U.S. Nuke Sites Dismantled Security to Save Money, Report Warns

Problems persist two years after major security breach

The organization responsible for securing America’s highly sensitive nuclear sites has been suffering from a “chaotic” and “dysfunctional” security policy that has endangered the country’s nuclear sites and left them vulnerable to attack, according to a new report by the government’s watchdog group.

The National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA), which is tasked with managing the nation’s nuclear stockpile and securing classified research sites, has “increased risks and reduced security” over the past several years in a bid to reduce overhead costs, according to a new Government Accountability Office (GAO) report. Continue reading

Chinese aircraft enter Japan’s ADIZ

A Tu-154 electronic warfare aircraft of the People’s Liberation Army Air Force and a Y-12 utility aircraft of China’s State Oceanic Administration entered the Japanese air defense identification zone (ADIZ) simultaneously on Feb. 21, according to the state-run China News Service. Continue reading

Study reveals ‘dangerous weak link’ in nuke security

WASHINGTON (AP) — The number of countries possessing the makings of a nuclear bomb has dropped by almost one-quarter over the past two years, but there remain “dangerous weak links” in nuclear materials security that could be exploited by terrorist groups with potentially catastrophic results, according to a study released Wednesday.

The report said a significant portion of these materials is poorly secured and vulnerable to theft or sale on the black market. Relatively small amounts of highly enriched uranium or plutonium are required to build a nuclear bomb, which is a declared ambition of terrorist groups such as al-Qaida. Continue reading

Japan fighter jets scrambled to fend off China

JAPAN scrambled fighter jets to head off a Chinese government plane flying towards disputed islands in the East China Sea, Tokyo’s defence ministry said.

It is the first such incident to be announced by the ministry since China created its new air defence identification zone (ADIZ) in November last year, which has stoked tensions in the region. Continue reading