Dirty Bombs, Despite Their Name, Not Sexy Enough

Another treaty? Especially at a time when New START barely squeaked through the Senate ratification process, despite how watered down it was and compromised by giveaways to the nuclear-weapons industry? And when the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty and Fissile Material Cut-off Treaty seem to be going nowhere fast?

But since it doesn’t address nuclear weapons themselves, tied up as they are with a state’s notion of national security — and with some states, their very identities — a treaty might find easier going. Besides, the NPT, despite being violated and ignored at times, has, arguably, been as integral as deterrence to the prevention of states from attacking each other with nuclear weapons. A treaty on radioactive sources might create just enough of an obstacle to keep non-state actors or criminals from securing them.

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1 comment on this post.
  1. Lex:

    This is a real thing. We had 19 tubes of cesium go missing from the area’s biggest hospital in 1998; ultimately, the case was classified as theft. It was never solved, and the material was never found. Authorities were pretty sure that whoever took it was familiar with radioactive materials, which suggests an organized effort that might be part of a larger pattern.