September 8, 2006

The Hiroshima Fallacy

A nuclear physicist shares his views on Iran's pursuit of nuclear weapons;

The most likely form of nuclear attack in the modern world is one carried out by terrorists. In carrying out such an attack, the attackers might well use a device quite different from the sophisticated weapon that military experts suggest it will take Iran “five to eight years” to develop. Current thought on this subject is often informed by what one might call the “Hiroshima fallacy,” the belief that terrorists would not consider the use of a nuclear weapon significantly less sophisticated than the first weapon used against Japan, or one with a yield significantly less than the yield of that weapon. This is simply not true. Terrorists could inflict tremendous damage in terms of both human life and economic disruption with much simpler devices. Another potentially dangerous fallacy is the notion that terrorists could not attack without transporting a complete weapon to the target. This, too, is nonsense.

The rest at Medienkritik

As was pointed out somewhere else, the fact that "intelligence sources" have provided such a wide range of estimates as to how far along Iran is in its nuclear capabilities is a warning in and of itself - it indicates that nobody really knows for sure.

Posted by Kate at September 8, 2006 12:03 AM

Go to watch the video interviews of Walid Shoebat (former Palestinian terrorist). Also, audio of a radio program from Ireland; Shoebat is interviewed by telephone.
I wish there were a WHOLE LOT more people like him.
No nukes for Muslim terorists, thank you.

Posted by: Joe B. at September 8, 2006 1:59 AM

A couple of satchel nukes to take out a number of city blocks, would be just the terrorist ticket.

No huge city wiped off the map, with a corresponding risk of massive retaliation. Just focus on selective destruction of parts of cities to 'get your message across.'

The five to eight year timeline is probably for a full blown MIRV warhead with ICBM launch capability.

This would likely come courtesy of black market arms trading. No state sponsors to trace just a bunch of stand up guys turning some hardware for cold hard cash. A little sleight of hand here, a little corruption there and voila'. No violation of the Non Proliferation Treaty, just a bunch of home spun boys taking a nuke for a test drive.

25kg of U235 or about 4kg of U239 should do the trick to go critical. The 'gun type' would probably be easiest to manufacture, as one wouldn't need to mess with circular shaped charges in the implosion device types.

Just a random neutron away from 10 million Celsius.

But this is nasty stuff Kate, thats why the UNSC and the IAEA exist; to stop bad stuff from happening to basically decent people.

Regrettably, the record in Cambodia, Rwanda, Darfur, etc. has been at best afforded "mixed" results.

You see when IAEA inspectors don't get free access it makes other people and nations; shall we say somewhat nervous.

When they speak about nuclear transparency, it is preferred not to do so at 100 million Celsius. The IAEA find these temperatures somewhat unworkable.
Most reasonable people would concur in this 'assessment'.

On that note


Posted by: Hans Rupprecht at September 8, 2006 2:09 AM

While I'm sure that our security forces are thinking beyond the 'Maginot Line' philosophy, I'm afraid the same cannot be said for many/most of the populace.........from the unceasing references to 'WMD lies' that appear in media article/comments sections, one can only presume that the majority, (or at least the majority of respondents to some of these threads), are unable to grasp that WMD's have evolved from the old Soviet-era parades wherein trucks bearing huge missiles were displayed as proof of military capability.

Nothing 'less' than these antiquated exhibitions will ever convince some of these individuals of the dangers posed by 'suitcase-sized' weapons....until, of course, one is detonated.

At which time they will claim to have been ahead of the curve, and 'let down' by 'neo-cons', (a term I'm getting sick & tired of hearing).

Posted by: Nemo2 at September 8, 2006 5:59 AM

And when it happens, it will ALL BE OUR FAULT. We might as well begin an investigation now into the "root causes" and what we coulda shoulda done to appease them.

Posted by: Richard Ball at September 8, 2006 8:05 AM

"The most likely form of nuclear attack in the modern world is one carried out by terrorists."

Really? If I were offered a 6 month futures contract at even money I'd "lay heavy lumber" (this term means "make a substantial wager") on the "good guys" to use nukes first. So, I imagine, would the majority of Canadians who blame America for the 9/11 attacks.

America and Israel are openly talking about nuking Iran and I take them at their word; the reverse isn't true of "the" terrorists. In light of the "good guys" known nuclear aresenal and stated intent to use it *in the near future* versus "the" terrorists' highly probable lack of nuclear capabilities I argue it is highly illogical to state that "the" terrorists will use nukes first.

Posted by: Bob at September 8, 2006 8:40 AM

"America and Israel are openly talking about nuking Iran..."


Nuking! Before I call you a leiar I'll give you a reasonable opportunity -5 hours-to post links to who in authority is openly taking about nuking Iran.

Posted by: Terry Gain at September 8, 2006 8:50 AM

bob, your comment is empty.

Your attempt to substantiate your opinion by appealing to 'others who agree with you' is irrelevant and empty. After all, this group is actually a very small percentage of the Canadian population, i.e., " the majority of Canadians who blame America for the 9/11 attacks" is actually a very small percentage of the whole Canadian population. Most Canadians don't blame the US for those attacks. Equally, most Canadians don't blame Canadians for the Air India bombing attack of the last decade. And equally, most Canadians know very well that the 9/11 attacks were the product of Islamic fascism, in this instance, as run by Bin Laden.

The argument is a valid one; it is stating that the conventional nuclear device might not be the weapon of choice of terrorists; instead, they might use a 'mini-nuke' which will accomplish severe destruction. Since Islamic terrorism is on-going, since the agenda of Islamic terrorism is simply civilian destruction (ie, it's not a war between nations, over territory or resources), then, their agenda will be to harm as many civilians, both physically and economically, as possible.

Posted by: ET at September 8, 2006 9:00 AM

Make that... Walid Shoebat - Former PLO Terrorist Who Speaks Out For Israel.

I doubt it, Bob. Please follow along with the logical steps, laid out below:
- Iran gets bomb.
- Now what?

IF Israel or the U.S. uses a nuke first (which I would bet a 6-month NYMEX light crude contract at the usual ca. 5% margin AGAINST happening), it would be ONLY after the mullahs have one of their own. It would be limited to being used as something akin to a "bunker-buster" i.e. blow up Iran's processing facilities. That would be jake with me, come to think of it.

Posted by: Joe B. at September 8, 2006 9:04 AM

You know this is going to happen. It's just a matter of time. Screwing around with airlines has become amateur hour with diminishing returns for the jihadis.

I don't know who I despise more, the craven little Islamic gutblowers or the willfully ignorant, arrogant and cowardly slobs on the left that obstruct needed measures for us to protect ourselves. And, that includes the option of pre-emptively doing something NOW about Iran.

I personally couldn't give a rat's ass at how Europe is going to save itself from dhimmitude either.

Am I alone in noticing these responses to the article: "But right now I don't can see any arabian caountry that has built up a significant industry or any other important kind of significant business. So stay calm. As along as the islamic world keeps blaming the West for the inability of its children to read and write, there's nothing much to worry about."...and...."Moreover, islam is part of european history and culture, muslims live in europe for more than 13 centuries. To be afraid of islam as a religion is a mistake."

I rest my case.

Posted by: penny at September 8, 2006 9:13 AM

Bob has been listening to the left side of his brain again.

His sources are internal

Posted by: cal2 at September 8, 2006 9:19 AM

Penny - I agree. I don't think "the West" can be beaten, UNLESS we beat ourselves. I find myself thinking often about a good friend of mine... reasonably bright, but a left-leaning liberal all the way. Believes the sappiest crap he hears or reads, just as long as it's anti-American, anti-Israeli, anti-Iraq war, etc... I don't know exactly what it would to change his mind, but when, or if, HE does (bellwether, because if HE'LL change, anybody can), I'll feel a whole lot better about the West's chances against all this Islamic fascism going on now. We've been known to have "disagreements"... then I come home and stiff whiskey.

Posted by: Joe B. at September 8, 2006 9:35 AM

Penny - I agree. I don't think "the West" can be beaten, UNLESS we beat ourselves. I find myself thinking often about a good friend of mine... reasonably bright, but a left-leaning liberal all the way. Believes the sappiest crap he hears or reads, just as long as it's anti-American, anti-Israeli, anti-Iraq war, etc... I don't know exactly what it would to change his mind, but when, or if, HE does (bellwether, because if HE'LL change, anybody can), I'll feel a whole lot better about the West's chances against all this Islamic fascism going on now. We've been known to have "disagreements"... then I come home and have a stiff whiskey.

Posted by: Joe B. at September 8, 2006 9:37 AM

Penny - I agree. I don't think "the West" can be beaten, UNLESS we beat ourselves. I find myself thinking often about a good friend of mine... reasonably bright, but a left-leaning liberal all the way. Believes the sappiest crap he hears or reads, just as long as it's anti-American, anti-Israeli, anti-Iraq war, etc... I don't know exactly what it would to change his mind, but when, or if, HE does (bellwether, because if HE'LL change, anybody can), I'll feel a whole lot better about the West's chances against all this Islamic fascism going on now. We've been known to have "disagreements"... then I come home and habve a stiff whiskey.

Posted by: Joe B. at September 8, 2006 9:37 AM

I have to disagree with the people who post "if Iran ever has a nuclear weapon and threatens to use it America and Israel will pulverize them".

Yes, if the current leaders of those two countries are still in power, but GWB has only two more years, and who knows who Israel's next PM will be.

Try this scenario, a Hillary Clinton Presidency in the U.S., and an Israeli version of Dalton McGuinty or Jack Layton in Tel Aviv.

They'd "negotiate" while Iran built bigger and more sophisticated weapons, and recruited martyrs to deliver them to enemy states

Posted by: dmorris at September 8, 2006 9:45 AM

What should we do? Are we all going to die?

Posted by: Grasshopper at September 8, 2006 9:49 AM

Bob would tell you prior to 9/11 that the Americans would have been the first to fly air planes into tall buildings before any terrorist would. Wait a minute - that IS what he is saying! Man, what a twit!

Posted by: a different Bob at September 8, 2006 9:58 AM

Or the local jihad wackjob cell commander could just get tired of holding onto his lump of yellowcake or u239 and dump it in any old Don , Humber , Credit, Niagra, Potomac, Hudson, St Lawrence, Bow, Ohio, Mississipi river nearest him.
Property values would be next to zero and the base of our entire economy would be ?

Posted by: richfisher at September 8, 2006 10:39 AM

An intelligent commenter asks: "I doubt it, Bob. Please follow along with the logical steps, laid out below:
- Iran gets bomb.
- Now what?"

First, they need to develop nuclear power, joining THIRTY other states such as Lithuania, Slovakia, Armenia, Argentina, Brazil, and Mexico as producers of nuclear energy. Iran isn't even there yet.

If Iran manages not to get nuclear holocausted in the next 5 years let's say they develop a nuclear weapon. Then they join Pakistan, Israel, and possibly other rogue states like Belarus, Kazakhstan, Ukraine in having nuclear military capabilities. Not good. I don't have a solution for that, and neither do you.

A different Bob says "Bob would tell you prior to 9/11 that the Americans blahblahblah"

Oh be quiet, I neither said nor inferred any such thing.

Grasshopper says: "What should we do?"

Buy stock in adult undergarment companies, apply directly to forehead.

Posted by: Bob at September 8, 2006 10:42 AM

dmorris - following your thoughts, remember it was Clinton that let North Korea get its nuclear bomb up and running under his watch. It was another Democrat, Carter, that empowered the Iranian thugs in '79 when he cowered and whimpered for a 1000 days. Ahmadinejad was one of the hostage takers. They were released as Reagan was taking oath. How symbolic is that! It's pretty apparent that terrorists would be voting Democrat if we gave them absentee ballots.

Joe B. - I have a few like your friend in my own extended family. I recently had to physically excuse myself from a group at work because I knew I was going to loose it listening to their Bush bashing, can't we all get along, shallow DNC talking points banter. I'm convinced that the only thing, sadly, that's going to wake these people up is the next Big One.

Bush isn't perfect. But, Al Gore or John Kerry in the White House standing down terrorism!!!

Posted by: penny at September 8, 2006 10:45 AM

"if Iran ever has a nuclear weapon "
Consider the Manhattan Project. In 1944 scientists and engineers, without the aid of so much as a simple calculator capable of doing math within 2 decimal place accuracy; with only theory and scetchy theory at that to guide them, came up with 8 killoton weaspons in only 3 years. How could IRAN or Iraq be so far behind? I think it reasonable to conclude their only problems are delivery and quantity of weapons.

Posted by: Gunney99 at September 8, 2006 10:49 AM


Are you really this stupid or are you just trolling. That's a serious question.

Posted by: Warwick at September 8, 2006 10:51 AM

We’ll win this. I agree with those that are saying the biggest problem we have is with our own utopians. These internal forces, led by the utopian MSM and academia are putting the brakes on the West properly resourcing this fight in time to prevent a “Pearl Harbor” event that would drive us into declared War mode.

Also my sense is that middle Americans are upset with Bush not for being a warmonger but for not winning or being seen to win. Bush’s polls would improve if he laid out a clear aggressive strategy to win. BTW, I think Bush is caught like Roosevelt who knew he had to get into WWII he just couldn’t talk the public into it until Pearl Harbor.

Therefore I have no doubt the next election for President will be campaigned on the basis of - let’s get on with this fight, win it and get it over with.

Again, we’ll win but do we have to wait for an unpleasant event to resource a more robust fight ?

Posted by: nomdenet at September 8, 2006 11:02 AM

If Iran manages not to get nuclear holocausted in the next 5 years

If IRAN doesn't get nuked???, you twit, how about if Iran doesn't nuke Israel("another rogue State") as early as tomorrow, if they can.

You don't seem to be getting much out of the news, Bob. There seems to be a lot of confusion on your part as to what the principle players on the world stage are saying and doing. I guess it's all pretty interchangeable to you. Or, you've got some kind of Ground Hog Day syndrome like the movie going on. No past, no present, no timelime.

Posted by: penny at September 8, 2006 11:03 AM


skill testing question...
what country has openly declared to wipe isreal off the map ? if you should come up with the right answer do you think they would be using pea shooters ?

Posted by: spike at September 8, 2006 11:05 AM

Regardless of who's in the White House - if the terrorists attack North America again, there will be a long lineup at Allahs check-in counter.

Posted by: Irwin Daisy at September 8, 2006 12:08 PM

"there will be a long lineup at Allahs check-in counter."

Can we put bob at the front of the line?

Posted by: FREE at September 8, 2006 12:21 PM

My wager is on "that stupid"

Posted by: Robert in Calgary at September 8, 2006 12:25 PM

Unfortunately, the face of war is constantly changing. The days of lining up at opposite ends of the field wearing appropriate uniforms and having at'er are long gone. The rules are that today, there are no rules. Women and children?? Fair game for those fanatics. Geneva convention?? Please, quit making me laugh infidel. In order to beat your opponent you have to think like him (to the point of understanding his methods and motivation). To assume that they would not set off a nuke before they have it perfected along with a delivery system is wishful thinking. This is not going to go away any time soon and the only way to get the upper hand is to take the fight to them. I'd prefer seeing IEDs going off in Afghanistan than Saskatchewan or even Quebec.

Posted by: Texas Canuck at September 8, 2006 12:32 PM

September 8, 2006

Mohammad Ghannadi Maragheh, Research and Technology Deputy at the Iranian Atomic Energy Organization, Reveals Details About Iran's Nuclear Project

Interviewer: "I wanted to know what is the link between the Arak heavy-water reactor and what we now have at Natanz. Or perhaps these are two separate processes?"

Mohammad Ghannadi Maragheh: "Obviously, these are two completely separate processes. What happens in the enrichment process is intended primarily for light-water power plants, and for light-water research reactors. What we have in Arak is heavy water, which is used for heavy-water reactors and CANDU reactors. Since our future plans do not include the production of plutonium. In fact, we have no plans to separate uranium and plutonium for the purpose of fission. We are interested only in the radio-isotopes. We don't care which project will be the first to yield results - whether it is a heavy-water or light-water reactor. Canada has many heavy-water reactors. India has many heavy-water reactors - heavy-water research reactors. One country uses them to produce radio-isotopes, while the other uses them to produce weapons. It's up to the country." ....

Posted by: JM at September 8, 2006 12:48 PM

Texas Canuck - agree. That's was part of Bush's strategy in taking our troops into Iraq which the Dems don't get. Sure enough the cockroaches came out of the woodwork there. What is it the the left doesn't get in that it is far better to be killing them there than here. It has to be sapping their energy and funding in Iraq, plus incurring a backlash with the locals.

The Dems again have proposed an orderly retreat from Iraq. Then, what? Fight these monsters by remote control from across the Atlantic? Give them free reign across the ME? That can't work. What the Dems want is for this to go away magically Bill Clinton style. Minimize it. Ignore it. That didn't work either.

Posted by: penny at September 8, 2006 1:01 PM

Grasshopper said,

"What should we do? Are we all going to die?"

BTW grasshoppers have good survivability, as they strategically locate under large rocks when required.

No, just some of us. The anti-populationists will view this as a positive development, since they argue there are too many humans on the planet. This will be a nuclear culling of the population, kind of like the seal hunts "thin out" the population. These are kind of like the goons that Senator Dallaire reported on from Rwanda at page 6 from "Shake Hands with the Devil" the bureaucrats reported that "there are only humans and there are too many of them".

Put in the hands of some suicidal ideologues, satchel nukes would prove to be, shall we say, 'troublesome'. The reasons for being a suicidal ideologue could be for "Der Fuehrer", for the greater proletariat of the grand old Communist Party, for some twisted version of Allah, or plain old human sacrifice in the vein of the Aztecs:

Sahagún describes what awaited those condemned souls upon the summit of the temple:

"As soon as they had dragged them to the block…they threw down on their back, five men holding them, two by the feet and two by the arms, and one by the head. Then at once the priest, who was to kill him, would come and strike him a blow on the chest with both hands, holding a flint knife shaped like the iron of an anchor, cutting a hole. Into this hole he would thrust one hand and tear out the heart, which he offered to the sun… The lords from provinces who had come to observe the sacrifice were shocked and bewildered by what they had seen and they returned to their homes filled with astonishment and fright."

Now, the ritual beheadings of the Al Qaeda/Taliban types kind of fits the modality of using terror as a political tool.

Back to the Aztecs below:

"Michael Harner, in his book The Enigma of Aztec Sacrifice has also revised the estimated number of persons sacrificed in central Mexico in the fifteenth century to 250,000 per year" [1], and claimed "Evidence of Aztec cannibalism has been largely ignored or consciously or unconsciously covered up."

While popular accounts refer the Aztec had to perform a daily sacrifice so the sun would appear the next day, the sacrifices were made only in specific days. Bernardino de Sahagún, Juan Bautista de Pomar and Motolinía report that the Aztecs had 18 festivities each year, one for each Aztec month. Motolinía and Pomar clearly state that only in those festivities were sacrifices made. Each god required a different kind of victim: young women were drowned for Xilonen, sick male children were sacrificed to Tlaloc (Juan Carlos Román: 2004 Museo del templo mayor), Nahuatl-speaking prisoners to Huitzilopochtli, and an Aztec (or simply nahua, according to some accounts) volunteer for Tezcatlipoca. The Ramírez Codex states that for the annual festivity of Huitzilopochtli, more than 60 prisioners were sacrificed in the main temple, and prisoners were sacrificed also in the main Aztec cities.

Not all these sacrifices were made at the main temple; a few were made at "Cerro del Peñón", an islet of the Texcoco lake. According to an Aztec source, in the month of Tlacaxipehualiztli, 34 captives were sacrificed in the gladiatorial sacrifice, to Xipe Totec. A bigger figure would be dedicated to Huitzilopochtli in the month of Panquetzaliztli: according to the Ramírez Codex more than 60 captives were sacrificed. This could put a figure as low as 300 to 600 victims a year, but Marvin Harris multiplies it by 20, assuming that the same sacrifices were made in every one of the sections or calpullis of the city. There is little agreement on the actual figure since there is little archeological evidence so far to support any figure.

Providing prisoners for sacrifice was the main purpose of warriors, and every Aztec warrior would have had to provide at least one prisoner. Theoretically this should provide a base number of victims. But while all the male population was trained to be warriors, only the few who had successfully captured prisoners for sacrifice could became full-time members of the warrior elite. Those who could not would most likely have became macehualli, or workers. Accounts also state that several young warriors could unite their efforts in order to capture a single prisoner. This suggests that capturing prisoners for sacrifice was challenging.

Because of this modern estimates of the number sacrificed by the Aztec at the time of the conquest can vary from 300 people annually to 14,100 in a single event. The main source of discrepancy in this estimate is whether the sacrifices were only performed in the main temple of Tenochtitlan, in all twenty calpullis (precincts) of the city or in all Aztec cities."

Only today, the justification is that Allah is instructing the Al Qaeda/Taliban types to make war on the west, and show ritual beheadings on the internet. The political tool of terror is alive and well, only the justificatory "ideology" has changed. Of course they are all doing "God's work".

It is a strange mixture of ideologies that Communist China, which professes no gods, is helping the Iranians, who profess that all should convert to a radical Islam, per the mullahaucracy.

Communist China of course uses the fear of nuclear weapons in its arsenal to ward off those in the sphere of influence around say Taiwan.

Iran would like to use the threat of nuclear weapons to advance the cause of the Caliphate and of course the demise the of the "Great Satan" the United States.

Whenever, one is engaged in ideological battles somebody has to be the 'good guy' and somebody has to be the 'bad guy'. At its root, is the quest and retention of power, influence and last but not least, money.

Hang it all, even Hezbollah recently handed out $12,000.00 USD to those who had their homes destroyed.

The ideology du jour, now is that "Israel should be wiped off the map" and all should convert, willy nilly to the worship of Allah, on pain of sanction.

Here we all are, and the "modern Aztecs" are still with us since the fifteenth century. One can multiply examples from Celtic, Roman, Greek or Egyptian history at one's leisure; but ideological sacrifice, in the name of one's 'Gods' or 'no Gods' is very much alive or dead depending on whether one belongs to the ruling classes or merely a plebian peasant who needs to be 'taught a lesson'.

Any decent student of history and archeology/anthropology will recognize that the ideological threads common to the justification of human and/or ritual sacrifice for the purpose of retention of power and influence. Usually, it is the fear of loss of power and influence which impels a radicalization at the political level.

But fear will ultimately 'sink the ideological boat' because as we have seen in eastern Europe; the communist grip could not hold, even with 1 in 50 as "Stasi" informants in East Germany.

Of course in the west, one is free to believe whatever you want; but it stops where someone else's nose begins. The strength of democracy is that it incorporates a variety of positions and distills the kernel of truth through vigorous debate. Vigorous debate has been somewhat lacking in some democracies, but that appears to be changing for the better.

A satchel nuke going off, would be political 'shock wave therapy' and would likely lead to a seismic reordering at the political level as to whether there is a real or imagined 'war on terror'.

The history of mankind is replete with terror as advanced by such notables as Ivan the Terrible, Attila the Hun, Adolf Hitler, Josef Stalin, Erich Honnecker, Mao Tse Dong etc.

Note the following article:

Mr Ng also commented on the nature of the CCP. “The Communist Party has never changed. It is the same entity as its monstrous Mao past, no matter how today it tries to portray itself to the West as a reformed, even normal party.”

He quoted former Chinese paramount leader Jiang Zemin: “It is clear that we did the right thing by opening fire on the students in 1989. After all, almost all the other communists are out of power, while we are still here. But the mistake we made was that we let the world see it. From now on, we will not make that mistake anymore.”

Mr. Ng illustrated the quotation from Jiang: “When the CCP started the persecution of Falun Gong in 1999, the CCP took it underground and while it is most brutal, it is not seen much by the outside.”

When ideologies use fear as an internal motivator this most often will fail, as the allegiances 'bought' will bit by bit crumble. Newer and more extreme outrages need to be had to underscore the quest and retention of power through fear.

In short, the ideologies of hate are predicated on the 'us' versus 'them' mentality. It inherently sets up a Heglian dialectic spiral. It is a political pathology, that uses fear and atrocity, because at its core the 'center cannot hold'.
The group is assumed to be greater than the individual. In the west, it is the free individual who is assumed to be greater than the group.

It is these political fault lines which separtate us from oriental Communism and radical Islamist extremism.

This is why free thinking peoples are ascribed as a threat, because the allegiance given or withheld in a democracy has to be earned. Respect of the voter can be abused, but scores are settled on ballot box day. Citizens can be abused for a while but when this is made a steady diet out the governments go.

In the west, one is free to worship Allah, Yahweh, Jesus, Vishnu, Sikh, etc. or no gods at all. What the west doesn't tolerate is the proposition, to a greater or lesser degree, that fear and use of violence are legitimate methods of conversion to a cause.

The Air India case, as the former supreme court justice John Major correctly noted, was a failure of the legal system.

On May 1, 2006, Prime Minister Stephen Harper called the Commission of Inquiry into the Investigation of the Bombing of Air India Flight 182 and named retired Supreme Court Justice John Major as its head.

"This inquiry is not a matter of reprisal, nor is it intended to go back over the criminal trial," he said. "It is about finding answers to several key questions about the worst mass murder in Canadian history."

The old adage of "justice delayed justice denied" comes to mind.

Air India bombing inquiry begins in Canada

Friday, Jun 23, 2006,Page 7

Sundra Arora, right, is comforted by her daughter Shipra Rana as the names of all the victims of Air India Flight 182 are displayed before Justice John Major's opening statement of the inquiry looking into the 1985 fatal bombing of Air India Flight 182, in Ottawa, Canada, on Wednesday. Arora's other daughter Shyla died in the bombing.
An inquiry began in Canada on Wednesday into the 1985 bombing of Air India Flight 182 to determine how Canadian authorities failed to stop or to prosecute all those responsible for one of the world's worst air attacks.

"[The inquiry] will help us determine how we can assure the families who have spent more than 20 years seeking answers that the Canadian system has been or can be fixed. The Air India tragedy or its like must never be repeated," retired Supreme Court justice John Major, who is leading the inquiry, said in his opening remarks.

"This massive murder was the most insidious episode of cowardice and inhumanity in our history, and it remains among the worst aviation disasters in Canadian and world history. Some 21 years later, Canada and the world cannot forget what took place," he said.

The airliner was bombed off the coast of Ireland on June 23, 1985, by radical orthodox Sikh immigrants to Canada, according to prosecutors. The blast killed 329 passengers and crew members, mostly Canadians.

Less than an hour later, another bomb inside a suitcase blew up at Narita airport in Japan, killing two baggage handlers as they transferred it to another Air India flight.

Both bombs originated from Vancouver on Canada's West Coast and, according to prosecutors, were payback for the Indian government's 1984 army attack on the Sikhs' Golden Temple at Amritsar.

The only person jailed over the attacks is Inderjit Singh Reyat, who was denied parole in March.

Two other suspects -- Ripudaman Singh Malik and Ajaib Sing Bagri -- were acquitted last year in Canada's most complex and expensive criminal trial ever, which revealed a lack of cooperation between Canada's spy agency and national police that may have led to the destruction of key evidence.

The alleged mastermind of the plot, Talwinder Singh Parmar, was killed in a police shootout in India in 1992.

Major took over from former Ontario province premier Bob Rae who conducted a review of the failed criminal case against the two Vancouver men to determine if a judicial inquiry was warranted.

Rae, who is now vying to lead the opposition Liberal Party, recommended a probe with limited scope.

Major will not be able to find guilt or point to possible suspects in the case, which remains open.

However, he will recommend fixes to Canada's security, legislative and judicial systems that "failed the families of the Air India victims ... [and] all Canadians."

Specifically, Major will examine Canada's new anti-terror laws and airport security.

What a refreshing piece of honesty from our former supreme court justice John Major. This man has the jam to acknowledge what no one else dared yell from the roof tops. My kudos to him.

No it is not good enough to sweep 329 lives under the carpet and say justice was done. The first step to a cure is to acknowledge there is a disease. We wish John Major well in his endeavours.

So at long last we arrive at the conclusion that the ideological thrusts that motivate some to political violence are fear and loss of control.

Hence, when the long line of "life is cheap" advocates come your way and suggest by way of stupidity or craven political calculus that change through violence achieves anything; we should give these same advocates the bum's rush they so richly deserve.

Thus we conclude that fear will 'sink your ideological boat'.

"Do not let your hearts be troubled,
and do not let them be afraid."

—John 14:27

Sounds like mighty good advice to me.

Posted by: Hans Rupprecht at September 8, 2006 1:57 PM

The Last Known Hiroshima Survivor.

The last known Hiroshima survivor picks himself up , wipes off the debri , stares at the Mushroom cloud forming overhead , looks to the east as the Enola Gay flys away , and says; " The hell with this. I am moving to Nagasaki." *

*From Ron S. Chriechton's handbook of Politically Un-Correct Jokes.

Posted by: Ratt at September 8, 2006 4:24 PM

To all Leftist appeasing Moonbats, let this be a lesson to you.

"You may not be interested in war, but war is interested in you."

-(your beloved comrade in arms) Leon Trotsky

Posted by: Doug at September 8, 2006 5:46 PM

penny: "It was another Democrat, Carter, that empowered the Iranian thugs in '79 when he cowered and whimpered for a 1000 days."

And it was Reagan who illegally sold arms to the mullahs in Iran - after he cut and ran from Lebanon.

Posted by: Jonesy at September 8, 2006 6:13 PM

This is why the idea of dirty bombs came up early on. Terrorists seldom go for sophistication (exception being the weaponry used against Israel), so the intelligence communities are always on the look out. The Hiroshima fallacy is more the problem of academics who choose to feel safe in their bubbles. That, and people who choose to remain blissfully unaware. Heck, when there is nothing you can do about it, why not put your head in the sand and sing?

Posted by: Debbie at September 9, 2006 9:05 PM

In CHICO CALIFORNIA its against city ordenence to set off a nucular bomb smart thinking when your city gets vaporized by terrorists the city councils of screwy wacky ideas

Posted by: spurwing plover at September 10, 2006 3:58 PM