RealNews

Expert: Chemical Weapons, Dirty Bomb Risk Minimal

Chemical, biological and radiological weapons (CBR) pose only a minimal risk of causing widespread deaths and are of little interest to al Qaeda, a British counter-terrorism expert said Wednesday. Instead militant groups such as Osama bin Laden’s network, blamed for the Sept. 11 attacks on the United States, would continue to use bombs or easily accessible “weapons” like planes or petrol tankers as weapons of mass destruction. “CBR weapons have received only desultory attention from old terrorist organizations and almost none from new. Al Qaeda have shown no interest,” Brigadier Malcolm Mackenzie-Orr told Reuters. “Why change their favored method of attack?” The United States and Britain are massing troops in the Gulf in preparation for a possible invasion of Iraq to disarm Baghdad of weapons of mass destruction which they say could be used in the future by terror organizations. Last week the U.S. government warned that al Qaeda could be planning a possible mass-casualty CBR attack, and raised the national threat level to orange, the second-highest after red. But Mackenzie-Orr accused governments of playing up the risk of CBRs for political reasons, saying they had proved generally nowhere near as effective as traditional weapons in the past. He said chemical weapons were quickly dispersed, biological weapons were difficult to spread widely, and radiological weapons — so-called “dirty bombs” — presented big logistical problems. Full Story

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