The Japanese government has not declared about 640 kg of unused plutonium in its annual report for the International Atomic Energy Agency in 2012 and 2013, an amount enough to make 80 nuclear bombs…
Japan claims to own 44 tons of plutonium, while the actual amount is 45 tons, said Japan’s Kyodo News Agency. The unreported plutonium is part of the plutonium-uranium mixed oxide (MOX) fuel placed at an offline reactor in a nuclear plant in Saga Prefecture, southern Japan.
The MOX fuel was loaded in March 2011, shortly before the Fukushima Nuclear Crisis happened later that month. Until two years later, the unused fuel was taken out from the reactor which remained offline.
An official from Japan Atomic Energy Commission argued that the plutonium is considered being used and hence exempt from reporting to the IAEA.
But plenty of experts both abroad and at home criticized the action of the Japanese government for failing to recognize the seriousness of the problem…”From the safeguards point of view this material is still un- irradiated fresh MOX fuel regardless of its location,” former IAEA Deputy Director General Olli Heinonen said. Thus the unreported plutonium could be diverted to as many as 80 nuclear bombs.
Japan keeps the largest amount of plutonium among non-nuclear nations. The country used it for power generation in the past, but after the 2011 disaster at Fukushima, Japan’s nuclear reactors remain idle.
The big amounts of plutonium are causing regional worries over Japan’s motives, as well as global concerns over the security of these nuclear fuel reserves.
This ain’t an “oops!” moment. Reflect for a minute on what reasons there might be for Japan to hide a ton of plutonium. It’s not like they’re paying taxes or licensing fees on the stuff.
It isn’t likely Japan would sell plutonium to some other nation – especially when the first use that comes to mind is production of nuclear bombs or warheads, dirty or otherwise. Just when the Abe government is trying to unwrite the nation’s pacifist constitution.
Like – “Don’t put me in that freezer!”
The Punjab High Court in India has been asked to determine whether a Hindu spiritual leader is dead or in a deep state of meditation.
His Holiness Shri Ashutosh Maharaj, one of the wealthiest gurus in the country, reportedly died of a heart attack in January. His followers disagree, claiming that Maharaj has gone into deep Samadhi or meditation. His disciples have put his body in a freezer at his Ashram for preservation until he wakes.
His estate will remain under the control of the Ashram until he is declared dead. His family has called on an Indian high court to determine whether Muharaj is actually dead or reached the next level of transcendence.
“Maharaj has been in deep meditation. He has spent many years meditating in sub-zero temperatures in the Himalayas, there is nothing unusual in it. He will return to life as soon as he feels and we will ensure his body is preserved until then,” said one of the guru’s aides.
Dilip Jha, Muharaj’s son, claims his father’s followers are only saying he is alive so they can continue to have access to his fortune.
Probably could get away with the same hustle in most theocracies. Like Mississippi.
Pay attention in class and follow instructions
A group of Sunni militants attending a suicide bombing training class at a camp north of Baghdad were killed on Monday when their commander unwittingly conducted a demonstration with a belt that was packed with explosives…
The militants belonged to a group known as the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, or ISIS, which is fighting the Shiite-dominated army of the Iraqi government, mostly in Anbar Province. But they are also linked to bomb attacks elsewhere and other fighting that has thrown Iraq deeper into sectarian violence.
Twenty-two ISIS members were killed, and 15 were wounded, in the explosion at the camp, which is in a farming area in the northeastern province of Samara…Eight militants were arrested when they tried to escape…
The militant who was conducting the training was not identified by name, but he was described by an Iraqi Army officer as a prolific recruiter who was “able to kill the bad guys for once…”
A State Department official, Brett McGurk, said that ISIS had about 2,000 fighters in Iraq, and that its longer-term objective is to establish a base of operations in Baghdad, led by Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, who has been officially designated as a global terrorist by the State Department.
The dude qualifies all the way round. Especially since he took out 22 candidates with himself, wounded 15 more and survivors were arrested. Phew.
The National Security Agency is authorized to spy on the citizens of America’s closest allies, including Britain, even though those English-speaking countries have long had an official non-spying pact, according to a newly disclosed memorandum.
The classified N.S.A. document, which appears to be a draft and is dated January 2005, states that under specific circumstances, the American intelligence agency may spy on citizens of Britain without that country’s consent or knowledge. The memo, provided by the former N.S.A. contractor Edward J. Snowden, is labeled secret and “NOFORN,” indicating that it may not be shared with any foreign country…
The memo was provided by Mr. Snowden to The Guardian, which shared it with The New York Times. The N.S.A. also declined to say whether the memorandum merely codified longstanding American practice or was breaking new ground…blah, blah, blah, the agency said in a written reply to questions…
One paragraph, marked secret, appears to suggest that the preferred option is to gain permission from the country whose citizens are to be spied upon. But the very next paragraph, marked secret and NOFORN, indicates that the N.S.A. can go it alone if permission is not forthcoming — or if United States chooses not to ask.
Sounds like the country we’ve all come to know and revere for its respect for constitutional democracy and citizens’ right to privacy. Just not in the last five or six decades.
Candidate for head of Homeland Security
Residents of Old Saybrook received quite a shock after hearing the area was under a terrorist attack over the Connecticut town’s public address system on Sunday afternoon.
The Office of Emergency Management said a dispatcher accidentally made a series of errors, which caused the message to play over speakers placed around town. The message also warned residents to seek shelter…
Reverse 911 calls were made through the Everbridge Emergency Notification System apologizing for the error and saying in part, “There is no emergency, and there is no homeland security crisis in or near the Town of Old Saybrook.”
The Office of Emergency Management said it takes the matter very seriously and an internal investigation has begun into that dispatcher’s actions.
The possibility for disruptive errors like this one don’t exist – of course – where the public and politicians alike have decided not to rule their lives by fear and trepidation.
Hooters ball-girl picks up ball still in play and tosses it to the crowd. Embarrassment follows.
The night shift at a Chivas Brothers distillery screwed up this week and accidentally flushed about 6,000 gallons of Scotch whisky down the drain…
The 80-proof goof happened early Tuesday at a bottling plant in Dumbarton, where workers were cleaning equipment. Instead of purging the wastewater, they instead expelled 18,000 liters of bulk whisky into the local sewage system…
No one at Chivas noticed until 11 a.m., but local sewage crews had gotten a good whiff of the scotch-and-water problem and were attempting to identify the source long before the distiller reported what had happened.
“Discharging large volumes of alcohol into the sewer network can have an adverse impact on wastewater treatment processes, particularly during dry, cold weather,” Scottish Water said in a statement, the BBC reported. “We are continuing to closely monitor our Dumbarton wastewater treatment works to ensure treatment has not been compromised…”
The company said it was investigating.
Someone managed to pull off a double OOPS! They flushed $750,000 worth of decent booze down the drain – and probably poisoned a chunk of the sewer treatment plant, as well.
Distracted motorists have more accidents passing Stonehenge than any other British landmark…
Over a third of drivers, 34 per cent, have had a prang or near miss in the UK as a result of taking their eyes off the road to admire a view…And an admiring 14 per cent have slammed on the brakes to get a longer look – typically reducing their speed by 27 mph…
The Angel of the North, in Gateshead, Tyne and Wear, is the second most dangerous landmark and the Blackpool Tower, in Lancs, third.
A captivated 18 per cent and 12 per cent of motorists find their eyes drifting towards these sites as they pass…
Just over one in ten of these drivers, 11 per cent, have had or nearly had an accident at these two beauty spots.
Janet Connor, from MORE TH>N, said: “Travel guides, friends and family often encourage us to take the scenic route…But until now the perils of admiring the world beyond the windscreen have not been fully explored.
“The UK is blessed with some amazing sights but motorists need to keep their eyes on the road and resist the lure of staring at them while driving…To avoid having an accident, park-up and enjoy the view safely.”
I remember when a Boston hotel built a swimming pool that immediately overlooked the I95 Freeway right in the heart of the city. There were so many accidents the first month it was in use – from male drivers ogling the babes in bikinis – they were ordered by the city to close it back down.