The Terror of the Pakistani Nuclear Horn

While Abbasi declared that Pakistan’s nuclear assets, including the tactical nukes, were under a robust command-and-control system, the short-range weapons meant to be used early in a conventional conflict with India are vulnerable to accidents and risk of landing up with terrorists.

According to a recent report by the Federation of American Scientists (FAS), Pakistan has stored its nuclear forces at nine different locations across the country.

Renowned US nuclear weapon expert and co-author of the report Hans Kristensen said Pakistan’s nuclear warheads may be located in storage facilities near the bases the report identifies, and that these bases themselves appear to house nuclear-capable launchers that would use those warheads.

The report describes the launcher bases to give readers an impression of the extent to which Pakistan’s nuclear forces are being dispersed across the country.

Kristensen told TOI that because Pakistan was building a short-range sub-strategic nuclear arsenal (in addition to its longer-range force), the warheads would likely be distributed to regional storage sites from which they could be assembled and transported to the launcher bases.

„Since the shorter-range systems are intended to be used earlier in a conflict below the strategic level, weapons for these systems would likely be distributed early in a crisis and raise the risk of accident and incidents. If used against conventional attacks, use of the tactical nuclear weapons would likely lead to escalation to a wider nuclear war quickly,“ said Kristensen.

A Trump administration official was quoted last month as saying that the US was particularly concerned by the development of tactical nuclear weapons that were designed for use in the battlefield, and that Washington believed these systems were more susceptible to terrorist theft and increased the likelihood of nuclear exchange in the region.

The report by Kristensen and Robert Norris also says that Pakistan has a rapidly expanding nuclear arsenal of 130-140 warheads and an increasing portfolio of delivery systems.

The report says Islamabad is quantitatively and qualitatively strengthening its arsenal and deploying weapons at more sites and yet the locations are difficult to pinpoint.

„For example, no reliable public information exists on where Pakistan produces or stores its nuclear weapons. Thus, we have used commercial satellite images, expert studies, and local news reports and articles to make the assumption that nuclear weapons are likely to be at, or near, wherever nuclear-capable weapon systems are deployed,“ it says.

The Fallacy of the Nuclear Deal

Iran’s New Missiles Illustrates the Weakness of Obama’s Nuclear Deal- Donald J. Trump

Reuters

DUBAI (Reuters) – Iran said on Saturday it had successfully tested a new ballistic missile with a range of 2,000 km (1,200 miles) and would keep developing its arsenal despite U.S. pressure to stop.

The United States has imposed unilateral sanctions on Iran, saying its missile tests violate a U.N. resolution, which calls on Tehran not to undertake activities related to missiles capable of delivering nuclear weapons. Iran says it has no such plans.

U.S. President Donald Trump said on Twitter the missile test illustrates the weakness of the Iran nuclear deal reached by his predecessor Barack Obama. He also linked the action to recent aggressive moves by North Korea.

“Iran just test-fired a Ballistic Missile capable of reaching Israel. They are also working with North Korea,” Trump said on Twitter. “Not much of an agreement we have!”

Iran said in its announcement on Saturday that the Khorramshahr missile could carry several warheads.

State broadcaster IRIB carried footage of the missile test without giving its time or location. It included video from an on-board camera which it said showed the detachment of the cone that carries multiple warheads.

“You are seeing images of the successful test of the Khorramshahr ballistic missile with a range of 2,000 km, the latest missile of our country,” state television said, adding this was Iran’s third missile with such a range.

The Khorramshahr was first displayed at a military parade on Friday, where President Hassan Rouhani said Iran would strengthen its missile capabilities.

Britain voiced concerns about the latest test.

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani arrives to attend an armed forces parade in Tehran, Iran, September 22, 2017. President.ir/Handout via REUTERS

“Extremely concerned by reports of Iran missile test, which is inconsistent with UN resolution 2231. Call on Iran to halt provocative acts,” British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson wrote on Twitter.

France also said it was extremely concerned and called on U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres to carry out a full report on the launch.

“France asks that Iran cease all destabilizing activity in the region,” Foreign ministry spokeswoman Agnes Romatet-Espagne said in a statement. “(France) will consider with its partners, notably European, the means to obtain from Iran the cessation of its destabilizing ballistic activities.”

Trump told the U.N. General Assembly on Tuesday that Iran was building its missile capability and accused it of exporting violence to Yemen, Syria and other parts of the Middle East.

He also criticized a 2015 pact that the United States and other world powers struck with Iran under which Tehran agreed to restrict its nuclear program in return for relief from economic sanctions.

Iran’s defense minister said on Saturday foreign pressures would not affect Iran’s missile program.“On the path to improve our country’s defensive capacity we will certainly not be the least affected by any threats and we won’t ask anyone’s permission,” Brigadier General Amir Hatami said in remarks carried by state television.

Iran denies its missile development breaches the U.N. resolution and says its missiles are not designed to carry nuclear weapons.

“The weight of the Khorramshahr missile’s warhead has been announced to be 1,800 kg (4,000 lbs), … making it Iran’s most powerful missile for defense and retaliation against any aggressive enemy,” state television said.

Reporting by Dubai newsroom; Additional reporting by John Irish in New York and Joel Schectman in Washington; Editing by Marguerita Choy and James Dalgleish

1884 A Forewarning Of The Sixth Seal (Revelation 6:12)

The Coney Island earthquake of 1884

January 20, 2010

New York City isn’t immune to earthquakes; a couple of small tremors measuring about 2.5 on the Richter scale even struck back in 2001 and 2002.

But on August 10, 1884, a more powerful earthquake hit. Estimated from 4.9 to 5.5 in magnitude, the tremor made houses shake, chimneys fall, and residents wonder what the heck was going on, according to a New York Times article two days later.

The quake was subsequently thought to have been centered off Far Rockaway or Coney Island.

It wasn’t the first moderate quake, and it won’t be the last. In a 2008 Columbia University study, seismologists reported that the city is crisscrossed with several fault lines, one along 125th Street. 

With that in mind, New Yorkers should expect a 5.0 or higher earthquake centered here every 100 years, the seismologists say.

Translation: We’re about 30 years overdue. Lucky for us the city adopted earthquake-resistant building codes in 1995.