Thursday, May 12, 2005

NIGHTMARE SCENARIO: NUKES OVER WASHINGTON D.C.

It was all over the news yesterday...An errant Cessna veered into restricted airspace over Washington D.C. Panic ensued.
From AP:
A small plane strayed within three miles of the White House on Wednesday, leading to frantic evacuation of the Executive Mansion and the Capitol with military jets scrambling to intercept the aircraft and firing flares to steer it away.

[...]

The White House raised its threat level to red - the highest - for eight minutes, said spokesman Scott McClellan. Vice President Dick Cheney, first lady Laura Bush and former first lady Nancy Reagan, overnighting at the White House for a special event, were moved to secure locations.

From Wapo:
Alarms sounded and emergency lights went on in congressional office buildings about noon, as police shouted warnings and people hurried for exits and walked, or ran, down marble staircases and north toward Union Station, witnesses said.

Outside, sirens wailed and the sound of the jets could be heard overhead. "It was relatively orderly," said one Senate worker who fled the Capitol. "But there's still panic, there's always panic. You start to run faster than you think you can run."

The question for me is: Why the panic? Yes, a cessna over Washington, 3 miles from the White House is something to be concerned about. But, to evacuate almost all offices and government buildings in the city as a result of a small plane veering off course? What were they so afraid of...

Answer: SUICIDE NUKE PLANES

Yep. That's right. Nukes delivered via small planes. Exploded over the city.
Via NorthEast Intelligence Network:
The Northeast Intelligence Network has received specific information from a well-placed source within the DC intelligence community, speaking on strict condition of anonymity, that current intelligence has recently been collected domestically and abroad from human and electronic sources that identify very detailed and specific threats to political, economic and strategic targets located within the continental U.S., including high value targets in Washington, DC., New York, and about two-dozen other cities across the U.S.

“We are reviewing very recent and highly credible information - information that was obtained within the last few months, of plans that include a significant series of attacks that involve the use of unconventional weapons.” We are talking about a mass casualty event or series of events with the use of WMDs [weapons of mass destruction] and some rather unique delivery methods. We are also reviewing attack plans that include the use of aircraft of all types and sizes as well, even remotely controlled aircraft.” According to this source, intelligence officials are unsure whether the attack plans are intended to take place at the same time or will be a timed series of events. “We don’t have a handle on any sort of timetable, but I can tell you that we are very concerned with the short term,” stated this source.

This is the first I have heard of this threat, but, in the context of the panic-ridden reaction of our Capitol police / leaders, it makes perfect sense:
"Today’s events should make it obvious to anyone paying attention that we are anticipating a pretty significant event. The airborne threat was identified as a Cessna 150 – a two-seater - within seconds after it initially breached our [Washington, DC] airspace. Even fully loaded with fuel, how much damage could one expect to be caused by that aircraft,” asked the official rhetorically. “Now, look at how the security officials handled the situation on the ground at both the White House and the Capitol building. It should be obvious that we were expecting a mass casualty event, and our people were immensely concerned about what was in that plane after it failed to respond to repeated warnings from the ground and later from the air. I am talking about a weapon of mass destruction, from a biological or chemical payload to a small tactical nuclear device.”

Let's pray that a scenario like this is never carried out. Can you imagine a small plane loaded with a tactical NUKE over Washington or New York? How could it be stopped? Shooting it down is really not an option as that could trigger the NUKE. What would we do? Probably panic like they did yesterday...

Other coverage on this incident:
Malkin: Laughing at a terror scare
Wizbang: Whitehouse evacuated -- Unknown aircraft in area
Truth. Quante-fied.: Plane scare at Capitol

cross-linked at THE JAM