debunking Iraqi atomic test claims

Les Schaffer schaffer at
Wed Jun 20 11:12:55 MDT 2001

Just found an interesting article in Nature on recent uses of a vast
array of seismometers over the earth's surface.

in the story was a link to this interesting article

debunking the notion -- printed in The Sunday Time's of 25 Feb 2001,
based supposedly on combination of defector info and satellite photos
-- that Iraq had exploded a 10 kt atomic device in September 1989.

Given that the claim of such a test seems seriously implausible, it
would be interesting to work backwards now from the Time's story and
find the source of these allegations.

It occured to me -- after reading the seismology story -- that there
is another problem with the Times piece. and that is this: even if it
were true that 10 kt device had exploded back in 1989, why havent
there been further "signals" since that time, picked up by an ever
more elaborate array of seismometers with ever increasing sensitivity?
after all, if iraq were really such an offensive threat as to warrant
a new round of warnings in 2001, surely they would not depend on a
5-10 year old small-scale test on which to base its nuclear capability
for possible first strikes against god-knows who.

putting on the conspiratorial cap, perhaps there is a reason why
G. W. Bush wants to scrap all kinds of arms treaties. the technolgies
for verifying them have outpaced the needs for Imperial 101 to spread
misinformation on its "enemies".

les schaffer

p.s. for tech heads:

1.) the same prof that wrote the report above did work on the analysis
of seismic data from the explosion of the Soviet nuclear sub Kursk:

2.) seismic records are now being analysed for evidence of increased
ocean wave heights over the last 70 odd years to verify hypothesis
that global climate change is increasing frequency and severity of
storms. [Bromirski, P. D., Flick, R. E. & Graham,
N. J. Geophys. Res. 104, 20753-20766 (1999)].

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