Inaccurate Prediction of Nuclear Weapons' Effects and Possible Adverse Influences on Nuclear Terrorism Preparedness
Harney, Robert C.
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The primary purpose of this paper is to discuss the accuracy of common effects estimates and describe how more realistic estimates might affect nuclear terrorism preparedness.[...].The likelihood of an attack [nuclear] has prompted considerable public debate about what are the best steps to prevent such an attack. In many of these discussions estimates of the number of casualties or the size of the area that would be damaged by an attack are used to reinforce the importance of action. Ironically, as discussed later, these estimates may evoke inaction in some critical areas. It is more likely that valid estimates made for a military attack scenario have been improperly extrapolated to the terrorist scenario.
This article appeared in Homeland Security Affairs (September 2009), v.5 no.3
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