” NATO said.

Tu-95 is a turboprop aircraft built during the Cold War to carry nuclear weapons and is because of its long range included in the strategic nuclear forces.

Strategic submarines

The third arm of Russia’s nuclear triad, the submarine based ballistic missiles (SLBM), were tested on Wednesday, when “Yury Dolgoruky” launhced a Bulava missile from submerged position in the Barents Sea.  

This was the first operational test launch of Bulava in line with the program of combat training. All previous launches were part of development testing of the new weapon.

It is also the first time a Borey-class submarine had a full set of missiles on board when the launch was conducted. The Borey-class submarines carries 16 missiles that each may hold as many as 10 nuclear warheads. “Yury Dolgoruky” got her full set of Bulava missiles in June this year.

Unifying The First And Third Horns (Daniel 8:8)

Now Pakistan cares about ISIS

ISIS Infiltrating Into Pakistan

ISIS Infiltrating Into Pakistan
Two weeks ago, The Post reported that “Pakistan isn’t losing any sleep over ISIS,” featuring a photograph of the terror group’s leader, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, dressed all in black, before a microphone.

Days later, in a speech before the Security Council, Pakistan’s Ambassador to the United Nations struck a much different tone, demanding that the international community exterminate ISIS.

“We must all, collectively, oppose and defeat its evil ideology of ‘hate, murder and destroy’. We must remain united in our fight against this new face of terrorism and violent extremism,” Masood Khan said in his Oct. 21 speech.

Kahn also insisted that the UN “use all diplomatic means at their disposal to prevent further deterioration.”

He then chastised the international community for not acting quick enough against this “rising tide of primeval barbarism and criminality.”

“It is now clear that if the Syrian conflict had been addressed two years ago, we would not have witnessed the rise of ISIS,” Kahn said, adding, “We should hold fast to this lesson we have learned in or contemporary history.”

On Oct. 17, The Post revealed that Pakistani officials were cooler than cucumbers after the bloodthirsty Pakistan Taliban announced that it was merging with ISIS to wreak havoc across the country.

One Pakistani official said at the time, “It shows a desperate attempt by a decimated [Pakistan Taliban] to find external support for survival. They are a weak and broken group because of the successful operations of the Pakistani forces.”

Six prominent members of the Pakistan Taliban had turned their allegiance away from Afghan Taliban spiritual leader Mullah Omar to al-Baghdadi.

“I pledge allegiance to the Caliph of Muslims, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi,” Pakistan Taliban spokesman, Shahidullah Shahid, said. “I will listen to and obey his every order, even if the situation is difficult, whether I like the order or not.”

Five regional commanders also declared their unbridled support for al-Baghdadi, who, in June, declared himself the Caliph of the Muslim world and ordered all Muslims pledge their allegiance to him.

The proposed merger of the two terror groups was seen as a serious threat to the security of Pakistan, which has nuclear weapons.

Iran Not About To Give Up Their Nuclear Program

Iran poised to choose poverty over nuclear disarmament

October 31
 
Ray Takeyh is a senior fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations.
As the Nov. 24 deadline for Iran and the great powers to negotiate a comprehensive nuclear agreement approaches, both sides may be confronted with momentous choices. What happens if the decade-long search for an arms-control accord falters? Although there is little evidence that the West is contemplating alternative strategies, important actors in Iran are beginning to consider life after diplomatic failure.
Since the exposure of its illicit nuclear program in 2002, the Islamic republic has wrestled with a contradictory mandate: how to expand its nuclear infrastructure while sustaining a measure of economic growth. The reformist president Mohammad Khatami avoided debilitating economic sanctions by suspending nuclear activities. Then came the tumultuous presidency of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, which privileged nuclear empowerment over economic vitality. Current president Hassan Rouhani has succeeded in negotiating an interim agreement — the Joint Plan of Action — but he faces diminishing prospects for a final accord. Iran has finally come to the crossroads, and Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and many hard-line elements seem ready to forge ahead with their nuclear ambitions even if they collide with economic imperatives.
During the past few years, Khamenei has been pressing his concept of a resistance economy whereby Iran would shed its need for foreign contracts and commerce. “Instead of reliance on the oil revenues, Iran should be managed through reliance on its internal forces and the resources on the ground,” he said last month. Writing in the conservative daily Khorasan last year, commentator Mehdi Hasanzadeh went further: “An economy that relies on domestic [production] rather than preliminary agreement or the lifting of a small part of sanctions or even all sanctions will bring a great economic victory.” In the impractical universe of conservatives, Iran can meet the basic needs of its people by developing local industries. Iran’s reactionaries seem to prefer national poverty to nuclear disarmament.
The notions of self-sufficiency and self-reliance have long been hallmarks of conservative thinking in Iran. Since the 1980s, a central tenet of the hard-liners’ foreign policy perspective has been that Iran’s revolution is a remarkable historical achievement that the United States can’t accept or accommodate. Western powers will always conspire against an Islamic state that they cannot control, this thinking goes, and the only way Iran can secure its independence and achieve its national objectives is to lessen its reliance on its principal export commodity. Hard-liners believe that isolation from the international community can best preserve Iran’s ideological identity. This siege mentality drives Iran’s quest for nuclear arms and their deterrent power.
Although many in the West may privately hope that the interim accord will simply roll on in absence of a comprehensive agreement, Iranian adherence is hardly assured. The history of Iran’s nuclear diplomacy suggests that it will abandon the agreement when it has sufficient technological capacity to carry out a rapid surge of its program. Between 2003 and 2005, while the Europeans negotiated a suspension of Iran’s program, Tehran continued to accumulate nuclear materials and hone its research skills and, when it was ready, abandoned its pledges.
Ali Akbar Salehi, head of Iran’s Atomic Energy Organization, has already established the pretense for introducing speedier centrifuges. “New centrifuges will be used for production of vaccines,” he noted last month. Then, in an uncharacteristically honest moment, Salehi acknowledged that “such kinds of machines cannot be purchased at the world market. They are not sold as they are said to be of dual use.” And it is precisely that duality that attracts Iran to machines that can produce highly enriched uranium with speed and efficiency. Once Iran’s skilled scientists are confident of their mastery of the new machines, the Joint Plan of Action is likely to meet the fate of the other agreements that Tehran has negotiated with European powers.
In the coming weeks, the ebb and flow of the high-wire negotiations are sure to capture headlines. We will see furious diplomacy and foreign ministers journeying back and forth to European capitals. But it already seems clear that Khamenei and the hard-liners are poised to choose nuclear power over economic prosperity — a decision that would probably prove catastrophic for their country. Rouhani may yet be able to temper, for a while, such rash impulses. But by loudly contemplating alternative strategies should diplomacy exhaust itself, Iran seems to be crossing a dangerous threshold.