[It is no secret that the ‘insurgents’ in Iraq are testing various new tactics for killing Americans and others there: shooting down planes and helicopters, new types of destructive bombs, chemical weapons attacks such as that posted at the end of this blog. Bush insists that our war on Iraq is tying up the terrorists there, but suppose Iraq is rather a testing ground for Al Qaeda attacks on us here at home?! They are notoriously patient in planning such things.

Imagine some of the rockets for shooting down planes being transported here in shipping crates — or they could be stolen from stockpiles here. Such is no unlikely possibility, given our failure to protect our ports and general transport systems.

Try bombs in a busy people location — say a stadium or such which could be carried in by a worker or suicide bomber dressed as a policeman.

But the worst (other than a nuclear weapon) from which we are not protected at all is an explosion in a chemical plant of tanks of hazardous materials such as was done with a tanker the other day in Iraq (chlorine). We must have hundreds of these chemical plants (and transportation systems for such stuff) scattered through the nation. One of my students who suffered lung damage working on “the pile” — clearing the World Trade Center site after 9/11 — explained to us that what made things additionally deadly were the dangerous chemicals that had been kept in tanks in the lower levels of the towers (not just the billion or so in gold that kept the men under scrutiny while cleaning up the mess and prohibited them from leaving the site).

Imagine some of these plants or a tanker being blown on a windy day which would rapidly spread deadly fumes in a populated area. We had such an incident in India a few years back which killed thousands — Bhopal http://www.bhopal.net/catastrophe.html
Guess what the Bush administration has allocated for protection of these plants — a measly $15 million which is worth about 90 minutes of our Iraq expenditures.

Needless to say we should be bringing back our troops to protect our homeland while there is still time — not sending more of our national guard troops over there.

Put the two articles posted below together and you may want to make your vacation/retirement plans for some place else — Mexico or maybe Canada? Ed Kent]

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http://www.cnn.com/2007/WORLD/meast/02/20/iraq.main/index.html?%3Cbr%20/%3Esection=cnn_topstories&eref=yahoo

BAGHDAD, Iraq (CNN) — A cloud of deadly toxic gas engulfed an Iraqi town Tuesday, killing six people and leaving dozens of others choking on fumes after a tanker carrying chlorine exploded outside a restaurant.

An Iraqi Interior Ministry official said the blast in the town of Taji, 12 miles (20 km) north of Baghdad, was caused by a bomb on board the tanker.

There were contrasting figures on the casualty toll. Baghdad security plan spokesman Gen. Qassim Atta told state-run al-Iraqiya TV that five people died in the blast and 148 were poisoned by the gas. (Watch how study says Iraq war has increased terrorism Video)
[snip]

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http://www.iht.com/articles/2007/02/22/news/guard.php

National Guard May Undertake Iraq Duty Early

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By DAVID S. CLOUD
Published: February 22, 2007

WASHINGTON, Feb. 21 — The Pentagon is planning to send more than 14,000 National Guard troops back to Iraq next year, shortening their time between deployments to meet the demands of President Bush’s buildup, Defense Department officials said Wednesday. [snip]

“A war is just if there is no alternative, and the resort to arms is legitimate if they represent your last hope.” (Livy cited by Machiavelli)

Ed Kent 718-951-5324 (voice mail only) [blind copies]
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