August 2nd, 2012
(HigginsBlog) – 3 senior citizen nuclear activists, including an 82-year old nun, infiltrated and vandalized the United States only nuclear bomb making facility.
Repeated warnings by activists all over the country that US nuclear facilities are not safe from terrorists have been blanket dismissed at public hearings by regulators who say our facilities are safe from attacks.
Their claims now appear to be justified as the 3 anti-nuclear activists, including an 82-year-old nun, were able to cut through 4 security perimeter fences at what is reportedly the only United States only uranium and plutonium enrichment facility.
According to the activists they walked across the grounds for over 2 hours for over 2 hours before reaching the main building which they then proceeded to vandalize by spray painting, hanging banners, police crime scene tape and throwing human blood on the building.
Officials say the nuclear materials themselves have not been compromised but the facility is being shut down until next week due to the security failure.
If three senior citizens were able to accomplish such a task, imagine what terrorists or well-trained enemy special forces could have done.
Perhaps more shocking is the US government does not run their own security at the site, instead delegating that authority to one of the CIA’s favorite mercenary firms – G4S – which would be an awfully convenient scapegoat in the event of a real incident at the site.
U.S nuclear bomb facility shut after security breach
(Reuters) – The U.S. government’s only facility for handling, processing and storing weapons-grade uranium was temporarily shut this week after anti-nuclear activists, including an 82-year-old nun, breached security fences, government officials said on Thursday.
WSI Oak Ridge, the contractor responsible for protecting the facility at Oak Ridge, Tennessee, is owned by the international security firm G4S, which was at the center of a dispute over security at the London Olympic Games.
Officials said that the facility was shut down on Wednesday at least until next week after three activists cut through perimeter fences to reach the outer wall of a building where highly-enriched uranium, a key nuclear bomb component, is stored.
The activists painted slogans and threw what they said was human blood on the wall of the facility, one of numerous buildings in the facility known by the code name Y-12 that it was given during World War II, officials said.
While moving between the perimeter fences, the activists triggered sensors which alerted security personnel. However, officials conceded that the intruders still were able to reach the building’s walls before security personnel got to them.
Ellen Barfield, a spokeswoman for the activists who called themselves “Transform Now Plowshares”, were arrested and charged by federal authorities with vandalism and criminal trespass.
She said the three, identified as Megan Rice, 82, Michael R. Walli, 63 and Greg Boertje-Obed, 57, were being held in custody. They are scheduled to appear in court in the next few days.
Barfield forwarded a statement from the group in which they said they had passed through four fences and walked for “over two hours” before reaching the uranium storage building, upon which they hung banners and strung crime-scene tape.
The NNSA officials said that the activists cut through two chain link fences surrounding the sprawling facility and a third fence surrounding the ultra-secure enriched uranium stockpile building, known as the “Highly Enriched Uranium Materials Facility.”
Wyatt said that the building serves as the U.S. government’s only “warehouse” for storing highly enriched uranium used in nuclear weapons.
Highly enriched uranium is a radioactive material used in the core of bombs to produce a nuclear detonation. The Oak Ridge plant is one of the most important government installations involved in the maintenance and production of the U.S. nuclear arsenal.
Peter Stockton, a former Congressional investigator and security consultant to the Energy Department, expressed skepticism at government claims that the nuclear material was not at risk.
“It is unbelievable this could happen,” Stockton said. “The significance is outrageous. If they were terrorists, they could have blown open the door and got inside.”
Stockton said that the security breach was the “worst we’ve ever seen”. He said it was more serious than the case of Wen Ho Lee, a Taiwan-born scientist who was suspected of espionage at the Los Alamos nuclear laboratory. He pleaded guilty in 2000 to a less severe charge when the case against him collapsed.
Source: Higgins Blog