How nations risk nuclear terrorism
U.S. President Barack Obama and South Korean President Lee Myung-Bak hold a news conference in Seoul, South Korea.
March 26th, 2012
02:50 PM ET

How nations risk nuclear terrorism

Editor's note: Richard J. Chasdi is an adjunct assistant professor at the Center for Peace and Conflict Studies at Wayne State University and the author of "Counterterror Offensives for the Ghost War World: The Rudiments of Counterterrorism Policy" (Lexington Books, 2010).

By Richard J. Chasdi - Special to CNN

World leaders are meeting in Seoul this week to discuss how to deal with the threat of nuclear terrorism.

The effort to prevent the misuse of nuclear materials and the spread of nuclear weapons has long-placed most emphasis on defensive measures. These are essentially on the "supply side" - aiming to choke off the flow of nuclear weapon components and radiological materials to terrorists. While there is a place for such steps, there is another, and perhaps more successful way, to accomplish the goal.

One of the gravest threats to nuclear proliferation arises from the nations that use proxy groups - seemingly independent organizations that are paid to further the interests of governments.

Ending or reducing the use of such proxy groups has real potential to reduce the availability of such materials to terrorists. Perhaps the single, most dominant security threat stems from the nuclear-tipped country of Pakistan, with its accepted use of proxy groups to promote the perceived national interest.

Third-party transfer, where a country receiving weapons sells or gives them to another party, is always a danger, and with it looms the possible catastrophe of nuclear weapons in the wrong hands.

Read on here.

Topics: Nuclear • President Obama • Terrorism

soundoff (4 Responses)
  1. Rz

    Proliferation ?!? Just see what happens if someone even tries to get a nuke even close America ! Isn't that right, Kruschev and Castro ?!?

    March 26, 2012 at 11:48 pm | Reply
  2. j. von hettlingen

    Yes, Laskar-e-Toiba is Pakistan's proxy to terrorise Indians and undermines their interests in Kashmir. But LeT is less of a security risk to Pakistan than the Pakistani Taliban (TTP), that wants to destabilise the country.

    March 27, 2012 at 6:32 am | Reply
    • j. von hettlingen

      Pervez Musharraf once said Pakistan's nukes are constantly on the move, to avoid falling into the wrong hands.

      March 27, 2012 at 6:35 am | Reply
  3. Benedict

    It seems that non-state actors will be the powder keg to start WW III! To state the obvious,these proxies do represent a threat to world stability,but i wonder if anyone is crazy enough to place weapons of mass destruction in the hands of individuals who are willing to go after targets outside of government orders!!

    March 27, 2012 at 7:05 am | Reply

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