In one scenario laid out by The VonFrederick Group, terrorists could hide an atomic weapon inside a cargo container, load it on a pirated freighter, dock it at a pier in San Francisco, and detonate the weapon before anything could be done to prevent it. Such an explosion would instantly kill every living thing for miles and utterly destroy the entire city and surrounding areas. Nearly every building would be demolished. As for people, San Francisco has an estimated population of over 740,000- the death rate would be expected to be at or near 100%. Deaths attributed to the effects of radiation poisoning as well as those who would perish in the resulting structure and wild fires outside the blast’s immediate reach could number in the thousands. Should something like this occur, September 11th would seem insignificant in comparison.
The preceding scenario came to mind when I read an article in the February 17th, 2006 edition of The New York Times about the control of the ports in New York. According to the article, “P&O Ports operates the New York City Passenger Ship Terminal and owns a 50 percent interest in the Port Newark Container Terminal, which is the third-largest cargo terminal on the Port Authority’s property.” This British company, Peninsular & Oriental Steam Navigation Company (P&O) also runs ports in New Jersey, Baltimore, New Orleans, Miami and Philadelphia. Our government has approved the purchase of P&O by Dubai Ports World (DP World). DP World is owned by the government of Dubai which is part of the United Arab Emirates (UAE). Additionally, David Sanborn, a senior executive of DP World, has been nominated to head the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Maritime Administration. [Read more…]