But the nuclear menace we face is broader than simply that of traditional nuclear weapons. The crisis in Japan is a dramatic demonstration of the real-world threat resulting from nuclear material over which we have lost control. A radiological bomb that uses conventional explosives to disperse radioactive materials is a far more achievable goal for al Qaeda and other terrorist organizations than a nuclear device.
So said House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairwoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen’s (R-FL) at yesterday’s Foreign Affairs Committee hearing on the global nuclear revival and U.S. nonproliferation policy.
NoH strongly agrees with Rep. Ros-Lehtinen’s statement that the security of nuclear and radiological materials is an urgent national security priority. There is an overwhelming bipartisan consensus that the best way to keep our nation safe from CBRN terrorism is to deny terrorist acquisitions of these materials.
Which begs the question: Why did Ros-Lehtinen and the rest of her caucus vote to cut nearly $650 million from the budget for vital programs to accelerate the international effort to secure and eliminate vulnerable nuclear and radiological materials?